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 Torana LH


LH Torana
March 1974
The LH was an all new body shape for the popular Torana and came along when the LJ was starting to show its age. One of the big changes was to the physical size of the Torana as it was now larger and the engine-bay was able to accomodate the V8 engines without the tight squeeze it would have been in the LC-LJ range. The Australian motor industry was still concerned at the reactions of the supercar scare and with a new model launch could take away a bit of the stigma associated with the new V8 Torana. They were very aware that an adverse reaction could jepordise the new racing version L34 which release was held back untill July. By the time they released the L34 the market was already used to the potent SL/R six and eight cylinder Toranas cruising the streets.  The supercar scare was a definite era of the Australian motor history that shook people from the young right down to the granny who only drives to go shopping once a week one way or another. One of the other big changes was the non availability of a two-door as well as the dropping of the GTR and XU-1 in the model line-up. The replacement for these were the SL/R models which came out in 3300 (135bhp), 4200 (185bhp), 5000 (240bhp). These cars looked a treat with widened wheels, flared guards, sporty interior and special paint job to show that they were different from the everyday familly car. The L34 however was purely designed for racing and was enhanced in other ways but if you lined them up at a drag strip a suprise would be in order as there was nothing between them in straight-line performance. The real enhancements were it's all round ability, it was running a Holley 4-barrel and a modified cam and it's parts were more inline with the racing requirements and could be further enhanced for racing unlike the SL/R road series. The strengthened rods, exhaust headers and other high performance engine parts were designed to make the 5.0 litre Holden engine compete reliably against the larger 5.8 litre Ford units. there were some people who were dissapointed about the performance of the new 5.0 as it was found to be over half a second slower than the previous XU-1 through the quarter mile as well as being slower in top speed but I think this was a bit of a ploy by Holden so that the supercar scare didn't revisit and stop production on what would be a Bathurst winning package in 1975, 1976, 1978 and 1979 for the racing Toranas.
 Specifications
The LH was only available as a four door sedan but had a good range of engines to suit just about anybody.
These were:
Four cylinder l900 cc Opel
2250 cc six ( for export markets only )
2850 cc six ( in low and high compression)
3300 cc six (in low and high compression)
4.2 litre V8
5.0 litre V8

Holden vehicle serial number: stamped on the righthand frame side member.
MODEL        CODE    BODY      ENGINE
Torana S            8UG69      four-door         four
Torana SL           8UH69      four-door         four
Torana S            8VB69      four-door         six
Torana SL           8VC69      four-door         six
Torana S            8VB69      four-door         V8
Torana SL           8VC69      four-door         V8
Torana SL/R 3300    8VD69      four-door         six
Torana SL/R 4200    8VD69      four-door         V8
Torana SL/R5000     8VD69      four-door         V8

Luxury levels:
Torana S, aimed mainly at the fleet market.
Torana SL which was the most popular with a good mix of eligance and refinement never before seen in an Australian made car
Torana SL/R which probably stood for Sedan Luxury Racing.
The S and SL could be ordered with any engine.
The SL/R only as the SL/R 3300, SL/R 4200 and SL/R 5000.
The L34 was a straight out race car.
The L34 option had ported heads with increased valve size and roller rockers which sucked fuel from a 700cfm four barrel Holley carbarettor that was supplied from a high pressure fuel pump. A twin point distributor made it all spark at the high revs and a set of headers extracted all the waste out twin exhausts. The L34 had uprated suspension wider wheels and came standard with the Aussie M21 close ratio four speed that fed an limited slip diff. 

Transmissions:
Three speed manual column shift.
Four speed manual floor shift.
Four speed manual close ratio M21
Three speed automatic, column or floor change.

