Vauxhall auto news

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Opel launches new Corsa hatchback [w/videos]

07/10/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Economy, Euro, Paris Motor Show, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall, UK

2015 Opel Corsa

Though its brand portfolio may have shrunk in recent years with the loss of Oldsmobile, Saturn, Pontiac and Hummer, General Motors still sells its wares around the world under a wide array of brands: Chevy, Buick, Cadillac and GMC in its home market, Holden in Australia, and a whole mess of joint-venture brands in China. In Europe, however, it's all about Opel, with Vauxhall tackling the UK market with a nearly identical product lineup but a different badge. And it's those two brands through which GM has just revealed its new Euro-centric hatchback.

Representing the fifth-generation model for Opel and the fourth for Vauxhall (which badged the first-gen model as a Nova) is this new Corsa, replacing a now eight-year-old model. Set to be revealed at the Paris Motor Show in October, the Corsa represents GM's assault at the likes of the Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo in the European market and slots into both brands' lineups in between the smaller Adam and the larger Astra.

It's based on a heavily revised version of the GM-Fiat Small platform that underpinned the model it replaces, not to mention a variety of other products from Opel, Vauxhall, Fiat and Alfa Romeo. Power options center around a new 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine that uses a balance shaft (unique among three-cylinder engines) to reduce noise, vibration and harshness, as well as a turbocharger, direct injection and stop/start ignition to maximize output and efficiency. It'll be available in either 90- or 115-horsepower guises, and is joined by a 1.2- and 1.4-liter fours as well as a 1.3-lier diesel. Buyers will also be able to choose between three- and five-door body-styles, with design cues obviously borrowed from the more stylish Adam city car.

As the latest product from one of the world's largest automakers, the new Corsa also naturally benefits from the latest technologies inside the cabin and under the hood, details of which you can delve into in the pair of press releases under the videos below.

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Opel launch new Corsa hatchback [w/videos]

07/10/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Economy, Euro, Paris Motor Show, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall, UK

2015 Opel Corsa

Though its brand portfolio may have shrunk in recent years with the loss of Oldsmobile, Saturn, Pontiac and Hummer, General Motors still sells its wares around the world under a wide array of brands: Chevy, Buick, Cadillac and GMC in its home market, Holden in Australia, and a whole mess of joint-venture brands in China. In Europe, however, it's all about Opel, with Vauxhall tackling the UK market with a nearly identical product lineup but a different badge. And it's those two brands through which GM has just revealed its new Euro-centric hatchback.

Representing the fifth-generation model for Opel and the fourth for Vauxhall (which badged the first-gen model as a Nova) is this new Corsa, replacing a now eight-year-old model. Set to be revealed at the Paris Motor Show in October, the Corsa represents GM's assault at the likes of the Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo in the European market and slots into both brands' lineups in between the smaller Adam and the larger Astra.

It's based on a heavily revised version of the GM-Fiat Small platform that underpinned the model it replaces, not to mention a variety of other products from Opel, Vauxhall, Fiat and Alfa Romeo. Power options center around a new 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine that uses a balance shaft (unique among three-cylinder engines) to reduce noise, vibration and harshness, as well as a turbocharger, direct injection and stop/start ignition to maximize output and efficiency. It'll be available in either 90- or 115-horsepower guises, and is joined by a 1.2- and 1.4-liter fours as well as a 1.3-lier diesel. Buyers will also be able to choose between three- and five-door body-styles, with design cues obviously borrowed from the more stylish Adam city car.

As the latest product from one of the world's largest automakers, the new Corsa also naturally benefits from the latest technologies inside the cabin and under the hood, details of which you can delve into in the pair of press releases under the videos below.

