PEOPLE LIKE US

ROD HYLAND > WYNYARD, TASMANIA

STORY ANDREW BROADLEY PHOTOS NATHAN JACOBS

ROD Hyland is a dyed-in the-wool Holden man, and the proprietor of Rod Hyland Cars & Parts in Wynyard, Tasmania.

Rodís passion for classic Holdens is what got him involved in the automotive business in the first place, and aside from the healthy stash of Lions he has tucked away in the yard, his personal collection boasts some of the most desirable Aussie muscle cars from the 60s and 70s.

Looks like youíve got a couple of old Holdens kicking around, Rod!

Oh yeah, thereís a few of them here. Thereís probably 40 or so old Holdens. But we wreck and sell parts for all makes and models. There are probably around 1000 cars in the yard in total.

How long have you had the yard?

Weíve been here for about 18 years. I basically started out dealing in classic Holdens and drifted into everything else as the demand grew.

It started out as a hobby and ended up as a headache! But weíre still Holden specialists, for sure. Especially in this end of Tasmania; thereís no one else around with anything like it.

What are your favourite cars that have come through the place over the years?

I really like the HK Monaros, and Iíve got a few of those. Weíve also had three or four HT ambulances come through over the years, and theyíre great too. Stuff you just donít see anymore.

Do you ship many parts to the mainland?

Yeah we do. Not just classic Holden parts either.

We send all kinds of parts over to the mainland.

It looks like youíve got a personal project on the go, too?

Iím building an HK Monaro at the moment, and since the photos were taken weíve actually painted it black and Iím starting to put it back together. Iím sticking with a 350 Chev and twospeed auto and the interior is all original, but Iím going to put a decent set of wheels on it. Iíve got another couple of HKs that are finished and on the road; a Silver Mink one and a Warwick Yellow one.

You wheel and deal in this stuff every day, but is there anything you own thatís definitely not for sale?

Probably the Silver Mink HK. Itís a GTS 327ci auto, and itís the first one I bought, so Iím a bit more sentimentally attached to it. Iíve had it for about 14 years now.

Any other toys that youíre particularly proud of?

Iíve got an HQ coupe which Iíve had for a long time, and a genuine LX SL/R 5000. The Torana is all restored, but it didnít have the original engine with it when I bought it, so I put a 304ci V8 and five-speed in it.

I bet the Torana is a blast on those twisty roads youíve got down there in Tassie.

It is, and [at Wynyard, in north-west Tasmania] weíre right at the good end of some of the best roads. You can go for a couple of hours without seeing a cop. Nothing like what youíve got to put up with over there. The west coast of Tasmania in particular has some great roads.

Whatís your take on the big money Aussie muscle cars and parts seem to be fetching these days?

Itís got a little bit out of control. The biggest concern these days is the security of the vehicles. You canít leave them parked anywhere anymore; thatís the biggest worry. s