2013 Opel Astra Opc
Opel Astra OPC
Opel Astra line-up has a new high-performance mem, the brawny 206 kW / 280 hp Opel Astra OPC which now completes the OPC folk with the modest Corsa OPC and the mid-size Insignia OPC. Powered by a 2.0 liter turbocharged direct injection engine, the Astra OPC (Opel Performance Center) achieves maximum torque of 400 Nm and can sprint from zero to 100km/h in just six-point-zero seconds. It achieves a top speed of 250 km/h. Never before has an Astra been so fast.
The four-cylinder engine offers 25 percent more maximum torque than its Astra OPC predecessor and also boasts 40 hp more power. This translates into 140 hp per litre, the highest specific output per liter in an Opel gasoline production car, compared with 120 hp in the previous Opel Astra OPC. The new turbocharged engine is based on the latest 2.0 liter Opel gasoline engine with 250 hp adding an extra 30 hp to it. However, fuel consumption has been reduced by 12 percent, while CO2-emissions have been reduced by 14 percent in comparison to the predecessor. The CO2-emissions of the Astra OPC have been lowered to 189 g/km (previously 221 g/km) and fuel consumption to 8.1 l per 100 kilometer (previously 9.2 l/100 km).
The Opel engineers developed a completely new state of the art engine air intake system in order to feed as much air to the turbocharger as possible. In addition, the exhaust system was optimized to further improve the flow of the exhaust gases and improve the engine performance. The turbocharger itself was further enhanced to withstand even more charge air pressure and therefore the durability of the charger was increased accordingly by using new components.
2013 Opel Astra OPC
Exclusive Opel Astra OPC high-performance chassis for closer road contact
Opel has designed a high performance chassis package geared especially towards lateral dynamics and superb handling qualities for its new Astra OPC, to complement its powerful 206 kW/280 hp, 400 Nm engine. The chassis with dampers made by ZF Sachs benefits from several decisive elements that all enhance the car’s driving dynamics: high performance struts (HiPerStruts) on the front wheel suspension, the mechatronic FlexRide chassis system, a mechanical multi-plate slip differential and Brembo brakes. The chassis has been further sharpened with 19″ alloy wheels as standard together with 245/40 ZR sized tires. In addition, the Opel OPC (Opel Performance Center) team fine-tuned the chassis to OPC standards by modifying the dampers and stiffening the springs and bushings.
OPC-tuned FlexRide suspension satisfies many sporty driving styles
The mechatronic FlexRide chassis which has been especially enhanced and tuned to OPC needs and offers the driver the damping and driving characteristics he requires, is the key ingredient in the high-performance chassis. While the conventional Astra FlexRide offers a choice between a standard adaptive setting, a more comfortable Tour mode and a Sport mode, in the Opel Astra OPC the system is aimed at those who enjoy a sportier ride.
The Opel Astra OPC driver can choose between three different modes, with each mode offering a unique and specific experience of high performance driving. The Standard mode delivers all-round performance while comfort is preserved at all times for everyday drive situations. Even in this mode, the Astra OPC performs brilliantly in bends, shines with its responsive steering and minimal body tilt. At the touch of a button, the Sport mode stiffens the chassis suspension, increases agility by reducing body roll and makes the steering more direct.
Meanwhile, the OPC mode creates the ultimate driving experience: steering becomes even more direct in comparison to the Sport mode, the throttle is more responsive and the chassis setting is geared towards delivering maximum performance. The instrument panel lights up red to signal that the car is in the OPC mode. For best possible ride control, the ramp control sub-mode further stiffens the damping, ensuring that the wheels are in contact with the road instantly after hitting a bump for optimal control. This means the vehicle experiences a soft landing even when the springs on the struts rebound on an uneven road surface. Meanwhile, the roll control sub-mode reduces side tilt further so that the vehicle lies flat in the road so that agility is maximized.
