Opel/Vauxhall preparing soft-top Astra cabrio
The Astra is a car of many hats. It's sold as an Opel in Europe, a Vauxhall in the UK, a Buick in China and a Chevrolet in South America. The previous model was even sold as a Saturn in North America and as a Holden in Australia.
Now that's versatility for you, and its body-styles are just as pervasive. The five-door hatch launched in 2009 has since bred a wagon variant, the GTC coupe was just revealed last week, and there's two more to come – including the convertible that's simultaneously surfaced in these spy shots and in the rendering (below right) released by GM's European design studio.
Whereas the previous Astra cabrio went with a folding hard top, the new model is expected to incorporate a soft roof to save on space and weight. The resulting shape ought to be a bit longer than the hatchback, but maintain a svelte profile. Four seats and a usable trunk are also said to be part of the package, with the roof folding into its own compartment aft of the cabin and below an elegant chrome surround.
The Astra cabrio is expected to hit markets overseas in 2013. But with Saturn long gone, it remains to be seen whether General Motors will bring it over to its home market at all.