Packing 325hp (242kW), a sophisticated AWD chassis and a sub-six second 0-60mph time, Opel’s new Insignia OPC is set to take the midsize performance saloon market by storm when it goes on sale in the middle of the year. OPC, which stands for ‘Opel Performance Center,’ is the name given to models developed by GM’s official in-house tuner in Europe, and in the past has been used for cars like the Astra and compact Corsa hatchbacks.
OPC cars typically feature minor engine and handling mods as well as styling and performance upgrades such as bigger wheels and sporty bodykits. In the UK, the car will be known as the Vauxhall Insignia VXR.
The new Insignia OPC is the first model from the performance division to be offered with AWD and is available in hatch, saloon, and wagon bodystyles. Highlights are a ‘HiPerStrut’ (High Performance Strut) front suspension system, an adaptable AWD system with an electronic Limited Slip Differential and a 10mm reduction in ride height over the standard Insignia.
The HiPerStrut system is unique to the OPC model and serves two primary functions: firstly, to reduce torque-steer, but also to maintain negative camber during cornering, thereby improving ultimate grip levels in wet or dry conditions. Complementing these features are standard 19in alloy wheels (20in lightweight forged alloys are optional), revised bushing and damper settings on both axles, and Brembo brakes with color-keyed calipers and vented and cross-drilled discs.
Drive comes from a 2.8L V6 turbocharged engine rated at 325hp (242kW), which is enough to send the car from 0-60mph in 5.8 seconds and an electronically controlled top speed of 155mph.
The sporting theme continues inside with Recaro front seats, a new steering wheel, gearknob and unique moldings, as well as different instrument graphics and sill plates._______________________________________Follow Motor Authority on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.