Vauxhall's most powerful production car ever revealed
11 February 2009

Vauxhall has released its most powerful production car ever, the Vauxhall VXR8 Bathurst S.

The combination of a Walkinshaw Performance 122 supercharger and the latest Corvette-sourced 6.2-litre LS3 V8 gives the Vauxhall VXR8 Bathurst S 552bhp.

That’s a 20bhp power advantage over the previous supercharged VXR8, which used the older 6.0-litre LS2 version of the Corvette motor, and 127bhp more than the current normally aspirated car.

The supercharger also pushes the torque of the Vauxhall VXR8 Bathurst S up by 127lb ft to 527lb ft (although, in the interests of durability, this is 41lb ft down on the old supercharged car’s 568lb ft, despite the car’s high-capacity clutch).

The Vauxhall VXR8 Bathurst S gets stiffened height-adjustable springs and bespoke, individually adjustable coil-over dampers. Six-pot front brake callipers and four-pot rear callipers are also fitted as standard.

The most interesting option available for the VXR8 Bathurst S, however, is what Vauxhall calls the "Bi-modal exhaust" (also available on the non-supercharged Bathurst model). This 2.5in-diameter system permits two noise settings to be selected; Street limits the Bathurst S to 92dbA, while the Optimum setting releases the full 102dbA.

Our Verdict

Vauxhall VRX8 2011-2012

The Vauxhall VXR8 is an unsophisticated sledgehammer that is engaging, entertaining and very different from the German super-coupés that it rivals

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Driven this week

The trick exhaust system costs £1600, while the VXR8 Bathurst S is on sale now, priced from £44,995.

Matt Rigby

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Our Verdict

Vauxhall VRX8 2011-2012

The Vauxhall VXR8 is an unsophisticated sledgehammer that is engaging, entertaining and very different from the German super-coupés that it rivals

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week