Motorsport legend says that the future of the V8 Supercars competition is in danger after the decision to close Holden
Car racing legend Craig Lowndes says the future of the V8 Supercars competition is at risk after a shock decision to close Holden
- Craig Lowndes is uncertain about the future of the V8 Supercars competition in Australia
- Holden is committed to the 2020 season, with no further plans announced
- More than half of the V8 Supercars grid consists of Holden Commodores
- Lowndes expressed condolences to the families that resulted from the closure of the company
Car legend Legend Craig Lowndes says the future of the V8 Supercar competition in Australia is in the air after the decision to close Holden.
The 45-year-old grew up in a Holden family and raced the famous cars for most of his career and said he was devastated by General Motors’ call to end the iconic Australian brand.
“I have spent 90 percent of my racing career driving a Holden Commodore and it’s a shame for me to hear that it has ceased to exist,” Lowndes said Today.
Holden Commodores make up more than half the grid in the V8 Supercars races in Australia, leaving Lowndes uncertain about the future of the competition once Holden’s commitment ends after this season.
Craig Lowndes said he is uncertain about the future of the V8 Supercars competition in Australia following the decision to close Holden. Pictured: Jamie Whincup and Lowndes (L-R) celebrate after winning the Sandown 500 in the 2019 Supercars Championship last November
Lowndes behind the wheel of a Holden Commodore in practice for the Sandown 500 in 2019
“It’s the discussions that are above me,” he said. “All team owners in the pitlane will chat with the manufacturer of Holden and Supercars to find out what the future will look like in the future.”
The seven-time Bathurst 1000 champion expressed its condolences to the workers and families affected by the news.
“I’m very humble. I was able to drive like this and have the results we have had over the years, but you have to remember the families and employees who were still involved with Holden at the time, as well as the dealers, “he said. “And all those people who unfortunately will lose their jobs.”
The disappointment of Lowndes was reflected by racing legend Mark Skaife, who told Sky News he did not expect the company to collapse during his life.
“Two of us fought to stop the tears, it was one of those that I know might be big sooks, it’s a very big change in a landscape I never envisaged, I just never thought in my that there will be a day when we would see Holden leave this country, “said Skaife.
Skaife described the company as something iconic Australian, it looked like losing part of the culture when the closure was announced.
The closure was announced on Monday – two years after production ceased in Australia and the brand began selling only imported vehicles. Pictured: a classic Holden vehicle in Fremantle in 2017
“It is part of the social fabric of Australia. You have either been blue or you have been red – the reality of football, meat patties, kangaroos and holden cars – it was part of our psyche, “Mr. Skaife said.
After closing the company’s local production activities in 2017, GM announced that the brand would retire in both Australia and New Zealand.
GM will not only take the name Holden ax, but will also stop selling cars in Australia.
Holden suffered from crumbling domestic sales, while GM also announced plans to close a car factory in Thailand and remove the Chevrolet brand from the market there.
Together, the two shutdowns will cost the American multinational more than $ 1 billion.
GM has promised to offer ‘fair’ redundancy packages for its 600 employees who have been left in the dark, most of which have disappeared by the end of June.
TIME LINE OF HOLDEN IN AUSTRALIA
1856 – Holden starts as a saddlery in South Australia.
1917 – Holden produces bodywork.
1931 – General Motors buys Holden Motor Body Builders.
1948 – The FX, the first Australian-designed car, is released.
1951 – Holden’s first ute goes on sale.
1958 – South Australian factory opens in Elizabeth, although it does not assemble its first full car until 1965.
1968 – Kingswood and Monaro enter the market.
1969 – Holden makes its first V8 engine.
1971 – Holden launches the HQ model. Considered by some to be the best Holden ever.
1978 – Commodore replaces Kingswood.
1990 – The last Australian boss of Holden, John Bagshaw, stops.
2003 – Holden opens $ 400 million V6 engine plant in Port Melbourne, exports to Korea, China and Mexico begin Toyota takes Holden’s position as the best selling car brand.
2009 – Parent company, General Motors, fils for bankruptcy in the US, but survives.
2013 – Prime Minister Tony Abbott says the government will reduce support for car manufacturers, despite the request for help.
2013 – Holden decides to end production in Australia by 2017. The Holden Commodore must become a fully imported car.
2017 – The company rolls its last car off the assembly line on October 20 and ends more than 50 years of car production on the Elizabeth site.
2019 – GM announces that it will discontinue its Commodore and Astra models in 2020.
2020 – General Motors announces the retirement of the Holden brand in Australia and New Zealand.