By on September 29, 2017

2017 Chevrolet Camaro SS Australia - Image: ChevroletIn response to the huge global success achieved by the sixth-generation Ford Mustang, General Motors’ Australian Holden branch is developing right-hand-drive Chevrolet Camaros for sale in 2018.

According to Australia’s News, the beleaguered Holden brand will benefit from the launch of a market-specific Camaro next year thanks to conversion work done by Holden Special Vehicles.

General Motors is no doubt privy to news that the Ford Mustang became a global hit when the sixth iteration launched with independent rear suspension and right-hand-drive availability. The Mustang arrived in the United Kingdom in late 2015, for instance, and quickly outsold all other sporting coupes, earning the bulk of its sales from V8 versions. And in Australia, where Ford originally anticipated 1,000 annual Mustang sales, the Blue Oval is running at a roughly 10,000-unit annual pace.

Selling far fewer Camaros in its home market than it used to, Chevrolet could certainly use a global boost for its high-performance coupe. But the sales boost may be modest, as Australia’s Camaro is destined to be far more costly than the Mustang. 

2017 Ford Mustang RHD interior - Image: FordThe cost of total Camaro renovation will likely drive the Camaro SS’s price up to AUD $80,000-$90,000, about $30,000 more than the basic Mustang and $20,000 more than the Mustang GT. Price is only one factor that will result in few Camaro sales down under. HSV will likely only be able to build 1,000 of the cars annually, although Holden’s employee count is likely to tick up by 150 to 200 workers.

Until Holden readies the first right-hand-drive Camaros for sale in Australia, the company will suffer a six-month gap without a V8-engined performance car. Holden has typically been able to sell 3,000 V8-engined vehicles annually.

Back on this side of the Pacific, Camaro sales are off 2016’s pace by 4 percent through the first two-thirds of 2017, setting the stage for the lowest-volume year of U.S. Camaro sales since the nameplate was brought back from the grave in 2009. With 46,297 sales so far this year, the Camaro trails the Mustang by 10,000 units and the Dodge Challenger by 1,200.

[Images: General Motors, Ford]

Timothy Cain is a contributing analyst at The Truth About Cars and Autofocus.ca and the founder and former editor of GoodCarBadCar.net. Follow on Twitter @timcaincars and Instagram.

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