Holden back the years, poll

BIRTH OF A LEGEND: 1948, and Prime Minister Ben Chifley inspects Australia's home-built car, the Holden 48-215, also known among fans as the FX.

BIRTH OF A LEGEND: 1948, and Prime Minister Ben Chifley inspects Australia's home-built car, the Holden 48-215, also known among fans as the FX.

The dash of the 48-215. There's a speedo, warning lights, a fuel gauge and ... nup, that's it.

The dash of the 48-215. There's a speedo, warning lights, a fuel gauge and ... nup, that's it.

A beautifully restored 1949 model 48-215.

A beautifully restored 1949 model 48-215.

INSTANT CLASSIC: 1953 and the 48-215's successor, the iconic FJ hit the streets.

INSTANT CLASSIC: 1953 and the 48-215's successor, the iconic FJ hit the streets.

Ian Blackburn of Terang in western Victoria, right, with his FJ ute, restored with the assistance of Doc Elliot, left..

Ian Blackburn of Terang in western Victoria, right, with his FJ ute, restored with the assistance of Doc Elliot, left..

FE 1956-57:  The FE Holden featured new styling that took advantage of its longer wheelbase. The FE also introduced the station wagon to the model options.

FE 1956-57: The FE Holden featured new styling that took advantage of its longer wheelbase. The FE also introduced the station wagon to the model options.

FC 1958: Kev Woodlard of Byron Bay with his restored FC, which was basically a  facelifted FE with new grille and tweaked engine.

FC 1958: Kev Woodlard of Byron Bay with his restored FC, which was basically a facelifted FE with new grille and tweaked engine.

FB 1960-61: Michele Borghesi of St Kilda, Melbourne, with her FB. Once again it was a mild tweak of the previous model, with a slightly more powerful engine not enough to counter the increased weight from its slightly larger proportions.

FB 1960-61: Michele Borghesi of St Kilda, Melbourne, with her FB. Once again it was a mild tweak of the previous model, with a slightly more powerful engine not enough to counter the increased weight from its slightly larger proportions.

EK 1961-1962:  The EK was only a minor facelift of the FB, most notably the changed grille, but also significant as the first Holden to offer automatic transmission.

EK 1961-1962: The EK was only a minor facelift of the FB, most notably the changed grille, but also significant as the first Holden to offer automatic transmission.

EJ 1962-63: Change was in the air and the EJ marked a complete redesign, dropping the 50's curves and tailfins for a squarer shape. The one millionth Holden was an EJ built in October 1962.

EJ 1962-63: Change was in the air and the EJ marked a complete redesign, dropping the 50's curves and tailfins for a squarer shape. The one millionth Holden was an EJ built in October 1962.

EJ Holdens on the production line. The EJ was the last model to use a variation of the "grey" motor that had powered all Holdens since the 48-215.

EJ Holdens on the production line. The EJ was the last model to use a variation of the "grey" motor that had powered all Holdens since the 48-215.

LIVING THE DREAM: An EJ station wagon and van.

LIVING THE DREAM: An EJ station wagon and van.

EH 1963-65: That's more like it. The squared up tail lights and other refinements to the EJ resulted in one of the most loved models of all time with more than 250,000 produced. Most importantly, it the first model to use the legendary red motor that would power Holdens up to the 80s.

EH 1963-65: That's more like it. The squared up tail lights and other refinements to the EJ resulted in one of the most loved models of all time with more than 250,000 produced. Most importantly, it the first model to use the legendary red motor that would power Holdens up to the 80s.

An EH ute at work. With sheep. How much more Australian can you get?

An EH ute at work. With sheep. How much more Australian can you get?

HD 1965-66: An all new body that was longer, wider and heavier. It was also the first Holden to have disc brakes, which proved useful in stopping that longer, wider heavier body...

HD 1965-66: An all new body that was longer, wider and heavier. It was also the first Holden to have disc brakes, which proved useful in stopping that longer, wider heavier body...

Ron Steltenpool of the Central Coast shows off the classic lines of the HD.

Ron Steltenpool of the Central Coast shows off the classic lines of the HD.

A HD wagon. Often unfairly panned by critics, it wasn't that bad but suffered from following after the popular EH and being overshadowed by what came next...

