It’s a family affair at Vauxhall. Next month, the firm will officially reveal the Sport Tourer estate version of the new Astra. But our spies are one step ahead of the game, and have snapped the first pictures of the dramatic three-door Sport Coupe that’s set to add a little more glamour to the range when it arrives in time for the Paris Motor Show in October, before going on sale in the Spring of 2011.
Designed by Brit Mark Adams, the Coupe follows the trend set by the previous generation Astra. So while the five-door car had fairly sober lines, the coupe was much more rakish and used very different sheet metal.
And as you can see, in profile the new car has a curved roofline and dramatically swooping glazed area which drops quickly from the front doors back to the tailgate glass. The camouflage hides a dramatic crease above the rear wheelarch which gives the shape extra dynamism. More aggressively sculpted LED taillights and a new rear bumper will also feature.
The Astra’s front has also been revised to further differentiate it from its five-door sibling. Tweaked bumpers, headlights and LED daytime running lights, and a sloping bonnet, which better suits the curvaceous roofline, will all feature.
Under the skin, the Sport Coupe gets a wider track than the five-door for better stability and cornering grip. The Coupe will share the same range of engines as the five-door - the 1.4-litre turbo and 1.6-litre naturally aspirated petrols will be joined by a 2.0-litre diesel and 1.7-litre ecoFLEX oil burner.
But the real headline is the addition of two new performance versions of the stunning Coupe. The first is a 210bhp 1.6-litre turbo which revives the GSi name and is designed to take a swipe at the VW Golf GTI. This car is set to debut alongside the rest of the range. Performance fans will have to wait until later in 2011 for a firebreathing 240bhp 2.0-litre petrol turbo VXR version of the car.