The sixth-generation Vauxhall Corsa, which will go on sale next year, will be fundamental to the success of the British company as the first car produced under its new owner, the PSA Group.
The Corsa will set the tone for a new wave of Vauxhall/Opel vehicles, each of which will be overhauled thanks to access to new platforms, engines and hardware also used across the group’s other car brands, Peugeot, Citroën and DS.
Vauxhall’s new supermini has been developed in an unusually fast time. When it is unveiled in 2019, less than two years will have elapsed since work began, just as the deal to buy Vauxhall/ Opel was being agreed between PSA and General Motors.
The quick turnaround is due to PSA axing the original decision for the next Corsa to be based on GM’s architecture. Once PSA had taken over Vauxhall/Opel, it would have been required to pay a licence fee to GM to use the platform, something boss Carlos Tavares is keen to avoid as he tries to return the brands to profitability by 2020.
Vauxhall/Opel boss Michael Lohscheller has previously told Autocar that the new Corsa “will not be compromised in any way. It’s true that we had a version ready to go, and you can’t just stretch a design to fit a new platform, but the teams have done a fantastic job in record time to ensure that the car is on schedule.”
The new Corsa will be based on PSA’s Common Modular Platform (CMP), a front-engine, front-wheel-drive architecture that will also underpin cars such as the forthcoming new Peugeot 208. The Corsa will also dip into PSA’s engine line-up and is likely to adopt the 1.2-litre turbocharged three-cylinder in a variety of power outputs.