Vauxhall's new speedy VXR
Vauxhall has revealed its new Astra VXR model - 155mph worth of coupe thanks to the addition of a powerful new engine.
Even though it's only been a few weeks since Vauxhall released its Astra GTC model, the question may be 'why release another Astra, what's the difference'. The difference is the VXR packs a bit more of a punch in terms of power and performance.
So what is the Astra VXR?
The VXR offers a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine which produces 280bhp of power and 400Nm of torque. This power gives the VXR a top speed of 155mph.
When it comes to new mechanics the VXR has been fitted with a whole new unique slip differential which will help the car handle corners better at speed. This new slip differential has already proven its worth at the 'green hell' 13-mile track, which is infamous for its annoyingly tricky corners.
The VXR is equipped with a new 'VXR button'. This allows the car to pull off more performance like driving manoeuvres by adapting its driving set-up.
A new re-designed exterior is also a distinctive feature of the VXR. This includes features like sculpted front and rear bumpers, two exhaust pipes and extended side skirts.
The VXR's new interior goes hand in hand with this and offers new performance seats, a flat-bottomed steering wheel and chrome-effect highlights.
But what's the difference between the VXR and the GTC?
The two cars may share the Astra name and the same general shape, but they are drastically different. The VXR name should not be confused for just another trim level, it is a complete reworking of the Astra GTC to create a performance car which can stand on its own.
While the Astra GTC is designed as a sporty 'warm hatch', it is essentially designed as a volume seller and as a result, offers impressive running costs. The VXR, however, is a turbocharged performance car designed for speed enthusiasts and very little else.
The VXR's top speed of 155mph blows the GTC out the water by an extra 20mph. But you would expect this anyway from a more performance based model.
The VXR's 'VXR button' is not only a new feature but is featured as well as a 'sport' button, which is featured on the GTC.
By just looking at the two cars it is clear that more time has been spent on making the VXR look slicker and cooler.
Which one should I buy?
The VXR has essentially got everything the GTC has got, but with more power and a more racing-based design.
If you have to choose between these two models it would come down to what you want the car for.
If you want a car for nipping out and about or even a family car with a sportier feel, pick the Vauxhall GTC.
But if performance and premium feel is more your thing, then go for the Vauxhall VXR - just be wary of those running costs and higher insurance premiums.
The Vauxhall Astra VXR will go on sale in the UK in 2012 and prices will be revealed closer to the launch date.