A muscular 321bhp Insignia VXR has been revealed by Vauxhall, and the new model has its sights set firmly on Audi’s S4.
The new VXR will go on Sale
this summer priced around £30k. As well as boasting a brawny new version of GM’s 2.8 litre ECOTEC V6 with a forged steel crank, alloy sump, twin-scroll turbocharger and variable valve timing, the Insignia is the first VXR model to get a 4x4 chassis. It’s a Haldex adaptive system apparently similar to the Saab 9-3 Turbo X set-up and features an electronic limited slip differential.
The hot Vauxhall also gets what’s described as a high performance strut (HiPerStrut) front suspension system, as well as revised bushing and damper settings all round. The HiPerStrut system is unique to the VXR and is said to both reduce torque steer, and to maintain negative camber during cornering – improving grip in the wet or dry.
The car rides 10mm closer to the tarmac than its SRi sibling on 19ins alloys wheels, while brakes are vented/cross-drilled discs with colour-keyed callipers by Brembo.
According to Vauxhall’s figures the car is good for an electronically limited maximum of 155mph and can reach 60mph from rest in 5.8secs. Much of chassis development was carried out at the Nürburgring, and Vauxhall seems convinced that its new model will be a viable competitor for ‘up-market’ rivals like the 328 bhp Audi S4.
‘The Insignia VXR is not just about absolute power, but a combination of usable performance and chassis sophistication which is the match of premium rivals, such as Audi’s new S4,’ says Andy Gilson, Vauxhall’s Marketing Director. ‘In essence, it’s an ultra-fast performance saloon that will appeal to buyers who appreciate subtle yet distinctive styling, but who need to know that there’s real substance below the car’s metal.’
Talking of styling, the Insignia VXR should be instantly recognisable by its deep front bumper with bold mesh grilles, a rear spoiler and dual chrome tailpipes. Inside the VXR cabin you get Recaro front seats, VXR steering wheel and gearknob, unique instrument graphics and black headlining. Exterior colour options are limited to blue, red, black, silver, white and grey.
As well as the hatch and saloon models, Vauxhall will also introduce an estate version of its hottest Insignia. Expect the wagon to command a showroom premium of around £1400.