The world premiere of the GTC Concept at the 77th Geneva Motor Show gives an insight into how dynamic and refreshing Vauxhall and Opel’s new design language will look in the future. “This concept car demonstrates the new interpretation of the brands,” explains Alain Visser, Executive Director, European Marketing. “The GTC Concept embodies the confident, emotional direction we’re taking. Its exciting lines combined with its high driving dynamics and interior flexibility reflect what the brand trademark characteristics will be in the future.”
“You have seen a number of our recent concept cars become reality,” says Hans Demant, Vice President of Engineering for General Motors Europe. “Concepts like the GTC Genève and Antara GTC or the Flex-Fix rear carrier system from the TRIXX previewed their production variants. This car is a confident ambassador for the brand and could play a similar role for us, previewing the engineering and design cues of our next-generation of Vauxhall and Opel products.”
The four-seat coupé is powered by a 300PS, 2.8-litre V6 turbo petrol engine and features an intelligent, electronically-controlled four-wheel drive system, which provides optimum traction and stability as well as excellent agility in all driving conditions.
Interior flexibility, which has become a trademark of the Vauxhall brand, is ensured by the thoughtful “Flex4” system. The backs of both rear seats can be docked separately to the front seats by remote control, creating a spacious three or two-seater with flat load floor and up to 1020 litres of luggage compartment capacity. As with all Vauxhall and Opel cars, the seats do not have to be removed or installed to achieve the changes in interior layout.
The GTC Concept reveals the next-generation of Vauxhall and Opel styling. Much as the VX220 did in 1999, or the GTC Genève Concept did in 2003, this car marks a break in the evolution of Vauxhall/Opel’s design language.
Key elements of the silk grey-lacquered Coupé concept car finished with a matt grey paint begin with an aggressive front end emphasised by large aluminium vertical intakes that intersect the headlamps. These vertical elements are mirrored in the rear exhausts.
The front is highlighted by a prominent, trapezoidal grille with polished aluminium Opel bar and a new bolder badge. The centreline crease coupled with the distinctive aluminium vertical intakes and outboard LED vertical driving lamps visually communicate power and strength. The distinctive design continues with LED technology, enabling creative headlamp shapes that give a distinctive night time illumination graphic in the front and rear lights.
Another significant design cue of the two-door sport-coupé with its sleek silhouette (length/width/height: 4830/1867/1432 mm, wheelbase: 2737 mm) is the sophisticated bodyside shapes and surfacing. Large flarings hug the aggressive wheel and tyre package.
Thanks to the wide track (front/rear: 1627/1629 mm), the GTC Concept provides a commanding stance, planted by 20-inch rims with 245/40 R20 “red line” styled rubber.
The GTC Concept’s rear strategically echoes the design language of the nose with an integrated chrome bar resting on the distinctive rear centre crease. The shape of the LED rear lamps is also recognisable as a Vauxhall/Opel styling cue. The smart exterior shape and aerodynamic characteristics are rewarded by the Cd value of 0.25.
Vauxhall and Opel’s interior designs have progressed to become warmer and more inviting in products like the new Corsa and Antara. However, the GTC Concept represents the next chapter of the interior brand identity. Echoing the exterior, the interior shapes and surfaces articulate a dynamic driving experience. The dashboard’s top-pad wraps around from the instrument panel to the door, embracing the occupants. The sweeping décor dynamically stretches one’s eye from the surfaces of the door and instrument panel, and the horizontal theme is secured with a large integrated centrestack design floating above the décor surface, an appearance reminiscent of premium audio equipment.
Complementing the exterior material theme, matt ebony surfaces are contrasted with rich high-gloss piano black décor finishes and structurally elegant aluminium accents. The U-shaped aluminium graphic on the steering wheel is reflected again on the centre console and the gear shifter, visually connecting the driving interfaces. The rotating navigation control is ergonomically positioned, allowing it to easily be located and controlled by the driver, without having to remove their eyes from the road. The four, sporty, round instruments encircled by translucent rings are backlit in dynamic red, replacing traditional amber tones. As a final twist, the “redline” graphic of the tyre pattern is vertically woven into the contoured sport seats and the centreline of the steering wheel.
“In the last few years, many cars have grown bigger without passengers benefiting from it. We have reversed this trend with the GTC Concept. In comparatively compact exterior dimensions, we optimised the dimensions in the interior,” says Frank Leopold, Manager GME Innovation, Show Cars and Advanced Packaging. “In this way, the car fits like a glove.”
With the lower seating position and vertical hip point - known as the H-point - both front occupants sit perfectly integrated in the car. Thanks to the lower-set instrument panel, outward visibility remains excellent. This also provides a generous sense of space, an effect strengthened by its colour: the instrument panel’s upper section is dark, while the lower section is light.
The intelligent packaging is further highlighted by plenty of space in the rear of the car, despite its flat roof line: rear headroom is 920 millimetres. The rear seats are set low, but the four-seat, two-door car still offers brand-typical flexibility thanks to a novelty developed by engineers: the “Flex4” interior concept.
“Flex4” enables the backs of both the rear seats in the Coupé concept car to be moved forward separately at the touch of a button via sensor-control and docked to the front seats. The luggage compartment cover is thereby automatically pulled over the remaining seat surfaces in the floor. This creates a three or two-seater with a flat load floor up to 1.80 metres long. Luggage compartment capacity increases from 500 litres to 755 litres (three-seater) or up to 1020 litres (maximum capacity: up to waistline).
The GTC concept car is powered by a turbocharged, 300PS, 2.8-litre V6 petrol engine with two variable camshafts, which is combined with a six-speed manual transmission. Maximum torque of 400Nm is available from 1,850 up to 4,500rpm, and accelerating from zero to 62mph is calculated to take around six seconds. Top speed is limited to 155mph.
The power from the high-tech turbo engine is channelled via an advanced, electronically-controlled four-wheel drive system, which is fully integrated into the car’s adaptive IDSPlus chassis management system. An electronically-regulated torque transfer device seamlessly distributes power between the front and rear axles for optimum traction and driving performance. The high-speed control allows more power to be provided to the rear axle before any traction loss can occur, for example during quick acceleration. This creates a driving feel similar to a sporty rear-wheel drive car. An electronically-controlled limited slip differential at the rear axle provides additional stability and traction thanks to torque distribution between the rear wheels.
Major benefits of the GTC Concept’s intelligent four-wheel drive system are optimum traction and stability in all driving conditions as well as excellent agility and an active driving feel.