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Opel's new pocket-rocket Corsa OPC due in Ireland next month priced from €29,995

CarsBy Robbie Farrell
The new Opel Corsa OPC is due here in the next few weeks
The new Opel Corsa OPC is due here in the next few weeks

Opel boy-racer fans will be delighted with the news that the German manufacturer has, this week, unveiled its pocket-rocket Corsa OPC.

Marking its international debut in beautiful Bilbao, Spain, the New Corsa OPC is set to be unleashed in Ireland this May and is priced from €29,995

Benefiting from the significant revisions in technology, interior/exterior design and chassis showcased in the recently launched New Corsa, the OPC is set to raise the bar for small, fast hatchbacks.

Power

First launched in 2007, the Corsa OPC is the fastest member of the new generation Corsa family and combines uncompromising athleticism with outstanding suitability for everyday use.

Headline performance figures for the Corsa OPC are 0-100km/h in 6.5 seconds and a top speed of 270km, but more importantly the OPC produces its 245Nm of torque from lower revs (between 1,900rpm – 5,800rpm, compared with 2,250rpm – 5,500rpm to the outgoing model).

This makes the OPC a potent performer between 80-120Km/h as it can dispatch in just 6.4 seconds in fifth gear.

An overboost facility provides an additional 35Nm of torque, ideal for swift and safe overtaking. Maximum power from its 1.6-litre turbocharged engine is 205hp, while the Corsa OPC achieves 7.5 litres per km on the combined cycle with C02 emissions of 174g/km.

Engine & Powertrain

Opel’s powertrain engineers had to re-develop numerous components in the OPC’s engine to achieve its impressive performance values.

Engineers constructed a completely new intake line leading to the turbocharger. A new intercooler is also used. New fuel injectors, controlled by the new engine management system, ensure an even finer and more precise delivery of fuel.

This results in a noticeable improvement in responsiveness, especially at low engine speeds, and optimised power output at higher engine speeds.

Working with exhaust specialists Remus, Opel engineers developed a new exhaust manifold with an integrated turbocharger.

As before, power is delivered to the front wheels via a second-generation six-speed transmission with a short, fluid gear change.

The gearbox features a new design shift lever, shift cable and bearing cap with adjusted end stops. This helps reduce shift travel by 13 per cent versus the outgoing model.

Chassis

Opel has worked closely with damper-supplier, Koni, to develop a new technology, known as Frequency Selective Damping (FSD) for the new Corsa OPC.

FSD allows damping forces to adapt to the car’s movements, ensuring that body control is maintained when the car is driven fast, but ride quality is optimised at lower speeds.

The systems is an entirely mechanical solution and does not require any electronic components such as sensors, cables or engine control units. In addition, the car’s ride height has been lowered by 10mm all round.

There’s also a new rear axle with new geometry for a modified roll rate. In combination with a new torsion profile rod, this results in improved responsiveness compared to the outgoing model.

The Corsa OPC’s spring rates, anti-roll bars, rear-axle bearing bushes are also new or revised.

For the first time, Opel is offering a two-stage switchable electronic stability programme (ESP) and traction control (TC) with the Corsa OPC.

In Competition Mode the traction control is inactive, while the ESP is relaxed to allow less intervention. For track use, the ESP can be fully disabled. Revisions have been made to the new Corsa OPC’s steering, making it more direct and precise, with improved feedback through the wheel.

Michelin 215/45 R17 tyres are standard, as are 308mm front brake discs.

“A high degree of driving involvement was our priority right from the start of development,” said Volker Strycek, Opel/Opel’s Director Performance Cars & Motorsport.

Performance Package

For Corsa OPC customers keen to enhance their car’s dynamics still further, Opel is offering an optional Performance Package.

Priced keenly at €3,000, highlights include 18-inch alloy wheels with super sticky Michelin Pilot Supersport tyres. The pack also features a motorsport-derived Drexler Limited Slip Differential (LSD), Brembo four-piston brakes and re-tuned Koni FSD system above the standard set up.

Design & Equipment

The interior also creates a sporty ambience. Recaro performance seats, which offer passengers optimum side support even in the most demanding maze of corners, are prominent.

The leather steering wheel, flattened at the bottom, the OPC gear knob and the sports pedals along with the characteristic instruments in the OPC design all come as standard and complete the interior.

Standard bi-xenon lighting and a choice of six exterior colours help the new Corsa OPC stand out in its class. An aggressive new front-end design features large air intakes and an aluminium-framed opening below the headlights.

A small scoop is located below the bonnet and side-sill extensions enhance the Corsa OPC’s performance credentials still further. A rear spoiler provides meaningful down-force over the back axle, and twin Remus exhaust pipes further distinguish it from regular Corsas.

Six exterior colours – including Flash Blue, which is unique to the Corsa OPC – are available for the Corsa OPC. The car’s cabin has standard Recaro seats, a leather, flat-bottomed steering wheel, sports pedals, as well as an OPC gear-lever and instruments.

A heated front windscreen and Intellilink connectivity for Apple iOS and Android smartphones are also standard.

We will bring you the full review when we get behind this pocket rocket later in the year,