Vauxhall gave up on the VX220 in 2006, yet it was arguably one of the best cars to have the Griffin badge on the front in the past 30 years. That said, you can’t argue with lacklustre sales or buyers who gave that badge the bird.
Still, I say that it was the badge snobs’ loss because under the surface of a VX220 there lies a Lotus Elise underneath. Significantly, though, it was always cheaper, new or used, than the Elise.
The VX220 has a strong 2.0 litre engine and when it was attached to a turbocharger it pushed the lightweight body along to 60mph in less than 5 seconds. The gearbox is well matched too, being usefully slick and helping to power along the car whether it is tackling twisty country lanes or even cruising on the motorway. Even so, you will still get around 30mpg overall, which is pretty good for a vehicle that delivers almost supercar levels of handling and performance.
For track day fans the VX220 is the sort of car that will take you reasonably comfortably to the track, where you can drive on the limit and then drive safely home again. Brilliant.