Corsa A
Opel Corsa A

Overview

Also Called
Vauxhall Nova
Production
1983–1993

Body and chassis

Body style
3 and 5-door hatchback
2 and 4-door saloon
Corsa B
Opel Corsa B

Overview

Also Called
Buick Sail
Chevrolet Classic
Chevrolet Corsa
Holden Barina
Opel Vita
Vauxhall Corsa
Production
1993–2000 (Europe)
1994–2010 (South America)
2001–2005 (China)
2000–present (Corsa-derived vehicles)

Body and chassis

Body style
3 and 5-door hatchback
4-door saloon
5-door estate car
2-door coupé utility (pickup)
Related
Opel Combo B
Opel Tigra A
Chevrolet Celta
Chevrolet Sail
Corsa C
Opel Corsa C

Overview

Also Called
Chevrolet Corsa
Holden Barina
Opel Vita
Vauxhall Corsa
Production
2000–2006 (Europe)
2002–2012 (South America)

Body and chassis

Body style
3 and 5-door hatchback
4-door saloon
3-door car-derived van
2-door coupé utility (pick up)
Related
Opel Combo C
Opel Meriva A
Opel Tigra TwinTop B
Corsa D
Opel Corsa D

Overview

Also Called
Vauxhall Corsa
Production
2006–2014

Body and chassis

Body style
3 and 5-door hatchback
3-door car-derived van
Related
Fiat Punto
Alfa Romeo MiTo
Corsa E
Opel Corsa E

Overview

Also Called
Vauxhall Corsa
Production
2014–present

Body and chassis

Body style
3 and 5-door hatchback
3-door car-derived van
Related
Opel Adam

The Opel Corsa is a supermini car engineered and produced by the German automobile manufacturer Opel since 1982. It has also been sold under a variety of other brands (most notably Vauxhall, Chevrolet, and Holden) and also spawned various derivatives in different markets. Its current fifth generation is built in Spain and in Germany. However, despite its global presence, it has never been sold in the United States or Canada.

Corsa A (1983–1993)


The front-wheel drive Opel Corsa was first launched in September 1982. Built in Zaragoza, Spain, the first Corsas were three-door hatchback and two-door saloon models, with four-door and five-door versions arriving in 1984. In mainland Europe, the saloon versions were known as the "Corsa TR" until May 1985. The basic model was called just the Corsa, which was followed by the Corsa Luxus, Corsa Berlina and the sporty Corsa SR. The SR receives a spoiler which surrounds the rear window, alloy wheels, checkered sport seats, and a somewhat more powerful 70 PS (51 kW) engine. Six years later, the Corsa received a facelift, which included a new front fascia and some other minor changes. The models were called LS, GL, GLS and GT.

The Corsa A was known in the United Kingdom market as the Vauxhall Nova (as it was considered that Corsa sounded too much like "coarser"), where it was launched in April 1983, following a seven-month-long union dispute due to British workers being angry about the car not being built there. It effectively replaced the ageing Chevette, which finished production in January 1984. Nearly 500,000 versions of the Nova were sold in Britain over the next 10 years, but by February 2016 only 1,757 were still on the road. In its best year, 1989, it was Britain's seventh best selling car with more than 70,000 sales.

Power first came from 1.0 L 45 hp, 1.2 L 55 hp, 1.3 L 70 hp and 1.4 L 75 hp petrol engines. (The first engines were all equipped with carburetors; fuel injection came later, but never for the 1.0.) The engines were based on the well-proven Family II design, except for the 1.0 L and early 1.2 L engines, which were based on the OHV unit from the Kadett C. There was also an Isuzu-built, 50 PS (37 kW) 1.5 L diesel engine available, which was also used in the Isuzu Gemini at around the same time. The diesel joined the line-up in May 1987 at the Frankfurt Show, along with the sporty GSi. The engines and most of the mechanical componentry were derived from those used in the Astra/Kadett.

A rare "Sport" model was produced in 1985 to homologate for the sub 1,300 cc class of Group A for the British Rally Championship. These sport models were white and came with unique vinyl decals, a 13SB engine with twin Weber 40 DCOE carburettors, an optional bespoke camshaft, a replacement rear silencer, and few luxuries. This gave 93 hp and a top speed of 112 mph (180 km/h) with a 0–60 mph time of 8.9 seconds. These are by far the rarest models (500 produced) and thus acquire a high market price if one does become available.

