2022 Shannons Spring Timed Online Auction

1960 Holden FB Panelvan



Passed In


Engine 2.2-litre 6-cylinder
Gearbox manual
Body Work 2-door van
Colour Green
Interior Black
Wheels steel
Brakes drums


This lot is no longer available

There’s a clue to the design of the FB in its model code, which simply stood for 1959. The car missed its date with the 1950s by 14 days, launched on 14 January of the new decade; it was so obviously a car designed for the late 1950s (never forgetting the almost unbelievable 1959 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz, the height of whose tailfins represented the last halcyon days of Harley Earl’s reign as General Motors’ – and, indeed, Detroit’s – design supremo). The FB constituted a cleverly updated version of the FE/FC. Paradoxically, the flashy FB with its greatly increased glasshouse, wraparound windscreen, dog-leg A-pillar, fashionably dished steering wheel and extroverted two-tone paint combinations actually owed much of its inspiration to the 1955 Chevrolet, while its FE predecessor (and the facelifted FC) were much closer to clean-sheet designs by Holden’s in-house stylist, Alf Payze. So, rather than being ‘all-new’ as Holden claimed, the FB was really a third go at the FE theme. This is more obvious when you look at the coupe utility and van versions. The FBs were heavier and to handle this additional avoirdupois, the model acquired heavier duty front dampers, wider rear leaf springs and upgraded brakes. The clutch, too, was beefier and there was a new paper element oil filter. The FB became the first Holden with plenum fresh air ventilation. Like its FE and FC predecessors, the FB Holden seemed to have a version for every application – Standard and Special sedans and wagons, utilities and panel vans. It was undoubtedly still widely perceived as being truly ‘Australia’s Own Car’!