Holden is culling its Commodore line-up in Australia. Will NZ follow suit?
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Throughout the decades, one of the best characteristics of the Holden Commodore line-up has been its variety. And that continues to today, with diesel and petrol engines, 2WD and AWD formats, and wagon and lift-back body-styles available to the punter.
In total 15 different variants of Commodore are offered in Australia, while in New Zealand there's 12. But, that leaning to variety could possibly be on its way out in favour of something much simpler.
Australian media have reported that their local Commodore line-up will be getting condensed and simplified by the end of the year. While the models likely to face the chopping block have not been confirmed, speculation led by the likes of WhichCar suggests that diesel-engined models could soon be a thing of the past.
It's also been speculated that more Commodores will share the 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, with the naturally aspirated 3.0-litre V6 potentially reserved for just top trims like the VXR.
However, Holden New Zealand have said that they hope to dodge the model cull entirely.
"Holden NZ is in a different situation to the one in Australia with regards to the number of ZB Commodore models available for sale in the market," says Holden NZ's Edward Finn.
"We believe the models available here in NZ offer clear differentiation between each other, there is not the same degree of crossover as some might perceive there to be in Australia.
"Given this lack of crossover, coupled with demand across the range, there is not the same immediate need to reduce the number of models available at our dealer partners around the country.
"Commodore continues to perform well against the competition in the large passenger car segment, finding favour with buyers who demand an exceptional driving experience combined with considerations such as a free three-year scheduled servicing and roadside assistance programme."
While the new ZB Commodore still retains its spot as the top selling large sedan on either side of the Tasman, it does so in a shrinking market and against the ongoing bitter rumblings from enthusiasts still unhappy with the Commodore nameplate being retained on a German-built car.
The loss of the Commodore's diesel options would be a shame. It's a compelling powertrain to sample in the metal, although perhaps it comes at an awkward time for diesel technology with manufacturers instead pivoting towards EV and hybrid development.