Vauxhall’s mighty VXR8 range of cars will be given a final hurrah at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed end of this month, when a very special last-of-line edition takes to the track as part of the First Glance track class, driven by a variety of high profile drivers.
Known as the Vauxhall VXR8 GTS-R, the new model is powered by an evolution of the current GTS’s supercharged 6.2-litre V8 engine, producing 595PS (up from 576PS) and 740Nm of torque, making it Vauxhall’s most powerful car in the company’s 114-year history.
Production of the Holden Commodore model, on which the GTS-R is based, comes to an end in Australia this October, when Holden’s manufacturing plant finally closes. Vauxhall – a sister brand to Holden in the GM family – has been importing the VXR8 in various forms since 2007, and sells the car through selected dealerships in its network with full service back up and a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty.
As befits its last-of-line status, the GTS-R is no ordinary VXR8 – and in this form it’s exclusive to the UK, too. Sending drive via a limited slip differential to the rear wheels, the GTS-R retains the previous GTS’s clever torque vectoring system, but adds an upgraded braking system with six-piston, monoblock calipers and 410mm discs up front. In addition, the GTS-R wears all-new 20-inch forged alloy rims (ten-inch width at the rear, 9-inch at the front).
Visually, the GTS-R has a fresh face, with a new front fascia, splitter, wings and carbon fibre vents, while at the rear there’s a new-look diffuser, spoiler (with carbon fibre upper), lower panel and quad exhaust outlets with diamond-shaped exhaust tips. Inside, the diamond theme continues in the Alcantara and leather seat trim, with the steering wheel and gear-lever also trimmed in Alcantara.
The current supercharged LSA engine has been re-mapped and is fitted with a high-flow air filter to achieve its hike in power.
Just 15 Vauxhall VXR8 GTS-Rs will come to the UK, at an on-the-road price of £74,500.
The GTS-R will join another new Vauxhall – the Insignia Sports Tourer 2.0 (260PS) Turbo 4×4 – in Goodwood’s First Glance Paddock, next to the Cartier Lawn at the Festival of Speed. Both cars will be driven on the hill climb twice a day through the event by a series of high-profile drivers.