Opel Calibra getting back in business

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 29, 2010

Opel's legendary coupe, the Calibra, has returned. This sleek new sports car replaces the 1989 Calibra version, which was the world's most aerodynamic coupe when it arrived back then.

The model will sit above the forthcoming three-door Astra, set to debut at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show. The new Calibra will go head to head with VW's Golf-based Scirocco, Peugeot's 308 RC Z and Ford's upcoming Focus-based two-door.

Due to a sleek body that mixes styling cues from the GTC Concept 's seen at the 2007 Detroit Motor Show as a preview to the Insignia and those of the new Astra, the car is set to take center stage.

Along with the Astra Roadster (Issue 1,069), the compact newcomer will be the star of Opel's line-up, as the firm has put on hold its plans for a larger, Insignia-based coupe, in the style of the GTC.

Fans say that the key to its appeal is the sloping roof, which gives the impression of a car that can slice through the air. The front boasts Astra-style headlights along with sabre tooth vertical air intakes a design feature taken directly from the GTC Concept and a low splitter.

Sculpted flanks and sleek taillights complete the distinctive shape. Inside will be a 2+2 cabin, which can possibly be installed with GTC Flex4 arrangement, which allows the two seats in the back to slide fully forward, maximizing boot space. That would make it one of the most practical cars in its class. As with the Astra, the Calibra will sit on Vauxhall latest front-wheel-drive Delta platform.

It possesses a wider track and increased wheelbase that will provide better stability and traction. Vauxhall FlexRide electronic damping system will be fitted as standard to flagship versions. This features Standard, Sport and Tour settings, letting the driver tweak suspension stiffness, throttle response and other variables.

Power will come from a range of Astra-sourced engines, including a 157bhp 2.0-litre diesel and a 177bhp 1.6 turbo. A range-topping 2.0 turbo from the upcoming Astra OPC will produce in excess of 250bhp. Before the Calibra is produced, Vauxhall will first launch the Astra three-door and estate, as well as a new Zafira MPV.

Topics: opel, sports car

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