HDT - The beginning of SV's
Whether your as old as me or in your teens, as a member of the Autstralian SV community the name Brock and HDT will be part of your Automotive lifestyle
HDT was only with us for 7 short years as a factory endorsed entity. But without a doubt it was one of the most defining periods of the Australian Automotive Industry . . . Peter Brock was an enigma & icon that fuelled our passions like never before and to be honest - never sinse . . . Having a figurehead like Brock at the head of such an institution was the icing on the cake and I have no doubt that the "Special Vehicles" ideal had accelerated momentum due to his presence
Yes, from time to time the young Peter Brock was pretty much out of control to the point where he actually believed (or was convinced by Bev & Eric Dowker) that he was "holier that thou" - which ultimately became his undoing
. . . But in those 7 great years he one thing that all of us 4500 HDT owners had was - FUN - and plenty of it . . .
I'm hoping that others that lived in that era add to this thread so many of the younger generation on here can understand the journey we all had in a more clearer dimension . . . so please post away and ask questions . . .
These HDT and early HSVs threads are great, very interesting reading and learning a lot, so definitely subscribed to this thread. Donít know much about HDT and early HSV so canít contribute much, but I do still have my HDT jacket from the 80ís lol
It will be interesting to see where this thread goes, I entered the car era with the early HSV cars and never really appreciated some of the Brock ones until the early 2000's.
Watching the HDT DVD in 2006/7 was probably when I enjoyed the journey of HDT rather than knowig about the demise as HDT always seems to be remembered for that more than the great era of car building.
Funnily enough it wasn't Brock who made me enjoy the history but the 2 mechanics who told their version of events. It gave the story "Personality".
For me though, I am a fan on the post Brock cars (VN Aero and VG Magnum). To me the Aero package gave the VN a great modern look that enhanced the car rather than make it look like a horrible VN/ VG hence the reason I built my own VG Magnum replica years ago.
for me the VN Aero gave HDT a great start to a new era but unfortunately lacked "Sole" that only Brock could deliver!
Last edited by HSVGTS125; 24-05-2014 at 04:50 PM.
I doubt this thread will go too far on a HSV Forum but as some members subscribe to another forum that features HDT only and contains quite a lot of rubbish I thought it prudent to have some sort of discussion around actual facts
Originally Posted by HSVGTS125
Also, there are a few members on here looking at HDT products at the moment they should also have access to knowledge that is correct . . . from those that lived the era
It's been just over 27 years sinse GMH pulled the pin on Brock so many on here were still in "Bagdad" or quite young so have little concept of where the real beginning was . . . How it evolved . . Why it evolved . . . and why it ended and what really caused the demise . . .
I'm a larrikin so were many HDT owners and in no small way - Brock was the "ring leader" . . . and he never hid behind the "corporate curtain" like HSV do today . . . Brock was out and about and always keen for a chat and a laugh!
Last edited by Sniper; 24-05-2014 at 05:35 PM.
I like how he just did things, he certainly had alot of freedom. Like how the VL got a V8, Holden said it would take months of planning and research. Brock built one in an afternoon and delivered it. Done!
Stories of the early cars was funny where the guys who built them liked the black ones because the gaps could be hidden.
Getting a 304 into the VL was easy . . . getting Chuck Chapman to sign off on the ULP 304 development was the challenge . . . it had to go from 8.8:1 to 8.5:1 and cop at fresh set of "head development" for ULP also
John Lindall was a great source of support for HDT and all us V8 fans at the time too . . and he along with Brock "drove" the "V8 til 98" campaign
For all the young guys n girls on here - there was a massive drive by many to get the V8 back into production and the "V8 til 98" campaign had plenty of support inc print material and bumper stickers generated by HDT and paid for by Holden - lol
I'd luv to know hard Brock & Lindall had to work to get Chapman over the line . . .
I used to have a V8 til 98 sticker
HDT... 3 simple letter that will be with me for life.... Never been a love/hate relationship with me like HSV has & has been a driving force for me since 1986 when i got to go for a drive in a Brand New 18th birthday present Series 2 VK GRP 3 & a journey that would see me not stop until i had reached the very best of Brock Commodores whether i could afford it or not!
I was 12 when i went for the drive... I was 19 when i got my first brock a series 1 VK GRP 3.... By Law i wasn't supposed to have it or drive it lol... but somehow i managed to drive that car around wherever i like, without displaying P's & not got pulled up once in 2 years whilst still on my P's.... i kinda like to thing that the cops new what it was, respected the breed & knew a 19 year old kid couldnt be driving one of those anyway so we'll let him enjoy his night...COPS were great in the 90's.
