Opel will have a busy fall this year with the introduction of three new icons: the revolutionary electric Ampera with extended range capabilities, the new generation Zafira Tourer flexibility master, and the 2012 Opel Astra GTC three-door sports compact. The Opel Astra GTC will have its world premiere at the 64th International Motor Show in Frankfurt am Main, September 15-25, 2011. The new Opel Astra GTC stands out with sharp design and driving capabilities. On the outside, sculpted shapes with precise accents add drama to clean, sweeping coupé lines. And on the road, all Astra GTC versions benefit from a premium front axle layout with HiPerStrut – High Performance Strut – that ideally combines with the clever Opel patented Watt’s link rear axle to provide unmatched stability and the sharpest driving precision. Only very few, radical sporty cars in the segment offer such a sophisticated front axle architecture.
Structured Body Design 2012 Opel Astra GTC
The new 2012 Opel Astra GTC is very much inspired by the Opel GTC Paris Concept revealed at the 2010 Mondial de l’Automobile in Paris. A compact, sporty five-seater with coupé appeal and dramatic proportions, the 2012 Opel Astra GTC has a unique design: it does not share any exterior element with other members of the Astra family, except for the outside rear view mirror housing and the rod antenna. Six of the seven 17- to 20-inch wheel designs on offer are also GTC-only features.
The clean front features Opel’s typical centerline crease and is accented by intense, slim eagle-eye designed headlamps featuring “wing-shaped” daytime running light graphics. These act as parentheses around the refined chrome emblem bar and the separate, dramatic trapezoidal grille, which is placed lower for a race track feel that hints at a sporty character. The shoulder section is the most dramatic area of the 2012 Opel Astra GTC. Its powerful design gives the car imposing proportions and a very purposeful road presence in highlighting its low, wide road-holding stance. The line from the C-pillar slides into the tail and curls around into the rear spoiler, which is ingeniously integrated into the continuing roof line. Optional LEDs highlight the stretched “wing-shaped” motif of the tail lamps.
Performance Engine Of 2012 Opel Astra GTC
The upgraded 2.0 CDTI common-rail turbo diesel engine with output raised to 121 kW/165 hp is fitted with a diesel particulate filter and a six-speed manual transmission. Opel’s new Start/Stop technology which reduces fuel consumption in urban stop and go traffic is standard equipment. The 2.0 CDTI combines excellent performance with high efficiency. It delivers up to 380 Nm of torque thanks to an overboost function and allows the 2012 Opel Astra GTC to reach 100 km/h in 8.9 seconds. Top speed is 210 km/h. The combined fuel consumption does not exceed 4.9 liters of diesel per 100 km and CO2 emissions are 129 g/km. With its 56-liter fuel tank, the 2012 Opel Astra GTC 2.0 CDTI can cover over 1,100 km. More powertrains will be offered around the world premiere at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. The sportiest versions including the future high-performance OPC will follow in 2012.
Opel Astra GTC Chasis Features
The 2012 Opel Astra GTC mechatronic chassis features an exclusive, high-tech front suspension architecture, similar to the one of the Insignia OPC, that improves handling performance and provides the sharper steering demanding drivers expect in a sporty-looking car. Compared to the five-door Astra, the ride height of the 2012 Opel Astra GTC is lowered by 15 mm while the basic dimensions of the chassis slightly increase. Due to extended control arms in the rear, the wheelbase grows by 10 mm, from 2,685 to 2,695 mm. Both tracks are wider, at 1,584 mm (+ 40 mm) in front and 1,588 mm (+ 30 mm) in the rear. This allows for the accommodation of sporty wheels with enhanced tire diameter, which improve both stability, road stance and visual impact.
The major change, however, is not visible to the naked eye. All 2012 Opel Astra GTC versions, regardless of the powertrain and trim level, are fitted with an extra feature, normally only available in high-end sports cars: front suspension with High Performance Strut (HiPerStrut). Compared to the standard McPherson suspension from the Astra, HiPerStrut has reduced kingpin inclination and offset and a shorter spindle length. This improves wheel guidance and grip, reduces torque steering reactions and increases cornering power, offering 2012 Opel Astra GTC drivers the sporty, crisp feel they expect, with enhanced precision and feedback.
In addition, HiPerStut reduces tire flops, which allows the car to accommodate larger-diameter wheels. This up-level layout that glues the car to the road guarantees driving excitement to all 2012 Opel Astra GTC drivers even before the very sporty versions planned for the near future are available. The layout of the rear axle combines a compound crank with a Watt’s link. This clever construction, exclusive to Opel, has demonstrated its multiple benefits in the Astra already. While it is lighter and more compact than a multi-link axle, it provides great comfort, excellent noise insulation and outstanding stability/control.
Innovative Safety Technologies
The second-generation Opel Eye front camera system benefits from improved and extended functionalities. The Traffic Sign Recognition (TSR) can identify more signs than before and the information it provides is supplemented by input from the navigation system. In addition to the familiar Lane Departure Warning (LDW), the camera now also supports a new Following Distance Indication function (FDI) that visually informs the driver about the distance to the vehicle ahead.
The new, fourth-generation Bi-Xenon Advanced Forward Lighting (AFL 4) makes its debut in the 2012 Opel Astra GTC. In addition to the nine functions from AFL+ – which include a High Beam Assist that switches the high beams on and off depending on the presence of other vehicles – it can be enhanced with an Intelligent Light Ranging system (ILR) that uses the front camera from the Opel Eye to measure the distance from the vehicle ahead and adjust the headlamp low beam pattern. This allows it to continuously optimize roadway illumination without blinding. With these ten functions, the 2012 Opel Astra GTC features the best lighting package in the segment.