Vauxhall's latest coupé-cabriolet arrives with an imaginative name
1 August 2005

The Frankfurt motor show will see a duo of folding hardtop debuts, as Vauxhall unveils its open Astra at the same show as Volvo's new C70. Tagged Astra TwinTop, the new coupé-cabrio will be one of a trio of new Vauxhalls on display, joining the 255bhp Vectra VXRand the long-awaited replacement for the Frontera 4x4.

The Astra TwinTop follows rivals such as Megane CC and Peugeot 307 CC in ditching the fabric hood in exchange for a folding hard-top, a route also being explored by VW and Ford with forthcoming cabrio versions of the Golf and Focus.

Arriving in the UK next spring, the TwinTop will be launched with a choice of four engines, 105bhp 1.6-, 138bhp 1.8- and 198bhp turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol variants, and the 148bhp 1.9-litre diesel. Based on the longer of the Astra’s two wheelbases also used by the Zafira and Astra Estate, the TwinTop should offer at least as good rear seat accommodation as anything in the class. Boot space comes in at 440 litres with the roof up, 220 with it down, which is best in class roof-down, and level with the Megane CC at its maximum.

Unlike the Tigra's roof, which was designed and built by French firm Heuliez, the Astra's roof has been developed by Porsche-owned CTS and unlike its established rival’s systems, folds into three pieces, which helps the sleek styling by remove the need for the steeply sloped A-pillar and long rear deck that handicap the Megane and 307 CC’s appearance.

Although prices won’t be firmed up until nearer the spring ’06 launch, Vauxhall will need to match its closest rivals, which means a starting price of around £17,000 for the 1.6, rising to around £21 for the range-topping 197bhp turbo.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Lexus LC500
    Car review
    20 October 2017
    Futuristic Lexus LC coupé mixes the latest technology with an old-school atmospheric V8
  • Maserati Levante S GranSport
    First Drive
    20 October 2017
    Get ready to trade in your diesels: Maserati’s luxury SUV finally gets the engine it’s always needed
  • Jaguar XF Sportbrake TDV6
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The handsome Jaguar XF Sportbrake exhibits all the hallmarks that makes the saloon great, and with the silky smooth diesel V6 makes it a compelling choice
  • Volkswagen T-Roc TDI
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    Volkswagen's new compact crossover has the looks, the engineering and the build quality to be a resounding success, but not with this diesel engine
  • BMW M550i
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The all-paw M550i is a fast, effortless mile-muncher, but there's a reason why it won't be sold in the UK