Get the inside story on the 1955 Holden FJ Utility entered in RACQ’s MotorFest competition.
To celebrate MotorFest 2020, each week RACQ Living will be conducting a Q&A with an entrant to find out a little bit more about them and their prized vehicle.
For the fifth instalment, Holden enthusiast Chris Moy shares the story of how he and his grandfather restored a 1955 Holden FJ Utility and how he one day intends to pass it down to his son.
Can you tell me a bit about the history of your Holden FJ Utility?
My granddad owned it and he brought it off its original owner in West Mackay in the early ’80s and restored it. I began restoring it again in 2009 and finished the restoration in 2013. I had always wanted it since I was a kid. One day I hope to pass it down to my son. He’s 18 at the moment and wants the car already, but that won’t be happening for some time (laughs).
What modifications/restorations have you done to the car?
I’ve restored the car to be 100% original. It has the original 6V battery, no indicators or seat belts, many iconic holden accessories fitted to it and even the old valve radio which takes about five minutes for it to heat up and work. It still has three on the tree, drum brakes all around and is spot on to the original.
Why is the Holden FJ Utility so special?
It’s a piece of Australian history. They were Australia’s car and that means something. I was devastated earlier this year when General Motors announced Holden would be finishing up in Australia. I felt like I had lost an arm. Holden had always felt like an extended part of my family going back to when I was driving around in the FJ as a kid with granddad.
Do you have a favourite memory with the car?
Some of my fondest memories are of grandad just driving around and me being there in the passenger seat. They’re very special to me and I often tell him that. He’s still alive and is very proud of what I have done to the car. It’s always been my dream car ever since I was a kid. My grandparents bought me a big picture of an FJ when I was young and I was instantly hooked.
What kind of reactions does it get?
It always gets a big reaction. Anytime I go for a drive, there are always people giving thumbs up, waving and taking photos. My missus thinks she is the queen in the car because everyone keeps waving at us (laughs).
What does your grandad think of the restoration?
He loves it. It was original in the first place but the paint was lacking after 20 years and the chromework was deteriorating. Grandad flew from Mackay to help me do the motor and brakes. He is very proud of the car and what I have done with it. Grandma tells me that whenever it comes out in a magazine, he goes to town and shows it off to everyone.
What would it mean to win the RACQ MotorFest Judges Choice Award?
It would honestly mean the world to me. I have had a tough year with the coronavirus and the car is everything to Grandad and me. When people appreciate all the hard work you’ve put in and the fact the car is original, it means more. The winning itself doesn’t mean as much to me as it does the appreciation of the work that went it into it.
- Read part one – Tall stories, small car - 1968 Morris Mini Cooper S
- Read part two - A family heirloom in the making - 1981 BMW R100RS
- Read part three - A WWII tribute - 1952 Chevrolet Coupe Utility
- Read part four - One man’s trash, is another’s treasure
For more details and to enter your vehicle, visit racq.com/motorfest. Get in quick as nominations for the competition close at midnight on 31 July 2020.