Compared to the turbocharged 1.6 Astra GTC (132 kW/180hp), the OPC engineers stiffened the standard springs by around thirty percent and lowered the vehicle by a further ten millimeters, thus bringing the car even closer to the road. In order to give the driver an even more agile and responsive drive, the bushings and the rear axle were also made stiffer, while the front anti-roll bar was made thicker by at least five percent compared to the GTC, giving it added stiffness. In addition to these measures there are other innovations in the Opel Astra OPC chassis, for example the diameter of the pistons inside the shock absorbers was increased and the dampers were given an OPC specific optimization. The suspension sub-frame rests on special rubber mounts. The elastic-kinematic nature of these mounts increases the steering agility while providing support even when subjected to extreme lateral forces in tight bends.
Tried and tested HiPerStruts improve ride and handling with direct steering feel
The Opel Astra OPC is equipped with the tried and tested HiPerStruts (High Performance Struts). OPC engineers significantly evolved the MacPherson struts from the standard Astra to create the new HiPerStrut front suspension architecture that puts the driver first and maintains a high level of comfort. The HiPerStruts improve grip to enable a sportier ride feel and handling, while at the same time increasing the cornering abilities expected from a high performance car, they significantly reduce torque steering reactions and enable much more precise steering as the rotation axis is shorter and more compact. It reduces kingpin inclination by 44 percent and shortens the spindle length (kingpin offset) by 46 percent with a reduced lever arm. The reduced inclination of the kingpin means less camber loss while cornering and thereby improved grip level, with increased cornering power and enhanced cornering linearity. The shorter spindle length significantly reduces torque steer reactions, sensitivity to road shakes and tire flops.
In addition, a Watt’s link which has been tried and tested in motor sports has been fitted to the rear axle of the Opel Astra OPC and is combined with a compound-crank axle, ensuring superb lateral stability and steering precision, especially in bends. The linkage comprises a short, pivoting center link with a ball joint at each end to which the lateral links from the wheels are bolted. The system ensures that around 80 percent of all lateral loads are absorbed by the rear suspension.
ESP can be de-activated for extra-sporty driving
Like the FlexRide, the ESP stability control also offers three different modes depending on how challenging and sporty, one wants to drive. In the pre-set standard setting which has been optimized for OPC use there is maximum ride safety for everyday situations without the driver losing control over the car. The Competitive mode raises the threshold at which the automatic systems intervene. However, when the vehicle is in a borderline dangerous situation it will be stabilized by the brake system. The ESP system is deactivated when the ESP button is pressed down for more than five seconds, thus creating the ESP-off mode.
Limited slip differential for more stability
In order to convert the power of the new Astra into efficient propulsion, the front axle is equipped with a mechanical multi-plate limited slip differential. When one of the front wheels spins, the two multi-plate packs inside the differential work like clutches and subject the drive to a clearly defined resistance. This locking effect (50 percent maximum) depends on the ramp angle with which the plate packs are pressed together and which consequently determines how pressure is applied to the multi-plate clutch depending on the amount of torque. The shallower the ramp angle is, the more sensitive the system is. In the case of the Opel Astra OPC, a ramp angle of 45 degrees was chosen for acceleration. In the case of deceleration, in other words when brakes are applied or pressure is taking off the accelerator pedal, the plates of the clutch are separated again and thus allow the ABS to work on the front wheels.
The differential helps to reduce wheel slip when there are very high lateral forces under acceleration, for example, or changes in the texture of the road surface. It is also ideal for forays onto the race track. The coordination of the differential with a static basic locking torque guarantees a harmonious response and transition behavior between load and overrun, eliminates influences on the steering and self-steering behavior during overrun, and ensures traction reserves in the case of highly varied wheel loads. The electronic characteristics of the propulsion-side slip-control system (TC, ESP) have been re-tuned in accordance with the characteristics of the limited slip differential. Maximum drive stability is ensured even at the stability limit or in wet conditions. “We have devised a great package that will convince even the most experienced sports drivers – not just on the Nürburgring,” the motorsport legend, Joachim Winkelhock, explains.
High tech Brembo braking system
The braking system has been tailored to fit the high performance requirements of the Opel Astra OPC – even under maximum load. OPC engineers and the Italian specialist Brembo designed an 18″ brake booster solution with larger ventilated, additionally cooled and cross-drilled 355 x 32 mm discs and 4-piston callipers in the front. The Opel Astra OPC also uses special high performance brake pads.
