The Pontiac G8 will end its short U.S. production run by the end of this year, but the Holden Commodore could live on in the U.S. under the Chevrolet nameplate. General Motors is reportedly mulling a plan that could see up to 40,000 Chevy-badged Commodores sold in the U.S. to various police departments.
According to Australi's GoAuto, GM is contemplating bolstering Holden's export program by marketing a Chevy-badged commodore in the U.S. market for police use. The plan would also call for the Chevy Commodore to be sold to police units in Canada, the UK and the Middle East.
Holden stands to lose as much as $760 million from the loss of G8 exports, but that sum could be more than made up for by the export of a Chevrolet Commodore. Thanks to the massive wear and tear put on police vehicles every year, GM would be able to realistically sell 40,000 units - or more - of the Commodore police vehicle around the globe annually. Sales would initially start with the Los Angeles police department but would spread to other departments, thanks in large part to the pending death of the Ford Crown Victoria -- the current police cruiser of choice. Ford currently sells about 60,000 units of the fleet-only Crown Vic to police departments around the country.
The transformation wouldn't be difficult, either. GM currently sells the Commodore as the Chevy Lumina in the Middle East and South Africa, so the tooling and parts are already in place to give the Commodore a Chevy face.
Moreover, GoAuto speculates that if GM does green light the Chevy Commodore for police use, a retail version could come on line in 2012 to replace the Chevy Impala. However, with the government and the UAW set to take a controlling stake in GM, we won't hold our breath for a Chevy-badged, Australian-made version of the performance sedan.