The Vauxhall Astra is one of the UK’s top-selling and best-loved cars with almost three million sold in the UK over the last 36 years, including 50,000 in the last 12 months; and that figure is likely to rise with the recent addition of the new Astra Sports Tourer, fresh from its 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show debut.
Built with an all-new lightweight vehicle architecture, new design, new powertrains and new technology at Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port manufacturing plant in Cheshire, helping to secure 2,000 jobs into 2020, the new Astra Sports Tourer will appeal not only to company car drivers, but also to anyone looking for a practical family car.
While in overall dimensions, the latest generation Sports Tourer has almost the same dimensions as the outgoing model, inside it offers much more space for passengers and luggage, with space to take up to three child seats in the rear and up to 1,630 litres of luggage.
But what catches the eye immediately is a lighter, more athletic and more agile appearance, courtesy of the Vauxhall design philosophy ‘sculptural artistry meets technical precision’ and the design inspiration of 2013’s Monza Concept.
With its all-new lightweight architecture, the new Sports Tourer is more lithe and aerodynamic, and up to 190kg lighter than its predecessor thanks to the wide use of high-strength and ultra-high-strength lightweight steels. Even the exhaust system is lighter, and tyres and wheels smaller, which not only increases the aerodynamic effects but also the performance of the brakes, with less mass to stop!
For the first time on a Vauxhall, the tailgate can be opened without a touch or a remote control, a simple small kicking motion under the rear bumper enough to open the tailgate, thanks to “Keyless Entry and Start”. And it closes with a further kicking motion under the bumper. Traditionalists will be pleased to know that you can still open and close manually and with a switch on the driver’s side of the car or via the key’s remote control.
Inside, more room is made with 40/20/40 foldable rear seats in the Elite model to allow even more flexible loading space, and the FlexOrganiser product range with side rails, dividing nets and various fastening options is available as an option so that all loaded materials can be stored safely and tidily.
The new Astra Sports Tourer uses the latest-generation Vauxhall engines - another big tick when it comes to efficiency with their compact, lighter and ultra-efficient design. And this reduced weight also leads to noticeably higher agility while saving fuel and CO2 emissions.
For example, the new Astra Sports Tourer diesel with 110PS achieves 83.1mpg while only emitting 89g/km of CO2.
All diesel engines, including the top-of-the-range BiTurbo engine, are available at 1.6 litres, And the 1.6 BiTurbo CDTi with 160PS can achieve up to 67.3mpg and emits as little as 112g/km of CO2 when used in combination with six-speed manual transmission and Start/Stop, right up to a top speed of 137mph.
The 1.6 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo is the most powerful petrol engine available for the Astra Sports Tourer, with the 200PS turbocharged direct injection engine boasting an impressive 300Nm of torque, allowing an acceleration from 0-60mph in just 7.2 seconds to a top speed of And all this with fuel economy of 45.6mpg on the combined cycle and CO2 emissions as low as 142g/km.
Normally, when we talk about technology in the car we are discussing those systems that ensure a safe drive. But here we are talking about the technical development in the car itself, taking into consideration the weight reduction and the compact design.
Having delivered a lightweight chassis with driving dynamics, the new Astra Sports Tourer is finely honed in key areas such as suspension, brakes and steering, with the ultimate result of greater agility, better handling, improved responsiveness and enhanced ride comfort.
This solid structure of the car ensures a firm foundation for Astra’s handling optimisation, as well as helping to reduce the noise and vibration in the cabin, with changes to the chassis merely adding to this.
The latest evolution of the de-coupled MacPherson struts, with an aluminium strut carrier, results in excellent roadholding and has been developed in combination with the improved, electrically-powered steering to deliver precise control and handling, aided and abetted by the dual-circuit braking system that comes in one of three combinations: 15" specification, 16" specification and a 16"/15" alternative which uses the larger front and smaller rear discs.
Electronic Stability Control (ESC) is standard across the range, Smooth Road Shake (SRS) compensation helps reduce any steering wheel vibration, Drift Pull Compensation (DPC) automatically corrects any pull or drift tendency, and the new Astra Sports Tourer’s rack-and-pinion steering system electrically powered to help reduce fuel consumption.
"A comprehensive active and passive safety concept is the basis for outstanding protection in the new Astra Sports Tourer."
Having already said that the whole car's rigidity has been increased with high-strength and ultra-high-strength lightweight steels, you can expect a high level of safety, and by adding in an intelligent and dynamic lighting system, IntelliLux, that automatically and continuously adapts to achieve maximum lighting whatever the traffic is doing as well as some of the latest safety technology available, you can rest assured that any journey will be a safe one.
Among the numerous assistance systems available that benefit from the latest-generation front camera that comes with the new Astra Sports Tourer is:
With the ability to connect whenever and wherever an essential part of modern life, the Astra Sports Tourer offers up outstanding connectivity thanks to Vauxhall OnStar.
With OnStar, Vauxhall’s award-winning IntelliLink system brings compatibility with Android 5.0 Lollipop and Apple iOS 8 (or higher) smartphones and apps into the car, with a higher grade version due at a later date. Via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, users can access maps, message reading and third-party apps (depending on the integration system) via the car controls and its large touchscreens (available up to eight inches).
OnStar turns the car into a powerful a 4G/LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot, enabling up to seven devices to be connected to the car network, and gives access to a broad portfolio of services such as emergency services, roadside assistance and remote control through the myVauxhall App where you speak to real people should an emergency arise.
Infotainment functions can be controlled via the touchscreen that is located on the centre console, via remote control on the steering wheel (selected functions only) or via voice control, with the most important information repeatedly displayed directly under the drivers’ eyes in the colour instrument cluster located between the speedometer and the rev counter in order to avoid any potential distractions whilst on the road.
And on top of all this, all Sports Tourer models come with Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, audio streaming, Aux-in, DAB+ and USB ports.
Vauxhall’s all-new Astra Sports Tourer range includes Design, Tech Line, SRi and Elite, with Nav versions of the SRi and Elite trims also available.
Each trim level features a high level of standard specification:
* = Please note: Standard 16-inch alloy wheels for Design and Tech Line models will not be available until late Summer 2016. Therefore until then both models will be supplied with 16-inch structure wheels.
Tech Line adds in:
SRi adds in:
SRi Nav models additionally feature Navi 900 IntelliLink system with fully-integrated European sat nav system and eight-inch colour touch-screen
Elite adds in (from Design):
Elite Nav models additionally feature Navi 900 IntelliLink system and fully integrated European sat nav and eight-inch colour touch screen
The new Astra Sports Tourer is now available to lease from Nationwide Vehicle Contracts. Contact one of our representatives to discuss some of the Hot Deals that we have on offer on this, and other cars too!