Vauxhall/Opel's most powerful Astra VXR yet – 276 bhp, 295 lbs.-ft., 155 mph – will be unveiled at the with front seats that are substantially lighter thanks to cutting-edge technology, have a lower seating position and enhanced side support to cater for increased cornering loads.
The new front seats are formed using an injection moulded sheet in the seat shells, which reduces their weight by 45% compared with a conventional shell. The sheet is filled with a composite material made from polyamide and fiberglass meaning that it only needs to be fractions of an inch deep, and therefore a lot lighter.
Bringing driver and front passenger lower to the Astra VXR's center of gravity, the new seats are mounted 0.6 inches lower than in the Astra GTC, and 1.5 inches lower than in the Astra Hatch. In addition, the new seats can be adjusted up to 18 ways, depending upon specification.
Pneumatically adjustable cushions in the seats' flanks, add further levels of adjustability at the push of a button, and provide `tailor-made' seating comfort and security normally reserved for race drivers.
The VXR's seats are the first in its class to be certified by AGR (Action for Healthy Backs), an independent German organization comprising leading doctors and therapists. Before they gained approval, the seats had to meet a list of ten criteria, including checks for lordosis support, and that the seatback contours adapt precisely to the natural curvature of the spine.