A Taranaki man so obsessed with Holden he started his own museum has been devastated by news the brand is set to close down.

Steve Fabish can lay claim to being arguably New Zealand's biggest Holden fan after he founded his own Hillsborough Holden Museum near New Plymouth in 2017.

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Yet, just like regular fans, Fabish was this week blown away by news the iconic brand will be closing by year's end.

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"To find that they are just going to shut the door is devastating," he said.

"It is certainly a shock to us all."

For Fabish - like so many other Kiwis - the closure hits deep at a love affair that has spanned most of his life.

Growing up in Inglewood, Fabish's mechanic dad taught him how to fix cars before his love of Holdens kicked off with the purchase of a 1972 HQ ute.

Classic 1950s Holdens at Steve Fabish's Hillsborough Holden Museum in Taranaki. Photo / Supplied
Classic 1950s Holdens at Steve Fabish's Hillsborough Holden Museum in Taranaki. Photo / Supplied

Then 20 years ago - after doing his first restoration on a 1977 Monaro that quickly progressed to a second restoration of a 1980 GTS ute - he began collecting.

That grew into his museum, which houses 33 Holdens built between 1949 and 2016, along with memorabilia, mannequins dressed in clothes from the same era as the cars, and even a cafe and mini golf course outside.

"It is a shame we are not going to be able to buy any more new Holdens to go in the museum, because the collection of cars we have got is outstanding," Fabish said.

And then there is future maintenance.

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Holden had assured New Zealand drivers it would still provide servicing and spare parts for at least the next 10 years.

"But then after that, we don't know what is going to go on," he said.

The end of the passionate Holden-Ford rivalry and potentially even the V8 Supercars racing competition would also hit at the hearts of fans like Fabish.

"The banter between Holden and Ford was really good when the Falcon was going," he said.

"Then when Ford pulled the Falcon off the production line things were starting to die out a bit, but now Holden are gone, who knows what's going to happen with the V8 Supercars."

Holden fan Steve Fabish is devastated the carmaker is shutting down. Photo / Supplied
Holden fan Steve Fabish is devastated the carmaker is shutting down. Photo / Supplied

General Motors gifted Fabish a brand new Holden Commodore VXR for his museum as recently as 2018, along with a letter from the company's executive vice president talking about a bright future.

"Holden and Kiwis 'go way back' (as you like to say) and I think we've got an exciting future together," the letter said.

Fabish said that at that stage he had no inkling they were going to close the manufacturing of the entire Holden brand.

Yet he also understood the closure was a "sign of the times".

"At the end of the day that's the way things are going for car manufacturers around the world, with electric cars and all the rest of it getting a push," he said.

"They have to look at all avenues, and the Australian and New Zealand market is very small compared to the rest of the world."

Owner General Motors announced on Monday it was closing down the iconic Australian and Kiwi brand. Photo / Supplied
Owner General Motors announced on Monday it was closing down the iconic Australian and Kiwi brand. Photo / Supplied

"I think that is one of the main reasons they have decided to pull the pin because we are right-hand drive here opposed to left-hand drive like everybody else."

Also the wide variety of imported cars in the country had given buyers much more choice, Fabish said.

"I love Holden vehicles, love the cars, the drive in them - everything about them - is really good," he said.

"And I've been getting a lot of texts, saying sorry about Holden."

"But I think it is something people are going to have to just grin and bear and carry on."