Image credits: © Vauxhall. GM Corp

2012 Vauxhall Astra VXR

Most powerful Astra ever makes show debut

2012 Vauxhall Astra VXR
Based on the GTC's platform and powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged direct injection engine, the Astra VXR produces 280PS of power and a mighty 400Nm of torque, enough for it to achieve a top speed of 155mph.

But while the Astra VXR is based on the new GTC, it has benefited from a raft of bespoke chassis modifications, transforming it into a focused, high-performance coupe. Setting it apart from all other current Astras is a specially developed mechanical limited slip differential, which works on the front wheels. In conjunction with the GTC's sophisticated HiPerStrut (High Performance Strut), the LSD provides the Astra VXR with exceptional lateral grip and traction through bends.

Further changes to the chassis include brakes developed by competition supplier, Brembo, and standard fitment of Vauxhall's fully adaptive FlexRide system. In the Astra VXR, FlexRide features not only a Sport button, but a VXR button, offering drivers the choice of two, more focused stages of damper, throttle and steering control.VAÚXHALL REVEALS GENEVA SHOW STARS
Vauxhall is to unveil a brace of stunning new models and a groundbreaking concept car at this year's Geneva Show, which opens to press on March 6.

The hotly awaited, 280PS Astra VXR will wow Geneva show crowds ahead of its summer launch in the ÚK, and promises to raise the bar in the hot-hatch class, taking its lead from iconic predecessors like the Astra GTE Mk 1, 2 and 3 and outgoing VXR model.

In stark contrast, the Mokka breaks new ground for Vauxhall, as it enters the growing small SÚV market with its sharp design, choice of front- and four-wheel drive and high degree of interior versatility.

But Vauxhall/Opel can also reveal that it will use Geneva to show off a radical and innovative concept vehicle that will reinforce the true breadth of its design and engineering expertise….

Vauxhall/Opel concept breaks cover

These are the first official images of Vauxhall/Opel's RAD e concept vehicle. Vauxhall/Opel will present the 'RAD e' design study in Geneva - a futuristic e-bike that complements the brand's existing e-mobility strategy and offers a concept of integrated individual and urban mobility. The RAD e – the first e-bike to be built around automotive construction and production principles – carries much of Vauxhall/Opel's typical design language such as the boomerang shaped features associated with the Ampera and the RAK e concept car. Its pedelec technology, with a 250 watt motor, gives the rider motorised support when pedaling and achieves a range of between 37 and 90 miles. In that sense, the RAD e responds to customer needs to be mobile when car use is restricted or not possible. The RAD e is unveiled at a time when e-bikes are widely expected to play a key role in future integrated urban transport, linking e-bikes, cars and buses.

Source - Vauxhall

Vauxhall Astra GTC : Vehicle Highlights

2012 Vauxhall Astra VXRThe all-new Astra GTC replaces the successful Astra Sports Hatch, and will lay down the gauntlet to VW's Scirocco and Renault's Megane Coupe when it appears in showrooms at the end of November 2011 with a heady mix of dynamic excellence, dramatic design and competitive pricing.

Closely based on last year's stunning GTC Paris concept, the Astra GTC enters the ÚK market – the biggest in Europe for this model – priced from just £18,495, nearly £1,350 less than the basic VW Scirocco. But even in entry-level trim, the Astra GTC adopts the sophisticated HiPerStrut front suspension derived from the Insignia VXR, offering precision handling and unmatched stability.

The third body style to come off the Astra's Delta platform (following the Hatch and last year's Sports Tourer), the only exterior design elements the GTC shares with its siblings are door handles and the roof aerial – even the wheelbase and tracks are different. Brit, Mark Adams, Vauxhall's Vice President of Design, has aimed to create a car that looks like it's been plucked from the class above, with its low, wide stance and simple, yet rakish lines.

ÚK Coupe market & rivals

Vauxhall's current Astra has already laid down successful foundations on which the GTC can thrive. In 2010, it was the ÚK's second best-selling car overall, as well as the best-seller in its segment, with sales of 79,330, beating both the Focus (76,892) and the Golf (62,912).

The Astra's lower medium segment is the second largest in the ÚK, accounting for 20.9 per cent of the total new car market, and coupe and three-door hatch sales make up 11.7 per cent of this segment (figures based on YTD April '11).

And in previous years, the Astra Sport Hatch – GTC's predecessor – dominated this class. In 2007 and 2008 it out-sold its nearest competitor by three-to-one, and up until last year was still the clear leader with total registrations of 11,451 in 2010 (Scirocco was 2nd, Audi A3 3rd, Megane Coupe 4th).

Overall in this segment, fleet and retail sales are split evenly at around 50:50 per cent and the GTC is expected to account for around 20 per of all Astra sales, much like its predecessor.

Naturally, the three key rivals Vauxhall identifies for the GTC reflect the main players in the current market: Volkswagen Scirocco, Renault Megane Coupe and the Audi A3 3-door. However, given the GTC's premium design and sophisticated underpinnings, Vauxhall also expects the BMW 1-Series to be potential competition.

Vauxhall's traditional rival, Ford, has already announced that there will be no three-door Focus, giving the GTC a real advantage in this arena.

Source - Vauxhall


• ÚK pricing revealed + 0-60mph time

• The most powerful production model in Astra's 32-year history

• 280PS and 400Nm of torque, with top speed of 155mph

• Bespoke chassis with mechanical limited slip diff and Brembo brakes

• Lightweight front bucket seats with prestigious ‘AGR' health seal

• On sale in ÚK in Spring; first deliveries this Summer

Source - Vauxhall

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