Astra, Cavalier, Nova and Carlton icons joined by a new Insignia flagship
Remember the GSI Vauxhalls? From Astra to Zafira via Corsa and Vectra, you always guaranteed a few traits: namely big power and some assertive visuals, but perhaps not always with the greatest dynamic prowess. Well apart from the Carlton GSI 3000, was meant to be quite good back in the day...
Remember when white was the colour? Grey now!
The point of this reminiscing? Vauxhall has seen fit to bring back the GSI badge, having not been seen since the Vectra C. It's being used for a new Insignia and, in a world where both mainstream brands and D-segment saloons aren't all that popular, we're quite pleased to see its arrival. Because PH still quite like fast saloons.
The important stuff is 260hp and 295lb ft from a 2.0-litre turbo, an "all-new" eight-speed auto, four-piston Brembo front calipers and a 'Competition' drive mode, in addition to the existing Standard, Tour and Sport. Arguably even more significant is the all-wheel drive system with genuine torque vectoring. No, really. The GSI gets a rear differential with two clutches "to accelerate each rear wheel individually as required by the driving situation." This promises a more interesting handling balance than traditional all-wheel drive, and sounds very similar to the Focus RS system.
Vauxhall GSI saloon at a motor show? Super!
Marking out the GSI from other Insignias will be some badges, a rear spoiler, new intakes and bigger exhausts. Standard wheels are 18-inch (with 19s and 20s also available), all using Michelin Pilot Sport 4 S tyres.
The Insignia will make its debut at the Frankfurt show, so expect UK prices and availability soon after that. For now, here are the GSI models for sale on PH and below are the images we could find from the press archive. Those Astras looks quite good, don't they? Welcome back GSI!
Shoot me down in flames but I really quite like the look of the latest insignia. With some stronger visuals an extra poke I think it'd be a nice overall package. Wouldn't part with my money on one new unless it came with a mahoosive discount to make skoda or ford options look silly overpriced!
Personally I'm glad Vauxhall are trying to make something more exciting of their cars, they've been stale for far too long (VXR8 and maloo imports excepting).
Their astra VXR's drive nice on track though.
Loyly20 Jul 2017
What a smashing looking car. Fantastic to see the GSi badge returning too! Great news.
foxmeister20 Jul 2017
Went off the Vauxhalls a few years ago, especially after a new Vectra C ownership saga, not quite as interesting to look at these days either...
Until the new Insignia, definitely looking far more interesting with this, especially the GSi look, could be tempted to look at pricing again, one day
Wacky Racer20 Jul 2017
The new Insignia is a very nice looking car indeed, far nicer than the "old" one and even that was OK.
Yipper20 Jul 2017
Vauxhall make some great cars, nowadays. They just need more aspirational marketing, to get away from the pyjamamama chav nonsense, and the glory days can return.