A HD wagon. Often unfairly panned by critics, it wasn't that bad but suffered from following after the popular EH and being overshadowed by what came next...

HR 1966-68: PADDED SUNVISORS!! That's right, no longer would Australian motorists bruise their hands on overly-hard visors as they squinted boldly into the harsh Australian sun. On a more serious note the HR was to prove another popular model with more than a quarter of a million produced.

HR 1966-68: PADDED SUNVISORS!! That's right, no longer would Australian motorists bruise their hands on overly-hard visors as they squinted boldly into the harsh Australian sun. On a more serious note the HR was to prove another popular model with more than a quarter of a million produced.

The classic lines of a HR wagon.

The classic lines of a HR wagon.

HK 1968-1969: Judy and Garry Cornford of Illawarra's Albion Park with their HK Premier, one of many types of HK produced including the iconic Kingswood, up market luxury Brougham, down market no-frills Belmont and most importantly of all...

HK 1968-1969: Judy and Garry Cornford of Illawarra's Albion Park with their HK Premier, one of many types of HK produced including the iconic Kingswood, up market luxury Brougham, down market no-frills Belmont and most importantly of all...

MONARO! Holden's first foray into two door sport coupe was an instant winner. With the Chevy-powered Monaro GTS 327 Australia finally had a muscle car to call its own.

MONARO! Holden's first foray into two door sport coupe was an instant winner. With the Chevy-powered Monaro GTS 327 Australia finally had a muscle car to call its own.

ANOTHER MONARO! No matter which way you looked it was a stunner. Who cares about the big bad wolf when you have a growling V8 under your little red hood?

ANOTHER MONARO! No matter which way you looked it was a stunner. Who cares about the big bad wolf when you have a growling V8 under your little red hood?

WINNER: And just to prove the point here's a Monaro leading the field into the Dipper at the 1968 Hardie Ferodo at Bathurst. The Monaro GTS 327 won the '68 race while its more powerful successor, the HT GTS 350 made it back-to-back Holden victories in 1969.

WINNER: And just to prove the point here's a Monaro leading the field into the Dipper at the 1968 Hardie Ferodo at Bathurst. The Monaro GTS 327 won the '68 race while its more powerful successor, the HT GTS 350 made it back-to-back Holden victories in 1969.

HT 1969-1970: A new grille, new tail lights, and introducing the home-grown 253 cubic inch V8 (4.2 litre in modern parlance). It was also had the first Holden transmission with syncromesh on all forward gears, meaning you didn't have to stop to put the car back in first gear (you try telling that to the kids of today...)

HT 1969-1970: A new grille, new tail lights, and introducing the home-grown 253 cubic inch V8 (4.2 litre in modern parlance). It was also had the first Holden transmission with syncromesh on all forward gears, meaning you didn't have to stop to put the car back in first gear (you try telling that to the kids of today...)

The HT Monaro, did we mention it came with a 350 Chevy V8 and won Bathurst?

The HT Monaro, did we mention it came with a 350 Chevy V8 and won Bathurst?

HG 1970-71: Another new grille, another set of new tailights, the HK-HT-HG shape was beginning to look a little dated by the early 70s, though I wouldn't try telling that to Craig Spicer, seen here with his methanol-sucking blown 383 Chevy powered drag racer.

HG 1970-71: Another new grille, another set of new tailights, the HK-HT-HG shape was beginning to look a little dated by the early 70s, though I wouldn't try telling that to Craig Spicer, seen here with his methanol-sucking blown 383 Chevy powered drag racer.

HQ 1971-73: This is it, the most popular Holden ever in terms of sales. More than 485,000 HQs were produced. At home in town or country, a true Australian icon. This was truly the era of Kingswood country, although the TV show didn't start until 1980.

HQ 1971-73: This is it, the most popular Holden ever in terms of sales. More than 485,000 HQs were produced. At home in town or country, a true Australian icon. This was truly the era of Kingswood country, although the TV show didn't start until 1980.

So many HQ Holdens were still on the road by the early 80s that the model was chosen for a new, cheap, entry-level category of racing. So popular was the new HQ-only 3H category seen here that spare parts for non-racing HQs soon became hard to find.

So many HQ Holdens were still on the road by the early 80s that the model was chosen for a new, cheap, entry-level category of racing. So popular was the new HQ-only 3H category seen here that spare parts for non-racing HQs soon became hard to find.

