Although the ride boarder ed on the hard side, it is quite fluid and compliant, coping well with uneven road surfaces and pot holes.
The 5-Speed dash-mounted gearbox is well-placed but we found gear changes a bit sloppy and it occasionally felt like a 6th gear would have helped matters.
How It Drove - Ride and Handling
Although the ride boarder ed on the hard side, it is quite fluid and compliant, coping well with uneven road surfaces and pot holes. The steering is well weighted and with body roll being kept in check, it is surprising how nimble the Zafira can be, even on ‘B’ roads.
If you like your ride a little sportier, then you can opt for the Interactive Driving System or IDS-Plus for short (option available on SRi Models). It incorporates an electronic damping system which senses the dynamics of the Zafira automatically adjusting the dampers in tune. SRi and some of the other high end Zafira’s also benefit from the “Sports Switch” which improves the steering and throttle responses making the steering and throttle sharper and more responsive. On cars with IDS-Plus it also activates the Continuous Damping Control (CDC) function which adaptively stiffens ups the suspension.
Who said MPV have to be dull?
Ease of Use
We found the Vauxhall Zafira a pleasant car to live with which is of prime importance to the family buyer. All round visibility is very good and it is easy to judge the four corner points, occasionally the front ‘A’ pillars did mask other road users but probably no worse than any other MPV.
At £300 the keyless entry system was an expensive option but was very welcome as it dispenses with the need for an ignition key. Simply place the electronic ‘plip’ key in your pocket or purse, then when you touch the door handle the car will automatically open, there is no ignition lock, simply a start and stop button on the central console. One thing that is missing and this applies to all Zafira's is that it doesn’t benefit from drive away locking. Yes, we could have manually locked the door before moving off, but other things do distract you, so it is especially important on a family car.
Vauxhall Zafira Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Vauxhall Zafira 1.8 Club|
|Colour||Star Silver Metallic|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||10.8 Seconds|
|Top Speed||122 mph|
|Fuel Type||Unleaded Petrol|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||44.1 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||5|
|Warranty||3-Years / 60,000 Miles|
|Price (when tested on the 15/03/06)||£16,395 OTR (Test car £20,820 including options)|