Holden Commodore VS

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Holden Commodore VS

Holden Commodore

Holden Commodore VS

1995 - 1997
6 cyl. & V8
3.8 litre EFI V6; 5.0 V8 EFI
145kW (V6) & 165kW (V8)
5 spd man / 4 spd. Turbohydramatic
Top Speed:
Number Built:
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Holden Commodore VS
Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 1


The VS represented another Commodore upgrade where the emphasis was on mechanical rather than visual change. On the outside, the VS sported new wheels (or wheel trims for the lower end versions), as well as new badges featuring a revised lion-and-stone GMH emblem, only the third revision since the original 48/215 and makeover for the HQ range.

Mechanical improvements to the V6 would make huge improvements in almost every area – power was increased by 13%, yet fuel consumption was cut by 5%. Helping achieve these amazing figures was a new cylinder block and manifolds, reshaped cylinder heads, lightweight pistons and a small increase to the compression ratio, now at 9.4:1.

Smoother, sweeter and much better than its predecessor, Holden named the new unit the “ECOTEC 3800 V6” – an acronym for Emissions and Consumption Optimisation TEChnology.

The automatic transmission was modified to suit the ECOTEC, now offering even smoother shifts and better response to throttle pressure. All in all the drive-train of the Commodore had matured to world-beating standards. But the Holden engineers did not stop there, providing considerable safety improvements over the VR.

The VS Series was the first Australian built car to offer a passenger's airbag (with a capacity of 120L), while the Bosch ABS system was upgraded to the latest version. Dual airbags were standard on the Calais and Acclaim, but those purchasing the Executive could choose it as an option.

The engineers also made a change to the security system,  allowing you to select either drivers door or all door unlocking, while a rolling security code system was incorporated to improve vehicle security.

So little was changed on the outside that it is sometimes difficult to identify a VS over a VR – to do so look for the revised Holden emblem, ECOTEC badge located under the indicator lights and silver insert around the edge of the front grille opening.

There was a slight styling change to the top edge of the boot, and the Calais was now fitted with 16 inch alloys, and came standard with fog lights and a two-tone paint job. And last, but not least, the VS sported revised wheels or wheel covers.

In April 1995 the VS Statesman and Caprice models were introduced, and featured all the mechanical improvements incorporated into the Commodore range. In June 1996 the VS Commodore Series II was released, the update having refinements to the V8 engine providing both more torque and power (the power now up to 168kW), as well as producing a quieter idle. The V6 remained unchanged, except for the manual gearbox which was now a Getrag unit.

A minor cosmetic change would see the side indicator lights replaced with better looking oval shaped units, but the big news with the Series II was the introduction of a supercharged V6, available on the Calais, Statesman and Caprice. The interior was given a mild make-over, and from January 1st 1997 Holden changed its new car warranty to 3 years / 100,000 km.

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Also see:

Commodore Commercials
Holden Red Motor
Holden 253 V8
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