Ray Heidrich’s Holden VK Commodore

Ray Heidrich has had his VK Commodore since he was 14 years old

Photographers: Ben Hosking

“MY VK pretty much started my interest in cars. My old man bought me this when I was 14 for $200. It was a bog-stock Executive SL with a 202 and Trimatic, completely original and clean.

First published in the January 2021 issue of Street Machine. Photos: Ben Hosking

Over a few years, before I had my licence, I taught myself how to work on it. I pulled things apart and modified the engine a little. I had it on the road for a few years until the engine started using more oil than fuel, and then it sat in my parents’ shed for a couple of years.

I was just going to respray the engine bay and chuck an injected 5.0-litre in to get it back on the road, but at the time the LS-swap craze was starting to take off, so I picked up an L98 and T56 ’box from a wreckers, gave the engine a freshen-up and built a VL diff with 31-spline axles and fresh LSD. I then decided I wanted to do an Asteroid Silver SS replica, but in the end I went completely left-field and went for a Calais look with Mercedes and BMW colours.

It was a complete garage build over about seven years, and only left home for paint, exhaust and trim. I already had a complete Scheel interior to go in, but eventually I decided on a more modern look with VY Maloo front seats and ClubSport rear seat.

The trimmer built the centre console and trimmed everything in black with diamond-stitch inserts. I had the car on the road for not even a year before I had the itch again, and decided on a 2300 Magnuson Heartbeat supercharger kit to suit a VE SS. With an LS9 cam and a safe tune, Corey from Coretuned got just shy of 390kW (523hp) from it on about 9psi.”