Bugger! Holden ending the ‘Ute’ in 2016 and all hopes for a new El Camino

bugger holden ending ute 2016 hopes new el camino

There’s just something about a V8-powered car-based truck that screams freedom.

Our American taste of car-based truck freedom, the Chevrolet El Camino, ended in 1987. But since then, the breed – called ‘Utes’ – lived on in Australia.

If you’re like me, you’ve been hoping that the General Motors brass would reincarnate the El Camino – not because you actually want to buy one but rather because you want to live in a country that still makes and sells a V8-powered Utes.

Well, hold onto your trucker caps, Ute fans; I have some bad news. Holden, GM’s Australian arm, is reportedly discontinuing the Holden Ute in 2016 and with it dashing all American hopes for a re-born El Camino.

Although Holden higher-ups were unwilling to officially comment, Cars Guide is reporting that an unnamed source has confirmed to News Corp Australia that the Holden Ute production will end in just three short years.

This comes just a few months after Australian Ford announced that it, too, is closing up shop and ending Australian-based production – and the iconic Ford Falcon Ute.

There had long been hope that GM might bring the Holden Ute Stateside as an El Camino in one form or another. As recently as early this year, Holden hoped to sell some Utes to American police departments, keeping production numbers up, since the new Chevrolet Caprice is a Holden underneath.

That plan, apparently, never came to fruition.

Back in June, the Holden Ute seemed to be flying high, as the VF SS V Redline rounded the Nurburgring in eight minutes and 47 seconds, setting a record for a commercial utility vehicle on the ‘Ring.

Recently, vehicles from Thailand and Japan have been outselling Australian-built cars in the land down under nine to one. Looks like the Australians can’t compete on their home turf against the Asian imports.

This is a sad, sad day. I had recently realized that Australia was the America that I would ideally like to live in. Australians still love motor racing, V8s, and Utes. Now, it would seem, they’re down to two of three. Bugger.


Gateway’s born-again Ford Bronco boasts classic style, 2018 muscle car power

Illinois-based Gateway Bronco has received a license from Ford to make brand-new examples of the first-generation Bronco. Every build starts with a Ford VIN and a donor vehicle, but Gateway upgrades every part of the car.

Thinking of opting for a car with a diesel engine? Here's what you need to know

Modern diesel-powered models prove that it is possible to build a clean, efficient diesel engine without sacrificing performance. Here's what you need to know about diesel cars, and how they differ from gasoline-powered models.

Volkswagen may be planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car may head to the Nürburgring in 2019 for a lap-record attempt, according to a new report. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car.

Uber is about to restart self-driving car tests but on a reduced scale

Uber is reported to be on the verge of restarting its autonomous-car test program. The company halted it in March 2018 following a fatal accident involving one of its vehicles, but its cars could be back on the road within weeks.

Pininfarina Battista is a 1,900-horsepower, 250-mph electric supercar

The Pininfarina Battista will be the first production car from famed Italian design firm Pininfarina. Named after company founder Battista Pininfarina, it has a claimed 1,900 horsepower and a $2.5 million price tag.

Tesla could show the electric pickup Elon Musk is dying to build in 2019

Tesla has started designing its long-promised pickup truck. The yet-unnamed model will come with dual-motor all-wheel drive and lots of torque, plus it will be able to park itself.

Allegro.ai is helping Hyundai mine the artificial intelligence gold rush

In November 2018, Hyundai invested in a startup named Allegro.ai. We talked to the company's founder to learn more about what that means for consumers in the not-too-distant futures.
Emerging Tech

With this robotic garage, retrieving your car is like using a vending machine

Remembering where we parked our cars can be a real pain. But what if our cars came to find us, rather than the other way around? A new automated robot parking valet system aims to help.

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…

These winter-warrior cars will never leave you out in the cold

Snow can be an absolute pain if your vehicle isn't optimized to handle that sort of terrain. If brutal snowstorms are an annual part of your life, we recommend you pick up one of these winter-ready vehicles.

2020 Toyota Supra caught hiding in a trailer without a shred of camouflage

Toyota's plan to once again lure enthusiasts into showrooms involves bringing back the Supra, one of its most emblematic nameplates. Here's what we know so far about the upcoming coupe, which Toyota is developing jointly with BMW.

NYC mandates minimum wage for Uber, Lyft, other app-based rideshare drivers

New York City's Taxi and Limousine Commission approved a rule that drivers for companies such as Uber and Lyft must be paid at least minimum wage, even though they are independent contractors. The new pay rate includes operating costs.

LM Industries’ autonomous shuttles head to Phoenix, Sacramento campuses

LM Industries will deploy Olli low-speed autonomous shuttles at school campuses in Arizona and California as part of its ongoing "fleet challenge," which asks local groups to propose uses for autonomous vehicles.

Bosch’s CES-bound shuttle concept takes us on a trip to a not-too-distant future

Bosch envisions a future in which driverless shuttles occupy their own market segment. The German firm won't build the shuttles, but it wants to provide everything else, ranging from the drive system to the apps used to hail them.