Continue reading Opel launch new Corsa hatchback [w/videos]

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The British require more of their delivery vans

06/24/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Minivans/MPVs, Videos, Commercial Trucks, Vauxhall, Humor

Vauxhall Vivaro van

In the United Kingdom, work vans are big business. They're such a big deal that an entire sub-culture surrounds their drivers, known as white van men. White van men tend to look at their vans the same way that die-hard American pickup owners look at their trucks - as tough, do-everything workhorses. So Vauxhall's cheek with this ad will certainly be appreciated.

It focuses on the General Motors subsidiary's cargo van, the new Vivaro, and how it can handle just about anything that's thrown at it. Rather than demonstrate this by showing off its hauling prowess, though, Vauxhall instead handed the keys over to precision driver Paul Swift, who it has dubbed "Stig-aro" as an ode to his work with Top Gear Live. Swift puts the Vivaro through its paces at the van's Luton factory. According to Vauxhall, Swift's work is now "seen as commonplace among the 1200-strong workforce at the historic Luton factory."

"As Britain's largest LCV manufacturer, we want to ensure that every customer receives the very best van that we can produce, and that means putting it through the most demanding maneuvers we can think of," said Plant Director Mike Wright.

Take a look below to see Stig-aro and the new Vivaro in action, and then scroll down for the official press release from Vauxhall.

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Audi RS6 Avant vs. Vauxhall VXR8 Supercharged in wagon battle

03/28/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, Wagons/Estates, Euro, Videos, Audi, Vauxhall

Evo Races Audi RS6 Against Vauxhall VXR8

The performance station wagon is the mature person's muscle car. As we get older, it's natural to add things like spouses, kids and dogs to our lives and each one necessitates a little more space. That doesn't mean we want to give up spirited driving though, and a quick five-door offers a great balance between needs and wants. In the latest video from Evo, we take a look at two, muscular European estates to see which is faster around a track.

Richard Meaden pits the Audi RS6 Avant and Vauxhall VXR8 Supercharged against each other; seeing that the cars go about utilizing their massive performance in very different ways. The RS6's all-wheel drive and luxury interior make it more of a scalpel around the track compared to the Vauxhall's rear-wheel drive hammer. Both offer the driver the chance to create some very smoky powerslides, though. Sadly, neither of these muscle wagons are available in North America, but scroll down to get a taste of them in the video.

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Opel putting Astra Extreme into production

03/11/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, Euro, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall, UK

Opel Astra OPC Extreme

Even more than in years past, this month's Geneva Motor Show press days were absolutely teeming with lust-worthy hot hatches. There was the new Seat Leon Cupra, the Honda Civic Type R concept, Volkswagen Scirocco R and Golf GTE, Audi S1 and Abarth 695 Biposto. But one of the most enticing of them all was the Opel Astra OPC Extreme.

Effectively a roadgoing version of the Astra OPC Cup racer, the Extreme is a track car for the road that packs a 2.0-liter turbo four tuned up to 300 horsepower and little else - and by that we mean it's been all stripped out and geared up for hardcore performance.

We have to admit that we were a little bummed when General Motors stated that the Astra OPC Extreme was just for show at the moment. But word coming in from Autocar suggests that, based on positive public reception at the Swiss show, it has already been approved for production.

Production will reportedly be limited to between 50 and 300 examples, depending on demand. That apparently includes a right-hand-drive Vauxhall Astra VXR Extreme for the UK market. All we need now is for GM to bring it across the Atlantic to sell in US showrooms.

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Opel Adam S and Adam Rocks make us want GM's Euro city car even more [w/poll]

03/06/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Convertibles, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall, UK, Off-Road

Opel Adam S at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, front three-quarter view

There aren't a lot of products that General Motors offers overseas that we don't get back in America in one form or another, but the Opel Adam stands as a notable exception. GM's assault on the fashionable city car market, the Adam isn't likely to find its way to US showrooms... even if it does pick up a Buick badge on its way to China. But as if its elusive status didn't make us long for it already, Opel and its British counterpart Vauxhall just revealed two new versions in Geneva that make us want it even more.