Suspension:
Front: coils, double wishbone, telescopic dampers, swaybar
Rear: coils, live axle, four links, telescopic dampers, swaybar

Steering:
Rack and pinion
3.3 turns lock to lock

Dimensions:
Wheelbase: 2586 mm
Track front: 1400 mm
Track back: 1372 mm
Length: 4493 mm
Width: 1704 mm
Height: 1328 mm
Weight: 1183 kg
Ground Clearance: 116.8 mm (4.9 inch)

Fuel Tank:
55 litres (12 gallons)

Tyres:
BR70 J13 / CR70 H13

Brakes:
Front: Disc 254 mm
Rear: Drum 254 mm


Torana S 1900
Price:
$3346
Engine:
Inline four cylinder, watercooled
OHV
Bore x Stroke: 93mm x 69.8mm (3.66" x 2.75")
Compression ratio: 9.0:1
Carburettor: Two barrel down-draught Solex

Power & Torque:
76 kW @ 5400 rpm (102 hp)
156 Nm @ 2800 rpm (115 lb/ft)

Transmissions:
4-speed manual
3-speed automatic

Performance:
Maximum speed manual: 148 km/h (90 mph)
Maximum speed auto: 137 km/h (85 mph)
Maximum speed in gears: (auto in brackets)
1st: 59 km/h @ 6400 rpm (72 km/h @ 5400 rpm)
2nd: 82 km/h @ 6400 rpm ( 114 km/h @ 5400 rpm)
3rd: 115 km/h @ 6200 rpm (137 km/h @ 4500 rpm)
4th: 148 km/h @ 5200 rpm
0-100 km/h manual: 14.9 seconds
0-60 km/h manual: 6.2 seconds
0-100 km/h auto: 19.6 seconds
0-60 km/h auto: 7.9 seconds
400m manual: 19.3 seconds
400m auto: 20.9 seconds

Fuel consumption:
Manual: 8.0 km/l - 10.0 km/l (22 mpg - 28 mpg)
Automatic: 7.3 km/l - 9.0 km/l (20 mpg - 25 mpg)


SL/R 4200
Price:
$4360

Engine:
V8, watercooled
OHV
Bore x Stroke: 92mm x 77.7mm (3.625" x 3.062")
Compression ratio: 9.0:1
Carburettor: Two barrel down-draught Stromberg

Final drive:
2.78:1

Power & Torque:
137 kW @ 4400 rpm (185 hp)
355 Nm @ 2400 rpm (262 lb/ft)

Transmissions:
4-speed manual
3-speed automatic

Performance:
Maximum speed manual: 181 km/h (113 mph)
Maximum speed in gears: 
1st: 67 km/h @ 5300 rpm (42 mph)
2nd: 93 km/h @ 5300 rpm (58 mph)
3rd: 136 km/h @ 5300 rpm (85 mph)
4th: 181 km/h @ 4650 rpm (113 mph)
0-160 km/h manual: 27.8 seconds
0-100 km/h manual: 9.2 seconds
0-60 km/h manual: 3.8 seconds
400m manual: 16.9 seconds
 

Fuel consumption:
Manual: 5.4 km/l - 7.0 km/l (15 mpg - 20 mpg)


SL/R 5000

This shows one of the components from the catalogue that made the L34 different. On the road version it would feed a 'quiet' and normal sized exhaust but on the racecar it would feed a large and open exhaust. The rules allowing open exhaust from the first join was taken to the limit.

Price:
$4757

Engine:
V8, watercooled
OHV
Bore x Stroke: 101.1mm x 77.7mm (4.00" x 3.062")
Compression ratio: 9.0:1
Carburettor: 4 barrel down-draught 

Final drive:
3.08:1

Power & Torque:
170 kW @ 4800 rpm (240 hp)
427 Nm @ 3000 rpm (315 lb/ft)

Transmissions:
4-speed manual
3-speed automatic

Performance:
Maximum speed manual: 194 km/h (121 mph)
Maximum speed in gears: 
1st: 77 km/h @ 5500 rpm (48 mph)
2nd: 106 km/h @ 5500 rpm (66 mph)
3rd: 140 km/h @ 5500 rpm (87 mph)
4th: 194 km/h @ 5500 rpm (121 mph)
0-160 km/h manual: 21.7 seconds
0-100 km/h manual: 8.2 seconds
0-60 km/h manual: 4.0 seconds
400m manual: 15.9 seconds
 

Fuel consumption:
Manual: 5.0 km/l - 6.8 km/l (13 mpg - 19 mpg)

 Pics



The first Bathurst for the L34 didn't turn into a win however it showed up well leading for most of the race but as anyone knows, it's a long way to the finish no matter what lap you are on. Even so they finished 2nd, 3rd and 4th with a remnant from the year before in 5th, a  XU-1. Next year was different with Peter Brock and Brian Sampson coming out as the victors in the big one.

Don't you just love those gumboots on the pit-crew!