Category Archives: Opel

Vauxhall VX220 Turbo One Careful Owner – Driven at weekends only

One Carefull but Crazy Owner

We are all guilty off it, browsing the pistonheads classified looking for some unmolested example of some of the best cars money can buy.

I am currently looking for a new pet project and specially tempted by the VX220 route, then I came across this lovely looking moonland grey vx220 turbo. Then I begin to worry about the usual thoughts of buying a tastefully modded car.

Has it been driven hard all its life, has it been looked after like a cherished naughty weekend, well fear not the honest owner has put a video up of his self driving around the Nürburgring’s Nordschleife in  Germany.

All my questions were answered but in such a beautiful way the epic video shows what a sub £9000 pound vx220 can do against the mighty Porsche GT3RS, after careful consideration and throwing caution to the wind I want it! but do you?????

Pistonheads VX220

 

Opel – Vauxhall Junior or Adam Spyshots

Here are the latest spyshots from the Nordschleife industry pool at the Nurburgring in Germany.

Here is the 2013 Opel – Vauxhall junior still hiding under its camouflage.

We snapped the Adam on its first laps around the Nürburgring but as you all know it has been photographed in both other places in Germany as well as in Sweden during the winter. The Adam is based on a shorted version of the new platform that will also underpin the next generation Corsa and will be available at the dealers in spring 2013.

Production will begin at the Eisenach plant in Germany in late 2012, with sales beginning in 2013and will retail at around £9500.

Driven – Vauxhall Corsa VXR Nurburgring Edition

Vauxhall Corsa VXR Nurburgring Edition. 34 letters. 5 words. Quite the mouthful. PistonSpy were recently invited up to Vauxhall’s Head Office in Luton to drive this car, and we jumped at the chance. It’s a car we previously snapped pictures of  testing back in 2010 – here. This is what we thought of it.

The Nurburgring Edition certainly looks the part. I thought it might look a little ‘after market’, but in the metal it actually looks great – really mean and purposeful. The squat stance is 20mm lower at the front and 15mm lower at the back than before and the 18” lightweight forged aluminum wheels really fill out the flared arches. To mark this model out as the Nurburgring Edition, there are Nurburgring logos on the B-pillars and door sills. At the back of the car, there are two massive (and real!), stainless steel exhaust pipes. You can buy the car in two new colours, Red Henna, and the colour I drove, Apple Green Grasshopper. This isn’t a subtle car, so if I was buying one, I’d definitely have the stand out green paint to match.

Inside, the car is a nice enough place to be. The great looking leather Recaro seats are undoubtedly the highlight. They are comfortable, and provide loads of lateral support. They also have the Nurburgring logo embossed on the headrest, which is a lovely, high end touch. The piano black plastic inserts on the wheel and across the dash however, look and feel a little cheap, which is a shame on a car of this price. Worst though, is the gear stick. It’s far too big, a very unusual shape, with an enormous trigger style button to open the gate to reverse. The gear changes themselves are also a letdown. It feels more luck than judgement when changing gear quickly.

But what is it like to drive? In short; brilliant. The turbo charged 1.6 litre engine develops 202bhp and 250NM of torque. This gets the car to 60mph in 6.5 seconds. That 0-60 time will certainly prove useful at your next Formula Traffic-Lights event, but this isn’t where the car really excels. This car’s real party piece is tearing down good old fashioned British B-roads.

On B-roads, the car was outstanding. Vauxhall commissioned German suspension gurus Bilstein to develop a bespoke spring and damper set-up, specifically for the Nurburgring Edition Corsa. Over the bumps and wobbles of the country roads around Luton, this Bilstein set-up meant I always felt in total control of the car. It gave a feeling of supreme confidence, allowing me to exploit that 202bhp engine to its fullest.

The most impressive upgrade on the Nurburgring Edition is the limited slip differential. It’s a proper mechanical, multi-plate system built by Drexler and has transformed the car. Throw the little Corsa into a corner, any corner, and apply a boot-full of power – rather than wildly spinning its wheels and just washing out wide, the limited slip diff actually tightens up your line, and pulls you towards the apex. The car is an absolute riot to drive.

