Leading the charge will be a new 1.6-litre turbo petrol engine with direct injection and Start/Stop technology that will cut C02 emissions by 13 per cent, compared with its predecessor. The four-cylinder SIDI (spark ignition direct injection) ECOTEC engine will be available in various outputs and across several car lines. What will set it apart from rivals will be its levels of torque, combined with excellent linearity, reduced noise, strong performance and low fuel consumption. Engineers achieved maximum torque of 300Nm from 1700rpm, resulting in a class-leading specific output of 187.5Nm per litre. Peak power also increased to 200PS at 4700rpm – up 20PS versus the existing 1.6T. “The quality, reliability and driveability of our cars is improving at an unprecedented rate,” said Duncan Aldred, Chairman and Managing Director of Vauxhall Motors. “Replacing core engine ranges with high-output, high efficiency units will enhance our cars’ appeal still further and reinforce our commitment to producing first-class products.”
Vauxhall’s first spark ignition direct injection engine, the 155PS 2.2-litre ECOTEC, was first seen in the 2003 Signum and Vectra models, followed by the Zafira. Today, the Insignia 2.0-litre turbo continues the direct injection theme, and is currently available with 220PS and up to 250PS in some European markets.
This summer, the new Astra VXR will adopt a tuned version of the same engine, with a bespoke cylinder head and turbocharger, that produces 280PS, yet produces emissions of just 189g/km. Production at the Szentgotthardt plant in Hungary will begin in late 2012.