A 1.6 L multi-point fuel-injected engine with 101 PS (74 kW) at 5,600 rpm (98 PS or 72 kW in the catalysed version) and capable of 186 km/h (116 mph) was added to the Corsa/Nova at the 1987 Frankfurt Motor Show, giving decent performance and being badged as a GSi ("Nova GTE" in pre-facelift models in the UK, later models were all called GSi). The GSi's engine mapping had been carried out by Opel tuning specialists Irmscher. A model with the 82 PS (60 kW) 1.4 L multi-point fuel-injected engine, which was otherwise mechanically identical to the GSi, also became available as the Nova SRi in the United Kingdom. In January 1988, a turbocharged version of the Isuzu diesel engine was introduced, with power increased to 67 PS (49 kW).

The design was freshened in 1990 with new bumpers, headlights, grille and interior, but it was clearly recognisable as a makeover of an early 1980s design, when it had to compete with the latest two all new superminis in Europe – the Ford Fiesta and Renault Clio.

Vauxhall Nova
The Corsa A was rebadged as the Vauxhall Nova between 1983 and 1993 for the British market. It replaced the Vauxhall Chevette. All Nova models were made in Spain, with the first British customers taking delivery of their cars in April 1983. It gave Vauxhall a much needed modern competitor in the United Kingdom supermini market, as the Chevette was older than the majority of its competitors, chiefly the Ford Fiesta and Austin Metro.

Sales in the United Kingdom were strong right up to the end, but by the time the last Nova was made in early 1993, it was looking very dated in comparison to more modern rivals like the Peugeot 106 and Ford Fiesta. Vauxhall dropped the "Nova" name in 1993 when their version of the Opel Corsa B débuted, and later models were sold as the Vauxhall Corsa instead. This was the second Vauxhall to adopt the same model name as the Opel version, the first being the Senator.

A television advert in 1986 featured the Los Lobos hit "La Bamba" playing in the background as computer technology allowed the Nova to drive over vehicles in a busy city. Another advert from 1990 featured Angus Deayton owning the Nova as a pet, computer technology allowing it to jump through a traffic jam and briefly play a hotrod whilst stopped at the traffic lights. The end featured a homage to Wacky Races, with the Nova laughing like Muttley.

The Nova is becoming a less and less common sight on British roads with time. Many of these cars have been modified by younger owners, so the car acquired a strong association with "chav" culture. Many Novas have been targeted by joyriders due to the car's minimal security specification.

A very significant security problem with the Nova, was if one was to remove the hazard light switch, turn it upside down, and insert it back into its slot, they would find that the ignition would come on with no clear explanation. After a simple push start, the engine would start — effectively hot wiring the vehicle. This was demonstrated by Jeremy Clarkson in E01, S21 of Top Gear.

Famous former owners of the Nova include Colin McRae and Sean Bean.

Corsa B (1992–2000)


In April 1993, the Corsa B was unveiled, and in the United Kingdom, Vauxhall dropped the Nova name, with the car now being known as the Corsa. In May 1994, it was launched by Holden in Australia, as the Barina, replacing a version of the Suzuki Swift sold under that name. This proved a success, and was the first Spanish-built car to be sold in significant volumes in the Australian market.

Four-cylinder power came from 1.2, 1.4, and 1.6 litre Family 1 petrol engines, as well as an economical 1.5 L turbodiesel engine. Most cars received a five-speed manual transmission, although a four-speed automatic was also available with certain engines. In the first few years, a four-speed manual was also available coupled to the smallest 1.2-litre engine. Unlike the previous model, there was no saloon version, but one was designed in Brazil for the Latin American market, as saloons were much preferred to hatchbacks. This was also introduced in South Africa and India. An estate car, panel van and pickup truck were also introduced, and a convertible version was produced for the Australian market, called the Holden Barina Cabrio. The estate car version was sold in some European markets (including Italy), badged as an Opel. The Corsa also spawned a small coupé called Opel Tigra. 1.0 L 3-cylinder and 1.2 L 4-cylinder Family 0 economy version was launched in 1997, and a Lotus-tuned suspension was added as well as an exterior refresh.

The saloon model was built and sold in Latin America as Chevrolet Corsa Classic until 2010. A budget version introduced for the Brazilian market, the Chevrolet Celta, has bodywork resembling the late 1990s Vectra and Astra. The Celta was sold in Argentina as the Suzuki Fun for a certain period. In 2011, GM stopped representing Suzuki in Argentina, so the Celta reverted to its original name under the Chevrolet brand. Argentinian production began in September 1997, where it was the first locally built Chevrolet passenger car since 1978. The Latin American Corsa received a light facelift in 1999, with smoother bumpers, and from April 2002 (when the new Corsa II was introduced) the Corsa B began being marketed as the "Corsa Classic" until 2010 where it became the "Classic" when the Corsa B-derived Chevrolet Sail and Chevrolet Celta replaced it.

