February 26th, 2008
2008 will see GM Holden celebrate its 1000th Ute export to South Africa with the announcement that General Motors South Africa is to take delivery of the new VE Ute.
This is the first export program for the all-new Ute, outside New Zealand, and enters GM Holden into its 5th year of Ute exports to South Africa.
To be sold as a Chevrolet Lumina SS Ute, the VE derivative will be almost identical in terms of specification and features to the domestic version of the sporty SS V Series, and joins the popular Lumina SS Sedan already on sale.
The vehicle was launched recently in Sabie, South Africa, where Marketing Manager for General Motors South Africa, Des Fenner, said the all-new Lumina SS Ute occupied a special niche as it was the only vehicle of its kind in the South African market.
“It is a vehicle that has a tremendous appeal amongst a group of buyers that work hard and play hard and enjoy an active lifestyle,” Fenner said.
“This vehicle raises the bar thanks to the wealth of expertise at GM’s global rear wheel drive design and engineering centre in Australia. They have created a vehicle that successfully integrates sports car performance, ride and handling, together with a functional load carrying capability.”
GM Holden Export Manager, Kristian Aquilina, said that it was great to see this long standing relationship with GM South Africa continue, especially with such an exciting product.
“The VE range, including the Ute, has generated a great response from our global GM partners and there is certainly a market for this kind of vehicle,” Aquilina said.
“Exports are an essential part of our strategy and with the success of the VE range overseas we expect to export 50 per cent of the vehicles we make here in Australia in the near future.”
The Chevrolet Ute has established strong credentials in South Africa as a recreational sports car and the new VE Ute is set to impress as a practical workhorse that promises functionality and versatility with stunning styling and performance.