Opel Astra GTC Headed to the U.S. as a Buick and Maybe a Convertible

Opel gave us our first official look at the 2012 Astra GTC late last month, which is set to be unveiled this June and in Frankfurt later this year. The new Astra is much sleeker and sportier than the last model, which if you recall was sold here as the Saturn Astra. That model obviously failed and went down with the rest of the Saturn brand. It looks like GM is set to bring the Astra back to the US, but this time it will be badged as a Buick. 2012_opel_astra_gtc_rear.jpg

Lexus and Audi both have small luxury hatchbacks in the US and Mercedes will be bringing the A-Class hatch here soon as well, so it makes sense that Buick try to capture a piece of that market as well. The Astra is already coming here in the form of the Verano sedan, but we’re expected to get the much hotter GTC version as well. The GTC is being offered in Europe with a range of four-cylinder engines that have up to 300 horsepower. In the US, it is likely that the GTC will get the same engines as the Verona, a 177-hp 2.4L and a turbocharged 2.0L with 220-hp.

The GTC is pretty much confirmed for the US, but a convertible could also make its way over that will be based on the same Delta platform as the Astra and Verano. Although it will be based on the same mechanicals as the Verano, Astra and Cruze, it’s expected to get its own distinct styling. The new convertible is expected to launch as an Opel in late 2012, but it remains to be seen if it will come here as a Buick.

Full Story: Car and Driver

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