First up we have the Adam Rocks, a variant of the stylish little hatchback that not only blows the roof off, but also gives it a beefier, off-road attitude. Up top it's got a similar opening roof panel to what you'd find on rivals like the Fiat 500C or Citroën DS3 Cabrio, but down below it's got more muscular body cladding, skid plates and 17- or 18-inch wheels fitted to a suspension that rides half an inch higher.

Taking a different approach to the same vehicle is the Adam S, which bolts a turbocharger onto the car's otherwise naturally aspirated 1.4-liter four to crank out 148 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque that puts it right in between the Fiat 500 Turbo and Abarth (which are sold as two stages of Abarth overseas) in terms of output. It's also got massive 16-inch brakes stuffed into 18-inch wheels, an upgraded aero kit and other sportier touches.

Both make the Opel Adam that much of a more tempting proposition, even if GM couldn't make the business case to bring it Stateside. But if it did, which would you choose?

View Poll

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Opel Performance Center takes Astra to the Extreme [w/video]

03/06/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall

The Opel Astra OPC Extreme at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, front three-quarter view

If hot hatches are your thing, this year's Geneva Motor Show is the place to be. Seat used the occasion to reveal its Ring-running Leon Cupra. Not to be outdone, Honda showed up with its Civic Type R concept. VW has got the new Scirocco R and Golf GTE to show off, Audi finally bestowed the new S1 upon us and Abarth transformed the Fiat 500 into the bonkers 695 Biposto. Even Alfa Romeo got in on the action with the latest QV edition MiTo and Giulietta. But the lineup wouldn't be complete without the Opel Astra OPC Extreme.

Arguably the ultimate expression from the Opel Performance Center, the Astra Extreme packs a 2.0-liter turbo four with 300 horsepower, a six-speed stick and limited-slip differential underneath the most outlandishly extreme aero kit this side of a DTM racer. Everything's made of carbon fiber and the cabin's stripped out for business to make it 220 pounds lighter than the standard Astra OPC/VXR and closer in spirit and appearance to the Astra OPC Cup that challenges the VLN series at the Nürburgring.

It's a beast of a hot hatch if there ever was one, but at the moment, the press release below describes it as a "study for low-volume production." We just hope Opel and its British sister Vauxhall will actually make it, but even then, it's not likely to ever find its way across the Atlantic, even with those giant wings. Indulge in the Opel madness with the video below.

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Geneva: Opel Performance Center takes Astra to the Extreme [w/video]

03/05/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall

The Opel Astra OPC Extreme at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show, front three-quarter view

If hot hatches are your thing, this year's Geneva Motor Show is the place to be. Seat used the occasion to reveal its Ring-running Leon Cupra. Not to be outdone, Honda showed up with its Civic Type R concept. VW has got the new Scirocco R and Golf GTE to show off, Audi finally bestowed the new S1 upon us and Abarth transformed the Fiat 500 into the bonkers 695 Biposto. Even Alfa Romeo got in on the action with the latest QV edition MiTo and Giulietta. But the lineup wouldn't be complete without the Opel Astra OPC Extreme.

Arguably the ultimate expression from the Opel Performance Center, the Astra Extreme packs a 2.0-liter turbo four with 300 horsepower, a six-speed stick and limited-slip differential underneath the most outlandishly extreme aero kit this side of a DTM racer. Everything's made of carbon fiber and the cabin's stripped out for business to make it 220 pounds lighter than the standard Astra OPC/VXR and closer in spirit and appearance to the Astra OPC Cup that challenges the VLN series at the Nürburgring.

It's a beast of a hot hatch if there ever was one, but at the moment, the press release below describes it as a "study for low-volume production." We just hope Opel and its British sister Vauxhall will actually make it, but even then, it's not likely to ever find its way across the Atlantic, even with those giant wings. Indulge in the Opel madness with the video below.

