All the official details and pics of Vauxhall's new Mondeo rival
18 April 2008

This is the all-new Insignia, Vauxhall’s replacement for the Vectra, and the car intended to take on the Ford Mondeo at its own game.It’s 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 be making its official debut at the London Motor Show in July, with the first cars being delivered to UK customers in October.These official 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. There will be three bodystyles available, a four-door saloon and a five-door hatchback (which use identical doors and glass shapes for production efficiency), along with an estate that follows later.The exterior design is striking, with the saloon and hatchback boasting coupe-like profiles 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 sport profile.Hatch, saloon and estate all use the same wheelbase this time – and there are no plans to replace the unloved Signum ‘executive hatch’. The estate is less of a load-lugger than the Vectra wagon is, we’re told that it adopts the concept of the semi-sporting Audi Avant. The tracks of all Insignia models increase by around 50mm compared with the Vectra, there’s a 50mm rise in the bonnet height to cope with new crash regs and the seat heights are higher, too – although Vauxhall claims “only a few millimetres” rise in overall height. Both saloon and estate have more luggage space than the already-generous Vectra.Vauxhall design chief Mark Adams reckons Insignia’s interior design takes GM’s European models to a new level of materials 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. Three petrol and two diesel engines will be available from launch in the UK, all of which meet Euro V emissions standards. Although the Insignia’s weight has not been disclosed, the basic 138bhp four-cylinder petrol motor will have its work cut out motivating such a big car. At the other end of the line-up, the range-topping 258bhp turbocharged V6 petrol motor should have no such difficulties. The diesels are both versions of GM’s new 2.0-litre common-rail turbo motor, initially in 128bhp and 158bhp states of tune. More powerful versions will follow, in addition to a high-economy EcoFLEX variant. Insignia will make its debut at the Lonon show in July, with more versions and specification confirmed at Paris in September. The first cars will be in British showrooms in October, and Vauxhall intends to make a big splash for the car’s arrival. Company bosses say the long-term decline in ‘D’ segment sales has been levelling off in recent years, and that private buyers are becoming more interested in these cars.Britain is likely to be the Insignia’s most important market, with early estimates suggesting as much as 45 per cent of production could come here (with Germany accounting for another 38 percent). Prototypes have spent considerable time on UK roads to refine the car’s ride and handling – and Vauxhall insiders confirm the UK market will get unique models, including an SRi variant intended to fight the Mondeo Zetec and Titanium.

Steve Cropley

Join the debate

Comments
14

18 April 2008

You have to admit that its a very attarcative car, albeit with a big slog of Jag XF in the profile. Looking for a small Exec type car, The BMW 3 series makes so much sense, but why can't it be this attractive? Desperately want an alternative to the BMW that is as dynamically sound.

18 April 2008

Nice car i like it.

I remember reading a few years ago about the new vectra 2008 replacement would have an auto pilot feature. I sure hope they implement.

If they implement this and it works i will be outside my local dealership on launch day!


GM announced it will offer a self-driving system on the 2008 Opel Vectra. The system will use a camera, laser beams, heavy-duty computer algorithms and a small, green Martian named Kazoo (holla Flinstones!) to pilot the car at up to 60 mph in rush-hour traffic, while the driver reads a copy of Der Spiegel and munches on a fresh Krueller.

link below

http://jalopnik.com/cars/gadgets/
gm-to-launch-auto-pilot-of-sorts-on-2008-opel-vectra-122509.php

18 April 2008

I like the look of it but dont like the interior layout myself. Def looks better than the may passat! Wonder what the hatch and estate will look like

18 April 2008

To me it looks better in these shots than the previews the other day, which is weird (was i drunk?)! But, I reckon it will still look pants with the 16" steels on the 'Club' version. And please Vauxhall, give us some decent colours, not just shades of gunmetal, grey and silver....

18 April 2008

[quote Schwenck]not just shades of gunmetal, grey and silver....[/quote]

couldnt agree more! I was gutted when my boss told me i had the choice of Silver or black when i got my passat estate! I wanted red!!

21 April 2008

The Koreans won't be worried by this latest attempt by Vauxhall! Can't wait to hear Clarkson getting his teeth in to this one.....

22 April 2008

Yeah, Clarkson's review of this will be one of the TV highlights of the year!

22 April 2008

Like I said, not so convincing on 16" steels. Looks a bit blobby now, no where for the bulk to hide...

[url]http://www.betawebtest.ft6.com/betawebtest_home/IMAG000.JPG[/url]


22 April 2008

WOW, all I can say is well done GM! Whilst there is probably some truth in the suggestion that 15" steel wheels, non metalic and no chrome won't do it any favours - lets be fair we are taliking about a replacement for the Vectra here and in that regard this looks like a giant leap forwards to me. So leaving aside the 'poverty models' for a moment what about a 300bhp 4 wheel drive VXR - bring it on I rekon !!

26 April 2008

Given the massive increase in size, I question whether it still belongs in the D segment. Looks more like an Omega replacement challenging an A6 especially with its rounded styling. If it isn't for the need to put a V8 in, this appears a more relevant large car in a green-minded world than the Commodore, with its front-wheel drive probably giving it better interior packaging.

Its aim to move upmarket looks pretty convincing in pictures.

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Lexus LC500
    Car review
    20 October 2017
    Futuristic Lexus LC coupé mixes the latest technology with an old-school atmospheric V8
  • Maserati Levante S GranSport
    First Drive
    20 October 2017
    Get ready to trade in your diesels: Maserati’s luxury SUV finally gets the engine it’s always needed
  • Jaguar XF Sportbrake TDV6
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The handsome Jaguar XF Sportbrake exhibits all the hallmarks that makes the saloon great, and with the silky smooth diesel V6 makes it a compelling choice
  • Volkswagen T-Roc TDI
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    Volkswagen's new compact crossover has the looks, the engineering and the build quality to be a resounding success, but not with this diesel engine
  • BMW M550i
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The all-paw M550i is a fast, effortless mile-muncher, but there's a reason why it won't be sold in the UK