1973 GTR XU1 Holden Torana

SNOW Merrett’s 1973 GTR XU1 Holden Torana has travelled across Australia raising an outstanding amount of funds for the vital work of the Leukaemia Foundation.

The striking purple vehicle has raised over $95,00 over six years and recently raised $27,223 for the Aussie Muscle Car Run, which was the largest fundraising total of any team participating in the seven-day cruise.

Mr Merrett’s love for Holdens was inevitable as he grew up around the iconic Australian vehicles.

“As a young child I would wake up early to watch the greats compete in the Bathurst event each year,” he said.

When the car was first released it was valued at around $3600 and now has an estimated value of over $90,000.

Mr Merrett has had the vehicle since 2011 and since then it has been completely restored.

It took the owner two years to complete a full restoration after it caught alight, destroying the body work.

“The car’s restoration included a new nose cone, a new roof and paint job,” Mr Merrett said.

A unique aspect of the car is that it was the seventeenth to last in the final 150 made of the model.

“This last batch was made ahead of a Bathurst event and they were produced in Adelaide and then sold in Wagga Wagga,” Mr Merrett said.

Previous owners of the vehicle were from Phillip Island and New South Wales and used  it as a race car and in countless hill climbs.

The car was found by chance by Mr Merrett when he noticed it on the back of a Muscle Car magazine and instantly felt the need to purchase it.

“This car is amongst a family of cherished vehicles I own,” he said.

The next event the car will participate in is on December 3 when a rally will be held from Penola to Millicent.

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