Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Multi-purpose tourer truly stood out on the motorway

Multi-purpose tourer truly stood out on the motorway

THE so-called people mover or MPV (multi-purpose vehicle) seems to have been usurped these days by all sorts of so-called “crossover” vehicles of all shapes and sizes.

That does not mean to say that the MPV as we have known it is something that might be considered a bit passé.

On the contrary, this week’s drive, the new Vauxhall Zafira Tourer proves that there is plenty of life left in this mode of vehicle.

It still scores highly as good, affordable, all-round transport for families, small or large — and the Zafira in particular is newly minted in a new generation, priced from £18,615 on the road.

The Zafira Tourer comes with a new exterior and interior aimed at emphasising its “spacious design and outstanding in-car connectivity”.

I have to say that the standout feature as far as I was concerned was the absolute ease with which it cruises on the motorway.

Vauxhall offers a choice of three engines for the new Zafira Tourer — the 1.4i Turbo and the 2.0CDTi in either manual or automatic transmission, and a 1.6 CDTi ecoFLEX in manual only.

I was driving the latter and found it a satisfying drive, as I said, especially on motorways.

By choosing the 1.6 CDTi (134PS) diesel engine with Start/Stop manual, the Zafira Tourer offers customers CO2 figures from 119g/km, with a combined fuel consumption of 62.8mpg according to the manufacturer.

The latest Zafira Tourer comes with the Flex7 seating system, ergonomically-certified AGR front seats, the Flex-Fix bicycle carrier and FlexRide adaptive damping.

The new range includes the following trim levels: Design, Energy, SRi, SRi Nav, SE, Tech Line, Elite and Elite Nav.

There are Vauxhall IntelliLink infotainment systems with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility and OnStar, including 4G/LTE Wi-Fi hotspot.

Vauxhall has also introduced full LED Adaptive Forward Lighting headlamps to the Zafira Tourer range.

The new Zafira Tourer comes with a new interior and instrument panel. The screen of the infotainment system has been replaced with a new integrated screen.

The new seven-inch up-level touchscreen systems have been “inspired by top-of-the-range tablets”. There is also a new three-dimensionally sculptured steering wheel.

Vauxhall offers two latest generation IntelliLink infotainment systems for the new Zafira Tourer: R 4.0 IntelliLink offers both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.

Vauxhall also offers Navi 950 IntelliLink — an infotainment system with on-board navigation. Vauxhall OnStar is standard in the new Zafira Tourer with Automatic Crash Response and other features.

The modular storage system includes a large storage box and cup-holders that slide on aluminium rails to the desired position.

Passengers in the second row can enjoy a Lounge Seating system. The back of the middle seat in the second row folds down and rotates to offer comfortable armrests for the passengers in the outer seats.

The third-row seats can be folded down flush with the floor of the luggage compartment, creating a level load surface.

The panoramic sunroof flows directly out of the windscreen and stretches to the rear of the vehicle. In a five-seat configuration, the new Zafira Tourer can carry a minimum load volume of 710 litres, increasing to 1,860 litres when the second-row seats are folded down.

The Flex-Fix rear-end carrier system offers an easy-to-use and practical solution for cycling enthusiasts. The integrated system slides out of the rear bumper and can accommodate up to four bicycles.

The new AFL LED system automatically adapts the lighting patterns of the headlamps to the driving situation, so that the optimal light performance is given without dazzling other drivers.

The new generation Front Camera System has a positive impact on all the driver assistance functions it supports, including the High Beam Assist of the AFL LED lighting system and the Traffic Sign Assistant. Following Distance Indication (FDI) also utilises the front camera to detect moving vehicles ahead.

Two features available in the new Zafira Tourer are Adaptive Cruise Control and FlexRide.

Enabled by a radar located behind the front grille, the Adaptive Cruise Control helps the driver to maintain the selected speed while keeping a pre-set distance to the vehicle ahead. In addition to speed, the desired gap to the vehicle ahead can also be selected by the driver.

Elsewhere, the adaptive mechatronic FlexRide chassis continuously adapts vehicle behaviour to the driving situation, style and individual preferences of the driver.

FACTFILE

Vauxhall Zafira Tourer SE 1.6CDTi 134PS ecoFLEX Blueinjection

Options on test car: Winter Pack (£365); spare wheel (£110); Navi 950 Intellilink (£710); Metallic paint (£555)

Total price of test car: £28,415

Engine 1.6CDTi 134PS

Max speed: 120mph

0-60mph: 10.4 seconds

Infotainment systems with phone integration and WiFi hotspot

Ergonomic cockpit and versatile lounge seats for up to seven passengers

Adaptive Forward Lighting LED headlamps seen previously on Astra

Sculptural chrome logo bar and double wing daytime running lights

Standard features include:

17-inch alloy wheels

Lounge seating

Steering wheel mounted audio controls

Dark-tinted rear windows

Electric parking brake

Fuel economy: combined cycle 62.8mpg

Words: Nigel Wigmore

Motoring

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