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Commodore VL


 
VL 1986
The VL was an updated version of the VK but had so many changes to it that it didn't even look that similar. And as for the engine, finaly the holden 6 cylinder motor was put out to pasture after 23 years and Holden imported a built up Nissan 3.0 six cylinder that was also available in turbo form. These engines were needed with the new unleaded fuel which most countries were adopting in one form or another.  The new fuel was far to hard on the old six and with it being a lower octane would have been expensive to modify so it could try and keep pace with more modern engines. The decision was a good one and the 3.0 Nissan six was inexpensive and produced good power in the relitively light bodied Commodores. Also with this new engine the bonnet was able to be lowered for better aerodynamics which reduced the drag and increased fuel economy at highway cruising speeds. With smaller headlights and in some models the pop-up lights it added a little style to the old body. The VL body was basically a VK from the front door pillar to the boot except for the little tail fin.

The VL as a race car was a very good package so much so that in the 1990 Bathurst race it was won by a VL Walkinshaw driven by Allan Grice and Win Percy.  It was decided by several drivers that the old aerodynamic package of the VL was a faster package than the new VN Group A which most teams had opted for.


1990 Bathurst winning VL


Group A

Brocky before the incident that saw him jump into the second team car.
The 1987 Bathurst was a foregone conclusion for the VL to loose but someone must have forgotten to show Peter Brock, David Parsons and Peter McLeod as they finally were given the win after the Texaco Sierras were disqualified after an irregularity in there fuel tank. It was found that they had  traces of higher than allowed octane petrol in there tanks after the race when they were inspected. Now this was one of the more unusual races as Brocky started out in 05 but after encountering trouble he dumped 05 and joined the number 10 Mobil Commodore where he was cross entered just in case this scenario ever happened. This was outlawed later but if you ask me it was what I would call a shrewd call on the master of the mountain and may I add he was not the only one to do this.


The 4.9 litre and 5.0 litre Group A engines that were used but only one carried the brock signiture, the 4.9 litre.
Group A
This was the first Group A since the introduction of unleaded fuel so people were pleasantly surprised to find more power than before as they feared it could have been the same as in the ADR27A days when cars lost so much power. The engines in the Group A were strengthened with stronger rods and cranks and used a lightened flywheel. The exhaust was different this year as the rules for racing allowed for anything goes after the first join so Holden made the first join closer to the heads. Of course the usual was done to the heads to help them breath and the fuel was fed from a high pressure pump into a Rochester 4-barrel. The gearbox for the 4.9 litre was a Borgwarner T10 with a one to one top gear. This was Brockys last stand and the fallout between Holden and Peter Brock was stretched to breaking point and beyond. Brockys Group A was signed and came with the 4.9 litre engine while the Generals product was unsigned and came with the 5.0 litre.  Brockys car also came with the Energy Polariser which was the stumbling point between Peter and GM-H as they saw no reason to add this piece of equipment to there cars and bvecause of this Peter saw no reason to add his signature to there Group A cars. The Brock version Group A was the race version and came with the sportier suspension package which allowed for better handling for the comprimise of comfort.
Group A Specifications:
Price:
$29,600
Engine:(5.0 litre)
V8 front mounted OHV
Bore/stroke: 101.6 x 76.8 mm
Capacity: 4987 cc
Carburettor: Rochester Quadrajet
Compression: 8.5:1
Power:
137 kW @ 4400 rpm
345 Nm @ 3200 rpm
Maximum recommended rpm: 5600
Performance:
0-80 km/h 5.33 seconds
0-100 km/h 7.64 seconds
0-140 km/h 15.2 seconds
Standing 400m:
15.54 @ 142 km/h
Fuel consumption:
14.4 l/100 km.....but who cares!
Transmission:
Gear  Ratio      Max speed    rpm
1st     3.25:1     63 km/h       5600
2nd    1.99:1     104 km/h     5600
3rd     1.29:1     160 km/h    5600
4th     1.00:1     207 km/h     5600
5th     0.72:1     221 km/h    4300
Final Drive:
3.08:1
Brakes:
Front: 289 mm discs
Back: 230 mm discs
Weight:
1295 kg
Wheels / Tyres:
Alloy 7JJ X 16
Bridgestone RE71 205/55 VR 15
Fuel capacity:
63 litres


The Momo 16 x 7 inch rims stood out like the rest of car and along with the Bridgestone RE71 which were 55 series allowed for a slightly better comfort level than the VK with it's 50 series tyres.

The bonnet scoop is not just for looks as it directs air directly into the 780 cfm Rochester 4-barrel.

Clean lines made the VL Group A a sleek and sporty Commodore and the lower swept bonnet helped this. The aerodynamics were there without being overly done but there was shock in store for the following model.

The interior is great and the build number is on the glovebox so you can tell if you are in an original or not.
 Specifications
Year of Introduction: 
1986 

Engines: 
3.0 litre 6 cylinder 
3.0 litre turbo-charged 6  cylinder
4.9 litre V8 

Transmissions:
5 speed manual 
3 speed Trimatic (V8)
4 speed automatic (6) 

Performance: 0-100 km/h
7.04 seconds (Group A)
9.58 seconds (3.0 litre manual)
11.08 seconds (3.0 auto)
7.63 seconds (3.0 Turbo)
6.97 seconds (5.6 Director Calais) 

Standing 400m:
16.79 (SL 3.0 litre)
15.58 (3.0 Turbo)
15.68 @ 139 km/h (Group A)
15.51 (5.0 VL HDT Group 3)
15.22 (VL SS Group A 1988 model)
15.10 (5.6 Director Calais)

Top speed:
3.0 litre Turbo 223 km/h
3.0 litre SL 187 km/h
5.0 litre Group A 221 km/h
5.0 Calais 198 km/h
5.6 Director 227 km/h

Production: 
151,801 

Models available:
SL sedan
SL station wagon
Berlina sedan
Berlina station wagon
Calais sedan
Calais station wagon

3.0 EFI Engine specs.
Nissan RB30 2962cc
Capacity: 2.960L 
Induction: EFI 
Valvetrain: Overhead cam, 2 valves / cylinder 
Bore x Stroke (mm): 86.0 x 85.0 
Compression ratio: 9.0:1 
Maximum Power: 114 kW 
Maximum Torque: 247 Nm

3.0 Turbo EFI specs.
Nissan RB30T 2962cc
Capacity: 2.960L 
Turbo: Garrett T3 water-cooled
Boost: 7psi non-intercooled
Induction: EFI 
Valvetrain: Overhead cam, 2 valves / cylinder 
Bore x Stroke (mm): 86.0 x 85.0 
Compression ratio: 7.8:1 
Maximum Power 150kW@5500rpm
Maximum Torque 296/Nm@3200rpm
6100rpm redline

4.9 V8
Capacity: 4.983L 
Valvetrain: Overhead valve, 2 valves / cylinder 
Bore x Stroke (mm): 101.6 x 78.6 
Compression ratio: 8.5:1 
Maximum Power: 122 kW 
Maximum Torque: 323 Nm 

 Pics

Walkinshaw VL & 5.0 litre engine

Group A

Brocks stroked 5.6 litre Director
Even after 226,000km the 3.0litre injected engine can still spin up to 183km/h and this was slightly up hill. Brand new they were rated as having a top speed of 187km/h so I guess this motor was just starting to loosen up.