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Vectra VXR goes quattro

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Vectra VXR goes quattro

All-new four-wheel-drive Vauxhall super-saloon is gunning for Audi

Text: Sam Hardy / Photos: Poblete/Automedia

November 21, 2007

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Vauxhall Vectra VXR

Menacing front end comprises a jutting nose, V-shaped grille, mesh air intakes and stylish headlights

Calling all performance car fans – Vauxhall is building a quattro!

The firm is replacing its top-selling Vectra next year with an all-new family model called the Insignia, and this is the stunning flagship VXR version. What’s more, the performance variant is being tipped to give the Audi S4 a serious run for its money.

It will usher in a raft of firsts for Vauxhall, with a choice of turbocharged V6 petrol or diesel engines, mated to a new four-wheel-drive system.

Costing £25,000 and available in saloon, hatch and estate bodystyles, the Insignia VXR line-up will offer similar performance to Audi’s sporty A4 variants, but with more practicality – and at a fraction of the price.

The new range makes its world debut at the British Motor Show in July, but top-spec VXR versions are still 18 months away. However, General Motors’ engineers are well advanced with the new cars’ development.

One thing is for sure: they will be even more aggressive to look at than the current models. Our pictures, which are based on exclusive inside information, show what buyers can expect from the saloon.

Taking the striking look of the Insignia – which was previewed by the GTC concept at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year – the VXR version adds a meaty bodykit. At the front, the jutting nose gets a body-coloured V-shaped grille, complete with sporty mesh air intakes. The streamlined headlamps get black surrounds, while the ground-hugging front bumper has integral spotlights.

The sporty feel continues in profile, with low side skirts, 19-inch alloy wheels and a sharply curved roof that flows down to a rakish tailgate.

At the rear, a subtle bootlid spoiler and twin chrome exhausts finish the look. Inside, the cabin will draw its inspiration from the GTC, with deep-set dials backlit in red, a chunky three-spoke steering wheel and figure-

hugging sports seats. As with the rest of the range, material quality will rival that of prestige marques.

The Insignia is based on GM’s new Epsilon 2 platform, and it will be larger than the Vectra it replaces. As well as more space, the new chassis will bring other benefits, most notably improved driving dynamics. And each model will get a revised version of the current Vectra VXR’s electronic adaptive dampers, allowing a choice of Comfort or Sport settings.

The big change, however, will be the introduction of an electronically controlled four-wheel-drive transmission. Debuted on the GTC, the new drivetrain can vary torque front to rear, and vice versa, according to which wheels have the most grip. It also incorporates a limited-slip differential to ensure maximum traction.

And that’s just as well, because a 2.8-litre twin-turbocharged V6 petrol engine will power the flagship Insignia VXR. Eclipsing the current model’s 276bhp output, the newcomer will boast in excess of 300bhp – resulting in a 0-60mph time of only 5.5 seconds and a 165mph top speed. With the benefit of revised active suspension and all-wheel drive, it will be at home on twisty roads in a way that its unruly front-wheel-drive pre­decessor never was.

As a significant amount of sales will go to company drivers, Vauxhall will also launch a 247bhp 2.9-litre V6 turbodiesel variant. Both models get a new six-speed manual box as stan­dard. Equipment will be impressive, with integrated sat-nav, hands-free telephone and audio technology.

The Insignia also promises to be the first Vauxhall to get the new Traffic Assist System. This uses radar and video to scan the road ahead, and slows the car automatically if it senses that a collision is likely.

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Vectra VXR goes quattro

All-new four-wheel-drive Vauxhall super-saloon is gunning for Audi

Text: Sam Hardy / Photos: Poblete/Automedia

November 21, 2007

Posted Image

Those wheels are nice.

Get the turbo V6 here, as Aura Redline and keep the 6-speed. I will be the first one on the list.

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That is BEAUTIFUL. We can only wish that Sautrn will get the same vehicle.

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Those wheels are nice.

Get the turbo V6 here, as Aura Redline and keep the 6-speed. I will be the first one on the list.

No you won't, I have control of VOS (Vehicle Ordering System). I will be! :smilewide:

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I have to say this is the first execution of the Bangle trunk that I like.

And what is wrong with the first car? It's spinning two wheels! :P

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No you won't, I have control of VOS (Vehicle Ordering System). I will be! :smilewide:

You get the German one.

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The car looks fantastic. I hope the real thing looks as good as the pictures do!

Edited by Dodgefan
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Damn that looks hot. :thumbsup: The only thing that worries me about the AWD is that the weight will be too high for any type of real performance.

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Damn that looks hot. :thumbsup: The only thing that worries me about the AWD is that the weight will be too high for any type of real performance.

If Subaru, Acura, Audi, etc can pull off reasonable AWD performance vehicles from FWD-sourced platforms, I'm sure GM can too. :)

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will that 2.8 have DI?

it does look... bmw esque. didn't the concept have crazy headlights? the ones that "teared" down beside the grill?

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2.9 litre diesel FTW.

Same HP as the HF3.6

Same torque as the CTS-V

Same mileage as the Aveo.

Edited by Oldsmoboi
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All wrapped up in Datsun sheetmetal. How nice.:)
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GM seems to be continually topping themselves in midsize sedan design. The current Saturn Aura was the first product of this revival for GM design. Then, the Malibu came along to surpass the Aura. If this car previews the styling of the next generation Aura, then the Malibu will be left in the dust yet again. I hope this trend continues at GM. It's great to see them continue to raise the bar in styling. I can't wait to see the Epsilon II based Buick midsize sedan; if if follows the trend, then it should be a looker. Keep up the good work GM! :thumbsup:

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Not bad but the grill bar has to be cleaned up for any American version. The bars is just way too much over kill. I would expect the Saturn would be more understated as well as the Opel.

Not bad over all but in some detail areas they should have put the pen down sooner. Too many details on small cars distract from a good styling.

Was the styling done at GM/Daewoo? It feels a little Korean in nature with Vauxhall cues.

Edited by hyperv6
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This thing is stunning in all ways. It looks great and sounds like it will have a badass powertrain. Let's get it here ASAP!

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All wrapped up in Datsun sheetmetal. How nice.:)

Datsun? Doesn't look like any Datsun I ever saw..they were are all boxy little cars...

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