The so called “co-cast floating brake disc” is a special system based on the fact that the discs are made of two materials: A cast iron brake rotor is mounted on an aluminum disc bell, thus combining the advantages of heat resistance from cast iron with the lightweight properties of aluminum. Overall, the advantage of the Brembo brakes is improved temperature resistance in the event of repeated braking and performance feedback during temporary long braking. In addition, weighing 5.1 kg, the OPC front calliper is 2.8 kg lighter than the standard unit used. Furthermore, the light weight brake discs at the front are up to 4.2 kilograms lighter per disc than their conventional counterparts. The lighter weight enables a reduction of unsprung mass, increasing agility, steering and handling precision.
Engineers also altered the torsion tube of the rear axle in terms of its stiffness and weld-on angle. This was done to ensure that the rear axle gives more support to front axle. The entire chassis including the brakes was tested on public roads and in the toughest of environments including the Nürburgring and Contidrom race tracks in Germany, as well as ice and snow in Scandinavia and in the Spanish heat of Idiada. After this intensive testing, engineers from the Opel Performance Center in Rüsselsheim selected 245/40 RZ sized tires, which are fitted to flow formed 19″ alloy wheels. However, customers who want Opel’s state of the art forged wheels, can opt for the lightweight 20″ alloy version that weighs 1.86 kilograms or 14 percent less than the five-star spoke 20″ version available in the Astra GTC. The forging process used to create the lightweight alloy creates a tougher material so that less it can be made thinner than in a flow formed wheel.
Most powerful Opel Astra OPC Ever
The Opel Astra OPC comes with a four-cylinder gasoline engine, which sets higher standards in terms of power and specific engine output. With 206 kW / 280 hp, Opel’s most powerful gasoline engine, the turbocharged direct injection 2.0 liter unit, has now been made even more powerful. At 400 Nm (200 Nm per liter), the engine offers 25 percent more maximum torque than its Astra OPC predecessor and also boasts 40 hp more power. This translates into 140 hp power output per litre, compared with 120 hp in the previous Opel Astra OPC. The specific output of 200 Nm per liter even outclasses high-performance sports cars. The new Opel Astra OPC can sprint from standstill to 100 km/h in just six-point-zero seconds – faster than the previous version (6.4 secs). The latest Astra OPC engine already delivers its maximum torque at 2450 rpm. In addition, the torque plateau is very wide and stretches all the way to just under 5000 rpm. This ensures the four-cylinder engine in the Astra OPC can deliver power in a wide range of situations and provides the highest specific output of any four cylinder gasoline engine ever produced by Opel.
The Opel engineers carried out far-reaching changes on the existing 250 hp gasoline engine unit used in the Insignia, giving it an even more sporty and powerful edge and adding an extra 30 hp to it. A completely new state of the art engine air intake system was developed in order to feed as much air to the turbocharger as possible. The turbocharger itself was further improved to withstand even more charge air pressure and therefore the durability of the charger was increased accordingly by using new components.
High tech features such as direct gasoline injection, a twin-scroll turbocharger with intercooler, double camshaft phasing and two balance shafts give this 1998 cm3 all-aluminum alloy engine its impressive performance statistics, making it considerably more powerful than the Opel Astra OPC predecessor engine.
The direct injection engine system is based on several elements: a high pressure pump driven by the camshaft increases the pressure of the fuel drawn by the electric pump from the tank up to 155 bar (at idling the injection pressure is 50 bar). The multi-hole injection nozzles are located below the intake ports and the special shape of the piston head means that the mixture is swirled around the centrally placed spark plug.
All-new engine air intake system
Opel engineers developed a completely new air intake system in order to further improve the air flow dynamics, reduce the pressure loss and therefore boost the engine performance even further.
The geometric cross section of the intake air duct was significantly increased. The air cleaner, the box that filters the intake air was boosted in terms of volume. This has the advantage that it can process the increased intake air that now flows through the ducts. Additionally, the enlarged box reduces noise.
