1961 HOLDEN EK SPECIAL

Merv’s love of early Holdens was influenced as much by his son as it was by motoring memories from his youth.

The main reasons you bought this car?
It’s in exceptional condition for an unrestored survivor and has a very good history. Remarkably, it’s just ticked over 50,000 miles. And it’s a practical classic, too; the EK Standard was a popular taxi in Auckland back in the day.

When did you buy it?
Around 2005, from the then-president of the Early Holden Auckland Club. But I have to credit my son Troy as he had previously bought an old Holden and restored it. That’s what led to my wife and I first attending club events.

The design features you most like?
The fact that it’s modelled on a 1956 Chevy is appealing. Plus, this model was the first Holden with the Hydra-Matic transmission, so it’s smooth to drive. And the colour combination of Grenadier Red paint topped with a Snowcrest White roof is striking and very popular with ladies. Upholstery is GM’s red/silver Elascofab.

Anything unusual about your car’s history?
It was delivered new to Rose Heaton in St Heliers Bay, Auckland. At the time, the purchase price was 1266 pounds, with a minimum 449 pound deposit required in overseas funds.

How often do you use it?
A couple of times a month, mainly to attend Club meets and for Club runs.

Who does most of the servicing?
Allens Auto, in Warkworth.

The most complex repair job to date?
We’ve just done the rear brake cylinders and brake linings. It was a matter of honing out the existing cylinders which were leaking.

What’s the furthest you’ve driven it?
The biggest trips have been from Auckland to Palmerston North, and another to New Plymouth, for national rallies. It excelled on both trips.

What’s the best car you’ve ever owned?
That would probably be my other Holden, a 1972 HQ Premier. It’s an ex-factory example with a 253 V8 and four-speed manual transmission.

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HOLDEN EK SPECIAL

YEARS PRODUCED 1961-62

MILEAGE 50,000 miles

ENGINE 2260cc straight-six

POWER 56kW (75bhp)

TRANSMISSION 3-spd auto

DRIVETRAIN rear-wheel drive

WEIGHT 1120kg

LENGTH 4.62m

WHEELS 13-inch steel

COLOUR Grenadier Red

UPHOLSTERY Red/silver Elascofab

OWNER Merv File, Snells Beach

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