Continue reading Opel Performance Center takes Astra to the Extreme [w/video]

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Official: Vauxhall Adam S is another hot hatch we can't have

03/04/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Concept Cars, Economy, Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Hatchbacks, Vauxhall

Vauxhall Adam S

Put your pouty faces on American enthusiasts, because there's yet another European hot hatch that won't be making a trek across the pond. This is the new Vauxhall Adam S, a "close-to-production" version of the adorable Adam city car, which is also sold in continental Europe as an Opel.

With the Adam S, Vauxhall has taken the standard car's naturally aspirated 1.4-liter engine and slapped a turbocharger on it to make 148 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque. Don't think that this is merely a tuned-up version of the turbocharged 1.4 kicking about in American cars like the Chevrolet Sonic and Cruze, though. According to Vauxhall, this is a bespoke deal for the Adam S. The top speed rests at 137 miles per hour, while stop-start technology means the angrier Adam won't hurt too much at the petrol stations.

A six-speed manual delivers the 1.4's power to the front wheels, although there's no specific mention of acceleration figures. A stiffer suspension has been fitted, as well. The brawny brakes, meanwhile, are branded as VXR units and feature 16-inch front rotors. Equally radical are the 15-inch pizza pans on the rear axle, although there're no specifics beyond those figures.

Shielding those brakes are meaty 18-inch alloys. Aside from those wheels, a showy rear spoiler is the most dramatic change to the Adam S' exterior, although a revised fascia and exhaust outlet also add a bit of verve to the Adam's adorable looks. There are also a few faux carbon fiber items on the exterior, as well. According to Vauxhall, the cabin has been fitted with Recaro buckets and a new steering wheel and gear shift, all of which are finished with red accents.

We'll have much more on the Vauxhall Adam S when it makes its official debut at the Geneva Motor Show tomorrow. Until then, have a look at the official presser from Vauxhall.

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Official: Vauxhall reveals stripped-out Astra VXR Extreme front-drive track toy

02/26/2014   [Original: Autoblog]
Category: Sports/GTs, Geneva Motor Show, Euro, Hatchbacks, Opel, Vauxhall, UK

Vauxhall Astra VXR Extreme

More power, less weight. It's a winning formula when it comes to performance automobiles, and one we've seen applied time and time again. It's what Ferrari did to transform the 360 Modena into the Challenge Stradale, the F430 into the Scuderia and the 458 into the Speciale. Maserati does the same with the GranTurismo MC Stradale and Lamborghini with the Gallardo Superleggera. We could go on, but you get the point: it's a formula typically applied to exotic Italian supercars, but of course it's not exclusively their realm.

Taking up the opposite end of the spectrum is the new Astra Extreme, the hardcore new hot hatch which GM's European operations will unveil shortly at the Geneva Motor Show. To be sold by Vauxhall in the UK as the Astra VXR Extreme and by Opel in Europe as the Astra OPC Extreme, the hottest of hot hatches takes the Astra Cup racer to the street with extreme aero and lightweight components.

General Motors has shed a good 100 kilograms (220 pounds) of excess weight through the use of carbon-fiber components. The roof, hood, engine cover and suspension bracing are all made of the lightweight stuff. The same goes for the aero kit, complete with front splitter, rear wing and underbody diffuser. Even the 19-inch wheels are made of carbon fiber, packing Brembo brakes that measure 14.6 inches with six-piston calipers up front. Even the cabin has been stripped out, dumping the rear seats in favor of a roll cage, with Recaro buckets and six-point harnesses up front. All that, and it's still (Euro) street legal.

Vauxhall and Opel aren't saying much about the power side of the equation, but do claim that the 2.0-liter turbo four - complete with direct injection and variable cam timing, is the most powerful it's ever made. However much power it produces, it's all channeled to the front wheels through a six-speed manual and limited-slip differential. All of which adds up to a limited-production track monster that looks ready to take on the likes of Renault and Honda for the front-drive Nürburgring lap record.

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