10 years of Opel OPC production cars

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For ten years, Opel Performance Center cars have demonstrated just how much sporty potential and technological expertise are packed into the brand’s top line vehicles. As the latest additions to the portfolio, the Opel Insignia OPC bring this philosophy to the next level, offering mature power and refined efficiency.

For ten years, Opel Performance Center cars have demonstrated just how much sporty potential and technological expertise are packed into the brand’s top line vehicles. The latest additions to the portfolio, the Opel Insignia OPC sedans and Sports Tourer, bring this philosophy to the next level, offering mature power and refined efficiency.

OPC cars are distinct, an expression of pure passion for driving, for automobiles, for the love of motor sport. OPC versions evoke emotion and allow Opel to demonstrate its expertise in driving dynamics and high performance.

The proof of the OPC portfolio’s success is in its sales. The first OPC car, an Astra 2.0 liter with naturally aspirated engine developing 118 kW/160 hp, sold out all 3,000 limited edition units within four months when it was launched in 1999. Since then more than 50,000 of these high performance cars have been sold in a variety of models, ranging from Corsa OPC to Zafira OPC.

Opel proved that performance and monocabs don’t have to be boring. Opel was the first brand to offer a high performance variant on a van when it launched a 2-liter Turbo Zafira OPC with 192 hp in 2001. More than 12,000 units of that sporty Zafira generation were sold.

The most popular OPC car last year was the Corsa OPC, with its 1.6-liter Turbo engine and 141 kW/192 hp. This powerful small car accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in 7.2 seconds and can hit a top speed of 225 km/h. The maximum torque of up to 266 Nm with overboost is delivered to the front wheels by a standard six-speed transmission.

At home in the Green Hell
In the last five years, OPC vehicles have broken a string of records on the Nurburgring’s Nordschleife 20.8 km track. The Astra OPC did it first in 8:35:94 in 2005. The Zafira OPC still holds the title fastest van for its 8:54:38 time made in 2006. Last but not least, the Corsa OPC holds the title for small car: 8:47:99 in a standard production model driven by Manuel Reuter in 2007. Moreover, all OPC cars have passed rigorous endurance tests on the Green Hell, considered the toughest and most demanding race track in the world.

In fact, the Nordschleife is Opel territory. It is the spot where Opel cars have endured their most rigorous testing since the 1960s. Three years ago, the Russelsheim automaker signed a partner contract with the legendary race track and opened its own test center directly at the ring.

It is the ideal test spot for all Opel products – and the toughest for OPC models: The Insignia OPC underwent 10,000 kilometers of endurance testing there and passed with no faults.

Three ways to get that exhilarating OPC experience
To ensure driving skills match the car’s performance, Opel offers exclusive one-day OPC performance training seminars to private customers at the Opel test center in Dudenhofen, Germany. Led by two-time Le Mans champion Manuel Reuter, drivers have a chance to hone their skills and discover the true potential of their OPC cars.

OPC cars have (often) been the object of many drivers’ dreams. For the last two years, Opel has run an Astra OPC Race Camp, a wildly successful race driver casting competition in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. The OPC Race Camp offers ambitious drivers with no motor sport experience the chance to test and develop their racing talent during rigorous training sessions and numerous elimination rounds.

Currently 10 candidates remain from a total of 22,000 applicants. The candidates are taking part in the second year of the program led by Manuel Reuter and Joachim Winkelhock. Each hopes to land one of the coveted spots on the driver team for the two Astra racing cars that participate in the 24-hour race on the Nurburgring next year.

Last but not least, for those drivers who want to pimp their ride on their current Opel cars, the brand has offered OPC Line packages since 2004 created by the same Opel designers in charge of all OPC models that include such items as rocker moldings and a rear spoiler.

Highlights of a decade of Opel OPC production cars:
•    2009: Market launch of Insignia OPC sedans and Sports Tourer model (2.8-liter V6 Turbo, 239 kW/325 hp)
•    2009: Astra OPC Race Camp Edition hits the market
•    2008: IDSPlus2 chassis system is added as standard feature for Astra OPC
•    2008: Special limited-edition “Nurburgring Edition” Astra OPC model is launched
•    2007: Corsa OPC sets record at the Nordschleife with a time of 8:47:99
•    2007: Optional six-speed automatic transmission is added for Vectra OPC and Vectra station wagon OPC
•    2007: Market launch of Corsa OPC (1.6-liter Turbo, 141 kW/192 hp)
•    2006: Zafira OPC sets Nurburgring Nordschleife record as fastest van with a time of 8:54:38
•    2006: 2.8-liter V6 Turbo, 206 kW/280 hp offered on Vectra OPC and Vectra station wagon OPC
•    2006: Market launch of Meriva OPC (1.6-liter Turbo, 132 kW/180 hp)
•    2005: Astra OPC sets a record for compact class with a 8:35:94 time on the Nordschleife
•    2005: Market launch of Vectra OPC and Vectra station wagon OPC (2.8-liter V6 Turbo, 188 kW/255 hp)
•    2005: Market launch of second-generation Zafira OPC (2.0-liter Turbo, 177 kW/240 hp)
•    2005: Market launch of current Astra OPC (2.0-liter Turbo, 177 kW/240 hp)
•    2005: In just five years, some 20,000 OPC cars have been sold across Europe
•    2004: Launch of the OPC Line packages
•    2002: Market launch of second-generation Astra OPC (2.0-liter Turbo,
147 kW/200 hp) in three-door and station wagon variants
•    2001: Market launch of Zafira OPC (2.0-liter Turbo, 141 kW/192 hp)
•    1999: Market launch of Astra OPC (2.0-liter naturally aspirated engine, 118 kW/160 hp); all 3,000 limited edition units sell out within four months
•    1997: Opel establishes Opel Performance Center GmbH (OPC)

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