Opel Crossland X 1,2 Turbo Cosmo AT
Opel is looking to cover all its raised ride-height bases with the introduction of the newest member of its X family
LAUNCHED in Europe to correspond with the cessation of sales of the characterful Meriva, the new Crossland X is a reinvigorated Opel brand’s answer to both a global decline in MPV sales and an ever-growing demand for compact SUVS. Denoted by its X-suffix, the Crossland joins the Mokka X – and supplemented next month with the Grandland X – as part of an extended family of Opelbadged SUVS aimed at strengthening its maker’s foothold in the South African market.
Operating locally after its divorce with GMSA under the ownership of Steinhoff International and now distributed by Williams Hunt, Opel South Africa is looking to make the most of its new, global PSA Group partnership to re-establish itself at the headier end of local monthly sales charts.
Built on a modified PSA PF1 platform that it shares with the Citroën C3 Aircross, the Crossland X is 63 mm shorter than its more ruggedly styled Mokka X sibling. Yet, in keeping with its more family-focused positioning, it offers a 50 mm longer wheelbase. Unmistakably modern Opel up front, the Crossland features a similar floating C-pillar treatment to the Adam, making the most of a twotone paint finish. Along with an optional panoramic sunroof, the Crossland X, in top-of-the-range Cosmo spec, can be ordered with either a black, white or grey colour scheme for the roof to offset an array of body colours. It’s a neat touch that has worked well for one of this car’s closest rivals, the Renault Captur.
Further distinguishing the Crossland X from the sportierlooking Mokka X and, indeed, endorsing the newer car’s broader marketing appeal, are wheel sizes that go up to 17 inches only, whereas the Mokka can be ordered with up to 19-inch wheels.
Sliding into an all-important raised driving position, solid perceived quality is let down slightly by the firmness of the plastics found lower down in the cabin. The option to raise or
lower the cloth-covered driver’s seat is a welcome touch while, certainly in Cosmo trim, the list of standard speci cation is relatively impressive. This includes a neat seven-inch touchscreen infotainment display incorporating a full suite of modern smartphoneintegration capabilities. While the incorporation of satellite navigation in this system – linked with the convenience of a head-up display – is a cost option, other nice-to-have standard features are auto wipers and headlamps, parking sensors with a reverse camera and cruise control.
While stability control, ABS braking and six airbags are standard tment, conscientious owners can supplement these safety systems with driver-drowsiness alert and various forward-collision-detection technologies.
A welcome packaging-related inclusion is the ability to slide the 60:40-split second-row bench by 150 mm to best accommodate either taller rear-seat passengers or additional luggage. On the latter, the Crossland X offers a classcompetitive luggage space that includes an additional out-ofsight stowage option underneath the boot board.
Although an entry-level Crossland X was not made available during the local launch, experience suggests it’s worth taking this variant for a long test drive before committing to live with its humble, naturally aspirated 60 kw/118 N.m powerplant, especially at altitude. The PSAsourced, turbocharged, 1,2-litre, three-cylinder engine tted to the rest of the range, meanwhile, remains a solid performer. Mated with either a ve-speed manual gearbox or six-speed automatic transmission, it’s an engine that offers good low-down grunt for town driving while capably settling down to a re ned thrum on the open road. While Opel claims a combined fuel-consumption gure of 5,4 L/100 km for its topof-the-range automatic model, I recorded 6,2 L/100 km over the course of my test drive.
On-road, the Crossland X impresses with its plucky, lightweight demeanour and compliant ride quality. While the steering could gain improved weighting and feedback, its precise action proved welcome, especially while negotiating smaller, urban spaces. If the topheavy nature of the Crossland causes it to pitch and roll somewhat while pushing on, thanks to impressive levels of overall grip, it’s a sensation that never reaches a point of alarm.
Ultimately, the Crossland X ticks plenty of boxes, most notably in terms of quirky, raised ride-height styling and clever packaging. While its overall dimensions largely mimic those of the Mokka X, it’s easy to see the newer car having broader appeal, including for young families that might otherwise consider a Captur, Mazda CX-3, Suzuki Vitara or the Ford Ecosport (see page 34 for a drive of the new one).
A question that will have to remain unanswered for the time being – at least until we sample a Crossland X alongside its closest rivals – is whether or not the Opel’s comprehensive standard spec justi es its relatively premium pricing.
The Crossland X impresses with its plucky demeanour and compliant ride quality
clockwise from top Height adjustment on the driver’s seat is a welcome feature; neat seven-inch touchscreen can be specced with navigation; dual USB ports; rear bench offers fore and aft adjustment; class-competitive luggage space; chrome look scuff plates in Cosmo spec.
Crossland X is 63 mm shorter, but offers a longer wheelbase than the Mokka X.