The Australian-made American version of the Holden VF Commodore, the Chevrolet SS, make a major winning start to its racing career in NASCAR's Daytona 500 held on 24 February 2013.
It was driven to victory by the five-time champion Jimmie Johnson hanging on to take the chequered flag ahead of Dale Earnhardt Jr also driving a Chevrolet.
This race was the public debut for the Chevrolet SS and comes ahead of the Australian-made performance sedan’s American showroom launch later this year.
Holden's chairman and managing director Mike Devereux described the win as the perfect start to Holdens pending export program. He went on to say that a win at the Daytona 500 is a major sucess, and a great way for Holden and Chevrolet to give the new SS some great early publicity specially in the American Sports Sedan market.
The next Major Race for the VF Commodore was the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide where the Australian public and race fans got to see if it could also win its second major event.
It was up against the traditional rival, the Ford Falcon and this 2013 season saw the introduction of newcomers, the Nissan Altima and Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG.
Shane Van Gisbergen driving the new VF Commodore put in an heroic performance to take out the race. Holden couldn't have asked for a better start to showcase the new VF. The 23-year-old flying Kiwi finished ahead of four-time championship winner Jamie Whincup in the 250km race with his Triple Eight Holden teammate Craig Lowndes third in front of a huge sell-out crowd of over 95,000. The young Kiwi driver's win seemed like the perfect way to unviel an exciting era under the new Car of the Future (COTF) specifications.
It looked like Van Gisbergen's teammate Whincup would extend the Holden team's dominance on Sunday before van Gisbergen got the jump with a clever 42nd lap pit stop.
Van Gisbergen looked to have secured an unbeatable 6 second lead but gave up his advantage when the safety car emerged with 13 laps left. However he held on to win by 2 seconds.