Scotland hit by German invasion 09 | 02 | 2011

    MOTORISTS IN Central Scotland may have been surprised to see what would appear to be an unseasonably large number of German tourists this month.

    From Western Edinburgh to Loch Lomondside and up into the Trossachs, large numbers of German-registered Vauxhall SUVs have been spotted – and some of them looking decidedly muddy.

    There’s a simple explanation. Car giant General Motors has chosen Scotland for the European launch of their brand new off-roader, the Antara, which will be on sale here from the end of April bearing the Vauxhall badge.

    Over a period of three weeks, hundreds of journalists and dealers from all over Europe are being flown into Edinburgh Airport and driving to the launch base at Cameron House on Loch Lomond, before heading for off-road tests in the Queen Elizabeth Forest Park in the Trossachs.

    Conditions on the first few days have been demanding, with heavy rain followed by snow, but the organisers from GM’s European base in Rüsselsheim are delighted. They say they chose Scotland specifically for the variety of roads and the accessibility of the forests for off-roading experience, which have gone down well with the drivers ... and it’s been a welcome out-of-season boost for Scotland’s tourist facilities.

    More photos of the Antara in action in the snow.

    Scotcars' full roadtest of the new Vauxhall Antara.

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    Alan Douglas

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