- Clarkson "bowled over" by Vauxhall’s fastest car
- Magazine names coupé "Best Muscle Car" in awards ceremony
Hollywood has its Oscars, but if you’re a car maker it will always be a ‘Jeremy’ that you’ll covet. The gold statuettes might look similar to the Motion Picture Academy’s favourite awards, but closer inspection reveals that they actually resemble Britain’s best-known motoring critic, Jeremy Clarkson, and they’re handed out to Top Gear Magazine’s favourite cars of the year.
And now one of the gold Clarkson effigies keeps watch over Vauxhall’s Luton HQ reception area, after the man himself named the Monaro VXR "Best Muscle Car", and handed the award to Vauxhall chairman and managing director Kevin Wale.
Clarkson said he’d fallen in love with the car and had been "bowled over" by the big V8’s character and 170mph, 382bhp performance. The January issue of the magazine goes on to say "full throttle brings movie-style noise, a kind of unreal ‘braaap' that sounds like all the best cars from when you were seven. And it brings the kind of speed that most cars this size have oily dreams about."
Jeremy isn’t the car’s only fan though, and all of the 5.7-litre coupes sold out within just three months of going on sale earlier this year. But there’s good news just around the corner. Those who are still keen to feel the Monaro’s muscle will soon see that the big VXR has been sent to the automotive equivalent of a gym, and will shortly be ‘brawn again’ into a new, even more dynamic model. Watch this space, as full details will be announced within the next fortnight.Published 3 December 2004