The filtered air has to pass through a humidity sensor inside the air cleaner. Opel is the first car manufacturer to use such a sensor in a production vehicle. The humidity sensor uses a special polymer that reacts electrically to the amount of water vapor in air and then measures the relative air humidity. This data is then passed to the engine control unit which in turn optimizes combustion. This helps to improve fuel economy. The Astra OPC which is fitted with Start/Stop technology has 189g/km CO2 and gasoline consumption of 8.1 liters per 100 kilometers. These are highly competitive figures in the high performance segment. CO2 emissions are also 14 percent lower compared to the Opel Astra OPC predecessor (221 g/km), while fuel consumption is 12 percent lower (9.2 liters).
Although the clean air duct after the air cleaner has remained the same, a hiss noise resonator has been added just before the turbocharger. As the name suggests, the resonator reduces the hissing sound made by the turbocharger when it reaches its maximum pressure limit. As the Astra OPC engine already makes 400 Nm, maximum torque, available at 2450 rpm (equivalent to a 25 percent torque increase to the Opel Astra OPC predecessor, this noise reduction device is very important. The advantage of the hiss noise resonator is that the driver can engine early maximum torque and a broad torque plateau with little noise and vibration.
Toughened and extra durable turbocharger for more immediate response
The engine’s turbocharger is based on the twin-scroll principle. This means that in the exhaust manifold and turbocharger, the channels of the first and fourth – on the one hand – as well as the second and third cylinders – on the other hand – are separated. The pulsating exhaust gases are fed through spirals (scrolls) and brought together directly ahead of the turbine. By separating the flows, their dynamics are exploited to the maximum effect.
The build-up of pressure starts as early as around 1400 rpm; gas pedal movements thus result in immediate and powerful propulsion. The maximum charge pressure has been increased to 1.5 bar – that represents a 25 percent increase compared to the one previously used in the Insignia. Therefore it was necessary to make the turbocharger even tougher, more durable and able to withstand the increase in pressure.
Further important features of this compact turbocharger are the pneumatic over-run air valve and an efficiency-optimized turbine wheel. At a defined vacuum, a valve is opened which leads the air back to the compressor inlet. This keeps the speed of the charger at a high level. When the accelerator pedal is pressed again, charge pressure is then immediately available. To increase volumetric efficiency in the combustion chambers, the pre-compressed air is cooled by around 100 degrees Celsius in an intercooler before entering the chambers.
Optimized exhaust system for even better performance
Engineers also focused on the exhaust system to further improve the flow of the exhaust gases and therefore improve the engine performance. Their main objective was to further reduce the exhaust back pressure. Both the closed couple converter (the catalyst near the engine) and the underfloor converter were optimized to reduce the exhaust back pressure. In conjunction with these improvements, Opel engineers in Germany improved the remaining segment of the exhaust system, from behind the closed coupled converter to the exhaust tail pipe. They did this by widening the entire exhaust system to the maximum possible diameter of 70 mm. All the modifications resulted in a 25 percent reduction in the exhaust back pressure compared to the engine exhaust system used in the Insignia.
All the mechanical modifications to the engine in the engine intake, exhaust and turbocharger, were accompanied by optimizations to the engine control unit. Engine performance characteristics including the charge air pressure, the fuel injection rate and the ignition data were all fine-tuned in line with the mechanical changes.
Pure emotion with sound engineering
A powerful car like the Astra OPC needs a powerful sound track that appeals to the emotional side of the high performance car enthusiast. That is why sound engineering played an important role in the development of the car. The engineers wanted to deliver the robust and masculine exterior sound typical of all Astra OPCs. They also wanted to re-create the jet noise like sound on the interior which OPC fans will remember from the last Astra when the driver accelerates from the mid to high rpm range. This is especially noticeable when changing up from third into fourth gear under acceleration. In idle the engineers wanted to makes sure that the exhaust has a full and robust exhaust burble. So they decided to use only two rather than three exhaust mufflers in contrast to the Astra GTC. The auxiliary exhaust muffler that sits before the front axle was left out. A reduction in the muffler design and volume ensured that the compact sports coupe got the exhaust note it deserved.
However, not just the sound quality but the sound level was important. So the engineers took advantage of Lex Ferrari rule on pass-by-noise: This amendment in the European regulation allows performance cars over 140 kW output and 75 kW/ ton to produce one extra decibel. When the high performance car passes by, its 206 kW /280 hp engine can truly be appreciated at 75 decibels, compared with 74 decibels on the Astra GTC
In order to pass the Lex Ferrari test, the Astra OPC had to accelerate from 50 km/h in third gear to 61 km/h on a stretch of road only measuring 15 meters. Only true high performance vehicle can pass such a test.
