The VK Commodore represented the first major change
to the Commodore since the release of the VB in 1978.
Sporting an all new and more agressive look than the
previous models, the additional side windows helped
make the VK look longer, and by reworking the rubber
seals the GMH engineers were able to give the VK a
squarer, more prominent look.
The inside was to come
in for a substantial makeover too, although the newly
squared-off design of the instruments was not to everyones
Some tweaking of the model range would see the SL/E name
dropped in favour of the Calais, while two new models
were designated to sit between it and the base SL, the
new Executive and Berlina.
The base model 3.3 motor was reserved for the SL, Executive
and Vacationer, while the more upmarket Berlina and Calais
were fitted with the 3.3 EFI or 5.0 liter V8 motors.
The 3300 six cylinder engine was now fitted with electronic
fuel injection, thoroughly modern even if its ancestory
lay with the first red engine fitted to the EH back in
The addition of fuel injection gave the 3.3 a much
needed boost in performance, much more than most commentators
of the day had anticipated.
Now much smoother and more
tractable, it would win over the hearts of any that drove
it - to the point that many considered it a better engine
than the once lauded 4.2 V8, the 253 not making the cut
and being dropped from the lineup.
the pick of the VK range was always the SS or Calais
(V8 equipped) models. Interestingly, the L31 5.0 liter
V8 was replaced by the LV2 4.9 liter midway through
the life of the VK in June 1985. Designed to help
the Commodore in Group A racing, the new motor was considerably
lighter (shedding 75kg) although most still refer to
it as a 5.0 liter. V8 engined cars also had the advantage of being equipped
with a much better braking system, including 4 wheel
discs and increased brake booster capacity.
also had success at Mount Panorama, winning in 1984
) and 1986
Bailey), only missing out in 1985
due to rule changes
to the Jaguar XJS of Armin Hahne and John Goss. Did
anyone notice that the 1.9 liter 4 and 2.85 liter 6's
were dropped from the Commodore lineup? Not really.