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Taking a bow at the red line

HOLDEN has paid a kind of tribute to more than three decades of excellence with its VF11 Commodore, the last to be produced in Australia.

The Aussies are thumbing their noses at the environmentalists and the move to smaller, more economical models with the release of this genuine beast. With the legend of Bathurst behind it, this is a real muscle car that will be welcomed with open arms by the Holden tribe.

Sitting right at the top of the 2016 Commodore range is the SSV Redline, a mixture of sports and muscle car that is aimed squarely at the motoring purist.

A massive 6.2 litre V8 engine with a whopping 304 kW of unbridled power and 570 Nm of torque makes this the most powerful Commodore ever produced. It can roar from 0 to 100 kmh in a mere 4.9 seconds, half a second quicker than before.

Roar is the perfect adjective. The Commodore VF11 comes with a bimodal mechanical sound enhancer exhaust that can be turned on to produce a sound something like a fighter jet swooping over your clothesline. To a petrolhead. this primal, guttural sound beats any orchestra.

Beyond the mighty engine there is so much to like about the 2016 Commodore. The company has spared nothing to make this a car to remember.

It comes with a remote vehicle start system that enables you to fire up the engine and start the air conditioning before you even get in. It also has passive entry and push button start, automatic park assist, a rear view camera and reverse traffic alert, an amazing feature that can see what is behind you up to 25 metres away.

Impressive safety featuresThis vehicle is going to take some stopping but Holden has allowed for that with giant Brembo brakes on all four wheels to go with other safety features like a forward collision alert, lane departure warning and blind spot alert, trailer sway control and a six airbag system that includes new thorax and pelvis airbags.

You cannot miss the brightly-coloured 19-inch wheels, which give it a strong road grip.

The Redline has a redesigned rear suspension stabiliser bar for better handling to deal with all that extra power.

The interior fittings, leather with suede inserts, are top quality — as is the MyLink infotainment system that links with an eight-inch colour touch screen that will show things like the satellite navigation. MyLink has built-in app technology, Bluetooth auto streaming, iPod connectivity, enhanced voice control, internet radio and a Bose sound system.

In another nice touch, information including speed and fuel consumption is displayed separately on the windscreen in front of the driver.

The SSV Redline also has an eight-way power adjustable driver’s seat and a sunroof.

There will still be Commodores built outside Australia after 2017 but this beauty is going to be a must-have for those who have loyally supported Holden for so long. A future collector’s item, it means Holden has signed off from Australia with a vehicle more than worthy of this moment in motoring history.