What is it?

The ‘Black edition’ Maloo is a limited edition model that sees the return of the R8 badge, along with the unique SV Black features.

Why are we driving it?

This is the first time HSV has offered a limited edition SV Black range since the 2011 E Series 3 based model. And it is also the first time the LS3 engine has been available in the GEN-F2 ‘R8’ range.

What colours does it come in?

The Black Edition is available in five colours – phantom (black), heron (white), nitrate (silver), sting (red) and jungle green.

What’s different about it?

The SV Black features include Satin Black 20-inch alloy wheels, black AP Racing forged four-piston brake calipers, black door surrounds and lower door accenting, shadow-chrome exhaust tips and distinctive black badging along with black fender vents and mirror scalps. The interior misses out on HSV’s seats (instead it’s fitted with those found in Holden’s SS-V Redline model, but still has HSV embroidery), but has unique side sills with numbered plaques.

Does it go?

It’s a V8-powered ute, so that’s like asking is the Pope a catholic. However, it does have 60kW and 101Nm less than its big brother, the supercharged LSA variant. Either way, the SV Black is still powerful enough to keep a smile on your face, and it arguably feels a better balanced package.

Will it get me noticed?

Yep, the Maloo has always stood out as more than your average workhorse ute and the subtle differences with the SV Black will have the train spotters pointing your way.

How’s the cabin ambience?

It’s a nice place to be, with plenty of room and storage spaces (for a two-seater ute) and good quality materials throughout. The 8-inch colour display has plenty of functions and is easy to navigate.

Does it stop?

Definitely; the black AP Racing forged four-piston brake callipers and 367mm front and rear rotors do an excellent job, both on the road and track, and give the driver every bit of confidence with great pedal feel.

Does it like corners?

The Maloo is more like a two-door sports car that has the bonus of being a ute, which means it is no slouch through the bends. The ride is sporty, yet comfortable, there is a decent amount of grip (even unladen) and it handles twisty roads with absolute confidence. Be warned, though, this is a heavyweight fighter; treat the power and weight with respect.

What about service stations?

Fuel consumption … well, with a claimed average of 12.6L/100kms, which is more like high teens in the real world, you’ll be visiting them often enough.

Would you buy one?

Yeah, if you’ve had your eye on a Maloo but don’t want to fork out the extra coin for the LSA variant, go for it. But get your skates on, as this Black Edition is limited to 100 units so it well might be rare.

What else should I consider?

You should have a look at Holden’s SS-V Redline, priced from $50,990 it has the same LS3 engine (although down on power) big Brembo brakes and is nipping at the heels of the Maloo in all areas. There’s also Ford’s Falcon XR6 Turbo, the big Aussie six packs a mighty punch and although not as good in the chassis department it’s still a good gadget.

 

– By Mark Short in Drive/The Age