Opel plans to expand its Insignia model range at the Frankfurt Motor Show with the introduction of a more outdoorsy, off-road ready version of the Sport Tourer wagon. Called the Opel Insignia Country Tourer, the new car follows the footsteps of the Audi Allroad in creating a more butch version of a station wagon for drivers who want to venture off the beaten path.
Changes compared to the normal Opel Insignia Sports Tourer begin with front and rear skid plates, extra body cladding around the wheel arches and rockers, standard Haldex all-wheel drive, tinted headlight housings, and dual exhausts. The Country Tourer's ride height is 0.8 inch taller than a normal wagon, to avoid off-road obstacles, and its tires are larger for better grip. Other tweaks for the Opel Insignia Country Tourer include a new front fascia and a new grille design. Opel says it was inspired to create the new model based on the success of its similarly butch Mokka compact crossover -- which is a mechanical twin of the Buick Encore.
Opel says the car can drive on loose ground even if only one of the wheels has traction, as the all-wheel-drive system proactively shuffles torque between the axles. However, it can switch to a front-drive mode to save fuel when there is plenty of grip available, such as during highway journeys.
There are three engines available, a 250-hp 2.0-liter turbo-four gasoline engine, a 163-hp 2.0-liter turbodiesel, and a 195-hp 2.0-liter turbodiesel. The former two can be mated either to a manual or automatic transmission of six forward speeds, while the 195-hp diesel comes only with an automatic.
Although the Opel Insignia forms the basis of the Buick Regal sedan, we don't see the Country Tourer making its way to our shores any time soon. Buick hasn't yet committed to bringing even the normal Sports Tourer wagon to America, so it would be a stretch to see the Country Tourer in a Buick dealer any time soon.