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Opel Astra GTC Sport upgraded

Triple treat: The Astra GTC Sport will soon be available with more torque, lower fuel consumption and an automatic transmission.

An auto option arrives for the Opel Astra GTC Sport, matched to a new 1.6 turbo

Opel logo11 Jun 2013

OPEL’S Astra GTC Sport coupe will receive a boost in July when an automatic transmission becomes available in Australia.

The GTC Sport, which sits between the regular Astra coupe and the hardcore OPC flagship, is currently a manual-only offering, limiting sales. The automatic version will cost $2000 more than the manual, at $36,990 plus on-road costs.

The addition of a six-speed self-shifter comes as part of a new powertrain package, with auto versions of the Sport to premier Opel’s new more efficient, albeit less powerful, 1.6-litre SIDI turbo-petrol engine.

With 125kW of power, the new engine is 7kW less powerful than the current 1.6 Ecotec engine. But it does offer an extra 50Nm of torque with overboost (280Nm) across a wider band (between 1650 and 4250Nm).

However, this new SIDI engine will only be available with the automatic. Manual versions will retain the existing 1.6 Ecotec.

Despite rocking the older engine, the manual will still be quicker from zero to 100km/h (8.3 seconds compared to 9.2s), although the auto cuts combined fuel consumption from 7.3 litres per 100km to 6.8L/100km.

Gears on the new automatic can be manually shifted via an Active Select function for a more involved drive.

Claimed improvements to the GTC’s ride and comfort have also been made with ‘sound engineering’ measures reducing cabin noise and vibration levels.

The new GTC version will be available with the standard features of the standard GTC including Opel’s HiPerStrut lowered sports suspension, Hill start assist, Bluetooth, Heated front sports seats and leather upholstery throughout.

20-inch alloy wheels are available as an option over the 19-inch standard rims, as is Opel’s FlexRide chassis control system.

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