VT Commodore

Produced the following years:
1997 1998 1999 2000

VT Commodore 1997-2000

Burgundy VT Commodore

The Holden VT Commodore was released in August 1997. This model was longer and wider than its predecessors and included a longer wheelbase. The basis for the body shape once again came from German design, this time from the Opel Omega B.

The initial release of VT Commodores was limited to station wagons and short wheel-based sedans. This meant the Utility, Statesman and Caprice were only available in the VS range at this time.

The stronger body of the VT model offered a very comfortable ride, as well as plenty of structural rigidity which controlled and reduced road noise. Safety for family passengers was also a priority for this model, incorporating driver and passenger airbags as well as side airbags as an option within the Acclaim model and higher models.

Later VT models saw the resurrection of a new generation of Statesman and Caprice limousines, as well as the resurrection of the wildly popular, iconic 2-door Monaro coupe. At first, the VT Monaro was only a show-piece concept car, displayed at car shows and trade shows. The waiting list for drivers wanting to purchase the new model Monaro was staggering after production began. Eventually in 2001, the new Monaro was released to the public and continued production until 2005.

The super-charged V6 engine introduced with the VS model was further modified and refined, giving it an upgraded power rating of 171 kW (229 hp). However, the 5.0 litre V8 engine was completely replaced in 1999 by the 5.7 litre V8 engine in the Generation III V8, the technology for which was sourced from the USA.

Originally the new version of the V8 engine was de-tuned down to 220 kW (300 hp) from the original US engine it was based upon, but throughout successful Commodore models it eventually received incremental upgrades back up to 250 kW (340 hp) before being super-ceded by the Generation 4 V8 in the VZ model.

The changes to the VT Commodore saw Wheels magazine award the model ‘Car of the Year’ for 1997, which was the fourth Commodore model to win this accolade.

Holden VT Commodore Models

The VT Executive sedan and station wagon were once again the base model of the range, with the Acclaim offering slightly more features as standard inclusions into the range.

The sports models, S and SS were also featured throughout the VT line.

While Holden manufactured both Berlina and Calais luxury models, as with previous models, these were no longer badged or marketed as being a part of the Commodore range.

The fitting of the semi-trailing arm independent rear suspension became standard inclusions across the entire VT range, and the optional side airbags for the Acclaim led the VT Commodore to become one of the highest selling Australian cars of the time.

In 1999, the Series II VT Commodore went on sale to the public and cosmetically there were very few differences between the Series I and II models other than amber indicator lenses on the side and rear signals.

Specification Levels

The VT Commodore was available in the following specification levels:
- Commodore
- 50th Anniversary
- 50th Anniversary Calais
- 9C1 Police Pack
- Acclaim
- Berlina
- Calais
- Equipe
- Executive
- Olympic Edition
- S
- SS