The bumper integrated tailpipe top offs the exhaust system. No other production vehicle has such a feature. The rear exhaust muffler is visually integrated in the tailpipe. The parallelogram shaped openings for both tailpipes
Extra durable engine put to the test
The engine’s high thermal endurance is further supported by a water jacket which extends to the bottom of the cylinders and oil-spray cooling of the underside of the pistons. Both camshafts in the engine respond automatically via an electro-hydraulic cam phaser to match valve opening times to the engine load status via the engine control unit. In addition, a higher overlap at lower speeds with continuously variable camshaft phasing ensures the turbocharger responds more quickly. The outlet valves are sodium-filled and all valves are actuated via low friction roller valve levers.
Other engine features are two counter-rotating balance shafts, low-maintenance chain drive for the camshafts and a cast-on oil filter housing, which is easily accessible from above. An oil change simply requires replacing the cartridge and is signaled by an interval indicator. Sensors measure wear and tear of the fully synthetic lubricant according to parameters such as the number of cold starts and the number of ignition.
Before the modified Opel Astra OPC engine could go into production, it was subjected to a series of challenging tests. Then it was put to an endurance test of 10,000 kilometers in the Astra OPC on the Nordschleife segment of the Nürburgring race track under racing conditions which equivalent of 180,000 kilometers on normal roads.
Opel Astra OPC Design and Interior Makes Strong Statement
A powerful car needs powerful design: the body work of the Astra OPC is an expression of pure passion for power and speed. Added to that is a new real flat bottomed 360 mm steering wheel that will appeal to drive enthusiasts, a lightweight high-performance bucket seat with state of the art technology and a unique new iPhone PowerApp that gives the driver access to dozens of real-time engine and car data via the CAN bus. Inside the cabin, high quality materials and OPC exclusive features create a sporty and premium atmosphere.
OPC flexes its muscles
The OPC exterior is an even sportier version of the emotional design of the Astra GTC. The Astra OPC is given extra sportiness with a set of specially sculpted front and rear bumpers, side skirts, an aerodynamic roof spoiler and two exhaust tail pipes in a trapezoid shape. Apart from the 19″ standard alloy wheels, 20″ forged alloy wheels are also available for those who want to give the Opel Astra OPC even bolder looks. “The appearance of the Astra OPC is muscular and masculine,” says the chief designer, Andrew Dyson. “Just a quick glance at its exterior reveals that the car is fast and agile. It looks like it is made for high performance driving and always pushing the boundaries.”
The OPC shares much of its exterior design with the GTC. Only three dynamic lines are used to create tension and define the outline of the silhouette. A fine, crisp line sweeps downward from the front door to the bottom of the rear fender and energizes the body side. A second line encapsulates the door handle and stretches to the rear, emphasizing the OPC’s dramatic stance by spreading the surfaces to a fine undercut and a broad shoulder.
The third line follows the clean, sporty silhouette of the roof. Customers who want to give their OPC an even sportier appearance can purchase the OPC appearance pack which comprises even more robust side-skirts, the logo bar in the front grille in the body color and a two-tier rear spoiler. Exterior colors include Arden Blue, Blue Buzz, Carbon Flash (metallic black), power red, sunny melon (yellow) ,Olympic White and Sea Shell (mineral white).
New 360 mm Steering Wheel Debuts in Astra OPC
Opel Astra OPC customers will be the first to use the all-new flat bottom steering wheel that takes its inspiration from motor sport. The diameter of the wheel is now 360 mm, compared to 370 mm in the rest of the Astra family, making the steering sensation even more precise, sporty and direct. Grip has also been enhanced by packing supple sponge rubber around a magnesium / steel hybrid ring and then covering the entire wheel in premium soft leather combined with embossed leather areas and colored cross stitching. The thumb areas in the wheel have been re-sculpted to optimize grip and the visibility of the instruments. The leather steering wheel can also be ordered with internal heating: no other car manufacturer offers this unique option. A subtle yet elegant OPC logo laid into the steering wheel adds another exclusive design feature. The steering wheel is multi-function and comes complete with the usual radio and CD switch.
