First things first, this is not an HSV Colorado. Instead, it is a Holden Colorado SportsCat by HSV.
It’s an important distinction as HSV felt disingenuous to apply its full branding to a vehicle that lacks its traditional power upgrade. Yes, the SportsCat retains the same 2.8-litre turbo diesel four-cylinder as the standard Colorado, producing 147kW/440Nm in manual guise with the auto adding another 60Nm.
HSV looked at extracting more power but doing so would have been expensive and the gains marginal, so instead it has concentrated on upgrading and enhancing almost every other area.
Most obvious are the SportsCat’s visual enhancements, consisting of a new fascia and grille, LED fog lamps and tow hooks, hard tonneau, rear sports bar, tailgate applique, wheel arch flares and 18 x 10-inch forged alloy wheels. The range-topping SportsCat+ adds a bonnet bulge and a ‘casselated’ treatment for the wheel arch flares.
Inside there are new sports seats wrapped in leather and suede while the instrument panel scores a similar treatment and twin-needle red stitching is applied to the leather steering wheel, door trims and centre console.
Thankfully, there are also some worthwhile engineering changes. Both SportsCats feature revised springs and dampers to reduce roll and improve on-road handling; the front ride height has been increased 25mm to improve ground clearance and approach angles and tyres are 285/60 Cooper Zeon all-terrains which provide a further 20mm increase in ride height.
The SportsCat+ adds a rear anti-roll bar that automatically de-couples when low range is selected, bespoke AP Racing brakes including 362mm front rotors, four-piston calipers and a larger brake master cylinder and the option of SupaShock remote reservoir dampers for high-performance off-road driving.
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Production of the SportsCat models is scheduled to start in January at HSV’s new production facility in Clayton with pricing to be confirmed closer to the release date.