Vauxhall reveals the Cascada cabrio
It’s a four-seat Vaux’ convertible that’s longer than an Audi A5. Quite stiff, too…
Posted: 17 Oct 2012
Europoppers, rejoice! Vauxhall has just revealed its full-size, four-seat convertible ‘Cascada' model. And it's bigger than an Audi A5 convertible.
Well, longer actually. At 4.7m in length, it dwarfs the A5 cabrio by a full 71mm! This size puts the Vauxhall into a market which, it says, it hasn't competed in since the 1930s.
Looks wise, it's basically an Astra GTC on steroids - no bad thing considering the GTC's rather handsome looks. And this isn't bad either. The design team was headed up by Brit Mark Adams, with a brief to build something that harked back to the golden age of grand tourers.
Underneath, Vauxhall tells us the chassis is 43 per cent stiffer and 10 per cent more resistant to bending forces than the old Astra TwinTop, with steel bars and strengthened rocker panels underneath, that contribute to both underbody reinforcement and a reduction in noise, vibration and harshness.
Vauxhall has also popped in its rather handy HiPerStrut front suspension system, as seen in the Insignia and Astra VXR, as standard across the Cascada range. This system, don't forget, helps reduce torque steer.
This points to a hot model somewhere down the Cascada's life, hopefully. For now, you'll have the option of a 136bhp 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol, a 160bhp 2.0-litre diesel, or a brand new 1.6-litre Ecotec petrol, the first from Vauxhall's ‘Mid Size Gasoline Engine' family. It produces 166bhp and 206lb ft of torque, mated to a new six-speed auto.
There are many electronic nannies preventing you from steering into a tree, such as lane departure warning, traffic sign recognition, a front camera, following distance indication, forward collision alert and even a heated steering wheel. Short of actually driving the thing for you, the Cascada seems to have all bases covered. Quite bossy, really.
It gets an Insignia interior, together with high-quality stitching and ‘handcrafted' interior modules. The seats are available in many leathers, while the boot offers 280 litres with the roof down, or 350 with it loaded. Oh, and that roof - it's available in three colours and comes with a polyester fleece between the outer and inner linings, to help reduce noise and stay warm. It's like a blankie!
Prices will be confirmed in due course, and Vauxhall refuses to confirm whether or not it will unveil the Vauxhall ‘Eiffel 65' or special edition ‘2 Unlimited'. What say ye, good folk of Top Gear's internet - like it?