Vauxhall’s Insignia is a perfectly good car, but you would struggle to describe it as interesting. With sporty German saloon rivals as well as the recently-launched Kia Stinger now on sale, Vauxhall needed to come up with something for those wanting an affordable, fast and practical performance car.
Its answer is the Insignia GSi. Here we round everything you need to know about Vauxhall’s latest performance car.
1. The VXR nameplate is no more on the Insignia
For years, Vauxhall’s performance name tag was GSi – with the Astra, Vectra and Zafira all having the name tag. Around 2005, Vauxhall resorted to a VXR badge for its performance cars. But now for the performance version of this model, GSi is back. There could be room for a VXR with even more power, though, so it is always worth watching out for it.
2. It actually has less power than the old Insignia VXR
The new Insignia GSi actually has less power than the old Insignia VXR, and quite a lot less power. That said, 60bhp less than the Insignia VXR doesn’t make that much difference to the overall performance figures.
3. GSi and VXR are not quite comparable
The GSi brand is not meant to be a fully-fledged VXR performance brand, rather a step-up from its normal cars. And that’s the reason for this difference in power between VXR and GSi. An even more powerful version of the Insignia is rumoured to be on its way, which will show the difference of power.
4. You can have it as a hatch and estate
As with the old Insignia (and the Vectra beforehand) it was available as both a hatchback and estate, and the new Insgnia GSi is no different. You can have it as a Gran Sport (hatchback to you and me) and as a Sports Tourer (an estate).
5. It comes as both a petrol and diesel
Insignia GSi buyers have plenty of choice, as both a petrol and diesel engine is available. You can choose from either a 256bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine or a 207bhp 2.0-litre twin-turbo diesel engine.
6. It’s on sale now
Prices for the Insignia GSi start from £33,375 for the Gran Sport, and £34,875 for the Estate. It is expected to arrive in Vauxhall showrooms in March.
7. It’s the fastest Vauxhall to ever go around the Nurburgring
Yes, that famous German circuit that seems to be used by every manufacturer. Now Vauxhall has joined the mix, claiming its Insignia GSi is its fastest model to ever go around the renowned track – although it is yet to release a time.
8. It’s much lighter than the Insignia VXR
Despite the GSi having less power than the VXR, it has shed the pounds, meaning that the performance figures are not that dissimilar from the VXR. It is now 160kg lighter than the Insignia VXR, which should make it more agile on the road.
9. It comes laden with standard equipment
The GSi has plenty of standard equipment, including chrome air intakes, front and rear GSi bumpers and a large GSi spoiler on the hatchback – all helping it to stand out from the standard car. Elsewhere you get full LED matrix headlights, leather sports seats, aluminium pedals, an eight-inch touchscreen with satellite navigation, a Bose sound system and a head-up display.
10. Four driving modes are available
The GSi comes with a ‘FlexRide’ system, which allows you to change the damping, steering, gear change-up points and the car’s stability and traction depending on the driver’s preference.
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