Spotted at a test track is the 2012 Vauxhall Astra Convertible, most likely badged up as an Opel under all that camouflage (the track was in mainland Europe).
This is effectively a replacement for the Astra Twin Top which was discontinued when the new Astra hit showrooms last year. It’s the newer model which underpins the Convertible too, featuring the extended doors from the recently revealed three door GTC.
We’re showing a rendering on our gallery below which depicts the car with a fabric soft-top. Sure enough, Vauxhall will ditch the old Twin Top’s folding metal roof for a traditional fabric roof for this model, as so-called coupe cabriolets are complex, heavy and expensive. They also rob boot space, even with the roof up. A return to folding fabric will mean the Astra Convertible will compete well on price and also have class leading boot space thanks to the retained rear deck. Expect smoother looks through better proportions and frameless doors and side windows.
Engines will reflect those announced for the GTC: a four cylinder 1.4 litre turbo petrol with 1120PS and the same engine also available with 140PS; a 1.6 litre turbo petrol pushing 180PS; and a four cylinder 2.0 litre CDTi diesel with 123PS. Expect fuel consumption raging from 40 to 55mpg, emissions from 130 to 165g/km CO2.
Availability, on sale dates and prices are expected to be revealed later this year or early 2013. We’re guessing a start point of about £21,000.