Vauxhall is now offering a Touring version of the VXR8. It is basically a muscle car dressed as a station wagon, and although it is not just as powerful as what the Germans offer in form of Audi RS and Mercedes AMG models, it is a whole lot more fun to use than all of them.
The most powerful estate car in Vauxhall’s 110-year history joins the sedan and the Maloo pickup, boasting the same 6.2-liter, 431PS V8 engine. Thanks to this tower of power, the VXR8 Tourer can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 4.9 seconds, an onto to a limited top speed of 155 mph. Standard transmission is a six-speed manual with an uprated LS7 clutch, but you can opt for an auto with limited slip diff if you want.
The key to the VXR’s greatness is its muscle car-derived simplicity. Not, it’s not crude, and yes, it does have fancy suspension setup, but it’s mechanical. Electronic interference is kept to minimum in this car.
As good as this car is in the straight line, it is not its forte. That’d be going sideways. It has a MacPherson struts/progressive rate coils at the front and a multi-link independent set-up at the rear which very normal, but there is something about that chassis that makes the car a hoot to drift.
As for the practical stuff, you get an 895-litre cargo volume, increasing to 2,000 litres with the rear seats folded down. Other notable features include HSV Performance Seats with eight-way adjustability, 20-inch Pentagon alloy wheels; two-coat metallic paint; Bi-Modal exhaust (controlled via EDI system); Aux-in/USB inputs; iPod support and Bluetooth with phonebook display and touch-screen dialling.
We’d pick this car over an Audi RS6 or a Mercedes E63 Estate every time.