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by David Zalstein

The Opel Corsa OPC has landed, the smallest car in Opel’s local performance line-up starting at $28,990.

The entry point into the Opel Performance Centre (OPC) range, the new Opel Corsa OPC is the pocket-rocket stepping stone to the bigger Opel Astra OPC hot-hatch.

Powered by a turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine producing 141kW of power at 5850rpm and 230Nm of torque between 1980-5800rpm (with 260Nm available with on ‘overboost’), the 1280kg two-door OPC has a claimed 7.2 second 0-100km/h and a top speed of 225km/h.

Opel Corsa OPC - 3

A six-speed manual transmission works with the car’s turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which has a cylinder head, sump, and turbo-specific intake manifold all made from aluminium. Claimed fuel consumption for the Corsa OPC is 7.5 litres per 100 kilometres, with COemissions of 175 grams per kilometre.

While the baby OPC misses out on the limited-slip front differential of the Astra and Insignia performance models, it has had its chassis tuned by not only Opel’s own OPC engineering team but Lotus Engineering as well. The Corsa OPC sits 15mm lower than the standard variant, has revised rear axle geometry that increases stiffness and decreases body roll, and gets specially adjusted spring and damper suspension rates. A variable ratio electro-hydraulic power steering system is also employed, claimed to provide both a “sports car feel” during enthusiastic driving and parking ease.

Opel Corsa OPC - 4

Helping to visually distinguish the Corsa OPC from the standard car are reworked front and rear bumpers, side skirts, a distinctive grille, dark finish rear diffuser and a roof spoiler, as well as the use of a triangular design theme seen on the side mirrors, front foglight surrounds, central exhaust tip and optional ($1000) 18-inch alloy wheels. Standard 17-inch alloy wheels sit over OPC brakes measuring 308mm at the front and 264mm at the rear.

Opel Corsa OPC - 7

Inside, a flat-bottomed leather-wrapped steering wheel with a motorsport-inspired centre-marking ring joins chrome instrument surrounds, red gauge needles, a leather gear knob, aluminium pedals and OPC-branded door sill plates and floor mats. A pair of fibreglass-reinforced plastic-shelled Recaro seats finished in silver-stitched cloth and Moroccana trim also feature with both seats designed to accommodate a four-point racing harness, while drivers also benefit from six-way adjustment.

Driver and passenger front, side and curtain airbags, brake assist, hill start assist, electronic brakeforce distribution, traction control and electronic stability control are standard – Opel says the latter can be turned off completely if “the driver wants to add further excitement to his driving experience” – along with daytime running lights, adaptive headlights, cruise control, Bluetooth connectivity, rear park assist, rain-sensing wipers and a seven-speaker audio system.

The Opel Corsa OPC is available in five colours – OPC Arden Blue; Casablanca White; Magma Red; Flaming Yellow; Carbon Flash Black – and goes on sale from April, following the Astra OPC and Insignia OPC’s mid-February on-sale date.

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