The date was August 25th 1970. The Holden HQ was still down the track, the LC XU-1 was brand new but even that was not enough for a few blokes at Fisherman’s Bend who like to loosen their ties and go wild.
As great as the XU-1 was it was still a 2 door Torana with go fast bits and it did not prepare the world for the GTR-X. The press release reads as follows: “GMH today broke with tradition by giving the public an opportunity to see in advance a car which could be the basis of a limited production vehicle of the future”, (they meant 1973). But when 1973 came around there was no GTR-X because the bean counters at Holden were worried about cash and put the kybosh on it.
The GTR-X sleek body was made with fibreglass(1043kg) which saved a heap of weight, so when the production GTR-X was equipped with a 202 with triple carbs and other goodies from the XU-1 it would have accelerated like there was no tomorrow, and stopping would not have been an issue as there were four wheel disc brakes to halt your progress.
The prototype was fitted with a triple carb 186S as the 202 had not yet been fully developed in 1970.
The fibreglass was filled with polyester resin and reinforced with steel in all high load carrying areas. The shell comprised of three sections which were bonded together, there was also an inbuilt tubular roll bar with seatbelt mounting points. Driver information was by way of ,Speedometer, Tacho, Radio, Electric Clock, Ammeter, Oil Pressure, Fuel Gauge, Temp Gauge, Vacuum Gauge, various warning lights
The fuel tank held 12 gallons but was also filled with polyurethane to prevent surge, headlamps were sealed beam type retractable by way of vacuum actuators. Steering was recirculating ball type with 14” wheel fitted with a tilt mechanism.
Reasons put forward by the sales team to start production were :
1. It will allow greater utilisation of existing components.
2. Most importantly it will lift the image of the GMH product line
3. It will provide a focal point in every dealer’s showroom, thus stimulating “Walk in Traffic”.
There would have not just been walk in traffic people would have been driving their cars into showrooms for a look. All of the positive vibes from the sales team counted for nothing as the Big Wigs bowed to the pressures of the bean counters and we are left wondering what might have been. Could you imagine one fitted out with an L34 engine?