This was the coolest, EH?

IN my teens, this was the vintage old Holden I liked best. Most of them were ‘hotted-up’ by then by their young third, fourth or fifth owners but EH fans seemed to respect the simplicity and low stance of the car too much to go overboard with embellishments. Mags, a fancy paint-job and maybe some seat-belts – that was the extent of the en-hottening. Even though no Holden looks better in mags, personally, I always prefer factory:

Surprising (to me), the modern look of the EH (1963 to 1965) was actually the work of legendary GM designer Bill Mitchell. A full size fibre glass model of the EJ progenitor of the EH was sent to Detroit for assessment in 1961 and Mitchell wasn’t impressed. Far from being low and modern, it was an unbalanced throwback. Mitchell took the Edsel-esque mock-up and created the first true change to the Holden since the 48-215, incorporating the new “Red” engine for the first time. More than 250,000 EHs – standards, specials, premiers, wagons and vans – were sold before the HD was launched. It was the fastest-selling Holden ever. About 14,000 per month were driven from showrooms around the country during its brief run. Anyway – adios, Holden.

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20 Responses to This was the coolest, EH?

  1. Bruce of Newcastle

    My brother was brought home from the hospital in a snot-coloured FJ.
    It is my earliest memory.
    I blame dread. We fought like hyenas for the next 15 years. 😀
    Not long after that we got a navy coloured EH station wagon.
    Fine car.

  2. Caveman

    You get in the special model that’s the one. Bucket seats chrome centre console. But I prefer the Ute.

  3. Dave in Marybrook

    Bloody hell- they parked that red EH next to a rally-ed up Volvo 142 (I think a ’65, with the badge on the front lip of the bonnet), a “Bertone” 262 turbo, and a P1800 ie The Saint.
    Is this the dustbin of history to which the prettiest Holden in consigned?

  4. egg_

    Our first brand new car was an EH Station Wagon the same colour scheme as in the above photo.
    From previous, our first car was Peter Allen’s (Walnough) dad’s ex car.

  5. Adelagado

    I’ll never understand why Holden never got serious about a locally produced basic, ultra reliable, 4WD tray top/dual cab for the farm and mining sector. It’s the one sector where Australia’s own domestic market could support a significant investment in tooling up. They could have drawn on the best components from GM around the world, and supported it with the best country dealer network of any brand. Instead they just sat around and watched Toyota develop a market that they should have had by the balls.

  6. Bruce in WA

    I’ve owned three cars with the lion and stone logo: a VK Commodore Berlina (very comfortable but overheated like a bitch); a V6 Jackaroo SWB (much underrated) — and then there was this one — same model specs, same colour. Of the three, it’s only the third I wish I still owned.

  7. chrisl

    It’s a death trap
    It’s a suicide rap
    Get out while you’re young
    Too much chrome

  8. Professor Fred Lenin

    Used to get my work bus serviced at a country holden dealer they used to lend me an apple green FJ Holden in mint condition ,column shift ,all in all not a bad car ,but fromt seat like sitting on a park bench ,you got driver fatigue after a 60 mile trip ,you would be stiff as a board .
    I had a bank manager who had worked for ES&A bank before it joined ANZ told me his bank had loaned GM the money to strart up here .

  9. Some History

    My brother was brought home from the hospital in a snot-coloured FJ.

    Ah, snot coloured. The memories.

  10. BoyfromTottenham

    According to a story in ZeroHedge today, GM is completely pulling out of selling any vehicles in Australia and New Zealand (and several other countries as well), in contrast to the ABC version which only says that GM are no longer going to use the Holden brand, which is quite a different story indeed. If I were a Holden dealer, I would be pretty pi$$ed off right now.

  11. calli

    Ha! My uncle had one of those. Pale cream top, deep caramel body. Oh, how he polished it to a mirror shine. It was his pride and joy.

    Dad had an HR – another two-tone. Ivory top, faun body. Column shift auto. Learned to drive in it around the streets of North Sydney and Crows Nest. Drove like a tank.

    We were a Holden family.

  12. Roger

    According to a story in ZeroHedge today, GM is completely pulling out of selling any vehicles in Australia and New Zealand (and several other countries as well)

    They’re pulling out of the right hand drive market.

  13. Thefrollickingmole

    I have fond memories of driving through the bush in an old FC.
    The dashboard was made to trepan anyone in a crash, nice forehead height knife edge

  14. Robber Baron

    My dad bought an olive green EJ sedan brand new. He drove it into the ground. It was the best car he owned.

  15. Mick Gold Coast QLD

    At 6:02 pm from currencylad :

    “IN my teens, this was the vintage old Holden I liked best”

    Moi aussi – most assuredly the coolest, a good choice.

    I see the occasional restored EH up here often enough (lots of retired blokes with a bob to spend on their hobbies) and they look so tiny now.

    From thefrollickingmole at 8:02 pm:

    “I have fond memories of driving through the bush in an old FC.
    The dashboard was made to trepan anyone in a crash, nice forehead height knife edge”

    I remember their dashboard.

    “trepan”, from Oxford
    noun: a trephine (hole saw) used by surgeons for perforating the skull
    verb: perforate (a person’s skull) with a trepan
    </blockquote

  16. 132andBush

    Saw a restored one in Wagga today.
    Cream coloured ute.
    Great to see a few restos running around.

  17. Megan

    My late mum kept her HD Special with two tone paint job in the above blue with white. No seatbelts, damned uncomfortable bench seats, but she loved it and it never let her down.

  18. Nob

    EH was the best looking Holden.
    I had an HR, EJ (called Ted of course) and an EH.

    All shit but it was what I could afford at the time.

    The EJ station wagon done shaft universal broke coming out of Sebastopol and nearly polevaulted us across the junction.

    The EH dipswitch would cut the lights altogether sometimes which was a bit freaky coming back over the Strzeleckis at 2am from a gig in South Gippsland I “fixed” it with silver paper from a fag packet.

    Bought the HR off an Indian in Perth, sold it to housemates when I fucked off.

    All between 1976 and 1981.

  19. Professor Fred Lenin

    I owned an EK Hydromatic then traded it on an HK ,bought my wife a second hand Mini it was a better car than both Holdens ,a real pleasure to drive ,my me hanic mate said the Mini was a drivers car ,I agreed .

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