The saloon and estate car versions were produced in China by Shanghai GM as Buick Sail and Buick Sail S-RV, respectively from June 2001 to February 2005. That year they received a facelift and became known as the Chevrolet Sail and SRV. In September 2006, Chile became the first country outside China to receive the Chinese-assembled Sail; it is called the Chevrolet Corsa Plus, available as a four-door saloon with a 1.6 L 92 PS (68 kW) engine. The Corsa Plus includes dual front airbags, anti-lock brakes, air conditioning, electric windows and central locking as standard equipment.

In India, the hatchback, saloon and estate car versions were sold as the Corsa Sail, Corsa (or Corsa Joy) and Corsa Swing respectively until the end of 2005. The hatchback model was still being produced, and extensively marketed in South Africa as the Corsa Lite under the Opel branding until 2009 at which point it was discontinued.

In Thailand, Corsa available as Opel and fuel injected 8V 1.4-liter engine and "Joy" and "Swing" variants, both available with 3 or 5-door and manual or automatic.

Corsa C (2000–2006)


The Corsa C was revealed in 1999, and introduced to the European market in October 2000 and the facelift arriving in August 2003. General Motors dubbed the new chassis Gamma, and intended to use it for a number of other models.

A saloon version was also offered in Latin America, South Africa and the Middle East. The Brazilian version of the Corsa sold in those countries featured a more conservative front end than its European counterpart. Brazil also offered a pickup truck version of the Corsa named the Chevrolet Montana (sold in some markets as the Tornado), which, as well as the saloon, was exported in a completely knocked down form to South Africa for local assembly. GM South Africa markets the hatchback simply as The New Corsa, and the pickup version as the Corsa Utility. Since 2007, the Corsa C saloon has been discontinued in South Africa. The Corsa hatchback in South Africa does not have the same front fascia as the European Corsa. Instead, it has the same front fascia as the Latin American Chevrolet Corsa, possibly because GM South Africa wanted the same front fascia as the sedan and pickup. Swapping with the European front fascia would be expensive sawing and welding due to the Latin American Corsa's sharper headlights.

Corsa D (2006–2014)


The Corsa D was created using a new version of the SCCS platform, which was co-developed by General Motors/Opel and Fiat, and is also employed by the 2006 Fiat Grande Punto. The first official pictures of the Corsa D, were released by Opel in May 2006. In the United Kingdom, What Car? awarded it 2007 Car of the Year.

The Corsa D is available in both three and five-door versions, and marketed as the Vauxhall Corsa in the UK. The same engines sizes from the Corsa C were available at launch, although the 1.3 L CDTI and 1.7 L CDTI engines were upgraded, with power ranging from 75 PS (55 kW) to 125 PS (92 kW). The 192 PS (141 kW) OPC/VXR version went on sale in early 2007, with a 1.6 L turbocharged petrol engine powering the front wheels. The 75 PS (55 kW) 1.3 CDTI engine was updated in mid-2007 to bring CO2 levels to just 119 g/km, meaning that 12 months' Vehicle Excise Duty in the UK costs £30 and is eligible for the Plan 2000E (a rebate of 2000€ in the purchase of a new car) in Spain. The car is also used as the villain car in Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show at Disney's Hollywood Studios.

The Corsa D was briefly available in Australia under the Opel brand name, rather than as a Holden as the Corsa B and C had previously been, during Opel's short-lived foray into the Australian market. Less than a year after launching, Opel Australia announced it was ceasing operations, removing Corsa from the Australian new car market.

In addition to not being sold in the United States or Canada, the Corsa D was never available in Japan either, as Yanase had stopped importing the Opel Vita in April 2004 due to declining sales. Opel withdrew altogether from the Japanese market in December 2006 due to low sales the previous year.

At an early stage of the Corsa D's development, a designer was dared to work an image of a shark into the interior. He managed to hide it so well, on the hinge of the glove compartment, that it was never removed, and features on all production models.

FlexFix
FlexFix is an optional integrated bicycle rack. It is essentially a concealed drawer that can be pulled out from the car's rear bumper. On it are two wheel-mount bike racks, rear licence plate incorporated in the system, brake/tail lights, indicators and fog and reverse light alternates in left hand drive and right hand drive cars. It is available as an option on Exclusiv, SE and SXi models in the UK.

OPC
In 2007, Opel introduced sport version of Corsa tuned by Opel Performance Center (OPC) – Corsa OPC. Corsa have 1.6-liter I4 turbo engine with 141 kW (192 PS; 189 hp) at 5.850 rpm and 230 N·m (170 lb·ft) of torque at 1,980 to 5,850 rpm, with overboost function which boost up torque figure to 266 N·m (196 lb·ft). 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) time is 7.2 s and top speed is 225 km/h (140 mph). Differences with standard Corsa in interior are sporty Recaro seats, OPC steering wheel and gear knob, instrument dials with OPC background. At exterior there are different front and rear bumper with triangle shaped exhaust, and wind difusors. There is also OPC tail spoilers and skirts. Car have stiffer and lower suspension than regular Corsa. Standard rims are 17-inch and optional 18-inch. Corsa OPC is only available as 3-door version.

