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Vauxhall Corsa cleans up with new look and character

14:58 23 December 2014

New Vauxhall Corsa has been heavily revised when it comes to how it looks and drives.

New Vauxhall Corsa has been heavily revised when it comes to how it looks and drives.

STUART COLLINS +44 7801 019024

Vauxhall has thoroughly revised its popular Corsa supermini, complete with cleaner, greener engines and a look influenced by the fashionable Adam, says Iain Dooley of the Press Association.

What’s new?

The revisions to the Corsa are extensive, and while Vauxhall’s engineers have retained the previous car’s basic platform, much work has been done on the way the car drives as well as how it looks.

Visually, the Corsa’s been influenced by the funky Adam, while there’s been an increased focus on boosting the green credentials of the engine range. And to improve the ‘big car’ feel, there’s now a wealth of added value safety kit and creature comforts available.

Vauxhall Corsa

■ Price: Vauxhall Corsa 1.0i Excite 5dr £14,695 (range £10,900 to 
£16,235)

■ Engine: 1.0-litre, 115bhp, three-cylinder turbo petrol

■ Transmission: Six-speed manual driving front wheels

■ Performance: 0-62mph 10.3 seconds; top speed 121mph

■ MPG: 57.6 combined

■ CO2 emissions: 115g/km

Looks and image

It’s hardly a surprise that the new Corsa looks a little bit like the Adam. From the front at least, Vauxhall’s mainstream supermini now boasts a little more character and is easier to spot in the supermarket car park.

And being Vauxhall’s volume-selling car, it’s got to perform for a wide variety of customers, be they private buyers or company car users. As such, the major selling point is low running costs, thanks in part to new and revised engines plus a greener approach to motoring.

Space and practicality

In supermini terms, the Corsa offers a good level of cabin space and practicality. It’s available in three and five-door form, and there’s ample boot space for a car of this size. And for a car that has to work for a wide variety of users, cabin oddment storage space is more than enough for mobile phones, drinks, maps and the like.

Behind the wheel

Previously the Corsa was rarely top of keen drivers’ shopping lists, but Vauxhall’s engineers have done a good job of closing the gap to the likes of Ford’s Fiesta. A thorough overhaul of suspension and steering elements has resulted in a more engaging experience, while refinement and the ability to cope with poorly-surfaced roads have also been greatly improved.

Vauxhall has also spent a lot of time improving the Corsa’s engine range, with the result being a greater focus on economy and ease of driving. Some existing units have been improved, such as the 1.3-litre diesel units – now offering sub-100g/km CO2 figures, while an all-new 1.0-litre, three-cylinder petrol motor comes in 90 and 115hp guise. The latter is pleasantly smooth and quiet, yet punches well above its weight performance-wise.

Value for money

Vauxhall’s not been shy in adding a lot of kit, with the highlights being a heated windscreen, the choice of heated seats and steering wheel, plus advanced safety kit and a high-end infotainment system previously only found on more expensive cars higher in Vauxhall’s range. Factor in the greener, more economical engines plus the ability to save money at the pumps and reduce the amount you give to the taxman each year, and the Corsa’s value for money status is pleasingly more attractive than before.

Who would buy one?

The Corsa has always appealed to a wide audience, and it’s likely to be the same with this new model. Private buyers form a significant proportion of the market and there’s no shortage of choice when it comes to engine and trim combinations. Offering both three and five-door bodystyles does much to further boost its chances in a crowded market. Vauxhall hasn’t forgotten business, users either. Low CO2 rated engines and fleet-specific trim levels should make the business of buying company cars an easy one.

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