Caught undergoing testing at the Nürburgring, the dash of this mule appears identical to that of the Astra, with which it shares most of its underpinnings. This means the same plethora of buttons adorning the centre console as the hatchback, Sports Tourer and GTC. The dash will carry additional chrome trim in an effort to provide a more upmarket look.
Along with the clear Astra influence, the new soft-top features parts from the larger Insignia to ensure space for four. Despite this, the convertible will not share the Astra or Insignia nameplate. It will reveal the drop-top’s name in Paris.
Vauxhall will introduce the new convertible at a slightly higher price point than the old Astra TwinTop. It fears the Astra badge will hold little appeal at this level.
These pictures also reveal how seriously Vauxhall is pursuing increased passenger space in its new fabric-roofed convertible. Next to and behind the driver, crash dummies can be seen strapped into the seats, displaying its four-seat capabilities.
Expect drivetrain options to mirror those of the Astra and Insignia donor cars, including a new range of 1.6-litre turbo engines to be introduced later this year. Diesel options will include a 128bhp 1.7 CDTI and a more powerful 165bhp 2.0-litre option. There is no word yet on the viability of the 195bhp BiTurbo diesel in the convertible. A dual-clutch transmission is set to appear sometime after launch.
After its debut next month, Vauxhall’s new convertible should be in showrooms during spring 2013.