Vauxhall Astra VXR to remain 2WD

* Vauxhall rules out 4WD Golf R rival * Astra platform prevents it * Smaller engines possible for future VXRs...

Vauxhall Astra VXR to remain 2WD

Vauxhall has ruled out a four-wheel-drive VXR rival to cars such as the Volkswagen Golf R.

Performance centre and motorsport manager Volker Strycek said that a four-wheel-drive Astra VXR was out of the question.

The Insignia VXR has four-wheel drive, but the Astra VXR is based on the Astra GTC and could not accommodate the extra mechanicals required for four-wheel drive, according to Strycek.

The Astra VXR comes with a 276bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine, which powers it to a 0-62mph time of 5.9 seconds.

However, Strycek said that future VXRs could use smaller engines.

We have to see about downsizing, he said. Would we go smaller for the next generation? Why not? In motorsport the FIA is talking about using 1.6-litre engines.

Although Strycek describes the VXR brand as important halo cars, there are no concrete plans for Vauxhall to re-enter motorsport just yet, although he would like that to happen.

There is an inherent desire to return to motorsport, and I am sure Opel and Vauxhall will do so, but no one is sure when, he said.