While many Aussies need little convincing that our local V8 sedans are entirely 'the business' when it comes to RWD bang-for-your-buck, it's always nice to receive some real-world confirmation. Proof of that fact has recently arrived courtesy of our burnout-loving friends in America. There are reports circulating that they've managed to muscle a Pontiac G8 GXP around the Nurburgring in a highly impressive 8m30s.
The Pontiac G8 GXP is mechanically the equivalent of our HSV Clubsport, meaning there's around 317kWs and 550Nms on tap. GM has been using the 'Ring to assist with the development of their performance models of late (think Cadillac CTS-V and Corvette ZR-1). It appears that they were honing the G8 GXP's suspension at the famous circuit, when they reeled-off an 8min30s lap (with an engineer - not a race driver - behind the wheel). The GXP has managed to come within 17 seconds of the lap time put down by BMW's E60 M5, a vehicle costing almost twice as much.
Rumours suggest the car in question was a development mule, which might impact on the result - depending on what (if any) non-standard modifications were made to the car prior to the lap being completed. When something as simple as a roll-cage can greatly affect grip levels (through increased chassis rigidity), this becomes an important point to note.
Few would argue that that our home-grown V8 sedans represent exceptional value for money in performance terms. Whether the Pontiac G8 GXP was a fettled version or not, our Holden engineers and designers have reason to be proud.