Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer
Vauxhall Insignia

Estate cars are somewhat common place in the UK, and as such, manufacturers have to provide a strong case for why you, the buyer, should purchase their car over any other.

With the Insignia Sports Tourer, Vauxhall might have done just that.

The exterior design is svelte with distinct coupe-like styling. From the front and rear, it certainly looks the part. The coupe styling - whilst sleek - gives the impression of the car having been stretched backward. As a result, the tailgate appears to overhang the rear wheels. We think this works, however, you may disagree.

Our test car was the Vauxhall Insignia Exclusiv Nav 2.0 CDTi 160PS, coupled to the 6-speed manual gearbox. Additional options included the Plus Pack (18" 7-twinspoke alloy wheels and Front fog lights) - £475, DAB radio - £155, integrated mobile phone system with Bluetooth - £215 and Adaptive Forward Lighting (AFL) - £870.

The Exclusiv Nav model provides a Satellite Navigation system with colour monitor, integrated stereo radio/CD, auxiliary-in and an iPod compatible USB socket.

How It Drove - Ride and Handling

The Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer features Vauxhall's FlexRide system, which provides the driver with a choice of three dynamic settings - Standard, Tour and Sport, all of which can be selected to suit your driving style and road conditions.

'Tour' mode, as the name suggests, is designed for long distance driving, for example, motorway driving. As such, the damping is softened, allowing the suspension to absorb more bumps in the road, giving the driver and passengers a smooth relaxed ride.

It's on the motorway that the Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer feels most at home, providing a smooth and relaxed experience, allowing long distances to be covered in comfort.

At the other end of the settings is Sport mode, when the FlexRide system stiffens the damping and the throttle response becomes swifter. Alongside this, the Adaptive Forward Lighting system reacts more quickly. Even the lighting on the instrument panel changes from white to red adding to the driving experience.

The difference is evident with power available on demand for overtaking and the car feels more composed through corners. Unfortunately the steering feels light and a little too disconnected for enthusiastic driving.

In the middle of the two is 'Standard' mode, where the suspension feels a bit firm, but as far as we are concerned, that is a good thing, still allowing the car to be pushed through corners with confidence.

The 1.8i, 2.0 turbo and the 2.8i turbo V6 engines which make up the petrol range, and the 2.0 CDTi diesel engine, available in 130PS and 160PS guises completes the line up.

The entry-level petrol engine is the four-cylinder 1.8 litre. It produces 140PS at 6300rpm and maximum torque of 175Nm at 3800rpm. The 2.0i turbo 220PS engine generates 350Nm of torque between 2000 to 4000rpm. Fitted with this engine, the Sports Tourer reaches 60mph from standstill in 7.5 seconds (7.6 seconds for the automatic) and has a top speed of 147mph. It posts an official fuel consumption figure of 31.4mpg on the combined cycle.

Published : 27/04/11 Author : Melanie Carter

Vauxhall Insignia News

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