If we take a moment and reflect on the virtues of the original Vauxhall VXR8, or Holden Monaro, we can conclude that its brilliance was due to its sheer simplicity. It has a big engine, a manual gearbox, rear drive, and some normal suspension. The latest incarnation of the car, however, has gone all electro-fancy.
They just revealed that the high-spec Vauxhall VXR8 GTS model is getting a highly advanced and very complex Magnetic Ride Control system. The MagnaRide system made by BWI Group is similar to what they use in the Corvette.
The benefits of this suspension system includes a comfortable everyday ride, precise body control for enjoyable handling on the track and real-time management of the tyre loads to make best use of all the available grip. But if that’s what you want, you shouldn’t get a VXR8 in the first place. The VXR is for those who want to go everywhere sideways, and we’re not sure MagnaRide is going to enhance that.
MagnaRide features Magneto Rheological (MR) damper fluid which contains tiny iron particles that can be quickly but temporarily magnetised by energising electrical coils in the damper piston. So basically by increasing or decreasing the density of that fluid, the system’s electronic brain can alter damping of the suspension.
In addition to the system’s self-acting capability, drivers can select between Touring, Sport and Track settings using a Driver Preference Dial that also controls other aspects of the car, such as the exhaust note, steering calibration and traction control settings. We just wish it also had a drift setting in which the system would deliberately cause the rear wheels to lose grip!