HOLDEN COMMODORE VE II SS V REDLINE
VEHICLE STYLE: Performance Sedan
Engine: 6.0 litre naturally-aspirated V8 petrol
Outputs: 270kW / 530Nm
Transmission: six-speed manual
Official fuel efficiency: 12.2 l/100km
On test fuel efficiency: 13.2 l/100km | E85: 16.8 l/100km
CO2 emissions: 288g/km
- Quality: The interior is typical Commodore, and although the new centre stack design is a winner, there are a few rough edges on some cabin plastics. Disappointingly, Holden has yet to fix the issue of reflections on the instrument cluster.
- Comfort: The black and red-trimmed leather front seats have good lateral support and clearly designed with full-sized Australians in mind. They're comfortable for all sizes though, and so is the rear bench. Whether in the front or back, there's an abundance of room in the SS V's cabin.
- Equipment: The Redline gets Holden's classy new iQ infotainment system, cruise control, dual-zone climate control, a trip computer, auto-on headlamps, semi-electric front seats, sat-nav and Bluetooth.
- Storage: The boot measures in at 496 litres, however the rear seats don't fold down to increase luggage capacity. A ski port allows long items to be carried.
ON THE ROAD
- Driveability: With superb low-end torque from its 6.0 litre V8, the Redline is an effortless drive around town. The clutch is light and the gearshift appropriately chunky for a sporting drive.
The engine's eager 270kW gives the SS V real hustle on the street. With such flexibility offered by its low down torque and high-end power, the SS V Redline is a genuine sports saloon.
- Refinement: The low-profile rubber wrapped around the forged 19-inch wheels produce a fair amount of road noise on coarse pavement. The thumping V8 soundtrack though is very appealing. The cabin isn't terribly serene, but would you expect it to be?
- Suspension: The FE3 performance suspension is unique to the Redline, and is, in a word, outstanding. It delivers excellent compliance without feeling too soft, and makes the Redline much sharper around a corner than a cooking-model SS.
- Braking: The big Brembo brakes are Redline-only equipment too, and, like the suspension, a worthy upgrade over the SS V's brakes. Strong, and with a high resistance to fade, we couldn't fault them.
- ANCAP rating: 5 Stars
- Safety features: Six airbags (front, front side and curtain), three-point seatbelts on all seats, ABS, EBD, stability control and traction control are all standard.
WARRANTY AND SERVICING
- Warranty: 3 years/100,000km
- Service costs: A complimentary inspection occurs at 3000km/3 months with service intervals every 15,000km/12 months. Servicing costs vary, so speak to your dealer before purchase.
HOW IT COMPARES | VALUE FOR MONEY
- FPV GS sedan ($56,990) - The FPV GS has 315kW and 545Nm – 45kW and 15Nm more than the SS V Redline – and a far nicer interior than the Holden.
It's a shade cheaper too and the only real shortcoming lies in its brake package, which isn't as confidence inspiring as the Redline's Brembos. The FPV is easily the pick of the litter. (see FPV GS reviews)
- Chrysler 300C 5.7 V8 sedan ($60,990) - It's mechanically outdated, visually polarising, relatively expensive and not as powerful as the FPV GS or SS V Redline.
However if you want an affordable V8 RWD sedan and don't want a Holden or Ford, the Chrysler 300C is your sole remaining option.
Note: prices are Manufacturer's List Price and do not include dealer delivery or on-road costs.
TMR VERDICT | OVERALL
For just $2500 more than a regular SS V, the Redline Edition represents outstanding value. The FE3 suspension tune alone is worth the extra outlay, and the Brembo brakes are a significant step-up from the standard stoppers.
The blingy wheels may not be to everyone's tastes and the interior could use a little extra refinement, but on the whole, the SS V Redline gives a lot of bang for your buck.