It’s only fitting then that the city-sized hot-hatch, which CarAdvice can also reveal will go on sale in March 2015, could wear a Holden badge as part of the company’s new-product offensive.
The company announced this week that more than a third of its future product lineup would comprise models sourced from Europe. The Astra and Insignia performance cars – featuring the VXR badge of UK sister company Vauxhall – are among the handful already confirmed.
Opel’s performance variant manager, Wilfried Diehl, told CarAdvice that Australian engineers were involved in developing the Corsa OPC’s 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder that is found in the locally built Cruze.
“The 1.6L is the Family 1 engine and Australian engineers helped with the tuning,” said Diehl. “It will produce 200-plus horsepower.”
The engine’s output puts it above 1.6-litre turbo fours from key rivals, such as the Ford Fiesta ST (134kW-147kW), Renault Clio RS200 (147kW) and Peugeot 208 GTI (147kW). Volkswagen’s Polo GTI now features a 1.8-litre turbo but still trails with 141kW.
The Opel Corsa OPC’s performance and sound have both been improved with the addition of a sports exhaust system by the same company behind the current Astra VXR’s piping layout – Remus.
Diehl says we can expect the Corsa OPC to emit a similar ‘jet’ noise that gives the Astra some character.
Expect the new version to shave a bit of time off the outgoing model’s 7.2-second 0-100km/h claim.
The OPC version of the Corsa is again based on the three-door variant.
Diehl added that the Corsa OPC could again be expected to have a more aggressive set-up than the bigger Astra.
“The customer is younger for Corsa… they like to have really hard chassis setting, they have fun with it – and it’s the reason why we did the [special] Nurburgring edition,” he said.
“If we do the same with Astra [OPC] it would not be that successful. Astra has a different average age – they like to have sporty car but also have a car for everyday using."