Vauxhall had been preparing the ground for the GTC for some time. It revealed a concept of the same name at the Paris Motor Show in 2010, heralding it as a new type of Astra, and launched it in the UK in 2011.

Three-door Astras have always proved popular with buyers, but the gives Vauxhall its first genuine coupe since the unloved mark IV. You need to go back even further in Vauxhall's history, to the Manta and Calibra of the 1980s and 1990s, to find anything that could be described as desirable. 

The GTC hasn’t yet been subject to the new model revisions the five-door and state underwent last year, having dropped the Astra designation from its name in early 2014. It’s squarely aimed at the Volkswagen Scirocco, a car that uses the proven underpinnings of the Golf to deliver something altogether more special.

Vauxhall uses styling and some significant mechanical changes to transform the hatchback into a sporty, practical coupe. It gives the GTC credibility in a market that is starting to fill up quickly.

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