Premium quality cabin
Further typical OPC features include the sports shifter and aluminum plated pedals with rubber studs for better foot grip. The instrument cluster gives the cabin a sporty premium feel with glossy piano black chronograph-inspired dial rings which contrast against a satin black background. Opel’s design language “sculptural artistry meets German precision” is reflected in the wrap-around shape of the interior panels including the instrument cluster. Without the use of the straight lines, the wing-shaped upper instrument panel flows into the door and the armrests, thus creating a flowing dynamic. Black headliner, floor mats with the OPC logo and exclusive Nubuk leather border with reflective stripes is a special feature for the OPC customer.Exclusive door panel stitching in arden blue or cool pearl throughout the cabin give the interior the sporty and premium atmosphere.
High Performance Seating Revolution
The new Astra OPC is available with a new optional high-performance bucket seat with state-of-the art technology which is certified by the independent healthy back experts, AGR (“Aktion Gesunder Rücken e.V”) after meeting high ergonomic standards. Both front seats increase the sporty and dynamic driving experience by introducing cutting-edge weight-saving material, a lower seating position and enhanced side support.
The driver and his co-pilot can now enjoy an even more sporty driving experience as the seating position is 17 mm lower than in the Astra GTC coupé and even 30mm lower than the conventional Astra. The lowering of the seats further increases the feeling for the car and the contact between the driver and the highway.
OPC engineers used an organic injection molded sheet in the performance seat shell, resulting in a weight saving of 45 percent compared to a conventional shell. The sheet is filled with a composite material of polyamide and fiber glass. The new material is both agile and strong and because of its strength it only needs to be one to two millimeters.
The new optional seat boasts up to 18 different settings with following adjusted manually:
The following settings adjusted electronically:
The performance seat has the largest setting range in the compact sports coupé segment, allowing both the driver and his co-pilot a high degree of flexibility. In addition, pneumatically adjustable cushions are available for the flanks of the performance seat. Opel is the only manufacturer in the compact high performance segment to offer such a device in a production car. The around every body shape and give support from the side at the push of a button. It can be ordered in a fabric / morrocana and three different leather color combinations.
Customers who opt for the premium leather seats can choose from two versions or seats that come complete with a vertical leather stripe in the center of the seat in arden blue stitching or a gloss leather stripe with cool pearl stitching. The OPC logo is embossed into the leather upper part of the front seats, showing great attention to detail and a high level craftsmanship. The center of the leather seat is always perforated so that air circulation and the breathing function are provided.
The trim of the fabric seats is equally refined and sporty. A combination of morrocana and fabric with chrome colored details and the OPC stitching in cool pearl creates a premium feel.
Power App access for Astra OPC owners
Opel shares its passion for technology with its customers by being the first in the industry to give them access to preselected data from the CAN bus (Controller Area Network) and making it directly available on an iPhone where it can be displayed or analyzed further. Opel Astra OPC customers are among the first to benefit from this technological innovation. The CAN bus is the central system that unifies and connects all the electronic control units in the vehicle. Astra OPC owners who also use Apple smartphones will now be able to download an application or App from the App Store, enabling them to access to CAN- bus data.
The CAN-bus bundles the signals from the different vehicle areas. So far, only highly specialized work shops were able to access this information using specialist software. Now however, Opel is now giving car enthusiasts the chance to receive selected, performance-related data by offering the OPC Power App. This opens up a whole new world for car technology fans.
The fun offered by the OPC Power App does not just end when the engine is switched off. Not only are up to sixty different data, including engine boost pressure, throttle position, lateral acceleration or engine torque, readily available in real-time on the iPhone but they can also be stored and later compared with friends. A lap-time recorder connected to GPS data appeals to racing fans, for example those who use the legendary Nürburgring track and want to analyze and improve their performances on the Nordschleife stretch.
In this way, braking points and section speeds can be analyzed. However, in addition the G-forces can be measured inside specific bends.
