Yes, underneath those spoilers and vents it’s the new Opel Corsa OPC, bound for the 2015 Geneva motor show in March.
Like the old one, it’s less than subtle to look at, it’s powered by a 1.6-litre petrol four-pot, and it promises to be quite quick. It’ll hit 100kph in 6.8sec, tops out at 240kph, and packs more power than before from its 1.6-litre turbo motor.
There’s now 150kW and 245Nm, the latter available from 1900rpm to 5800rpm. That’s a handy improvement, as the old Corsa models reached peak torque at 2250 to 5500rpm, so it promises to be a more flexible, driveable engine that before.
It powers the front wheels through an evolution of the old Corsa’s six-speed manual transmission, with combined fuel consumption claimed at 7.5l/100km and CO2 emissions at 174g/km. Quite high that last figure, but it is an improvement over the previous OPC’s 190g/km.
Since the Corsa got its newest overhaul at the tail-end of 2014, the new one benefits from a far less nasty interior than before and a host of new kit, including a heated front screen and the smartphone-compatible Intellilink multimedia system.
This being the hot hatch version, there’s also a set of buckety Recaro seats and a flat-bottomed steering wheel.
On the outside, besides that wide vent cut into the bonnet and lots of aluminium dotted about its nose, there’s a roof spoiler that creates downforce, casting its shadow over twin Remus exhaust outlets.
Biggest news is the dampers, made in collaboration with Koni, the hot Corsa is fitted with Frequency Selective Damping, or FSD for short. In a nutshell, the damping force is continually adjusted in response to the car’s movement, with the happy result being tighter body control at high speeds and better ride quality at low speeds.
As you’d expect, the ride height’s lower than the regular Corsa, by 10mm, and the power steering’s been recalibrated for improved feel and feedback.
Also new is a two-stage ESP and traction control setting. Putting the system in ‘Competition Mode’ disables the TC and places the ESP in a more liberal setting. If you’re on a track, or feeling particularly macho, you can also turn it off completely.
You can also get that nutty Drexler limited-slip diff from the Nurburgring edition, and the uncompromising (and hilariously good fun) add-on will be available as part of the optional Performance Package.
The pack also includes larger 330mm front brake discs and a more uncompromising setting for the Frequency Selective Damping.
There is no news yet on when SA sales will start or what the pricing will be set at