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Sunday, 08 May 2016 00:00

V8 era: The technical battleground

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The V8 era pitted the Ford Falcon and Holden Commodore in head-to-head combat for two decades. What followed with the introduction of the locally-built V8 racers from the end of 1992 was an intense battle for technical supremacy.

V8X Supercar Magazine issue #92 reflects on the Ford Falcon and Holden Commodore legacy, including a feature looking back at the V8 era when the icons of adversary went head-to-head for championships and Bathurst 1000s.

V8X Supercar Magazine issue #92 is on sale now in stores with the digital edition available in the official V8X app (in the App Store and Google Play), online at DigitalEdition.V8XMagazine.com.au and in the Magzter app store.

CLICK HERE for more information on V8X Supercar Magazine issue #92.

The formula was dubbed Group 3A. The fundamentals were: sedan, V8, rear-wheel drive formula still applies today, 23 years on. Evolutionary this formula has undoubtedly been.

And that applies to the technical development of the cars as the rules that dictate their performance envelope have become more and more stringent through the years.

The first technical steps into the new formula were led by Dick Johnson Racing (DJR), which built a bold and highly modified EB Falcon that was dubbed a sports sedan. Meanwhile, Holden had a Group A base to develop its first new era racer, a VP Commodore.

The technical rules were a little grey and loose in those early days, recalls Glenn Seton, who owned and led the Ford factory-backed Peter Jackson Racing team and debuted his first EB at the 1992 Sandown 500 in preparation for a full-on tilt at the championship in 1993.

"The rules weren't massively clear and that's why the 1992 car never ever raced again after I crashed it at Adelaide in the last race of the year," he explains.

"Although we could repair it, the rules changed over Christmas regarding things you could do around the rear-diff housing and also the top of the wheel arches. So us and Johnson basically built new cars for 1993."

The feature by Bruce Newton details the formative years of the V8 era, the parity battles that ensued, the impact of the implementation of the Project Blueprint regulations, the end of the Ford and Holden exclusivity with the Car of the Future and the race wins tally of each Falcon and Commodore model from 1993 to the present.

CLICK HERE to purchase the print edition of V8X Supercar Magazine issue #92 to read the full feature.