Vauxhall Astra GTC

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Vauxhall Astra GTC

• World debut for Astra GTC
• New 1.7 diesel engine announced
• Prices will start at 18,495

After its guest appearance at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, the new Vauxhall Astra GTC made its official world debut at the Frankfurt Show.

Closely based on the concept that was shown at the Paris Show last year, the new car will arrive in British showrooms in November this year.

Prices start at 18,495, and at the show, Vauxhall announced that it would be adding a second diesel engine to the range. The 1.7 CDTi unit will join the already announced 158bhp 2.0 CDTi unit, and will be available in two states of tune, developing 108 or 128bhp.

These models initially the most economical in the range will be available from the beginning of next year, but more economical Ecoflex models will follow later in 2012.

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The GTC is the third model in the Astra range after the hatchback and estate, but the only parts it shares with the others are the door handles and aerial.

Underneath, it uses the same front suspension as the high-performance Insignia VXR, and that - on our brief test drive in a prototype - delivered plenty of grip and sharper turn-in than a regular Astra hatchback.