Blast from the Past: 1991 Opel Kadett GSi Meets 2012 Astra GTC OPC

Back in the mid-1980s, General Motors’ Opel brand attempted to fight the hugely popular Volkswagen Golf GTI and its like in Europe’s compact sport hatchback segment with a performance version of the sleek Kadett E called the GSi (sold as the Vauxhall Astra GTE Mk2 in Britain). The Kadett GSi came equipped with a 2.0-liter naturally-aspirated four-cylinder producing 114hp (115PS) in the 8v OCH model and 148Hp (150PS) in the 16v DOCH (Double Overhead Camshaft) variant. Today, Opel and sister company Vauxhall are represented in the category by the newly released Astra OPC and VXR respectively, which are based on the sporty looking three-door GTC model. The hottest Astra of the bunch hides a mighty punch under its hood thanks to a 2.0-liter force-fed that delivers 276hp (280PS) and 400Nm (295 lb-ft) of torque channeled to the front wheels via a 6sp manual gearbox and a limited slip differential. And since we’re talking about the past here, it wouldn’t hurt to remind you that the new OPC is not only nearly twice as powerful as the top Kadett GSi, but it has 30 more horses than the 1989 Porsche 911 Carrera (964) that was fitted with a 246Hp (250PS) 3.6-liter flat-six. In this video released by Opel, the automaker called in retired German racing car driver Joachim Winkelhock to take the GSi and its modern day replacement for a quick spin and compare the two cars. The original clip is in German, but you can click the “CC” button on the video for English subtitles.