Due to be available nationwide at Holden dealerships in Q4 2018, the newest member of the GM Australasia’s line-up, the Acadia, will be undergoing a rigorous 6 month real world testing program in the lead up to its local debut.
Coming to fill the gaps left by the soon to be vacated slot of the ageing Captiva, the GMC-sourced Acadia is an altogether more capable and sophisticated successor, one that’s had its arrival warmed by the Equinox that preceded it, coming from the Chevrolet stable.
Australians can rest easy knowing that the Acadia has already received considerable acclaim from North American buyers, and will arrive having been assembled alongside its GMC-badged left-hand drive siblings in Spring Hill, Tennessee with all the proper AU/NZ alterations made.
The testing programme devised by General Motors covers both continents and comprises of 30 Acadias in total, 16 of which will be assigned for trials on Australian roads. The remainder will are headed for similar tests in North America.
Known internally as the Captured Test Fleet (CTF) program, Acadia’s real-world tests are done on Australian roads and conducted by wide range of Holden employees and their families, of different ages, locations and occupations.
CTF drivers and their families are tasked with putting the car through its paces and reporting on any issues. Driving along tram tracks and gravel roads, testing radio, navigation and traffic sign recognition in busy, complexes areas, and withstanding day-to-day abuse by children spilling food and drink on seats are just some of the challenges thrown at Acadia.
Holden’s Regional Quality Manager, Steve Corcoran, said the CTF program was designed for Acadia to withstand all that Aussie life could throw at it. “The CTF program includes people from various backgrounds with various car usage characteristics, all working together to make sure Acadia performs to the highest standards on the road and in broader quality areas,” said Corcoran.
“Speaking from personal experience, my kids took it upon themselves to test out how easy it was to clean the interior after dropping ice cream on it – a situation we go through regularly in summer. “In that instance I found the seats were easy to clean despite being a more premium material so there was no issue to report back. The aim of the program is to find real-world problems before our customers do so that they and their families have absolute peace of mind that their Acadia is built and tuned to perform in every way.”
The 7-seat Acadia will be launching with both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations, a naturally aspirated 3.6-litre V6 petrol engine paired to a 6-speed automatic. Stand out features of the range will include a 360-degree camera, heated and ventilated front seats, and wireless mobile phone charging.