In the late 1960's Holden were at the forefront
of experimental car design. Most know of the wonderful
GTR-X, but only a handful will truly remember the Hurricane.
Unlike the GTR-X, the Hurricane was never really intended
to make it into production.
Rather, Holden described
it as an experimental research vehicle, allowing them
study design trends, propulsion systems and other long
Revealed in May 1969, the wedge-shaped,
mid-engined V8 Holden Hurricane was quite unlike other
modern show cars of the era, which tended to reveal
more of what the manufacturer would be releasing with
the next incarnation of a particular model.
Instead the Hurricane was always a developmental concept, a
dream car with no serious intention of it ever becoming
Like the GTR-X, the Hurricane was developed as a
two-passenger vehicle, and boasted an arsenal of (for
the time) advanced technology. Before you scoff at
list of features the Hurricane featured, try to remember
the year was 1969!
Few had even heard or understood
what electronic digital instrument displays were, nor
what an auto-seek feature was on the car radio.
about "Comfortron" automatic temperature control air
conditioning and a Pathfinder automatic route indicator.
Rear vision was provided by a CCTV screen in the console,
connected to a wide-angle lens camera activated by
Code named RD 001, the Hurricane was
the first product of the GMH
Research and Development
section. This highly skilled team (but small in number)
team worked in conjunction with the Advanced Styling
Group at the Fishermans Bend Technical Centre.
The Hurricane stood just 990mm high, and did not have
conventional doors - instead an electro-mechanically
powered canopy swung forward over the front wheels,
combining with twin ‘astronaut
type' power elevator seats which rose up and pivoted
forward, along with the steering
column, for ease of
access. Occupants were lowered to a semi-reclining
position and the roof closed over.
The car could not
be started until the canopy was locked down, the seats
fully lowered, the driver's fully retractacted, and
the auto-lock seat belt secured. Among
other safety innovations were a foam-lined fuel tank,
integral headrests, digital readouts, interior
padding and a fire warning system.
The wind tunnel-tested
fibreglass body was finished in an experimental aluminium
flake-based metallic orange paint and mounted on a
steel box section perimeter frame with rubber insulated
mountings. Under the Hurricane's pivoting engine hood,
set forward of the rear axle, was an experimental 253
cubic inch Holden-designed and built V8 with a four-barrel