The new generation General Motors Holden Commodore, Australia's best selling car, will be the first locally built range with Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) as standard.

Holden said the Australian safety first was considered a crucial feature for the all-new Commodore, due for release in the third quarter of 2006.

Holden will also make ESP standard on its upcoming Statesman and Caprice flagship cars and the new GM-Daewoo-built Captiva sport utility vehicle.

State transport ministers, State coroners and motoring organisations have been among advocates for local manufacturers to make ESP more available to Australian car buyers.

GM Holden chairman and managing director, Denny Mooney said: "We have not witnessed such vocal support for new automotive technology as we have for ESP. The call is coming from all parts of society including police, safety experts and coroners."

During its history, Holden was the first local car maker to fit seat belts, anti-lock braking and driver and passenger airbags.

Its ESP system was developed in conjunction with the local operations of Robert Bosch, which first supplied ESP to automotive manufacturers in 1995.

Holden was the first local manufacturer to offer ESP with a locally built sedan when it was specified as standard in 2004 on the VZ Commodore Acclaim and V6 variants of the Calais, Statesman and Caprice.

The technology was made standard on the VZ series Adventra all-wheel-drive wagon launched in early 2005. It is also standard on some imported Holden-badged Opel models.

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