Australia's Greatest Performance Muscle Cars

Australia's Greatest Performance Muscle Cars

Australia has made a lot of tough cars over the years, but which stood the test of time and are cemented into our history as the best of the best? Let's dive into our pick of the greats that changed history, racing, and what we wish was in our garage today.

1969 Holden HT Monaro GTS 350

The fasted Monaro in the classic body, sporting the 224kW Chevy 350 (5.7-litre) under the hood, giving it substantially more guts than the 5.3L in it's predecessor, the HK. The HT lived up to the spec sheet taking the win at Bathurst in 1969 by Colin Bond. 

1972 Holden LJ Torana GTR XU-1

The Monaro was replaced as Holden's racing vehicle of choice with the original 1970 LC Torana GTR XU-1, and in 1972, the LC's 3.0-litre six was bored out to 3.3-litres and adopted triple Stromberg carbs, creating this 142kW unit. Clocking 220kph down Conrad Straight, the LJ GTR XU-1 is remembered for taking Peter Brock his first Bathurst victory.

1971 Ford XY Falcon GT-HO Phase III

Arguably Australia's favourite muscle car to this day, the Phase III established what Aussie muscle meant. With its intake on the 351 Cleveland poking through the bonnet, this Ford saw 0-100km/h within 6 seconds, a 14 second quarter mile, and 227km/h at the top end. Allan Moffatt took the Phase III to the top of the Bathurst podium in 1971 - the only win for this car.

1967 Ford XR Falcon GT

If the Phase III defined Aussie muscle, then this one started the movement. The GT was based on a Fairmont with a police-spec 168kW 289ci V8, four-barrel carb, bigger brakes, retuned suspension and a floor-mounted, all-synchro close-ratio four-speed. Unbeatable at the 1967 Bathurst, many regard this as the pivitol moment that started the Ford Vs Holden battle, and drove the manufactures to war on the track. Oh yeah, and it only came in one colour...

1985 HDT VK SS Group A

The car now known as the Blue Meanie was the very first Group A Commodore. Becoming one of the most sought after models, Brock's personal one sold at auction for a reported $1.057 million a few years back. 1985 saw new racing regulations, which forced Holden & HDT to comply by creating a road-going VK. It was proven on the track with wins by Brock at Bathurst '85, Grice's '86 win and Kings Cup at Spa in '87

1972 Chrysler VH Charger E49

The E38 Charger showed promise on the track but was hampered to 2nd place by its three-speed gearbox. The lads got to work on the E49, which was developed with an extra gear - hence the #4 on the side panel. Its 4.3-litre triple Webered six was good for 225kW/440Nm, rivalling it's acceleration with the XY GT HO. The goal was a Bathurst win, which never became a reality, but it may be the best car to ever not to win the great race.

1977 Holden Torana A9X

Mr Brock was back at it again with a 7 lap victory in the 1979 Bathurst, while setting the lap record on his final round, which was enough to establish this car as more than just a contender. 305/405 of the 5.0-litre V8 A9X manufactured were sedans, making the race-winning hatch an icon and regarded as the best Torana ever made.

Do you agree with this list? If not, go make your own list or jump over to our private Facebook group to complain. There's 300 000 blokes over there and they'd be happy to hear about why the XR6 is better than all the above!

All images were taken from the internet and are assumed to be in the public domain. In the event that there is a problem with copyrighted material, the break of the said copyright is unintentional and images will be removed at once with any request.

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