By Otsile Kadiege
There’s a new player in the popular and a highly contested B-hatch segment and it’s none other than the new Opel Corsa. The Corsa is still produced German automaker, Opel, which is now under the PSA Group, which itself falls under the Stellantis umbrella. Enough about the corporate structure and back to the Corsa which Opel South Africa is hoping will make a significant dent in the sales of the favoured Volkswagen Polo. If looks and quality are anything to go by, they may be onto something but they must be warned, the Polo has seen off many great foes.
Bold and pure design
Ever since its inception in 1982 the sporty compact hatchback has grown in size and has become more premium over the years. The new Corsa, now in its sixth generation, boasts a sporty yet elegant exterior look. Upfront, the award winning new Corsa comes with athletic looking headlight design featuring halogen lights with signature Opel “Wing” daytime running lights as standard – LED headlights are standard on the Elegance derivative. The sporty touches are further accentuated by athletic bodylines, boot spoiler and a two-tone roof on the Elegance derivative. There are a few vibrant colours to choose from like the Voltaic Blue, Orange Fizz and Pepperoncino Red.
The cabin looks and feels premium in the Elegance derivative, which features comfortable heated faux leather seats, faux leather wrapped multifunctional steering wheel, 7-inch digital cluster and a 7-inch touchscreen (on the Edition and Elegance) with good graphics. Its intuitive infotainment system features Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Bluetooth connectivity. The Elegance derivative also gets 3 USB ports (1 front and 2 at the back), a 12-volt socket and a wireless charging pad.
As mentioned above, the cabin is comfortable, fairly spacious and practical. The luggage capacity is decently sized (309-litres), which can be expanded by folding the 60:40 split rear seats.
Performance figures and driving experience
The new Opel Corsa comes with a choice of two petrol engines, namely the:
- 1.2-litre three-cylinder naturally-aspirated petrol engine – 55 kW / 118 Nm 5-speed manual transmission; and
- 1.2-litre three-cylinder turbopetrol engine – 96 kW / 230 Nm 6-speed automatic transmission.
The only available derivative at launch was the Elegance, which is powered by the turbopetrol engine. We were impressed with the responsiveness of the engine and how it remained planted throughout spirited jaunts. Its suspension did a decent job at soaking up road imperfections in the Greater Johannesburg area selected for the launch.
Driver assistance and safety features
Some of the safety features include ESP, hill start assist, lane keep assist, collision mitigation braking at low speeds, front pedestrian detection and driver drowsiness alert. Driver assistance systems include front and rear park assist for the Elegance derivative, 180-degree view camera, park assist and traffic sign recognition.
The new Opel Corsa is priced as follows:
- Opel Corsa – R274,900;
- Opel Corsa Edition – R294,900; and
- Opel Corsa Elegance – R 386 900.
The new Opel Corsa comes standard with 3 year/120,000 km warranty and 3 year/45,000 km service plan.
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