Americans may dominate in their love affair for SUVs, but when it comes to the world’s fastest utility, Australia has the yanks beat. The HSV Maloo R8, based on an everyday work vehicle from GM’s Australian subsidiary, Holden, has set the mark with a 271.44km/h blast in the Aussie outback.

Driven by V8 Supercar driver Mark Skaife in front of Chris Sheedy from Guinness World Records for the category of Fastest Production Pick- up/utility, the Maloo reached a top speed of 277.16km/h in stock-standard form, but the entry in the Guinness World Record books is a two-way average to eliminate any wind assistance, so the record was set at the before mentioned 271.44km/h.

Still, this figure easily passes the previous record of 248.78 km/h set by a Dodge Ram SR-T with an 8.3-litre V10 motor in 2004.

HSV, standing for Holden Special Vehicles, is Holden’s performance arm. Their Maloo “ute” uses a 5.7-litre LS1 engine and six-speed manual, which is good for 340 bhp (255 kW).

Australia is currently developing GM’s Zeta platform for the upcoming Camaro and GTO plus a whole new range of HSV models. Looks like the Aussies may become GM’s experts in the development of performance vehicles.