UNCLE PHIL’S CHOICE PICKS

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PHIL WALKER

PHIL’S BOXSTER, WHILE LOVELY, IS WEARING THIN ON HIS NERVES IN THIS LESS THAN OPTIMAL WINTER WEATHER.

SO, HE’S DECIDED TO PARK IT IN THE GARAGE AND IS LOOKING FOR THREE THINGS; PERFORMANCE, PRACTICALITY AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, A ROOF.

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1988 HSV VL SS GROUP A $118,888

A SPARKLING ‘WALKY’ JEWEL

SURELY ONE of the all-time greats, the Group A is genesis for HSV and what kicked off the partnership between Holden and Tom Walkinshaw. It’s also what picked up the pieces after HDT fell apart in the wake of the unmitigated fiasco with Brocky unmitigated fiasco with Brocky and the infamous Director and the Polarizer mysticism nonsense.

There were only ever 750 of these silvery-blue monsters ever produced, and to my eye, they’ve aged pretty well. Actually I might even like the looks of these V8 brutes more now than I did back when they were showroom fresh.

They’ve also got the added benefit of being a sure-fire investment for the super fund, or at least that’s what you can tell the minister of finance if they ask why you’ve just bought it.

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1991 BMW E34 M5 $45,000

TALK ABOUT a masterpiece, these Munich missiles were the last of the hand-built M cars to leave the factory in Garching. It may not have packed a bent-eight unit under its business-like bonnet, but the 3.6lt and later 3.8lt straight six motors were true masterpieces. Then again, anything with individual throttle bodies has got my tick of approval. I also can’t help but love these things because of the star performance given by the M5 in Ronin, which surely has to be one of the best car chase scenes in recent film history, not that I’m a movie buff or anything.

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1996 JAGUAR XJR $26,990

IF THERE was ever a car that personified that old adage of ‘an iron fist in a velvet glove’, I reckon it’d be this Jag XJR. It is unassuming in appearance, especially this particular one in long wheel base guise, and yet, despite the subtly subdued looks, this Jag is packing a whopping 4.0lt supercharged V8 donk with enough shove to fry rear tyres or scare the crap out of occupants at will. Couple that with the fact that it’s a Jag, also having a ride like a magic carpet, this would be my chariot of choice if someone pointed me to the Hume and said, ‘See how fast you can get to Sydney’.

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1996 HSV VS GTS-R $174,990

NO DOUBT about it, the VS GTS-R was as divisive as its wing was large, mostly because of the polarizing shade of yellow paint, aptly named ‘Yellah’, it sported over its flared haunches. Power came from an Aussie made 5.7lt V8 that, if you asked HSV nicely (and gave them another $10K), they would send to the blokes over at Holden Racing Team (HRT), who would strip and rebuild the engine for more oomph. They’ve also got the mystique of being rarer than a Ford enthusiast admitting that the ‘Barra’ isn’t the greatest engine of all time.

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2007 MERCEDES E63 AMG $59,000

NOW, IT may have been mentioned in the mag previously (it definitely has), but for those of you out there that didn’t know, I’m quite a big fan of AMG Benzes, and this one looks like an ace example of Affalterbach’s finest. Slotted under the svelte, silver bonnet is arguably AMG’s most exciting, the M156; a V8 with 6.2 litres of pure engineering wizardry. In fact, the engine alone might be good enough to warrant the purchase of the whole car. It’s also got so be said that these things are quite good at going around corners.

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2011 ASTON MARTIN RAPIDE

$166,980

I HATE to be the bearer of bad news, but if you don’t think that this thing looks good then chances are you’ve got something horribly wrong with your eyesight and might actually be going blind. The fact this car manages to maintain its coupe looks so convincingly and yet have four-doors and accommodate four-people in relative comfort speaks to its true genius. Couple said genius with a thumping, naturally aspirated 5.9lt V12 and you’ve got a recipe for one of the most compelling four-door propositions for anyone who takes their martini shaken, not stirred.

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2011 PORSCHE PANAMERA S

$98,990

IF THE Aston is beauty personified, this car… isn’t. While the merits of the Porsche Panamera are many, there’s no getting away from its elephantinelooks. Owning one would be less of an issue though, mostly because you’d be inside it and therefore wouldn’t have to look at it. These things also have a reputation for being pretty unbelievable to steer; it is a Porsche after all. And the powerplant in this particular ‘S’ model is a stonking 4.8lt V8 that chucks out 294kW, which makes it almost quick enough to outruna long list of pretenders.

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2016 FORD FALCON FGX XR6 SPRINT

$59,750

YOU DIDN’T think we were going to forget this one, did you? The Ford Falcon XR6 Sprint is, sadly, the last of the Aussie Falcons… and almost certainly the best. Power came from the herculean and highly celebrated 4.0lt, turbocharged inline-six, or to you, me and every fan of the Blue Oval, the ‘Barra’. Only 550 of these Sprints were ever produced and they got a host of bespoke upgrades such as gold Brembo brakes, revised suspension and a bunch of extra bits added to the motor to make it fastest Aussie six-cylinder car ever built.

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