Vauxhall Astra Diesel
20th April, 2005
Surely there must be a catch? How can the new entry-level diesel engine in the Vauxhall Astra offer substantial improvements in performance while actually using less fuel? Thanks to the latest in turbodiesel technology, Vauxhall has made the impossible possible.
The latest addition to the Astra CDTi range, which goes on sale this week in Great Britain, uses a more powerful development of the unit already seen in the Vauxhall Corsa and Vauxhall Tigra line-ups. The new 90PS powerplant uses a sophisticated variable geometry turbocharger to give a maximum torque output of 200Nm (148lb ft) between 1,750 and 2,500rpm. That represents a 30Nm increase over the Vauxhall Astra’s current 1.7-litre CDTi 80PS engine.
On the road this translates to perkier performance, with the 0-60 mph acceleration time dropping from 14.0 to 12.7 seconds and the top speed rising from 104 to 107 mph. But it is economy and running costs which really matter to diesel drivers – and here the new CDTi really shines. Returning a 58.9 mpg average on the combined cycle and an astonishing 70.6 mpg on the extra-urban cycle, the new diesel is one of the most economical cars on sale in the UK, and yet it can still offer all the style, space and practicality of the Astra.
The impressive performance is partly due to the introduction of an all-new six-speed manual transmission, which is geared to combine the best in peppy performance round town while maintaining the ability to cruise effortlessly at motorway speeds.
The engine follows the rest of the Astra’s diesel model range by meeting tough Euro 4 emissions legislation.
Expect it to catch on quickly! But will we see it Australia? Time will tell, but can you imagine Holden wanting Peugeot and Volkswagen to keep the expanding market for diesels to themselves? Be sure of one fact .... the market for diesels will expand in Australia as more and more people realise that the European diesels engines are excellent when it comes to economy and performance. In the upmarket cars, Peugeot and Audi are expanding their diesel choices. It will surprise our Editor if Holden doesn't join in the race to offer a diesel.
Vauxhall Astra CDTi