The joys of an auto

KAILENE PIL­LAY dons high heels to wring the most out the Corsa’s 1.4

The Witness - Wheels - - MOTORING -

THE big­gest news for Opel last week was the 2015 Women’s Car of the Year Awards, which voted the Adam and Mocca tops in their cat­e­gories.

With my sis­ters rat­ing these Opel prod­ucts so high, I looked for­ward to my first drive in that other leg­end from this Ger­man sta­ble, the Corsa hatch­back, the 1,4 Corsa En­joy au­to­matic, to be pre­cise.

Turned out I liked the Corsa so much, I added over 400 km to the odo, mak­ing two re­turn trips to Dur­ban in just two days.

The first thing I no­ticed was how easy it is to driv­ing the Corsa in boots with proper heels.

The sec­ond was the joy that comes with that miss­ing pedal on the right. Se­ri­ously — af­ter years of driv­ing stick, this Corsa made me fall in love with au­to­matic driv­ing. And no, it’s not lazy driv­ing, it’s EASY driv­ing.

Other is­sues which male driv­ers never note is how the driver’s seat is at just the right height for those of a more pe­tite build to get in and out with ease and a mod­icum of grace; while the City Mode made ma­neu­ver­ing through traf­fic an ab­so­lute plea­sure.

It has the looks

But how does it look in the flesh, I hear you ask?

First im­pres­sions first — those day­time run­ning lights looks classy and in red, the hatch turned heads. Then there as the 16-inch al­loy wheels that fills the wheel arches to the brim.

Lit­tle bonuses are the ad­justable seat and steer­ing that re­ally helped a short woman like me feel more con­fi­dent in a car, while a tray un­der the pas­sen­ger seat makes stor­ing things out of sight easy.

Then there is the sound. Opel’s In­tel­liLink rates among the top three easy sys­tems in cars to­day. It op­er­ates on both iOS and An­droid and you can use the sev­eninch touch screen, steer­ing wheel or voice con­trol to con­nect easily to your phone via Blue­tooth or a USB ca­ble.

With the air con­di­tion­ing sys­tem blow­ing softly through my hair and the six speak­ers blast­ing loudly from my phone via Blue­tooth, I felt so much a diva I started kwetch­ing about the lack of an arm­rest.

I reckon this is all the Corsa needs to make tog­gling the gear switch on the au­to­matic lever just that lit­tle more com­fort­able for my short arms. Oh, and a sun­roof. But it sure has the look even with­out it.

Be­cause I could just thumb a tog­gle to gear down up Cato Ridge, I did it in or­der to quickly pass all those lum­ber­ing trucks. This did noth­ing good for the fuel con­sump­tion, but my petrol­head male col­leagues were quick to rea­sure me it is not just the fault of my boots. That 1,4 makes a rel­a­tively con­ser­va­tive 66 kW and 130 Nm, (the three-cylin­der, one-litre makes 83 kW), which means it likes to gulp when pushed and you re­ally have to just tease the right pedal with a big toe to get even near Opel’s best con­sump­tion.

Three trim lev­els are avail­able: Cosmo, En­joy, and Essen­tia. The au­to­matic Corsa re­tails for R216 500 and only comes in Opel’s En­joy cladding, high­lights of which in­clude that six-speaker sound sys­tem,

All in all it was a plea­sure to drive the new Opel Corsa. It’s a spa­cious, cool and sexy ve­hi­cle that is built for a city girl.

Opel’s com­pre­hen­sive cus­tomer sup­port pack­age and a wide net­work of deal­ers add peace of mind to the deal, but when you are buy­ing a 1,4 hatch, there are al­ways loads of spe­cial of­fers, so study all the advertising and com­pare which one will make you feel like a diva.


The Opel Corsa Cosmo can make you lip­sync like a pop­star while the wind blows softly through your hair.

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