Geneva Preview: Opel planning surprise that will please Saturn fans

GM Europe has announced it will be holding a special event during the Geneva Motor Show next month at which an all-new Opel Concept will be unveiled. The only official hint we have is the picture above that shows the car concealed in a cloak of darkness, with only its headlights and outer edges distinguishable. The reason that this concept car will be of interest not only to Euro folk is that we hear its styling will preview the look of the next Opel Vectra / Vauxhall Insignia, the car with which the next-generation Saturn Aura will share its mecanicals and looks.

Many mistakenly believe the current Aura and Vectra are built on the same platform and share sheetmetal, but that's not quite true. The Vectra is built on the Epsilon platform, while the Aura is built on a stretched version of the Epsilon and they really don't share many if any common body panels despite their similar styling. The Epsilon II platform, however, will underpin the next-generation Vectra, and that car will be a body double for our next-gen Saturn Aura due to debut around 2011. Moral of the story? This concept car will give us some far reaching clues as to what the 2011 Saturn Aura will look like. Until then, we are expecting that the Epsilon II platfom will appear first in the U.S. with a Saturn badge as an Aura Wagon. Though it's strange to offer a wagon version on a different platform than its sedan counterpart with entirely different sheetmetal, it's thought that the Aura Wagon will be positioned upmarket like an Audi Allroad.

[Source: GM Europe, Autocar]

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