In order to get the most out of the wealth of functions offered by the OPC Power App a black box or Smart Phone Controller is installed behind the interior panels. It can be installed ex works or on request by Opel service partners. The module is directly connected to the CAN-bus of the vehicle and transmits its data with a frequency of 30 Hertz to the iPhone which is equivalent to real time. An optionally available FlexDock iPhone cradle can also be installed to offer even better access and visibility of the PowerApp data. In that sense, the mobile phone acts as an additional instrument inside the cabin, recording all the data.
Seven different display modes complete with the OPC logo and colors are available to the user including an analog instrument, a G-force meter, a digital display and over/under-steer indicator, a bar chart, a line graph and a map. The OPC PowerApp works on iPhones (starting at the third generation), iPad 2 and iPod Touch and will also be available for android systems by early 2013.
Strong Track Record of OPC Label
The latest generation Opel Astra OPC, the sporty spearhead of the new Astra family will further underscore the sporty potential and the technical expertise associated with the OPC label.
The Astra OPC has been sold more than 15,000 times in the last seven years alone. Apart from the Corsa OPC, the Astra is among the top selling Opel OPC model according to its annual sales. Opel estimates it will sell around 10,000 OPC models within the next 12 months. Of these, around half are Astra OPCs, a further 3,000 are Corsas and the rest are Insignias. Annual sales for European high performance compact cars above 271 hp are around 14,000 units. Based on these figures, Opel expects to achieve around 30 % share of European sales of high performance compact cars.
The Opel Performance Center, responsible for the sporty accents in the Opel model line-up since 1999, is a decisive element in the brand’s profile. It embodies a high level of emotionality and passion for striking design, top-class technology and extraordinary driving dynamics. The vehicles with “OPC” in the model name are positioned as the emotional spearheads of the respective model lines. Current OPC models include the Corsa, 141 kW/192 hp (154 kW/210 hp as Nürburgring-Edition) as well as the Insignia OPC (239 kW/325 hp), which is available as a four or five-door sedan and Sports Tourer.
Sporty flair: “OPC Line” for Opel production models
In addition to performance-oriented OPC model buyers, many customers also individualize their Opel production model with top-quality “OPC Line” accessories. These can be ordered directly ex works for new cars. People who already own an Opel can have their vehicle retrofitted by an authorized Opel service partner. The OPC Line offers bodywork components, alloy wheels and interior details such as steering wheels and gearshift levers which have all been developed and fine-tuned for the respective model by Opel designers and engineers.
Popular and exclusive: OPC Performance driver training
The exclusive OPC Performance Training sessions, offered since 2006, are extremely popular with ambitious drivers and booked out well in advance. They are open not only to Opel drivers or owners of OPC models, but also to drivers of all makes of vehicle. The exclusivity of the one-day event starts with the location. It all takes place at the usually tightly screened-off Opel test center in Dudenhofen, where prototypes and future Opel models are developed for production. Participants learn to use the dynamics of the OPC models in a controlled and safe manner from a professional team of instructors under the watchful eye of the former Opel works pilot, Le Mans champion and brand ambassador Joachim Winkelhock. The primary aim of the training is maximum driving fun through maximum vehicle control.
From 1999 to the Fastest Astra Ever – The Astra OPC Story
Opel’s portfolio of high performance OPC cars has now been completed with the new Astra. This means Opel now has an OPC vehicle in the mid-size, compact and small segment with the Insignia, Astra and Corsa. The latest generation Opel Astra OPC, the sporty spearhead of the new Astra family will further underscore the sporty potential and the technical expertise associated with the OPC label. From its first beginnings in 1999, (118 kW/160 hp output, 188 Nm maximum torque and 220 km/h top speed), the sports car has evolved to the now fastest and most powerful Astra in Opel’s history. Output is now 206kW/280hp, torque is 400 Nm and the top speed of 250 km/h is higher than ever. Additional traction and drive stability are provided by a mechanical limited slip differential, a newly developed performance chassis and a high-performance braking system.
The Astra OPC has been sold more than 22.000 times. Apart from the Corsa OPC, the Astra is among the top selling Opel OPC model according to its annual sales. Opel estimates it sells around 10,000 OPC models within the next 12 months. Of these, around half are Astra OPCs, a further 3,000 are Corsas and the rest are Insignias. Annual sales for European high performance compact cars above 271 hp are around 14,000 units in Europe. Based on these figures, Opel expects to achieve around 30 % share of European sales of high performance compact cars. This would place Opel at the top of the sales ranking in this particular segment of cars.
