Sport­ing Tourer

The Galloway News - - MOTORS -

Vaux­hall’s new As­tra was an in­stant suc­cess with pri­vate and busi­ness cus­tomers when it ar­rived late last year. The sev­enth gen­er­a­tion hatch­back is Bri­tish built and de­signed and sits right at the top of its class. It has won nu­mer­ous awards in­clud­ing Scot­tish Car of the Year and it also holds the Euro­pean Car of the Year ti­tle. No sur­prise then that the Es­tate ver­sion I have been sam­pling is equally im­pres­sive. It might not match some of its ri­vals for over­all space but it is just as good to drive as the hatch and is even more prac­ti­cal. The Sports Tourer is a very good look­ing car and it is of­fered with a wide va­ri­ety of en­gines and a num­ber of trim lev­els. The test car fea­tured the small­est en­gine avail­able in the range - the 1.0-litre three cylin­der petrol turbo which pro­duces 105PS. Sur­pris­ingly the lit­tle unit al­ways felt will­ing and able to cope with the Tourer - which is con­sid­er­ably larger than the hatch. If you are planning on car­ry­ing heavy loads you will prob­a­bly need more grunt in the shape of one of the diesel units. With a top speed of 121mph, the 1.0-litre takes 11 sec­onds to reach 60mph and has emis­sions of 103g/km. It is mated to a five-speed man­ual gear­box and if you make good use of it you will have no trou­ble keep­ing pace with most traf­fic. This ver­sion of the Tourer should also be very eco­nom­i­cal to run with stop/start and a claimed com­bined fig­ure of 62.8 miles to the gal­lon. Es­tates have to be prac­ti­cal and the Tourer of­fers a 540-litre boot which can be in­creased to 1,630 litres if you drop the 40:20:40 split rear seats. The tail­gate open­ing is a use­ful square shape and with no lip it is easy to load larger ob­jects. Room for pas­sen­gers is ex­cel­lent with five adults be­ing able to travel in com­fort and there are plenty ad­di­tional stor­age ar­eas and power sock­ets. In SRI Nav trim the Tourer is loaded with stan­dard fea­tures. Ex­ter­nally you get 17-inch al­loy wheels, front fogs, rear spoiler,sil­ver-ef­fect roof rails, au­to­matic light­ing, door to door il­lu­mi­na­tion as well as LED day­time run­ning lights. The smart cabin fea­tures bags of equip­ment in­clud­ing a leather steer­ing wheel with au­dio con­trols, sports seats, air con­di­tion­ing, trip com­puter, elec­tric front and rear win­dows and elec­tri­cally ad­justable and heated door mir­rors, cruise con­trol and a tyre pres­sure mon­i­tor­ing sys­tem. You also get Vaux­hall’s Navi 900 In­tel­liLink sys­tem and their OnS­tar per­sonal con­nec­tiv­ity and ser­vice as­sis­tant - which is free for the first 12 months. The Tourer also boasts the lat­est safely equip­ment in­clud­ing a driv­ing as­sis­tance pack with an in­tel­li­gent cam­era sys­tem and hill start as­sist. It drives and han­dles well and at £20,585 feels good value for a qual­ity prod­uct. It pro­vides all that is good about the hatch plus added space and ver­sa­til­ity.

Hand­some the Tourer is at­trac­tive from all an­gles

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