The Opel/Vauxhall Astra GTC, equipped with the new 200 PS (197 hp) 1.6-liter turbocharged petrol engine, is the most powerful non OPC/VXR model that the manufacturer offers and is able to crack 62 mph (100 km/h) in an impressive 7.9 seconds, before topping out at 143 mph or 229 km/h.
This equates to a 30 percent boost over the previous turbo 1.6, though the increase in performance doesn’t seem exactly proportional.
Efficiency is up too, and it is claimed that equipped with the new power plant, the GTC is able to achieve a combined figure of 51 mpg UK or 6.6 l/100 km while expulsing 154 g/km CO2.
Engineers also say it’s now more refined than before, and it’s “the only unit in its class to feature twin balancer shafts for smooth running, while a host of sound engineering measures have been made for low noise, vibration and harshness (NVH).”
Along with the new engine, there’s also a new IntelliLink infotainment system that features sat-nav, voice control, Bluetooth and photo viewer, all accessed through a 7-inch touchscreen.
In Germany, the Astra GTC equipped with the 200 PS motor starts at €25,500, while UK buyers will be asked to part with at least £20,995 for one.
By Andrei Nedelea