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.