Advantages 7 seats, like all MPVs should have
Disadvantages Weight & fuel consumption.
OK, firstly just let me say I am biased towards Vauxhall, and secondly that I do not like this type of vehicle (MPV). If you average out my opinions of this car then, it should be neutral or pretty fair. I do not actually own one, although I have had some very "enthusiastic" drives in one.I was lucky enough to be invited to one of Vauxhall's promotional days, at their proving ground at Millbrook. The site itself consists of "The Dustbowl" which is a custom built circular track which is banked, with various lanes for different speeds. The idea being that you can run cars at any speed, and this particular Zafira went well at at least 119 mph.
They actually have over 70 Kilometres of track on other types of terrain, and the one I enjoyed was the Alpine circuit. This is a very twisty up hill & down dale helter skelter type "ride". It is a very safe circuit becaus of the marshals and emergency services on stand by, but there are still cars that accasionally leave the track.Anyway, now you know what type of test drive I have done, you will understand that I have pushed this car to an extent I could not do on the public highway. I also had a "normal" test drive on public roads by the way, not quite as exciting, but still enjoyable.
To be honest, I was not expecting any performance on any of my drives, just a little nippy thrashing fun, but I was surprised, the 2.2 litre SRi version really moves, and I am used to driving a 25 litre V6. On the open road, it is responsive, lively, and in spite of the height and size, it hugs the road well. The high driving position gave good visibility. The sports suspension is very tight, the steering extremely positive, (leather steering wheel) and 5 gears that can be changed quickly. Even on the demanding Alpine circuit, the brakes were very good, with no sign of fade. All instruments were easily seen and all switches were within reach. The seats were figure hugging, mirrors large enough & visible, and the very smart aluminium pedals were just where they should be.On the motorway speeds in the dustbowl, the car was very smooth, with no noise or vibration, even over the "ton". I could imagine sitting quite comfortably, on an Autobahn, at that speed for hours.
The NCAP safety rating for adult occupants gets a full five stars, so cannot be beaten. Many people would not even consider buying one of these because of the length, well actually they are only 14' 8", The rear seat is split folding, and the boot capacity is 140 litres rising to a massive 1820 litres with the seats down. The car does weigh just over one & a half tonnes (still less than an Omega) .Price, you can buy one of these for less than £19,000, this compares favourably with other sililar vehicles.
Spec:- (as standard)
Far too much to list here but will h=give you a taste.
Manual or automatic transmission.
Retractable luggage cover
Height-adjustable head restraints on all seats
Side impact protection bars
Front and side airbags
Driver's seat height adjuster
Six years body panel anti-perforation warranty
Steering column adjustable for reach and rake
Electric headlight beam levelling
Colour coded mirrors
Enjoy - I did.
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