What is it?
This is the Vauxhall Zafira Tourer, the seven-seat Ford S-Max-rivalling MPV, with a new 1.6-litre diesel engine.
It’s the first model in Vauxhall’s line-up to receive the new all-aluminium diesel engine, as part of a major powertrain development programme which will see 80 per cent of the engine range renewed by 2016.
The new engine produces a useful 134bhp and 236lb ft and is claimed to be capable of averaging 68.9mpg, impressive given the Zafira Tourer’s dimensions and 1626kg kerb weight.
More notably, its CO2 emissions are rated at 109g/km, meaning road tax costs just £20 a year allied to appealing benefit-in-kind company car tax rates for business users.
Developed entirely within GM, the 1.6-litre diesel is equipped with high pressure common-rail fuel injection, a single variable geometry turbocharger, start/stop and an exhaust gas treatment system. These work together to improve efficiency while retaining drivability.
The engine features ‘sound engineering’ measures, including multiple injection cycles designed to smooth the combustion process and reduce the stereotypical diesel clatter, acoustic shielding and quiet scissor gear drives for the engine’s timing systems.
Vauxhall has also revised its six-speed manual gearbox, with new internals and gearchange mechanisms. These upgrades are claimed to reduce shift travel and effort. An automatic transmission will be offered in the future.
Besides marking the introduction of a new 1.6-litre engine into a diesel line-up that previously consisted of solely 2.0-litre units, other updates include a newly developed Flex7 seating system and a choice of two new infotainment systems.