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Vauxhall Vectra SRi estate 1.9 CDTi 150

Vauxhall

Review

A NEAR 700-mile round trip to Wales gave me the ideal opportunity to put the Vectra through its paces around the stunning Cardigan coast in Wales.

The Jackson family did its best to take virtually all of our household possessions with us, excluding beds and kitchen sink, obviously.

And do you know what? Even with all the paraphernailia which comes with taking a youngster on holiday, the Vectra’s boot still wasn’t full.

And it was a bit of a luxury to be able to see out of the rear windscreen with the car packed – not something the Renault Grand Espace I drove before could claim.

But having been used to driving the airy Espace, I felt as though I missed out on the stunning Welsh views on our trip there as the Vectra’s roof seems to crouch down on you and the dashboard rises to meet it.

I know most cars in this sector are the same, but the Vectra’s dark interior doesn’t help create an airy feel.

The Vectra also seems sadly lacking in stash pockets front and back, and why, when there are two drinks holders next to the handbrake, don’t they securely take water bottles or drive-through cups?

And like other Vauxhalls, the Vectra has an infuriating indicator stalk – it resists the usual tap with a finger when you want to cancel it, which gets to be both distracting and annoying.

Like other testers I had the honeymoon period of showing off the motorised boot lid, but the novelty soon wore off when I was drenched while waiting for the slow moving tailgate to open.

It’s all well and good on a fine day, but in the pouring rain when you just want to open the boot it’s a pain in the rear!

I had the chance during the trip to be a rear seat passenger, and was surprised by the lack of a door stash pocket and electric windows, and although there was ample legroom, the seat comfort left a lot to be desired.

More importantly back in the front the lack of parking sensors, which on a vehicle of this length (4.82m) should be standard, are sadly missing, and I struggled without them.

However, one option I was glad of is the stunningly efficient satellite navigation system.

It was put to the test several times in the wilds of Wales and came shining through – finding obscure little villages with the minimum of fuss.

I have a few niggles with the Vectra, but it’s more annoyance than a deal-breaker.

Vauxhall Vectra SRi estate 1.9 CDTi 150
Price (OTR): £20,965 (£24,415 as tested)
Mileage: 10,585
CO2 emissions (g/km): 165
Company car tax bill (2005/6) 40% tax-payer: £154 per month
Insurance group: 9
Combined mpg: 46.3
Test mpg: 44.3
CAP Monitor residual value: £4,975/25%
HSBC contract hire rate: £446
Expenditure to date: Nil

  • Figures based on three years/60,000 miles
  • CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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