Looking at buying a commodore Page 1 / 2

countrypete, Jan 18, 7:48am
As a tow car, and for my wife as a daily driver. Have a BA falcon now specifically to tow the boat but want to replace that and my wife's smaller car. The question is, there are 3.0 and 3.6 litre versions around the $12 - $15k ballpark. I haven't driven the 3.0, but what do people see as the advantages / disadvantages? Is the 3.0 a good motor? What to look for? Thanks.

martin11, Jan 18, 7:53am
Tow rating of the commodore depending on which model is some of them very low . Falcon much better ,

absolute_detail, Jan 18, 8:53am
The barra is way better than the v6

likit, Jan 18, 10:21am
I purchased a VF SV6 to tow our 5.5 metre boat, beautiful car to drive & no problems towing, it does have the 3.6 litre motor.
I also looked at Falcons but not many around for the age & mileage I wanted.

tamarillo, Jan 18, 11:13am
prefer commodore over falcon to drive but its personal opinion. I found 3 litre underwhelming and without the extra urge that suits the car. SV6 best all round. always FELT livelier and more eager than staid Falcon.

franc123, Jan 18, 2:04pm
There isnt any advantage to the 3.0. They go well enough in most situations but it's noticeable they are down on torque when it comes to hill work and/or towing. It may not be a problem for you depending on how heavy the boat is. Falcon has always had a clear lead in this area over any six cylinder Holden ever made.

lythande1, Jan 18, 5:32pm
No such thing as a holden.
Commodore is an Opel

morrisjvan, Jan 18, 5:39pm
VE and VF Commodores were all Austrailian design and manufacture.

franc123, Jan 18, 10:11pm
Gee that's helpful. Not even a correct statement either.

joanie04, Jan 18, 10:19pm
I thought the Astra was an Opel.

franc123, Jan 18, 10:26pm
FFS who cares, Holden don't anymore lol the vehicles in question ARE Australian built and largely developed.

sw20, Jan 18, 11:56pm
You should look up the Dunning-Kruger effect. You have it in spades with the knowledge you disperse over the message board.

monaro17, Jan 19, 12:40am
As said, there is no advantage of getting the 3.0. It uses scarcely less fuel while delivering considerably less performance. Just make sure you get the SIDI V6 and if the kms are high budget for a timing chain to be replaced. No biggie, once it’s done you’ll get another 200,000kms.

The pre SIDI really is pretty sub par so make sure you get a 2010+ model, VE2 good VF and VF2 are better again but probably above your price range.

countrypete, Jan 19, 8:03am
Thanks for that. The budget is pretty subjective and can go higher, so later model may be the way to go. This car will likely have for some time as I tend to keep tham a while (have had two Balenos for 20 + years)

countrypete, Jan 19, 8:05am
The other options I considered are Fuga / Cima / Crown or any Jap rear drive six. Particularly want quiet and smooth.

tamarillo, Jan 19, 8:30am
Quiet and smooth, big old Lexus. And then the commodore v6 does have a nice rumble at times that I like but isn’t smooth. The falcon is smoother.

buyit59, Jan 19, 9:49am
Since you keep vehicles for a long time I would go with something that is more common so you can source parts easier . So for me that would rule out the Cima , Fuga route . More Commodores going to end up in wreckers yards here than the Japanese makes . Also I don't think Fugas have very high tow rating .

monaro17, Jan 19, 10:31am
Fugas have a 1500kg tow rating. So not awful but not the best either.
And, seeing as though these cars were sold extensively in the US as Infiniti M35/M45 parts are available via Rockauto and are very well priced. So parts availability is and will continue to be good.

But if you’re wanting to tow then Commodore better. And without opening a can of worms, we have had a large array of both commodores and Falcons of varying ages from old to very late, and I can conclusively say from my experience the commodore is a better car. Yes the Barra (and Barra 270T) is a great engine it is an absolute shame what it’s hooked to. Our low km FG2 G6ET was fast but woefully lacking in every other area- from refinement, drivetrain and suspension fragility, low tech, comparatively small inside, general NVH issues etc.

franc123, Jan 19, 11:11am
If you go and drive the V6 Holden you will find it is not very refined compared to either the Jap engines or the Falcon Barra either. You may be shocked by how noisy it is at higher revs.

holden113, Jan 19, 12:41pm
Consider a 6.0 Commodore 👍

Fantastic towing ability, super "cool" factor, just as if not more reliable than the V6 engine (timing chain issues etc) and a high probability of its value going up, not down in the future.

mrfxit, Jan 19, 6:50pm
Wouldn't touch either Ford Or Holden for a tow vehicle.
Both are over weight & thirsty for their size.
ok for occasional towing but not on a regular basis.
If you are going to be towing a lot, get a late model Diesel.
Plenty of Isuzu / Toyota/ Nissans around that are cheaper to run & take a lot more of a beating while towing easier for longer, then either of those old man tanks.

mrfxit, Jan 19, 6:53pm
Hasn't been a genuine Holden since the HZ Premier.
1st Commodore was an Opel body & engine, then it went down hill from there.
Falcons have always had brilliant engines but let down badly by the rest of the car.

monaro17, Jan 19, 6:59pm
Overweight and thirsty for their size? Well that’s not only subjectively wrong it is also factually wrong.

I doubt the OP (or most people with double cab utes in particular) actually tow all the time. For the amount of times you are likely to tow then the commodores and falcon present an excellent choice.

There is little use in buying a comparatively uncomfortable cumbersome Ute or big SUV worth many thousands more for the occasional tow job. I recall Jeremy Clarkson making an interesting analogy years ago, I believe he was referring to buying a particular SUV, it went something along the lines of “buying one of these is the equivalent of walking around all year in ski gear and wearing crampons in the hope you will go skiing”.

monaro17, Jan 19, 7:37pm
The VB commodore was indeed based on an Opel. However when they tested the donor car in aus it literally split at the firewall. So it was re-engineered completely but yes was ‘based’ on the donor car. As for the engines I’m afraid you’re wrong. Holden continued to use the old 3.3 and 2.85 engines designed and manufactured in Australia. Zero relation to Opel. It wasn’t until the VL in 1986 (87 in NZ) that the Nissan RB engine was introduced to meet the need for more stringent emissions standards and the use of unleaded fuel, so again- zero link to Opel. And while the next two generations of commodores were again based on the donor cars they were quite different in many respects (particularly engines), the VT-VZ donor shell was re engineered to again be considerably stronger and over 2” wider. The VE was a completely Australian, designed and built car, using of course some parent GM part bin stuff

hkjoe, Jan 19, 8:47pm
No such thing as a Holden?

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