Two diverse but equally stylish models will lead Opel’s local charge, writes
WHEN Opel sets up shop in Australia next year it will have a pair of good-looking hero cars to open the action.
The flagship of the Astra line-up, the GTC coupe, has just been unveiled in Europe alongside the latest version of the Zafira people-mover.
Opel has yet to finalise its local range but the GTC and Zafira are both likely to be high on the list, once they are revealed in production form at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September.
GM staffers in Australia won’t elaborate beyond what Opel has already stated — the Corsa (Holden’s old Barina source), the Astra and the Insignia model ranges will come here in 2012.
While the specific model line-up is not yet confirmed, the GTC (Gran Turismo Compact) is a likely starter as the Opel range is expected to replicate the previous Holden Astra range, which was halted in 2010.
The sharp-looking threedoor hatch should lead an Astra charge that includes a five-door hatch, a wagon and convertible.
The powerplant line-up in Europe will kick off with four choices of engine — one diesel and three petrol — with some similar engine choices to the Series II Cruze.
Taking care of the diesel side will be the upgraded 121kW/380Nm 2.0-litre common-rail turbo — with start-stop function and particulate filter and a six-speed manual transmission.
Opel claims 4.9L/100km, 0-100km/h in 8.9 seconds and a range of 1100km. Start-stop will also be on the 88kW and 103kW versions of the 1.4-litre turbo petrol powerplants, both with sixspeed manual gearboxes. The top-spec is a 132kW 1.6-litre turbo with a claimed top speed of 220km/h.
Opel has revealed chassis and drivetrain details in advance of the Frankfurt show, with the GTC model getting the ‘‘HiPerStrut’’ front suspension. The front end is similar to that of the performance Insignia OPC — a derivation of the standard MacPherson strut set-up that Opel says provides better wheel guidance, grip and (most importantly, given its predecessor’s flaw) reduced torque steer.
The GTC is 15mm lower than the standard Astra and will also have the adaptive damping ‘‘FlexRide’’ adjustable three-stage suspension system.
Opel’s Frankfurt stand also will feature a production version of the Zafira seven-seater.
The Zafira Tourer gets the FlexRide damper system and in a five-seat configuration fits 710 litres of cargo, increasing to 1860 litres with all seats folded.
Big seller: Zafira Tourer Flagship: Opel