HomeNewsLocal Holden enthusiasts shocked by company's exit

Local Holden enthusiasts shocked by company’s exit

Bundaberg's Early Holden Club president Rob Bickmore with his 1967 HR Premier sedan.

Today's announcement that General Motors will stop making Holden cars has shocked and saddened local enthusiasts.

President of the Bundaberg Early Holden Club, Robert Bickmore, said the group's goal was to maintain the history of old Holden models but now that sentiment applies to every Holden vehicle.

“I heard the news today and I was pretty dumbfounded to be honest,” Robert said.

“Holden has been such an iconic brand in Australia so it's quite disappointing to see this happen.”

The company has a long history in Australia, dating back to 1856 when James Alexander Holden started a saddlery business in Adelaide.

According to Budget Direct, the top-selling Holden of all time was the HQ which was introduced in 1971 with 485,650 units sold over three years.

The HJ, HX and HZ series soon followed.

Robert said he had been a long-time Holden fan and would never forget the first vehicle he purchased, a HR 1966.

“I have always been a Holden fella,” he said.

“My whole family have had Holdens, I guess you could say it was ingrained in me.

“I started with a HR and I actually now drive a HR today.”

holden car
Bundaberg Early Holden Club president Rob Bickmore in his 1967 HR Premier sedan.

Robert said as part of his role at the Bundaberg Early Holden Club Inc, showcasing the iconic brand to the community was what he loved most about being part of the group.

“We have an annual car show each year and often get together, go for drives around the countryside and more,” he said.

“Our members have all sorts of makes and models, from the real old cars to newer models.

“We used to focus a lot on maintaining those early Holdens but now, with today's news, that is certainly going to ring true for every make and model.”

Robert said Holden had always been known as an Australian car, with the company having tapped into the Aussie market with clever research.

“They just made the right type of car because they did their homework,” he said.

“Holden were known for building a solid, reliable vehicle that could handle the conditions of Australia.

“It's going to be very sad not to see the badge any more.”

Bundaberg Early Holden Club scavenger hunt
Malcolm Strathdee and Kathy Strathdee with a 1940 Buick at the Bundaberg Early Holden Club scavenger hunt.

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