Holden Camira JB
Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 1
The Holden Camira can be remembered for many things, but at the time the important issues were that this was a "World Car", and itwas GMH
's first front wheeler.
The Camira was sold in the USA as the Pontiac J2000, in the UK as the Vauxhall Cavalier, in Germany as the Opel Ascona and in Japan as the Isuzu Aska.
Manufactured in Australia by Holden, the Camira was designed by Opel and used an international parts bin that included an Isuzu dash and transmission
Apart from these few items, the Camira was largely built from Australian components, and boasted more local content than the (VL) Commodore of the day.
The atmo was imported from GM's HydraMatic division in the USA (the Turbo-HydraMatic). Powering the Camira was the Family II 4 cylinder engine being manufactured at the Fishermans Bend facility.
Although the initial design only catered for a sedan, Australian designers soon crafted a wagon variant to meet local demand. In keeping with existing Commodore and Gemini model designations, the Camira came in SL, SL/X and SL/E trim levels.
Despite winning a "Car of the Year" award, the Camira suffered reliability and build quality issues, and quickly gained a reputation it could well have done without.
Many believe the key flaw was in the engines design - one that allowed the motor to reach normal operating temperature quickly so that it could cope with Autobahn driving in Europe.
The Camira "SJ" (Sports) version was released in 1983 and featured go-fast equipment such as alloy wheels
and - you guessed it - matching decals. Unfortunately no modifications were made to the drivetrain.