1980 Holden Commodore VB - Reader Ride

By: Rod & Greg Owers - Story & Photos

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It was a big ambition to build a tribute rally car that would survive a gruelling 15,500km lap of the country

In early 2017 we became aware of Todd Martin’s proposed Repco Round Australia Reliability Re-Trial and by mid-February had entered and committed to build a tribute car of the original Car 3. It was 40 years ago that Shekhar Mehta, Rauno Aaltonen and Barry Lake drove the Holden Dealer Team entered VB Commodore to third place.

Luckily a friend was prepared to offload his 130,000 km factory four-speed original Vacationer to be the starting point.

The engine along with the rest of the driveline was rebuilt to ensure reliability, with this in mind we kept it relatively standard, only fitting a mild cam, extractors and slight increase in compression but retaining the factory air-conditioning.

| Read next: Repco Reliability Trial 2019 Re-run finishers gallery


With the knowledge that Peter Ferguson had also entered the event and planned to drive his father’s original car from 1979, the #17 HDT Commodore, our goal was to produce a tribute car that could be parked proudly beside his.

The front and rear bumpers were made by Greg along with the spares box behind the driver’s seat and the navigators panel. The rally trip-meters and lights were sourced via Ebay from around the world.

Forty years to the day after the 1979 event, Bev Brock flagged off the fleet.

The finishing line greeted us after 28 days, 15,578km and 1993 litres of fuel.

This car is for sale – and see the full story of the car here.

Valuation: The owners are asking $28,000.


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