From £8,740
The new Corsa finds itself with multi-talented classmates, but this first drives shows it has the talent to compete - and perhaps even win.

Our Verdict

Vauxhall Corsa

The Vauxhall Corsa is very refined, stylish and practical. Engines are not so good

21 August 2006

What's new? An all-new edition of Vauxhall's baby car, based on the same platform as the Punto. Its great styling, good build quality, impressive equipment and keen prices point it squarely at the market leadership. What's it like? Very impressive. Roomy, comfortable and frugal with supple suspension in base versions, though this SXi version is firmer - in exchange for sweeter on-limit handling. The new Corsa does, however, need a punchy 1.6-litre petrol to complete the range. A 197bhp VXR turbo model is coming. Inside, its well-appointed cabin and space, especially in front, give a big-car feel. There are some eye-catching features like an optional £500 pull-out bike rack, follow-the-road lights for every model, and an ESP option for just £250. The entry-level model is classified in insurance category 1. Should I buy one? Yes, but only after evaluating other superminis. This Corsa is a great effort, but the class is too close-fought, and entrants too different in character, to buy with your eyes closed. Steve Cropley

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