OPC Nürburgring Edition
The Opel Performance Center in 2011 launched a hardcore version of the Corsa OPC – Corsa OPC Nürburgring Edition. The engine is the same, 1.6-liter turbo, but it has been tuned to punch out 210 PS (154 kW; 207 hp) and 250 Nm (280 Nm with overboost function) of torque at 2,250 to 5,850 rpm. 0–100 km/h time is 6.8 seconds and top speed is 230 km/h (143 mph). New upgrades include Brembo brake packages, recalibrated ABS, traction stability management system, Remus exhaust, and mechanical slip differential which in this segment of cars (supermini/B-segment) only have MINI Cooper JCW.[39] Corsa comes with standard 18-inch alloy wheels and low profile tires, lowered suspension, dual-tipped stainless-steel exhaust and special Nurburgring badge at B-pillars and inside on gear knob and instrument dials. Also included is a new front spoiler, and different rear bumper. Corsa is available in Henna Red, Grasshopper Green, Graphite Black (available as matte colour), and Casablanca White.

2011 facelift
In November 2010, a facelift was announced. A revised front end was the most dramatic difference over its predecessor, consisting of a new grille, a restyled front bumper and new 'Eagle Eye' headlamps (introduced on the Insignia) which contain daytime running lamps- standard across the refreshed Corsa range. (Vauxhall versions gain the latest 2008 Vauxhall badge on the front grille, tailgate and steering wheel). A new 'Touch and Connect' multimedia system from Bosch will be available as an option on certain Corsas, replacing the CD60 unit. Alloy wheels are upgraded on SXI, SE and OPC/VXR versions. Production ended in late 2014, with the Adam styled Corsa E released.

Corsa E (2014–present)


The Corsa E debuted at the 2014 Paris Motor Show. The basic chassis architecture of this fifth-generation Corsa is the same as its predecessor’s, so exterior and interior dimensions are identical, give or take a few millimetres, but every exterior panel is new. Led by Brit Mark Adams, Opel’s design team has taken various style cues from the brand’s latest models and distilled them into a supermini shape. Interior space stayed the same, as has the 285-litre boot, but every part of the instrument panel and dashboard is completely new. All of the exterior sheet metal (except the roof) has been revised, but the underlying chassis and body structure (especially the glasshouse) is carried over from Corsa D.

IntelliLink infotainment system can be connected up to Apple or Android smartphones via USB or Bluetooth. The newest iteration of this will "mirror" your phone onto the touchscreen, allowing you to use things like your Google Maps or Spotify through voice command as well as use Siri voice control.

A reinforced, stiffer front sub-frame and new front suspension geometry, plus a new speed-sensitive electric power-steering system, have been designed to sharpen the handling and provide more front-end bite. Two types of suspension – comfort and sport – will also be offered.

It has been revealed that a new Corsa (likely named the Corsa F) will be released in 2018, with the Corsa E finishing production that year.

Corsa OPC/VXR
In February 2015, Opel introduced OPC version of Corsa E. Compared to the previous-generation model, power output has increased by 15PS to 207PS (204 bhp) from 1.6 Turbo engine, with a maximum torque of 245 Nm (181 lb-ft) between 1900 and 5800 rpm. An overboost function increases torque to 280Nm (206 lb-ft) when needed. As a result, the Corsa OPC is able to sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.8 seconds and to reach a maximum speed of 230 km/h (143 mph).

The Corsa OPC features a sports chassis with Frequency Selective Damping (FSD) technology, which enables the damping forces to adapt to the frequency of the car to balance sportiness with comfort. The suspension is lowered by 10mm (0.39 in) compared to standard Corsa models, and the car also gets an optimised steering system with more direct and precise reactions. OPC also worked on the brakes, adding 308mm discs on the front axle.

Opel also offers the Corsa OPC Performance Package, which includes a mechanical multi-disc differential lock made by Drexler, 18-inch wheels with Michelin tires and an even more athletic chassis set-up. The package also brings a Brembo high performance braking system with 330mm braking discs on the front axle.

Styling wise, the Corsa OPC/VXR get more aggressive body kits with new bumpers, aluminium frames for the fog lights, a small scoop in the hood, a big roof spoiler and twin-pipe Remus exhaust with a diffuser. Inside, the Recaro performance seats take centre stage, with other upgrades including the flat-bottomed leather steering wheel, OPC gear knob and sports pedals along, as well as OPC design instruments.
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