Friday, January 8, 2016

Forza Motorsport 6: The HQ Monaro GTS350

As Forza Motorsport 6's tribute to Australian motoring continues, the recently launched Polo Red Car Pack introduced us Holden's HQ Monaro, the second generation of Australia's first sports machine.

monaro (2)

The second-generation Holden Monaro, designated as HQ, was launched in 1971, marking it an evolution to the car known as Australia's first sports machine everyone can afford one. This generation introduced the LS model, featuring four headlights and chrome trim rings inspired from the Premier saloon.

In the GTS model, it's been offered with an Australian-made 253 cu in engine, a 308 cu in engine, or the top-spec GTS350 with the 350 cu in engine sourced from the Chevrolet Corvette.

There were problems faced on the GTS 350 model since its launch following the erosion of the cachet that led to the removal of 350 decals on post-1973 models. In its final 1974 year, the 4-speed manual gearbox was deleted and sales of the automatic model were in all-time low due to the engine option quietly removed from the lineup.

Now, a factory-spec GTS 350 is considered a rarity for Australian car enthusiasts with the coupe fetching as much as 100,000 Australian dollars.


There was a certain advert where touring car legend Peter Brock test drove a Monaro GTS (in four-door form) at a New South Wales Police Driver Training Circuit. He says that when you turn the steering wheel, the car turns. When you put your foot on the brakes, it stops. The four-speed gearbox has beautiful gear ratio, meaning it gets to the right gear at the right corner. What impresses Peter Brock the most about the HQ Monaro GTS is because it is so stable and predictable, it is an effortless car to drive. It's made for every driver who understands motorcars and it does everything better than most.

Although the Monaro I'm driving in Forza Motorsport 6 is the 2-door GTS350 version, it does everything like what Mr. Brock said in the advert. From the way it behaves, the gearbox, the V8 engine, it's still an effortless car to drive and for the driver who understands motorcars, it does everything better than most.

Learning from the past, it's hard to think why the Land Down Under gave us some of the most impressive cars in history and with the demise of Australian car production draws near, it's imperative that a game like this provided us some of the most historic Australian greats like this. We already tried the Torana A9X and the VL Commodore in the past DLC Packs in-game and with the HQ Monaro GTS 350, I think our tribute to Australian motoring may have done just that.

Speaking of which, I want to try this beast out in Bathurst and see how the HQ Monaro GTS lives up to its promise.

At the end of the lap, the HQ Monaro GTS 350 did it in 2:56.252, and while it may not be the quickest by modern standards, the HQ Monaro GTS 350 does live up to the promises and for the man who loves motorcars most, this Monaro does the job effortlessly.

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