HOLDEN – COMMODORE VF
Holden Commodore VF
Since the ’70s when the Commodore celebrated it’s nation-wide popularity and booming sales, the Commodore’s rankings have steadily declined as drivers have moved towards SUVs and trendy upgrades. The release of the Holden Commodore VF in 2013 was a major move on Holden’s part to revamp it’s image and get back in the game. Not to mention, this model was the last to be made locally, so true die-hard Holden owner’s will be itching to get their hands on one.
The 8-inch colour touchscreen featuring Holden’s MyLink infotainment system sits nicely within the improved, more contemporary interior, where you can enjoy the new electric power steering. You can also enjoy up to 19-inch alloy wheels if you go for the Redline.
Safety-wise, the VF has an full 5-star ANCAP safety rating, 6-airbags, rain-sensing wipers, rear cameras and sensors front and back, improved front brakes and overall grip. There is also blind spot alert, auto park assistance, Hill start assist and hold control, plus reverse traffic alert. There are three ISOFIX anchor points for your child seats in the back row.
LINK to other pages/ cars sold.
Engine: The most common variant is the V6 with either a 3.0 or 3.6 litre for a bit more punch. The V8 has a 6.0 or 6.2 litre and has significantly more power.
Power:210kW and 350 Nm for the popular V6 option.
Acceleration:0-100kmh in 4.9 to 5 quick seconds.
Transmission: Option for manual or auto, both 6-speed.
Fuel Consumption and Carbon Emissions: From 8.3L/100km from the 3.0 litre engine up to 11.5L/100km for the V8 option.
New: The value is good and prices have actually been cut since previous models, from $5,000 and up to $10,000 depending on the particular variation.
You can tack on an extra $500 for the flashy spoiler, $550 for a metallic paint job, and $2,200 for the auto transmission option.
The most popular option in the range is the SV6, one step up from the entry-level evoke and still comes with a $6,000 price cut from its predecessor.
used: Private online sales vary massively with asking prices starting around $8,000 for entry-level variations going anywhere up to $40,000 or higher for the SSV Redline model.
When buying or selling a Commodore, keep in mind that the asking price is often negotiable and is reflective of the number of previous owners, documented service history, accident history, kilometres driven, extra features, and general wear and tear
Buying or Selling a Used __
The VF has improved plastics and quality of interior materials since previous models, so they tend to be reliable in terms of withstanding years of use. Since they are often used as family vehicles, check out the interior for rips, spills, and stains as a starting point.
Whether the car has perfect service history or not, it’s important to listen for the rustling sound that may be heard when revving the engine. The V6 has had a few reports of timing chain wear-out so make sure it’s in good working order. If the previous owner hasn’t replaced it or hasn’t had regular services, it could be an expensive repair down the line.
There was also a recall of the wiper-motors that weren’t greased effectively and actually failed, so be aware of this as well.
Check out our comprehensive list of cars sold.
Rival vehicles are the Toyota Kluger, the Ford Falcon, and the Chrysler 300.
What our car experts think:
Pros and Cons: V8 is much punchier than the V6 but guzzles a lot more fuel. The V6 is still a solid option and is much more economical. The overall design provides slightly less space than some comparable models and the manual shifting is still a bit sticky. The timing belt could be more reliable, but overall a very trustworthy car to ensure the safety of your family.
HOLDEN ASTRA R
Holden Astra R
For an entry-level hatch-back, the Holden Astra R is a welcomed refresh compared to it’s predecessors. It handles twists and turns and provides more than you would expect for a zippy city car with a sophisticated suspension and impressive noise suppression. It is lighter, yet roomier, than previous models and is generally a pleasure to drive.
Basics: Cruise Control/speed limiter, rear-view camera and beeping sensors, hill start assist, ISOFIX anchor points for car seats, two bottle cupholders on each side and a central cupholder. The interior is rather plain with black plastic and
The Astra R has a 5-Star ANCAP rating, Electronic stability control, traction control, and ABS, and there are six airbags. The optional driver assist pack includes a leather steering wheel, AEB, rain sensing wipers and more, at additional cost (see below).
Electronics/Media: The Holden MyLink operates on a 7-inch touchscreen with DAB+, bluetooth, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
boot space: 360 Litres and up to 1210L with folded rear seats.
Comparable models: Mazda3, Volkswagen Golf 92TSI, Peugeot 308, Ford Focus Trend, Toyota Corolla Ascent Sport (all within $22-$24,000 entry).
Engine: 1.4 litre turbo four-cylinder petrol engine that makes 110 kw in power and 240 NM in torque. The engine is competitive amongst rival models on the market, although it doesn’t have much grunt for speedy acceleration and Holden doesn’t list a 0-100km time. You have the option for a 6-speed automatic transmission, or a manual.
The combined fuel economy rating is 5.8L/100km (though some test drives reported closer to 8.2L/100km), which is generally better than other comparable cars, or only slightly less. At 135g/km of CO2, the emissions ratings are also quite impressive. The manual and automatic models have the same ratings.
There is a basic warranty of 3 years or 100,000km warranty.
Entry for a new 2017 Astra R starts at $21,990 for manual transmission and an extra $2,200 for the automatic. There is also an option for a $1000 Driver assist pack which will give you AEB, lane-changing assist, forward distance indicator with collision warning, and a heated steering wheel. Other than Red and White, body colours also cost an additional $550.
At this stage, used models run from $11,000 to $15,000 as a starting asking price for private sales. Asking price greatly depends on the number of owners, documented service history, kilometres driven, and overall wear and tear.
What to Know about a used Astra R:
At this stage, the Astra R hasn’t really been around long enough for there to be any major issues consistently reported. There haven’t been any recalls and most owners seem generally happy with their car if they’re just using it to zip around town. It is lacking a bit in safety features and it’s fuel economy hasn’t reportedly stood up to the manufacturer claims, but otherwise it’s a pretty solid choice.
What our car experts think:
Pros: Nice exterior design and a fun, sporty feel while driving. Roomier than the previous model with a lighter body for better handling.
Cons: Lacking in features and flare considering the price point, higher entry than the Cruze. It’s also somewhat slow on acceleration.