Britain is expected to be the biggest market for the GTC, which is why Vauxhall and Opel engineers have conducted much of their evaluation on UK roads.
Much of the development centred around the introduction of Vauxhall’s HiPerStrut to the GTC, a first for an Astra model, and derived from the 325PS Insignia VXR. FlexRide, Vauxhall’s adaptive damping system, will be available as an option across the GTC range, complementing the revisions to the new model’s chassis.
But UK drivers will mostly enjoy the unique steering programme built specifically for them The Astra GTC uses a rack and pinion steering system with speed sensitive assistance. But in order to provide drivers with more steering feedback, the system’s electric motor is mounted directly on the steering rack, as opposed to the base of the steering column.
“The key benefits of using an electric power steering (EPS) are well known. At low speeds, the level of power assistance is increased to minimise steering effort. At higher speeds, assistance is automatically reduced to ensure a high degree of steering feel for the driver. The second important benefit is that, because it does not require an energy consuming hydraulic pump and responds directly to the amount of power needed at any speed, fuel consumption is also reduced,” Vauxhall explains.