Pictures leak out of Vauxhall’s Mondeo rival
16 April 2008

These are leaked pictures of the all-new Insignia, Vauxhall’s replacement for the Vectra and the car intended to give General Motors a genuine rival to the Ford Mondeo.The Insignia is larger and better-looking than the car it replaces, but it’s also been engineered to offer the sort of quality feel previously unknown to Vauxhall drivers. The car will make its official debut at the London Motor Show in July, with the first cars being delivered to UK customers in October.The leaked pictures show a car which, like the Ford Mondeo, Citroen C5 and Honda Accord, features more individualistic and ‘premium’ styling, intended to help distinguish it from other D-segment rivals. Like other mainstream manufacturers Vauxhall is keen to press the increasingly upmarket credentials of its new family car, while continuing to undercut marques like BMW and Audi.The Insignia is the first production model to use GM’s new Epsilon 2 platform, a much-altered and improved version of the original Epsilon used by the current Vectra. It’s grown substantially, being nearly seven inches longer than the current car. The leaked images show the saloon version, but both hatchback and estate bodystyles will also be offered. The exterior design is striking, boasting a coupé-like profile and a shrink-wrapped, compact look (surprising, considering the car’s Mondeo-beating dimensions). A distinctive scalloped shape runs from the driver’s door down the side of the bodyshell, working with the relatively shallow glasshouse to emphasise the car’s sporty profile.The Insignia’s interior design takes GM’s European models to new level of material quality and sophistication. The architecture and ambience is far more radical than the severe practicality of the Vectra; in fact, it makes most BMWs look austere. Technical details will be released later in the week, and we’ll be the first to bring you the full story and the official pictures.

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14

16 April 2008

Very Nice. Things are looking interesting at last...This looks a better car than the Accord. Move aside Mundano....

16 April 2008

Estate agents of the land rejoice.

Beautiful, assuming you like neo-American styling with lots of chrome effect. Imagine how that will look on the base model with tiny steel wheels.

Still, I must learn not to judge a car from picture and cars I hate at launch have a tendency to grow on me...

16 April 2008

Very impressed. Very Peugeot! Is the Frenchman still in charge at Nissan? The centre binacle is straight out of the Murano 4x4 but no problem with that. Inside and out this is a mightily tidy, well designed quality package. Can't criticise a thing. 10/10 Nissan.

GD

16 April 2008

How nice that Ford and Vauxhall are really trying to challenge BMW, VW, Audi and Mercedes. Perhaps we can now have far greater choice of good cars in the real family car sector.

GB

16 April 2008

When the current Avensis stops production, those Toyota fans will still have something similar looking (at the front, anyway) to buy.

The inside of it actually looks pretty decent.

Shame about the back end though. Chrysler Neon, anyone?

Where has all Japanese design went to?

17 April 2008

I've said this elsewhere, but I don't 'get' it. I think the exterior styling is a mess of too many influences (XF, Primera, Avensis), and overall, the interior doesn't do much for me either. There are some nice details - the wheel, doors, area around the gear lever, instrument binnacle - but that button-tastic centre console really grates, along with the wood.

I find the side profile particularly hard to get my head around. I'm not entirely sure why, the proportions just look odd to me. Have to say I've gone off the looks of the new Mondeo a bit too though having seen more of them around.

17 April 2008

[quote NiallOswald] Have to say I've gone off the looks of the new Mondeo a bit too though having seen more of them around.[/quote]

I agree. The mondeo was a bit of a case of 'The emperors new clothes' We were repeatedly told how wonderful it was, so we all agreed. Now the chrome has started to dull a bit we can see it for the rather plain, overweight and bloated design it really is. No amount of chrome can solve that!

17 April 2008

Smart looking car. Glad to see they have resisted the styling trend of extending the front grill below the bumper line, like Audi and so many others; I read somewhere once that this trend had been taken up by so many makers because it appeals more to the far-eastern and growing Chinese markets, where they like a car to have a vertical "face" look rather than the horizontal lines that appeal to westerners. My only reservations are the "wood" trim on the dashboard/facia/console and the dished rear view, which may look better seen square-on. I like the crease lines on the sides, stylish and different to anyone else. Look forward to seeing it in the metal.


Enjoying a Fabia VRs - affordable performance

17 April 2008

I agree about the new Mondeo. I too thought it looked quite smart and up-market when I first saw one on the road on the move but was suprised by how it looked much bigger than expected when I stood next to one parked on the street. Then on monday i parked in the local town car-park and waited to open my door whilst a young chap struggled to park his sparkling black and chrome Mondeo next to me. He apologised for delaying me as we got out of our cars and I remarked how smart his nice new car looked, he grinned and said "Yes its great, except they made it too big !".


Enjoying a Fabia VRs - affordable performance

17 April 2008

I quite like the exterior shape, especially compared with the horrible outgoing Vectra.

Inside looks quite inviting too, though the number of buttons on the centre console seems to suggest GM haven't quite mastered the Human-Machine Interface.

The new Mondeo is large and it is one of those cars that really needs big wheels and dark colors. In the lighter colors and lower specs it doesn't shine at all. The Insignia will probably also fall into this category.

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