Vauxhall has revealed the first in a line of new engines, which will premiere in the forthcoming Cascada
10 October 2012

Vauxhall has revealed a new turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine that will offered across its line-up, starting with the soon-to-be-revealed Astra-based Cascada convertible, from early 2013. 

The aluminium block unit, the first in a range of so-called SIDI (spark ignition direct injection) Ecotec engines that form the centrepiece of the company’s downsizing strategy, is claimed to boast vastly improved torque characteristics and a significant reduction in consumption over the engine it replaces.

In standard trim, known as Eco Turbo, the 1.6-litre engine kicks out a claimed 168bhp and 206lb ft of torque – some 54bhp and 92lb ft more than the version of Vauxhall’s existing 1.6-litre engine offered in the Astra

In a higher state of tune, in which it gains the working title Performance Turbo, the new engine’s reserves rise to 197bhp and 211lb ft, an increase of 20bhp and 52lb ft on the more powerful of the Astra’s 1.6-litre units.

Despite claiming fuel savings of up to 13 per cent, Vauxhall is yet to announce specific details to its new engine on a model for model basis.

Our Verdict

Vauxhall Astra 2009-2015
The Astra is now in its sixth incarnation, but it can trace its linage back to 1963's Viva

The Vauxhall Astra is one of the best-looking hatchbacks, but average dynamics and performance hamper its overall appeal

Join the debate


10 October 2012

I recently drove a 508 with the PSA/BMW 1.6 turbo, hoping for it to be superior to the diesel i had driven before. It was, but thats not to say its a great engine. The lag was still unacceptable. hopefully this new GM unit will be better. Just looking at peak power and torque figures tells you nothing about how a car will drive

10 October 2012

Lag is still the biggest problem with these small capacity engines as Artill suggests but until the technology behind the electrically assisted turbo catches up, I fear that we will have to suffer.

I remember the days when Vauxhall engines used to be top of their class (late 80's) but sadly, on paper at least, this engine appears to do no more or no less than it's competitors.



It's all about the twisties........

10 October 2012

they only way your going to find out whether the engines succeeded in delivering what was originally invisaged, is by driving it over a range of different situations. Bench and Circuit testing is fine, but like the fuel consumption figures that they yield, there is, and always will be a huge variance. The problem with Turbo's, and these applies to all manufacterers not just Vauxhall is where to pitch the Curve, ie, at what RPM you want if to start, peak and plateau. It's very difficult to get one single unit that capitalises on the entire power band, hence manufacterers selecting twin/sequential and even three/four scroll turbos to provide optimisation of a wider curve. And, quite often in lieu of greater coverage, it's left to modified gearing to pick up the slack during this curve. I would suggest supercharging, but even that has it's problems and is very expensive to construct particularly in more volume oriented cars. Whilst Vauxhalls engines are good, the games moved on, so any move which involves the use of greater research and development has to be good. In the past, Vauxhall have produced a few cars which have taken the sector, within there own competitor group by storm, and hopefully this will be a step in the right direction. Vauxhall wiil never be (IMHO) a VW successor, moreso because of the alliance with OPEL, and lack of a premium, premium parent mentoring from outset,  however it does have the ability to shine within it's own territory, and the british market is an important one at that.

10 October 2012

Buying in 2023, six owners and 120k miles later? £5 says no one here would! 

  • If you want to know about a car, read a forum

11 October 2012

BriMarsh wrote:

Buying in 2023, six owners and 120k miles later? £5 says no one here would! 

I'd buy a near 200 hp 10 year old Astra, see loads of existing 10 year old Astra up and down the motorway. Now where's my £5


Hydrogen cars just went POP

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • First Drive
    1 June 2016
    Volvo returns to the big time of large estates with its new wagon, the Volvo V90. We've driven it for the first time abroad
  • Audi Q2 1.4 TFSI 150 S tronic
    First Drive
    29 May 2016
    We head to Havana to find out how the new Audi Q2 is shaping up ahead of its November launch
  • Seat Leon 1.4 EcoTSI FR Titanium
    First Drive
    27 May 2016
    High-spec new Titanium FR trim is temptingly good value, particularly on the semi-enthusiastic 1.4 EcoTSI petrol
  • Kia Niro
    First Drive
    27 May 2016
    The Kia Niro will be one of the greenest cars in the compact crossover class when it goes on sale later this year. We drive it to see what else it has to offer
  • Car review
    27 May 2016
    Can the turbocharged successor to the 458 raise the bar again?