This year’s Performance Vauxhall Show will play host to a special display of Corsas in celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of what is one of Vauxhall’s best-loved models. We’ll be presenting ten outstanding examples of the ground-breaking supermini, ranging from a spotless Corsa B SRi through to heavily modified Corsa E VXRs.
In 1993, Britpop was getting ready to unleash its full force, Bill Clinton was sworn in as the forty-second President of the United States and the Maastricht Treaty took effect, formally establishing the European Union. In the motoring world, all eyes were on Vauxhall, a company ready to launch the successor to the fantastically popular Nova.
Opel had been using the Corsa name for years. Indeed, Nova is the UK designation for what the majority of the world knows as the Corsa A (Barina in Australia), but fearing the model’s name sounded too much like ‘coarser’, the lads in Luton decided to go their own way. A decade later, they relented, and the Corsa name was finally introduced to Britain with the launch of the Nova’s replacement.
A car which to this day remains almost as popular as its predecessor, the Corsa B was followed by a sharper, hotter hatch in the form of the Corsa C. The new arrival was consistently one of the best-selling cars in the UK during its time in production. It also proved to be a big hit with modifiers, but all things must pass, and a new generation of Griffins comprising cars ready to unlock their full performance potential was waiting in the wings. Enter the Corsa D.
A rethinking of the Corsa concept, Vauxhall’s updated compact car was soon presented in full fat, super-aggressive VXR trim with a 1.6-litre turbocharged powerplant, lightweight body panels, bulging wheel arches, race seats and a centre-exit exhaust. Later, Nürburgring Edition and Clubsport VXRs would set pulses racing. Today, the Corsa D VXR is one of the Vauxhall scene’s most enthusiastically tuned models, and one which paved the way for the recently discontinued Corsa E VXR, a comparatively short-lived – but no less impressive – take on the idea of a Vauxhall hot hatch providing the perfect platform for modifying.
You’ll find a fantastic selection of modified Corsas spanning all ages on our celebration stand. Regular readers will recognise the tuned 1.6-litre SRi owned by Sam Thomas and Adam Beard’s 1000bhp twin-engined monster as former Performance Vauxhall feature stars representing the earliest generation of UK cars badged as Corsas, while Dave Green’s supercharged 2.2-litre Corsa C will sit alongside heavily tuned VXRs, such as Rhys Morgan’s Carbon Flash track attacker and Jay Handbury’s slammed pink camo-wrapped wonder. Be sure to check ‘em out when they’re assembled close to the Performance Vauxhall magazine stand, where you’ll also be able to point your peepers at the C20XE-powered, Porsche rim-riding, Cadbury Purple-painted Corsa B built by Tom Parkes.