2016 Opel Astra TCR launched at the circuit Jules Tacheny in Mettet

Article by Christian Andrei, on October 28, 2015

Opel has finally unveiled its new Astra TCR race touring car. The debut took place during the International Touring Car Racing event in Mettet, Belgium. The Astra TCR made its debut blazing through the Jules Tacheny circuit.

To summarize, the new Opel Astra TCR is a unique and hybrid vehicle that puts together the concepts of safety and racing capabilities in the body of a production car. The result is a car that can hold its own effectively in both short races and in technically demanding competitions like the Nürburgring 24-hour competition.

Central to the Astra’s capabilities is a 2-liter turbocharged engine that has been rated at 330 hp. Matching this exceptional power rating is a torque of 420 Nm.

The engine is mated to a sequential, 6-speed racing transmission, which the driver can conveniently control via a paddle shift in the steering wheel. Downshifting can have effects on any racing car’s stability, but the double declutching system easily takes care of that.

To make sure the car has braking power within the acceptable thresholds, Opel has equipped the 5-door Astra TCR with new brake discs. 378 mm discs paired with 6-piston brake calipers that serve as stoppers for the front wheels, while the 265mm discs and 2-piston brake calipers do the same job at the rear.

The driver has the power to fully control the braking balance conveniently from his cockpit. Racing drivers are always particular about their preferences. Opel has recognized that, and has designed the new Astra TCR in a manner that gives a driver full control over the adjustable chassis, which features damper technology as well.

Aerodynamics is also a prime concern for any racing car; to address that, the Astra TCR also comes with standard front splitter and rear spoiler that are both fully adjustable as well.

There are, however, no electrical assistance systems found in the Astra TCR as Opel seeks to keep the price of the Astra TCR as affordable as possible.

Opel is preparing for the future as it designed the Astra TCR. The 2016 model now comes with a 100-liter fuel safety tank. This is a feature that will be considered standard from 2017 onwards by the International Automobile Association.

Because the Astra TCR incorporated this feature early, buyers will be spared from the need to modify the car in the future to meet this requirement. In a nutshell, the new Astra TCR is the newest embodiment of Opel’s philosophy towards consumer racing, and its commitment to that market.

The Astra TCR offers powerful features that you can commonly find in racing models, but still remains very close to production with the relatively low price of €95,000 (plus VAT).

Thus, with the new Astra TCR, Opel continues to comply with its mission of providing affordable touring cars to meet the needs of its racing customers. In keeping up with tradition, Opel has also partnered with ADAC to bring the new Astra TCR to the German TCR series.

With this partnership, Opel has created the best venues in which its customer teams can compete effectively with the 2016 Astra TCR. ADAC has designed the championships with three tiers, namely the national, continental and global TCR tiers.

This means that Opel’s customer teams have the unique opportunity of being able to race in championships worldwide and proudly piloting the unique and groundbreaking new model of the Astra TCR.

The Astra TCR’s development is being facilitated together with Kissling Motorsport. The teams are set to complete their initial quality assurance checks on the car’s performance by the end of this month, with deliveries set to commence on a limited scope on February of next year. However, only selected customer teams will receive the first deliveries.

Press Release

Opel Astra TCR: New Touring Car for Customer Racing Presented

Opel took full advantage of the international TCR (Touring Car Racing) presentation at the circuit Jules Tacheny in Mettet, Belgium, showing their new customer racing touring car for the first time. The Opel Astra TCR combines ultra-modern racing technology with an effective safety concept while simultaneously remaining close to production. It enables the Opel teams to compete in short and long distance races – such as the 24-hour race on the Nürburgring – with a technically unchanged vehicle.

The 5-door Astra is powered by a highly efficient two-liter turbocharged engine that will deliver 330 hp and maximum torque of 420 Nm (both determined by the “Balance of Performance” concept), thus ensuring that vehicle with a curb weight of 1,200 kilograms has enough propulsion. This power is transferred to the front wheels via a sequential, six-speed racing transmission with the paddle shift located on the steering wheel. Adhesion is established via a twin-disc sinter metal clutch. An automated double declutching system creates stability when shifting down. The racing car is decelerated by 378 mm brake discs and 6-piston brake calipers at the front along with 265 mm brake discs and 2-piston brake calipers at the back. The driver can modulate the braking balance from the cockpit.

The chassis is fully adjustable and comes with ultra-modern damper technology. The efficient aerodynamics, which include an adjustable front splitter and rear spoiler that for cost reasons are standard components and identical on all TCR vehicles, are also relevant for the vehicle set-up. Electronic assistance systems such as ABS and ESP are not permitted.

In order to ensure that the Opel customer teams can use their Astra TCR for a number of years without making any technical adjustments, the car already comes with features that the International Automobile Association (FIA) will only declare mandatory from the 2017 season such as the 100-liter fuel safety tank.

Opel’s commitment in the Touring Car Racing Series marks the continuation of a long and successful tradition in touring car racing. Customer racing has always been a key pillar in Opel’s motorsport commitment in many countries across Europe alongside factory-backed participation in the German Touring Car Championship (DTM) or national championships such as the German Supertouring Championship (STW). The concept of the TCR matches this philosophy perfectly – with powerful, optically impressive close-to-production touring cars available at affordable prices, the TCR meets the current requirements of the interested customer teams.

The TCR also offers Opel the perfect platform to present its new volume model in a racing environment in the involved markets. The various national championships, obviously including the new German TCR series (ADAC TCR Germany), which will be staged under the overall control of Opel’s longtime partner ADAC, and the European championship are an ideal playing field for Opel and its customer teams. The three-tier concept – national and continental championships along with the global TCR International Series – ensures that customer teams can compete worldwide with the same car.

The Astra TCR is being developed in close cooperation with Opel’s longstanding partner Kissling Motorsport from Bad Münstereifel. Initial performance checks are set to take place before the end of October. A limited amount of Opel Astra TCRs will be delivered to selected customer teams from February of next year. The race-ready vehicle will cost a competitive €95,000 (plus VAT).

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