The Vauxhall Allegra's interior has been spied for the first time as the city car continues its cold weather testing. The new Mini rival is in its final year of development ahead of a planned 2013 launch.
The car, which was previously known as the Vauxhall Junior, borrows much of its basic switchgear on and below the steering wheel and its instrument binnacle from the larger Vauxhall Corsa. But the centre console and dashboard are believed to be of a much higher quality, with soft-touch materials and gloss black trim.
At just 3.7 metres long — the same as the Mini — the Vauxhall Allegra will be made only as a three-door hatchback. Despite the camouflage, it is possible to see that it features comparatively narrow pillars, a low beltline and large, rounded headlights.
It looks less obviously like a Vauxhall/Opel family member than some current models, with its short wheelbase and unusually wide tracks giving it a squat, sporty look. It also features a convex rear window reminiscent of the original Ford Ka’s, and an arched roofline like that of an Audi A1.
The design is the work of the Vauxhall/Opel studio in Russelsheim. Although it is focused on European motorists, GM marketing chiefs believe the city hatch could sell well in Asia and Latin America.
Despite the three-door body, the Junior has practical four-person accommodation and is bigger inside than a Fiat 500.
The Junior will be offered with a range of economy-focused three-cylinder engines in both petrol and diesel forms, but sportier engines may also be in prospect; insiders say the engine bay can be made in two different sizes to accommodate bulkier powertrains. A battery-powered version is also understood to be under development and is due in 2015.
The Junior will be the premium-priced model in a three-strong GM small-car range alongside the Corsa and Agila, all of which use iterations of the firm’s latest small-car platform designed in Korea.