Vauxhall chief admits he's keen on the bold GT Concept, but says the company is unlikely to collaborate with another car builder on the project
Nic Cackett
1 March 2016

Enthusiasm for the Vauxhall GT Concept is high at the manufacturer, but the firm’s new boss has ruled a niche collaboration of the kind that delivered the Vauxhall VX220 doubtful.

Rory Harvey told Autocar: “The ability to invest in a niche product has to be driven by a business case, and currently that’s less likely.”

The Vauxhall boss - who has been in the job for less than six months - cited the increasing globalisation of the industry as another hurdle in incubating the sort of project which resulted in a rebodied Lotus’s Elise wearing a Griffin badge, as the VX220 did.

Nevertheless, Harvey declared himself a fan of the concept, which could prospectively see a rear-drive coupé introduced to the Vauxhall line-up.

“I would love to see the GT built, but you do have to look at the reality,” he said.

Vauxhall’s confidence has been buoyed by reaction to the retro-cool of the concept, not to mention the Vauxhall Astra’s very recent triumph in European Car of the Year.

Even if the manufacturer doesn’t ultimately aspire to build a car in the GT’s mould, it promises the same stylistic filter-down effect which has reportedly seen the 2013 Monza concept influence a good many of the 29 new models said to be in the pipeline at Vauxhall and Opel.

Harvey, a self-declared enthusiast at heart, also reiterated his support for the VXR wing of Vauxhall’s range, revealing that he’d enquired about “what more we could do in the sporting arena” not long after replacing former managing director, Tim Tozer. 

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1 March 2016
I can see that the pure concept of the Opel GT (and let's not kid ourselves, this is an Opel which only wears a Vauxhall badge for Brits) is not easy to replicate exactly as shown, but it would be a tragedy if GM don't sit down with SAIC and find a route towards a joint venture that could deliver an MG, Opel, Chevrolet and - yes - a Vauxhall sports car family. Obviously the numbers have to add up but all those brand's portfolios would benefit. The more heartening comment is that Mr Vauxhall says he likes the idea of a rear wheel drive Coupe. That's a step in the right direction at least...

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