I FIRST met Peter Dichiera way back in the late ’90s when this wild-eyed bloke from Mildura had started modifying Commodores and discovered that other people liked them.
From there it was an organic process to arrive at Corsa Specialised Vehicles and, eventually, a move to the big smoke where Dichiera set-up in a huge factory in Melbourne’s west. After a decade or so, however, Dichiera decided to move the family back to Mildura and things went a bit quiet as he and his crew settled into a steady work flow.
Things changed, however, with the arrival of the new Mustang, and suddenly customers with brand-new ’Stangs came a-knocking. That’s when Dichiera dusted off the lab coat and got serious about developing a Mustang package. Or two.
The very first car to carry the full CSV treatment was a light blue VR Commodore. It was hobbled a bit by the VR platform and its auto box, but it went like buggery. Dichiera really hit his straps with the VT Series II and the LS1 engine. Suddenly he had something to work with and his Strada packages made HSV’s stuff look a bit tame.
I reckon the most telling thing about CSVs over the years is that they’ve been bullet-proof. I’ve acceleration-tested plenty of them and neither I, nor anybody else at MOTOR, managed to break one. It’s been interesting to watch a bloke like Dichiera come up against new tech and learn to bend it to his will.
MOTOR and CSV’s relationship stretches back about two decades and there’s respect on both sides, which is why, as CSV enters the Mustang zone, you’re reading about it here first. – DM