Motoring review - Vauxhall Corsa : enduring popularity

By Jamie Hill - 1 March 2021


Leigh Robinson Swindon Link's Motoring writer gives the new Vauxhall Corsa a test drive.

The Vauxhall Corsa has been around for almost 40 years and is the most popular car on the British roads.

Sad thing is that there is nothing really British about the Corsa, in fact there never was. Originally designed by the Germans, built in Spain and now owned by the French, the only thing remotely from the UK is the Vauxhall name, and that is likely to go in the near future.

It started life as a Vauxhall Nova in 1982 and as either a Nova or a Corsa it sold around 15 million in the UK and Europe.

The new model, and there have been four models before, is basically French with a Peugeot 208 body. But to be fair the new Corsa is a pretty good supermini, sharp to drive and has an excellent powertrain range.

It is not cheap with prices starting at £15,550 going through to the top of the range at £16,550. The Corsa has a 1.2-litre 74bhp naturally-aspirated and 99bhp turbocharged petrol engine and a 1.5-litre diesel with 100bhp. An all-new six-speed manual is available for all models, and an eight-speed automatic will be optional for the turbocharged petrol.

The top petrol model gives you 0-62mph in ten seconds for acceleration and a top speed of 120mph. The larger of the two petrols will be the biggest seller.

The bodyshell is 40kg lighter than the old model and 15kg has been saved by using Peugeot’s all-aluminium engines. A 5.5kg has been removed by revising the front seat designs and the use of an aluminium bonnet saves another 2.4kg. In total the new Corsa is more than 100kg lighter. Miles per gallon are around the 50 mark.

The Corsa handles well, probably due to the super light steering and this makes it far better than the previous model.

The rear space is a little tight and headroom is just okay. The boot has just over 300 litres of space which is a little bigger than before and there are new matrix-LED headlights which are great.

And there is an all-electric Corsa-e on the way.

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