Holden HQ Monaro
Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 4
With the HQ series, Holden's design, engineering and
manufacturing team delivered the definitive Australian
car - new from the ground up and embracing the best of
US and European trends.
The HQ's forward-reaching front, flowing rear lines and
pronounced 'tumblehome' behind each wheel gave it a compact,
ground-hugging look, even though it was bigger than previous
The separate recessed grille reflected European trends
while the bulging muscle lines above each wheel arch,
the rounded tail and bumper-mounted rear lights were straight
Pontiac GTO muscle car.
After it was blacked-out for the Monaro GTS, the HQ's
standard silver grille became a 'road-devouring' intake.
The Monaro's pillarless coupe roofline and its wrap-over
rear window were eye-catching. A new LS -'luxury and sport' Monaro with black vinyl roof
and dual headlights combined Premier appointments with
The HQ was the most radically new model since 1948, and
Monaro shared the benefits. It had a partial front subframe
that extended to the centre pillar and a totally new rear suspension
. It delivered new levels of structural strength,
rough road stability and grip.
Further features included a more comprehensive safety
package, Holden's first flow-through ventilation, a demisting
system, integrated air-conditioning, a new flat dash and
slender front pillars for exceptional forward vision.
Holden sixes were also boosted in size and there were
hefty 10-bolt Salisbury limited slip differential rear
axles on all V8 models.
A new Australian M21 4-speed close-ratio gearbox could
be ordered with the local V8, the big Chevrolet 350 V8
'scored' a new Muncie 4-speed manual and the 350 was fitted
with a Turbo-Hydramatic 400 auto shift. While Daddy Cool's Eagle Rock topped the charts, Monaro
colours came from the 'flower power' palette. They included
several purples, pinks, lime and forest greens, acid reds,
bright blues, silver and gold.
As the HQ went through several phases over its long model
life, the Monaro GTS coupe was upgraded in 1973
with the release of the four door GTS
. It introduced bold
new colours, new bonnet and bootlid rally patches, accents
on the side vents and optional polished trim rings for
the sports wheels.