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(Chevette #429 - #433)

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Added to gallery:23rd Jun 2001
Contributer:Dave Australia

"These are all Aussie Holden Geminis.

This first picture is a photo of a 1979 'TE' model Holden Gemini Gypsy panelvan. The Gypsy van was a special options package for panelvans, which were usually very spartan inside. This was spawned by the worldwide desire for hot vans - now recognised as the start of the current Street Machine movement, which melds fantastic interiors with racing-bred street credibility. And you've got to love that tacky pinstripe and graphic!

Second picture is also a TE, this time a Holden Gemini CDT (Country Dealer Team) sedan. Riding on the coat-tails of the incredibly popular HDT (Holden Dealer Team) Commodore V8s, which were road and race-developed for Holden by legendary Aussie race driver Peter Brock, the CDT was modified ex-factory by a dealership in Mount Gambier, South Australia. Three series were produced, all based on the the 1979-81 TE model Gemini. The originals simply had Japanese gauges (including tacho, oil pressure and amps, etc) and the body kit and stripes. The second series (pictured) was blessed with a twin carb set up. The third series had a carb-fed turbo. As none of the series were built nor sanctioned by Holden, none of the modifications were RTA-approved. Thusly, the CDT pictured here was defected by the SA Police Department for non-standard carburettors, which came with it as standard! Tragic.

Third photo is of a 1984 TG Holden Gemini SL, which was the middle of the range specification (base was simply 'Gemini' while the top spec was the Gemini SL/X). This particular example is my mate Ross'. His has been upgraded to include an imported Isuzu 2000cc EFI DOHC engine, K-Mac springs shocks and swaybars, race seats and a Momo steering wheel, plus 15" Performance wheels. It's not that low in the photo because the springs and shocks were fitted recently. Like myself (see the chamois Holden panelvan elsewhere in these galleries), he likes to race his car at Mallala Raceway, and I'm only 2 seconds behind him on street tyres - and my car's almost stock with a 1600cc with mild work and 14" steel BMW wheels!

Picture four is a picture of another 1984 TG Holden Gemini, this time a wagon. This particular example has been modified externally with an Isuzu badge on the grille (Aussie Geminis had a large Holden badge, which is a lion rolling a ball), and those spectacular Centreline Convo Pro mag wheels. As you can see, the fat'n'skinnies state that this car is definitely set up for drag racing. Under the bonnet is the real action - a 3.8 litre Holden V6 pilfered from a 1988 'VN' Holden Commodore. While the engine is fairly low-tech in it's design and dates back to the late 1950s when it was developed from a V8 by Buick (the V8 design (3500cc) was cast in alloy and the design eventually sold to Rover who stuck it in everything they made there for a while), it makes excellent power and torque even for 1988, while getting 30mpg in the old language. Even in standard form with a 5 speed transmission, the old V6 will get a Gemini to boogie the quarter mile fairly quickly, and it's dead easy to bolt a supercharger to as well! I want one for my car!!!

The fifth picture is not an Aussie Gemini! No, these are 1975 Isuzu Gemini Minx, which I think may have been the up-spec model (lower models were the Gemini LS - or it could have been the other way around). I love the cheesiness of the Japanese picnickers all dressed in white! All hail the 1970s! While these were 1975 models, the grille they used is identical to the 1977-1978 TC model Holden Gemini. The other major difference are those crazy Japanese-spec mirrors waaay down there at the end of the bonnet! Good for avoiding blind spots I suppose, but a bitch to adjust I'm sure."

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