- New ‘Structure’ wheel puts kerb on damage costs
- All the looks of an alloy but costs less than £16 to replace
- Fitted as standard on new Vectra Exclusiv
It’s a sound which every driver dreads….. Just as you are trying to park neatly or squeeze past traffic on a tight urban street there is a sickening graunch as your expensive alloys meet the kerbstone.
If the damage isn’t too severe, owners might get away with getting the wheel refurbished by a specialist and a bill for around £60. Anything more severe will mean the whole wheel will have to be replaced, and the cost is likely to be at least three figures. Wheelcovers are much easier and cheaper to replace of course, but all style-conscious drivers lust after the sleek looks of alloy wheels.
Now Vauxhall has come up with the perfect answer - the Structure wheel. Fitted as standard to the new Vectra Exclusiv, it looks - even to the trained eye - like an attractive alloy wheel. In fact it is an innovative five-spoke steel wheel covered with an easy-to-replace plastic wheel cover. If it’s damaged, a replacement cover costs less than £16 including VAT, so all four wheeltrims can be replaced for less than the cost of refurbishing one alloy wheel!
As the cover is also held in place by the wheel’s bolts, theft is far more difficult than with a conventional wheeltrim, and it’s virtually impossible for it to fly off when the car is in motion.
Vauxhall’s experts were also determined that the new wheel shouldn’t harm the new Vectra’s driving dynamics, so the entire Structure wheel assembly, including the cover, is only marginally heavier than the equivalent 16-inch alloy wheel.
It’s just another example of how Vauxhall is using its expertise to keep running costs low for its customers. In fact, it looks like Vauxhall could have created a real ‘revolution’ in wheel design!Published 27 August 2005