The new Corsa VXR is a accurate amateur to the hot bear crown. The Fiesta ST is still added fun, but there’s no abashment in opting for Vauxhall’s latest offering. Aloof be abiding to blueprint the alternative Performance Backpack – the ambush Drexler animosity is arguably account the added £2,400 on its own.
As abundant as 60 per cent of GM’s European VXR (or OPC as it’s accepted on the Continent) assembly finds its way to the UK. The brand has article of a bandage afterward here, with Vauxhall affairs 9,000 Corsa VXRs to aback barrage in 2007.
This new one has been advised with its architect set durably on the ablaze Ford Fiesta ST, and on paper, it should accept the Ford licked. The Corsa packs 202bhp (against the Ford’s 180bhp), while 0-62mph takes 6.5 abnormal (versus the ST’s 6.9 seconds). If you blueprint the £2,400 alternative Performance Pack, you get a Drexler limited-slip diff, bigger wheels, Brembo brakes and a retuned abeyance bureaucracy too.
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We activated the new Corsa hot bear on both alley and clue – on and about Scotland’s Knockhill chase circuit. Making the 450-mile adventure in our abiding Corsa Turbo helped emphasise the changes, both aesthetically and mechanically – but has Vauxhall done abundant to topple the all-conquering ST?
Visually, the Corsa VXR is absolutely a bit shoutier than your boilerplate supermini. The 18-inch alloys you see actuality are optional, but all cars get xenon headlamps, a VXR bodykit, bifold Remus bankrupt pipes and a huge rear roof spoiler.
Added reviews for VXR auto
Inside it’s a bit subtler, with a brace of body-hugging half-leather, half-cloth Recaro sports seats, a flat-bottomed council caster and some VXR-specific dials. All UK models additionally get the IntelliLink Bluetooth infotainment arrangement from the accepted car.
On the road, the firmer bureaucracy makes it absolutely crashy about town, admitting the tighter springs accord it abundant added accord on agee country roads. It does accept a addiction of skittering about on asperous surfaces, but the council is aciculate and there’s affluence of grip.
For us, the alternative Performance Backpack is a no brainer – and Vauxhall reckons amid 40 and 50 per cent of new Corsa VXRs buyers will accept it fitted. The Brembo brakes action a sharper, added beeline feel, while the ablaze Drexler bound blooper cogwheel gives you abundant added aplomb to ballista the car out of bound corners.
The bigger admixture auto additionally appear as allotment of the pack, and while they attending great, they accomplish an about intolerable agitation at college speeds. That’s accomplished aback you’re blame on as the agent agenda drowns out the din, but on best motorway journeys it can get annoying absolutely quickly. This is a botheration on abounding hot hatches as they’re about based on cars advised for the city, but you’ll acquisition little alleviation in that on a continued weekend abroad in the country.
Unfortunately, Vauxhall couldn’t action us a ride on the accepted 17-inch rims, but those should be easier to alive with if you plan to use the Corsa as your alone car
That said, the turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder is a arise little engine. While it’s the aforementioned basal assemblage as you’ll acquisition in the old car, the torque bandage has been widened and feels abundant added attainable as a result. It’s not as acquisitive as the ST’s (245Nm as accepted vs 290Nm in the Fiesta) but there’s actual little lag and aback the abounding 285Nm bliss in on overboost, the car surges advanced with an alarming urgency. It works absolutely well, and if you time it right, it can accomplish overtaking a doddle.
• The cars the Corsa VXR has to beat
However, it’s aback you absolutely crisis the numbers that the Fiesta absolutely trumps the Corsa. Hot hatchbacks are declared to be fun, no accommodation sports cars you can use every day – and while the VXR offers all the aforementioned acumen as the accepted three-door supermini – it artlessly can’t attempt at the pumps.
Vauxhall says it’ll do 37.7mpg. However, afterwards 150 active miles, our cruise computer was account afterpiece to 24mpg – a adamantine bolus to absorb aback you accede a bigger, faster VW Golf GTI is apparently able of a quoted 47.1mpg. Thanks to the actuality the Corsa doesn’t get a fuel-saving stop-start system, or any affectionate of able cylinder-on-demand tech, it’ll additionally amount you £205 a year to tax. For comparison, the class-leading 208 GTi 30th Anniversary will set you aback aloof £110.
As a standalone product, the firecracker Corsa is a peach. It’s abundant to drive and comes loaded with kit. In fact, aback you accede our mid-range Excite, with it’s 113bhp three-cylinder turbo costs added than £14,000, it’s appreciably acceptable value. However, the supermini hot bear articulation is a angrily aggressive one, and all things considered, the afflictive and agog Corsa doesn’t absolutely represent the complete package.
For now at least, the Ford Fiesta ST charcoal king.