Customers opt for sporty, individual and modern trim
The OPC label and its British equivalent “VXR” are closely associated with motor racing, including its past involvement in the German DTM and British Touring Car Championships. During its development, engineers have tried and tested it in the toughest of motor racing conditions in various locations around the world. This is why the Opel Astra OPC has always attracted customers who appreciate the historical link to motor racing.
The Astra OPC is not only aimed at those who enjoy wide open roads; its compact size just one of several characteristics that makes it equally well-suited to urban driving. Surveys show the majority of Astra OPC customers are men in their early thirties who lead very active lifestyles. In contrast, owners of the Astra GTC tend to be in their early forties, suggesting that the OPC appeals to a younger segment of customers. Among them are many motor sport enthusiasts who appreciate the thrill of driving a high performance sports coupe like the Opel Astra OPC. They are customers who frequently use social media to stay in touch with their friends. So a PowerApp which is being made available for the first time in the Astra OPC will appeal to many of these customers as it combines the fun of measuring drive performance and data with the social media available on smartphones. The customer base for OPC’s has traditionally been very keen on optional upmarket trim that lets them individualize their car even further. For example, a third of OPC customers in Germany opt for premium leather seats in the interior, adding further value to their vehicle. More 70 percent of OPC customers opt for the 20″ rather than the standard 19″ aluminum alloy wheels. This is further evidence that for the typical Astra OPC customer values sportiness and upmarket trim.
The OPC brand: Performance and passion since 1999
The Opel Performance Center (OPC), responsible for the sporty accents in the Opel model lineup since 1999, is a decisive element in the brand’s value profile. It embodies a high level of emotionality and passion for striking design, top-class technology and extraordinary driving dynamics. The vehicles with “OPC” in the model name are positioned as the top-of-the-line sporty variants of the respective model lines, and demonstrate the brand’s high potential and technical expertise.
Over the years, the OPC models have not only established themselves as high-performance brand ambassadors with a high emotional factor, they are also commercially successful: from 1999 until today, around 65,000 units were sold worldwide. The biggest seller has been the Opel Astra OPC (around 22,000 units, 1999-2000 and 2002-2011, ahead of the Corsa OPC with around 17,000 units sold (2007-2011) and the Zafira OPC (around 15,600 units, 2001-2010) which, as “Europe’s fastest van”, defined a new sporty niche within the van segment. The Insignia OPC has been sold more than 4,200 times since its market launch in 2009. Last year, seventy-five percent of Opel’s OPC sales (including the Corsa, Astra and the Insignia) went to the key markets of with 34% percent Germany, 23% percent the UK and 15% Switzerland.
The OPC models in the high-performance mid-size class also made a major contribution to the sales success. The foundation was laid by the Vectra OPC with over 3,000 units sold (2005-2008).
Sporty flair: “OPC Line” for Opel production models
In addition to performance-oriented OPC model buyers, many customers also individualize their Opel production model with top-quality “OPC Line” accessories. These can be ordered directly ex works for new cars. People who already own an Opel can have their vehicle retrofitted by an authorized Opel dealer or service partner.
The OPC Line offers bodywork components, alloy wheels and interior details such as steering wheels and gearshift levers which have all been developed and fine-tuned for the respective model by Opel designers and engineers. The articles fulfill the most demanding requirements in terms of quality and fit, and come with a 24-month works guarantee.
Popular and exclusive: OPC Performance driver training
The exclusive OPC Performance Trainings, offered since the fall of 2006, are very popular with ambitious drivers and booked out well in advance. They are open not only to Opel drivers or owners of OPC models, but also to drivers of all makes of vehicles.
The exclusivity of the one-day event starts with the location. It all takes place at the usually tightly screened-off Opel test center in Dudenhofen, where prototypes and future Opel models are developed to series production. Participants learn to use the dynamics of the OPC models in a controlled and safe manner from a professional team of instructors under the watchful eye of the former Opel works pilot, Le Mans champion and brand ambassador Joachim Winkelhock. The primary aim of the training is maximum driving fun through maximum vehicle control.