Some automotive assembly plants have test tracks on premises. We've even heard of a few that have test tracks on the roof. But at GM's Ellesmere Port factory in the UK, one driver performs his tests inside the factory, and has been doing so for the past half century.
Opel is getting big into small cars. With more versions of the stylish little Adam coming out all the time and the restyled Corsa just released within the last few months, the German automaker is now bolstering the bottom end of its lineup with the addition of the new Karl.
Opel's slinky answer to the Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo debuted on Thursday at the Paris Motor Show, ahead of its launch in European markets late this year. The long-running Corsa – 32 years and counting – getting its first major refresh in eight years.
Though its brand portfolio may have shrunk in recent years with the loss of Oldsmobile, Saturn, Pontiac and Hummer, General Motors still sells its wares around the world under a wide array of brands: Chevy, Buick, Cadillac and GMC in its home market, Holden in Australia, and a whole mess of joint-venture brands in China. In Europe, however, it's all about Opel, with Vauxhall tackling the UK market with a nearly identical product lineup but a different badge. And it's those two brands through whi
Even more than in years past, this month's Geneva Motor Show press days were absolutely teeming with lust-worthy hot hatches. There was the new Seat Leon Cupra, the Honda Civic Type R concept, Volkswagen Scirocco R and Golf GTE, Audi S1 and Abarth 695 Biposto. But one of the most enticing of them all was the Opel Astra OPC Extreme.
There aren't a lot of products that General Motors offers overseas that we don't get back in America in one form or another, but the Opel Adam stands as a notable exception. GM's assault on the fashionable city car market, the Adam isn't likely to find its way to US showrooms... even if it does pick up a Buick badge on its way to China. But as if its elusive status didn't make us long for it already, Opel and its British counterpart Vauxhall just revealed two new versions in Geneva that make us
If hot hatches are your thing, this year's Geneva Motor Show is the place to be. Seat used the occasion to reveal its Ring-running Leon Cupra. Not to be outdone, Honda showed up with its Civic Type R concept. VW has got the new Scirocco R and Golf GTE to show off, Audi finally bestowed the new S1 upon us and Abarth transformed the Fiat 500 into the bonkers 695 Biposto. Even Alfa Romeo got in on the action with the latest QV edition MiTo and Giulietta. But the lineup wouldn't be complete without
Put your pouty faces on American enthusiasts, because there's yet another European hot hatch that won't be making a trek across the pond. This is the new Vauxhall Adam S, a "close-to-production" version of the adorable Adam city car, which is also sold in continental Europe as an Opel.
More power, less weight. It's a winning formula when it comes to performance automobiles, and one we've seen applied time and time again. It's what Ferrari did to transform the 360 Modena into the Challenge Stradale, the F430 into the Scuderia and the 458 into the Speciale. Maserati does the same with the GranTurismo MC Stradale and Lamborghini with the Gallardo Superleggera. We could go on, but you get the point: it's a formula typically applied to exotic Italian supercars, but of course it's n
Sliding canvas roof panels have become the new fad among stylish European hatchbacks. Again. While Mini has stuck with full convertibles, Fiat rolled it out with the 500C and Citroën followed suit with its DS3 Cabrio. But rather than simply cruise down the same road, GM's European operations have taken things a step further with the introduction of the new Adam Rocks.
If you've taken even a cursory look at GM's European strategy and wondered how it can target the market there with both Chevrolet and Opel/Vauxhall, you're not alone. In fact General Motors itself has found it difficult to justify the two-pronged approach. That's why it's essentially pulling Chevy from the European marketplace.
Our friends at Top Gear (the magazine, not the TV show) are currently celebrating the publication's twentieth birthday. In honor of that milestone, the BBC-owned book is naming what it thinks are the 50 greatest cars from the past 20 years. Now, this is TG's list, which means it's a bit more focused on European brands and models.
Opel may be bringing this Monza concept to the Frankfurt Motor Show this fall, but it's unlikely the Monza concept will spawn a production coupe to fill the void left by the Calibra and original Monza.
Conventional wisdom would dictate that Chevrolet sales in Europe should accelerate as more and more buyers battered by the continent's sour economy look to save money by choosing small, inexpensive cars over larger, more expensive options. After all, Chevrolet is positioned as General Motors' value brand, and it offers a number of affordable vehicles in popular inexpensive segments. Globally, Chevy sales are up four percent so far this year.
Right around the same time customers in the US start taking delivery of their Chevrolet SS performance sedans, buyers in the UK will be hopping behind the wheel of the new, high-output Vauxhall VXR8 GTS. Looking to take on the BMW M5 and Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, the supercharged VXR8 GTS ups the power even more by borrowing its engine from the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. The GTS will hit UK dealers by the end of this year with a price of 54,999 pounds (which converts to around $83,500, including taxes).
General Motors' Opel division is confident that its slate of diesel engines will allow it to meet stricter European emissions standards set for 2020. As for the even stricter ones expected in 2025? Not so much.
The Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid was the top selling plug-in hybrid vehicle in the United Kingdom, with 470 sold since being introduced to the market in July 2012. That means the Prius Plug-in Hybrid outsold the Vauxhall Ampera plug-in hybrid, Toyota says. The sales lead happened even though the Ampera was launched in the UK market three months earlier than the PHEV Prius. The Ampera is GM's European version of the Chevrolet Volt.