Along with the four-door HQs came an all new Monaro. No more more wussy 6-cylinders though if you wanted a GTS, available in three flavours: 4.2-litre vanilla, 5.0-litre chocolate, and 5.7-litre triple-choc with sprinkles. Gary Medlicott of Melbourne poses here with his immaculate GTS 350 (sprinkles version).

Along with the four-door HQs came an all new Monaro. No more more wussy 6-cylinders though if you wanted a GTS, available in three flavours: 4.2-litre vanilla, 5.0-litre chocolate, and 5.7-litre triple-choc with sprinkles. Gary Medlicott of Melbourne poses here with his immaculate GTS 350 (sprinkles version).

Dashboards came a long way since the humble 48-215. This is the GTS 350 cockpit view that every 70s kid aspired to.

Dashboards came a long way since the humble 48-215. This is the GTS 350 cockpit view that every 70s kid aspired to.

EVERY FATHER'S NIGHTMARE: The HQ Sandman, where revhead and waxhead sensibilities merged into a gnarly cruiser perfect for chewing up the tarmac in the search for that perfect point break. There was often said to be a lot of merging of a different kind going on in the back.

EVERY FATHER'S NIGHTMARE: The HQ Sandman, where revhead and waxhead sensibilities merged into a gnarly cruiser perfect for chewing up the tarmac in the search for that perfect point break. There was often said to be a lot of merging of a different kind going on in the back.

HJ 1974-1976: When you are on a good thing stick to it, as a popular commercial of the day used to say, and the HJ was largely a HQ with a squarer front end and new tailights.

HJ 1974-1976: When you are on a good thing stick to it, as a popular commercial of the day used to say, and the HJ was largely a HQ with a squarer front end and new tailights.

HX 1976-1978: A new front grille was about the only external change with the HX, but under the hood there were major engine changes to comply with new emission standards. Novocastrian Julie Wells poses here with her beautiful HX LE Monaro.

HX 1976-1978: A new front grille was about the only external change with the HX, but under the hood there were major engine changes to comply with new emission standards. Novocastrian Julie Wells poses here with her beautiful HX LE Monaro.

HZ 1977-1980: The end of an era, the HZ was the last sedan to bear the Kingswood name as the model made way for the new Commodore.

HZ 1977-1980: The end of an era, the HZ was the last sedan to bear the Kingswood name as the model made way for the new Commodore.

With the HZ there was no coupe Monaro, in fact the name was retired with the previous HX model. But there was a still a sports version, the HZ GTS, which featured the exciting new technology of RADIAL TUNED SUSPENSION.

With the HZ there was no coupe Monaro, in fact the name was retired with the previous HX model. But there was a still a sports version, the HZ GTS, which featured the exciting new technology of RADIAL TUNED SUSPENSION.

After the HZ the Kingswood name lived on for a few more years in the form of the WB Ute and one-tonners before ending in 1984.

After the HZ the Kingswood name lived on for a few more years in the form of the WB Ute and one-tonners before ending in 1984.

VB 1978-1980: The new kid on the block, the Commodore, was based on an Opel design with consideration to rising oil prices and an expected increase in demand for more fuel efficient vehicles. People weren't too impressed by the downsizing and later models saw the Commodore incrementally grow back to full proportions.

VB 1978-1980: The new kid on the block, the Commodore, was based on an Opel design with consideration to rising oil prices and an expected increase in demand for more fuel efficient vehicles. People weren't too impressed by the downsizing and later models saw the Commodore incrementally grow back to full proportions.

Smaller than a Kingswood, bigger than a Torana, people weren't sure what to make of it, though it went on to be the top-selling Australian car of 1979.

Smaller than a Kingswood, bigger than a Torana, people weren't sure what to make of it, though it went on to be the top-selling Australian car of 1979.

VC 1980-81: The VC was basically a face-lifted VB but also the first to use the new "blue motor", replacing the red model that was introduced in '65 with the EH. With the introduction of the VC Holden dropped the Kingswood and the Commodore was soon sailing solo.

VC 1980-81: The VC was basically a face-lifted VB but also the first to use the new "blue motor", replacing the red model that was introduced in '65 with the EH. With the introduction of the VC Holden dropped the Kingswood and the Commodore was soon sailing solo.