HDT was by the time i got my licence, i believed that the post 88HDT of the Colarafi's, Pennisi & champion have been nothing but glorified bodykit fitters... nothing more... Although i do remember 3 Cars that will always stick out in my mind from those days & that is that massive horsepowered white VN mongrel(bits of everything) with the pink VN GROUP A engine & white Simmons, The dark Blue VN aero of a certain Weribee Market Gardener & HDT's spanner man Cam Fisher & his bronze VB. HDT for me was more about road memories more than factory memories. I think it was the 95 Nationals at the NOW police centre(old crown casino) that blew me away, so many awesome cars, some of the highest quality i've ever seen but it was all based on who could have the most standard, original car...BOOOOORING! Heaven for bid if you broke the mould like Vinnie Macaro did & kitted out your VK SS with big wheels, big, stereo & big engine..you were kind of frowned upon but that car will always be remembered. These were the days when owning a car & even better a brock Commodore so much fun... The attention you got on the street was infectious & something i never saw again until i was one of the first to have a new devil yellow CV8.
I entered my first nationals in 1998.... i thought my car was something to behold.... that is until Mark Seamons & Mak Edwards rocked up with their HSV VL GROUP A & VK SS.... these guys re-wrote the book on concourse cars & started something that i believe finished at the 2005 Nationals, cost me another 2 cars, my marriage & ****load of money i may or may not have had & probably the downfall of my buisness but i was young, passionate & had a dream of having the best! in hindsight i should've stopped at my VH GRP 3 but thats what happens when you have a hunger for 'more'
These HDT days that i remember will always be with me, yes, they are'nt really factory related but HDT still was a dream, a passion that i'll always remember, i've meet & made some long lasting friendships & a hell of a lot of memories & mistakes that i'll learn from. Its a shame that those days are now lost... the comradery that i felt throughout is what made it i reckon & there was always good banter to be had. You could talk for hours on the subject... unlike todays cars.
I'm very grateful that i was able to enjoy the HDT era whilst modified cars weren't seen as a blight on society & i'm also thankfull that i got to satisfy the dream of owning 2 of the best Brock Commodores ever seen......So many more stories i could tell... I just wish i could've been around driving age when the factory was open as i reckon i would've spent alot of time down there!
This thread will be a challenge to my memory and I hope that if I get omething wrong or miss some details on a topic please correct me
I mentioned A9L in another thread and have been asked what this is/was and what was special about it
There were a few versions of the A9L . . . but I guess we need to start with the basic description. . . the A9L was the designated engine code for the Homolation engine used in the GPA's . . . and was also used in the GPA/3 . . . and in other models from time to time
. . . .but I will stay on the VK & VL HDT versions - which differed from dash other
The VK had h/duty L34 style rods . . . The big valve heads . . Crane Roller Rockers . . . specific hi lift Crane CM and heavier valve springs. . . the performance intake manifold with dual inlets (rather than 4) . . there was also a variant of the std crankshaft . . . and it was anted red and fitted with chrome rocker covers
What made this A9L pretty special was the Cam . . . it was not a good cam in a performance sense but the Group A international regulations at the time allowed for a certain amount of Camshaft lift provided the road going Homologation car had that lift . . . so Holden had Crane supply a 491 thou lift Cam to "milk" the rules - sadly the road going Group A still had to meet emissions so the "duration" of this CM was ordinary and the overall performance gain for the road car was negligible . . . but it was good to have and arguably made the VK A9L the most unique as a road going version . . . finally the VK was fitted with a nice set of primary headers that were engineered to have the secondaries made into any configuration as per the FIA rules
The VL A9L differed quite a lot in the interest of reliability but firstly I must say the Cam issue was resolved with the FIA and the VL no longer had a Homologation high lift cam - bugger . . . but the VL copped plenty of other goodies the VK A9L didn't have!! . . . . special rods with an extra bit of ribbing for strength . . . a better crank . . . and trick "machined" main bearing caps that looked quite awesome at the time - I have a pic somewhere but I can't lay my hands on it right now . . a unique lighter flywheel too which I hope I can find a pic of . . . this donk was painted black and had chrome rocker covers too . . . HDT and Holden "milked" the exhaust rules to the max with the VL (and the Walky too) by having the first joint in the header just 3 inches from the exhaust port . . . which enabled clever engineers like Larry Perkins, Ian Tate, Les Small and Neil Burns to produce varying power and torque depending on the track they were racing at the time . .
I'm sure I've missed things in this post but that's a basic description
Awesome post Lincoln . . . and I wanted to highlight these bits above . . . for me . . . three of the best early cars that I have ever layed my eyes on are your GP3 . . . your GPA/3 . . . Marks VL HSV- fark that was tough . . . and without bragging my VL HDT is up there with those 3 . . . Would luv to photoshoot those 4 together
Originally Posted by VIP-427
A couple of lads in SA had awesome cars that I enjoyed back in the day too - Michael Dontas's VK was my favourite GPA and Bill Panovic has still got his tough VH GP3 and drives it often
Last edited by Sniper; 25-05-2014 at 10:36 AM.
Reason: Spelling - damn apple gadget
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