Does it deserve that Nurburgring name? I think so. In fact I would absolutely love to drive this car on the Nurburgring. The car has such a sweet setup which really inspired confidence. The car loves corners, which the Nurburgring certainly has plenty of! Power-wise, I think the 202bhp engine is about perfect for a front-wheel-drive hot hatch at the ‘Ring. It’s powerful enough to have lots of fun, and thanks to that limited slip diff, feels totally useable all the time. Equally though, it’s not so powerful that it’s going to be getting you into serious trouble. A great balance.

Vauxhall are only bringing 250 a year to the UK. Each are individually numbered and prices start at £22,295. That’s a serious amount of money for a Corsa. There’s no doubt it’s a brilliant car, but you could get a RenaultSport Clio 200 Cup for £17,135 and save over £5,000. Or, if you’re really into Nurburgringy-ness, you could save up a few more pounds, and buy the current record holder for fastest FWD car, the RenaultSport Megane 265 Cup, for £24,840. You get a lot more car for the extra £2,500. Physically the Megane is a bigger car, but it’s also 30 seconds per lap quicker at the ‘Ring.

Neither the Clio or Megane look or stand out quite like the Corsa though. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing, well, that’s totally up to you.

Pistonspy Says:- Out of 5

Vauxhall Opel Astra Convertable – Winter Spyshots

Here are the latest spyshots of the Vauxhall & Opel Astra Convertable out in its first outing winter testing in northern sweden.

The spyshots show us that the final configuration is likely to be a soft top variant unlike the current retractable hardtop used on the Astra TwinTop.

Powering this car is likely to be a choice of 2 powerunits one being the 1.6i 16v Turbo, Manual 6-speed and the second likely to be the diesel 2.0CDTi 16v.

Vauxhall / Opel Astra VXR / Opc Official

Hot on the heels of the recently launched GTC, these are the first official pics of the new Astra VXR, which goes on sale next year and is set to become one of the most powerful hot hatch in its class and the fastest production Astra in Vauxhall’s / Opel history.

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

The damping is electronically modified via a “VXR” button which tightens up the suspension and firms up the damping settings for a more precision road handling.

We expect the car to be priced around the 25k Sterling to be competitive with the Megane 250 and the Focus ST.

This car has had some serious testing across at the Nürburgring so expect a video of a laptime to be released Soon! (Thanks Tom)

Opel Junior Production Prototype of the Trixx Concept Spyshot’s

Trixx Concept Production Prototype
Opel Junior AKA Trixx Concept (Click for Gallery Of Spyshots)

As we know Opel is working on a small car that will slot in underneath the Corsa, this was officially unveiled as a concept at the Paris Autoshow as the “Trixx” concept in 2004.

This baby Opel that we have called “junior” will probably get the name Allegra when it’s time for the official debut in 2012.

This is the very first time the Junior is spotted outside a test facility and driving on public roads.

The Junior is expected to be around 3.70 m long and will be sold as a 3 door version only.

Opel is developing a new family of engines for the Junior, engines that we probably also will see in the next generation Opel Corsa but we expect to see a varient of the 1.3 cdti engine and an hybrid to follow.

Infiniti Concept the ETHEREA Official Pics.

Infiniti today releases the first images of its concept car for the Geneva Motor Show in March. Called the ETHEREA, it is a compact luxury model that previews how a future entry-level Infiniti could look.

The pictures show an evolving Infiniti identity along with a profile distinctly different from anything currently available in the premium compact class.

“ETHEREA is about a new type of luxury for younger buyers,” said Toru Saito, Corporate Vice President and Leader of the Global Infiniti Business Unit. “It is not just a smaller version of a typically conservative and traditional luxury car.”

Designed under the direction of Senior Vice President of Design Shiro Nakamura, ETHEREA blends elements of coupé, sedan, hatchback and even crossover in one highly sculptural, near-mono volume form.

At 4.4m it is highly compact but at the same time it is space efficient and practical thanks to a new mechanical layout and innovative access arrangements.

Among its surprises are high-tech new interpretations of traditional Japanese materials and finishes, and several design cues set to make their mark on future production models – including the highly distinctive crescent-shaped C-pillar first seen on the Essence concept.
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