A VC Wagon. The commodore was one of the few cars in the world to be produced with a choice of 4,6,and V8 engine options.

A VC Wagon. The commodore was one of the few cars in the world to be produced with a choice of 4,6,and V8 engine options.

VH 1981-1983: An evolution of the VC model with a better looking front end, the VC also saw the introduction of the sporty SS model, which is still with us today.

VH 1981-1983: An evolution of the VC model with a better looking front end, the VC also saw the introduction of the sporty SS model, which is still with us today.

VK 1984-1986: Don't let the distinctive plastic grille fool you, the VK was just a major facelift to the earlier Commodore. And it had square instruments on the dash, which mercifully failed to catch on.

VK 1984-1986: Don't let the distinctive plastic grille fool you, the VK was just a major facelift to the earlier Commodore. And it had square instruments on the dash, which mercifully failed to catch on.

 King of the Mountain Peter Brock with Larry Perkins and the VK Commodore that was part of the pair's famous one-two finish at Bathurst in 1984.

King of the Mountain Peter Brock with Larry Perkins and the VK Commodore that was part of the pair's famous one-two finish at Bathurst in 1984.

And here is Newcastle artist Julie Squires pulling the cover off her statue at Bathurst that  shows Peter Brock atop his VK after the historic win. Yes she knows he didn't do this in real life.

And here is Newcastle artist Julie Squires pulling the cover off her statue at Bathurst that shows Peter Brock atop his VK after the historic win. Yes she knows he didn't do this in real life.

VL 1986-88: The final facelift for the first series of Commodores and featuring an imported Nissan engine so it could run on unleaded petrol.

VL 1986-88: The final facelift for the first series of Commodores and featuring an imported Nissan engine so it could run on unleaded petrol.

VN 1988-1991: Back up to full size again after the smaller earlier Commodores and also the first Commodore-based ute.

VN 1988-1991: Back up to full size again after the smaller earlier Commodores and also the first Commodore-based ute.

VP 1991-93: A face-lifted VN and the first with ABS brakes.

VP 1991-93: A face-lifted VN and the first with ABS brakes.

VR 1993-1995: Wheels Car of the Year in 1993.

VR 1993-1995: Wheels Car of the Year in 1993.

VS 1995-1997: The last of the second generation Commodores, essentially a VR with different  wheels, a new badge and updated engine..

VS 1995-1997: The last of the second generation Commodores, essentially a VR with different wheels, a new badge and updated engine..

VT 1997-2000: An all new design and the best selling Commodore to date.

VT 1997-2000: An all new design and the best selling Commodore to date.

VX 2000-2002: A minor update of the VT.

VX 2000-2002: A minor update of the VT.

IT'S BACK! 2001 saw the return, for a few years, of the iconic Monaro. The V2 Munro was available in both V6 and V8 but for some reason the V8 outsold its sibling by 10 to one.

IT'S BACK! 2001 saw the return, for a few years, of the iconic Monaro. The V2 Munro was available in both V6 and V8 but for some reason the V8 outsold its sibling by 10 to one.

VY 2002-2004: A more substantial upgrade on the inside with only minor changes on the outside, the VY failed to match the sales success of earlier models.

VY 2002-2004: A more substantial upgrade on the inside with only minor changes on the outside, the VY failed to match the sales success of earlier models.

VZ 2004-2007: Featuring a new Alloytec V6 and active safety features to improve handling in emergencies.

VZ 2004-2007: Featuring a new Alloytec V6 and active safety features to improve handling in emergencies.

VE 2006-2013: Unlike its Germanic forebears the VE was the first Commodore to be completely designed in Australia instead of borrowing from Opel and other makes.

VE 2006-2013: Unlike its Germanic forebears the VE was the first Commodore to be completely designed in Australia instead of borrowing from Opel and other makes.

VF 2013- Today: An evolution of the VE, and now destined to be the second last model made in Australia. Its replacement in 2016 will be the last before American-made cars with a Commodore badge begin landing on our shores.

VF 2013- Today: An evolution of the VE, and now destined to be the second last model made in Australia. Its replacement in 2016 will be the last before American-made cars with a Commodore badge begin landing on our shores.

A look back at the major Holden models since 1948 plus your chance to vote for which model was the best.