Vauxhall has launched a scorching 277bhp VXR version of the Vauxhall Astra GTC at Geneva

The scorching 277bhp Vauxhall Astra VXR has been unveiled at the Geneva motor show. The new Ford Focus ST rival promises best-in-class performance to ecplise its well-established front-drive rivals. Powered by a turbocharged, direct-injection two-litre ‘Family II’ engine boasting 295lb ft of torque, the latest hot VXR is the most powerful production Astra ever.

Distinguished by a sporty lower air intake with dominant outer brake ducts and 20inch multi-spoke alloys that push right to the edge of the arches, the VXR sits aggressively on the road.

Inside is a sporty cabin with high-back seats, trimmed in leather with contrast stitching and a sporty VXR-badged steering wheel.

Like the rest of the GTC range, the VXR gets GM/Saab’s HiPer strut at the front to retain steering finesse while the front wheels cope with transmitting a large-degree of torque.

An adaptation of a conventional front-strut, the VXR’s design features a separate knuckle joint that stops the ‘steering fight’ or torque steer that high power front-drive cars usually suffer from. Ford and Renault use similar designs in their rival hot hatches.

The VXR also employs a mechanical limited slip differential, which cuts wheelspin and improves traction from a standing start and out of corners. Although it remains to be seen whether this diff will introduce its own steering effects, both generations of Ford Focus RS have suffered this problem, although the more recent car was less susceptible.

Like the last-generation hot Astra, the cockpit features a VXR switch to adjust the FlexRide adaptive dampers to an uncompromised, track setting. A less hardcore Sport setting is also available. Also improved on the new GTC VXR are the brakes, where the standard stoppers are replaced with competition-derived models from Brembo.

Dougie McColm, product manager for VXR said: "VXR should account for around 10 per cent of the sales of astra GTC in the UK, which is the biggest market for VXR. It's been in development for about 18 months, and we've covered around 10,000km on the Nurburgring as well as on roads that simulate those you find in the UK."

Some of the development work was done by racer Le Mans winner and former Opel DTM racer Jo Winkelhock. "We have devised a great package that will convince even the most enthusiastic drivers," says Winkelhock, ‘and not just on the Nurburgring."

Join the debate


4 November 2011

Looks good! Not sure about the chrome foglight/grill surrounds, although its clearly a VXR thing. Like the rest of it though.

4 November 2011

If the review in this weeks magazine of the Corsa VXR Nurburgring is anything to go by then I await this car anticipation.



It's all about the twisties........

4 November 2011

Truth to be told it looks good and sounds promising. Next year I am looking to buy a hot hatch, my first after a decade of roadsters, and this VXR really spices things up.

4 November 2011

Yawn, yawn, yawn,hope there are more in your face colors available because that color is Mogadon on wheels!

Peter Cavellini.

4 November 2011

This looks good and the limited information reads well. I still remain to be convinced at putting this much power through front wheels but hopefully exciting for the right reasons.

4 November 2011

Tha Astra GTC is a very pretty car and well done to GM for not making the VXR look tacky like the last model. Lets hope is goes as well as it looks?

4 November 2011

[quote Peter Cavellini]

Yawn, yawn, yawn,hope there are more in your face colors available because that color is Mogadon on wheels!


Bright red not loud/chavvy enough for you?

And I believe the correct phrase is "In Yer Face"

4 November 2011

[quote Peter Cavellini],hope there are more in your face colors available because that color is Mogadon on wheels!

I was just thinking it made a nice change to the matt Coral or baby cack colours that manufacturers usually like to use on their launch cars.

4 November 2011

Yay they've kept up the tradition of properly aggressive VXR's.

Just the kind of hunkered-down beef I hoped it would be. That is has a proper diff is music to my ears.

Please please please be reliable!

4 November 2011

Even though the much talked about 300bhp figure did not materialise, the most important thing is that can it handle this much power?


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