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Australian Muscle Car Australian Muscle Car

Australian Muscle Car

Issue 111

Australian Muscle Car is a fresh, proudly Australian publication dedicated to preserving the legend of the unique ‘Australian made’ Ford vs Holden muscle car heritage. From 1960s classic Bathurst muscle to the super sophisticated Falcon and Commodore performance cars of the new millennium and everything in between.

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steve normoyle

As you may have noticed, this issue we’re celebrating 40 years since Peter Brock’s famous six-lap Bathurst victory in 1979. Think about that: Brock and co-driver Jim Richards finished almost 40km ahead of the second-placed car! It was an astonishing achievement then, and it remains unparalleled 40 years on. It’s pretty safe to say that it’ll stand for all time in Great Race history – the modern curse of the Safety Car should see to that! Of course, Brock’s ’79 Bathurst win is famous not just for the six-lap margin. Because, as I’m sure no one needs reminding, he set a new lap record on the last lap. That was a feat of such jaw-dropping audacity that it’s almost more remarkable than the win itself. The car had been flogging around Mount…

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chev corvette – holden!

It’s a great shot in the arm for General Motors’ Aussie outpost, which has been reeling from poor sales and bad news ever since local manufacturing ceased late in 2017. The Corvette is a great headline right now, but it promises to be an even better car when RHD examples of the all-new C8 start rolling from the Bowling Green, Kentucky, assembly line into Holden showrooms in either late 2020 or early 2021. While HSV has been supplying locally-converted Camaros to Holden, Corvette will mark the return of a factory-supplied rear-wheel drive V8 drivetrain to its showrooms for the first time since the locally developed and manufactured Commodore sadly disappeared from sale. Obviously the Corvette won’t be an exact replacement for Commodore. The C8 is the first mid-engined Corvette and, oh yeah,…

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the real thing

Allan Moffat’s Trans-Am Boss Mustang 302 might just be the most significant touring car Australia has ever seen. Not only was this a state-of-the-art, brand new Trans-Am racer purpose built for Ford by Kar Kraft in Detroit, it would also be the car that launched the career of Allan Moffat. The battles between Moffat’s Coca-Cola-backed Mustang (bottom) and rivals like Bob Jane and his 7.0-litre Camaro ZL1, the Mustang GTA of Ian Geoghegan and ‘Stormin’ Norm Beechey’s HT Monaro GTS 350 are the stuff of legends. It was an era of heavy metal touring car muscle which, while short lived, remains for many the highwater mark of touring car racing in Australia even 50 years on. From his exploits in the Mustang (including his earlier testing work with Kar Kraft), Moffat spring-boarded…

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finance the old fashioned way

Old Ford Fairlanes aren’t exactly a common sight on Sydney’s city streets these days. So it was hard to miss the white ZB Fairlane that rumbled past the AMC office recently. But what really attracted our attention was the signwriting on the old Ford’s bootlid and flanks. Across the doors was a company logo, ‘finlease, with the accompanying slogan on the rear quarter panels: ‘Finance with the quality of service of a bygone era. Intrigued at what appeared to be a 50 year-old company fleet car, we picked up the phone and rang the finlease 1300 contact number. Turns out that Finlease is a finance company, based in North Sydney, and the Fairlane is indeed a rep’s car for the company. Finlease boss Mark O’Donoghue told us that employing such an unlikely fleet vehicle…

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basking in past glories

Australia’s oldest continuously operating permanent circuit will celebrate a pair of 60th birthdays this year at its much-loved annual Historics meeting. Baskerville Raceway, 61 years young itself, will mark 60 years of both the mighty Mini and Elfin sports/racing cars at its 20-22 September extravaganza. Over 20 Minis will hit the track and as many Elfins will be present. The event will see the two Elfin 400 V8s of Bill Hemming and Mark Goldsmith on track together. In keeping with the big banger theme, Hemming is also bringing his ex-Vern Schuppan Elfin MR8 (#11), which competed in the AGP 1978 and ventured off-shore to the USA during the centre-seat Can-Am era. Hemming’s former Bob Jane Elfin 400 Repco fuel-injected 4.4 litre V8 (#4) was driven by many famous drivers including, Spencer…

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a penny for your fords

Here’s more proof Falcon GTs are worth a pretty penny today! Evidence comes in the form of Downies Collectables’ newly-launched Ford Falcon GT Enamel Penny Collection. With a strictly limited edition of only 10,000, this officially licensed nine penny collection honours the iconic machines manufactured from 1967 to 2014. Each coin has been enhanced with a special enameling technique and is finished in genuine 24-carat gold. Each penny in the collection bears a full-colour depiction of one of Ford’s legendary Falcon GTs, from the XR to the last of FPV’s versions. The nine penny collection is beautifully set within a black satin presentation case and is available exclusively from Downies Collectables.…