This year could be the most important in Opel’s history. The brand is now owned by PSA Group after a rather surprising deal worth $2.3 billion. It’s is also launching two models, expected to become best-sellers for the marque – the Crossland X and the second generation Insignia, in both sedan and wagon versions, which make their debuts in Geneva.
The new French owner of Opel promised not to interfere with the brand’s development process and work mainly on the business side, but the new Insignia could very well be one of the last models based on a GM platform. The vehicle is bigger than before and now offers an extra 32 millimeters room at hip height, along with 25 mm more shoulder room, and knee room.
At a five-seat cabin layout, the trunk of the sedan (Insignia Grand Sport) stands at 490 liters and 1,450 liters once you fold the rear sets down. If that’s not enough space for your luggage, you can go for the station wagon variant (Insignia Sports Tourer), which has an extra 30 liters for a grand total of 520 liters. At a two-seat configuration, the cargo capacity is 1,638 liters, representing a 108-liter increase over the model it replaces.
Standard models will be driven by the front wheels, while the more expensive variants will receive an all-wheel drive system with torque vectoring. There are quite a few powertrain options – the entry-level model comes with a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder gas engine in two power stages - 138 horsepower (103 kilowatts) or 164 hp (122 kW). There’s also a bigger 2.0 turbo unit with 256 hp (191 kW), connected to a new eight-speed automatic transmission. If you want a more frugal option, Opel has a 1.6-liter unit with 109 hp (81 kW) and a beefier 2.0-liter motor with 168 hp (125 kW).
The new Insignia will be used as a global platform for other vehicles under the General Motors umbrella. The Aussies will be getting the next-generation Holden Commodore with a range-topping model, featuring a 3.6-liter V6 engine with 308 hp (230 kW), nine-speed automatic gearbox, and all-wheel drive. In America, Buick will sell the new Regal and we’ll likely see it for the 2018 model year.