The dates identified for the manufacture and production of a Holden are also of significance as they vary depending on a number of factors. Of most interest is the Build Completion Date (Production Date) – the day the car was fully completed and left the assembly plant destined for a keen owner. This day can be referred to as the Birthday of a Holden. Other important markers include the date the body was completed and the date the vehicle was first registered and subsequently delivered to the first owner.
In the production process, a Holden was specified and an order raised to produce an end product. In keeping with tradition, the first number assigned to a Holden is the Body Number. This number appears as the entry on the Production Schedule. Each and every Holden is assigned a unique number in sequence so the manufacturing process can start.
Production commences when the Rolling Schedule dictates. There is a delay from when the entry into the Schedule is made to when the vehicle enters the Rolling Schedule. Certain preparation needs to be in place before the manufacture of a specific Holden can start.
The Car Sales Date (C/S) was a best guesstimate of when the vehicle will be completed - all things going to plan. The production process was a well-oiled machine that had stood the test of time, so this date was usually quite accurate. But things could go wrong and as a result the affected vehicle would be delayed. It was most important to keep the assembly lines moving and the output from the factories continuing. Delays of any kind were of major concern to a company such as GM-H.
Once a Holden body had reached the hard trim stage of production, it was then placed on the vehicle assembly line where all mechanical components and so on were fitted. In many instances, this meant that a Holden was transported from one plant to another in a different state. The ‘hard trimmed’ body was weather tight and so could be placed in a storage yard until the time came to go back on the line.
At the very end of a Holden’s production journey is the Warranty Start Date, which as the name implies is when the factory warranty commenced for the vehicle. GM-H put faith in their Holden and backed it up with a full warranty. Over time, the warranty conditions changed. Warranties also varied for the type of use intended for the product. The vast majority of users were everyday Australians who drove their Holden for personal use.