Vauxhall Meriva (2010 – 2017) Review

Vauxhall Meriva (2010 – 2017) At A Glance

Practical and easy to get in and out of. Facelifted 2014 models get impressive new 1.6-litre CDTi engine.

Spacesaver spare a £105 option. Pricey top models. Old 1.7-litre CDTi best avoided. Suspension is set-up for sportiness rather than comfort.

Insurance Groups are between 5–17
On average it achieves 81% of the official MPG figure

The second-generation Vauxhall Meriva was a huge step-forward from its predecessor and established itself as an innovative and very capable small people carrier. Despite facing tougher opposition from with the C-MAX and the likes of the Citroen C3 Picasso, the Meriva still has plenty to recommend it.

The big talking point is its unique Flexdoor arrangement. Vauxhall has gone for rear-hinged rear doors, which if nothing else offer a significant talking point. We used to call them ‘suicide doors’, but since then, they've been fitted to several cars, such as the Rolls Royce Phantom.

The doors have various locking systems which make them safe and it's fair to say that they are more than just a gimmick. Both they and the front doors open extra wide (with four separate click-stops) and facilitate very easy entry and exit.

For 2014, the Meriva received a subtle facelift. The styling, which needed little in the way of updating, remains as it was with staggered side windows which give rear seat passengers more glass area. Ideal for children in the back who are prone to car sickness. The clever seating and luggage arrangements remain as they were.

The big news is the arrival of a new 1.6-litre CDTi unit that Vauxhall calls the 'Whisper Diesel', which will eventually replace the old 1.3-litre and pensionable 1.7-litre diesels. Also, the appealing 1.4-litre turbo engine has been tweaked for lower emissions and improved fuel consumption.

If you're looking for a small MPV, the Meriva is a worth considering. The quirky Flexdoors are a user-friendly feature and it has a spacious interior with good rear passenger room. Rather oddly for a family car it feels like a driver's MPV, with a handling balance baised towards the sporting side. If you're after the last word in comfort, you may well want to look elsewhere.

Real MPG average for a Vauxhall Meriva (2010 – 2017)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

81%

Real MPG

25–59 mpg

MPGs submitted

453

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Is there any reason to buy a Mercedes B-Class to replace my Vauxhall Meriva apart from badge prestige?
"I'm looking to replace a Meriva A and am looking at a Meriva B, which seems the best value to buy used. A Dacia Logan, which is slightly more expensive used, is cheaper to run. A Mercedes-Benz B-Class is more expensive to buy and run - but is there any reason to pay more for the Mercedes apart from badge prestige?"
The B-Class will have a much more premium interior and is better to drive than the Logan and Meriva. It depends whether you want value for money or something a bit more luxurious.
Answered by Andrew Brady
I can't open the back doors of my car, what's wrong with it?
"The central locking on my Vauxhall Meriva isn't working. I turn the key once to unlock the drivers door and twice to unlock the back and passenger doors, however only the driver's door will actually open. I have had to put my children into the back seats through the front. Obviously it's not very safe, but I don't know what's wrong. "
Likely to be sticking lock servos. There is usually an access grommet in the lock face of the door that allows you to poke the extended nozzle of a can of WD40 through and give the solenoids a squirt to drive out the moisture.
Answered by Honest John
My Vauxhall Meriva needs a new engine - do I have any recourse against Vauxhall?
"I have a 2010 Vauxhall Meriva 1.4 turbo that's around 41,000 miles. Driving on the motorway last week, it began to lose power and then completely died. Had it recovered by the RAC and taken to a local garage. Both have said there is no compression and I'm looking at a new engine. Given its only done 41,000 miles, do I have any recourse against Vauxhall for them to replace the engine?"
It's more than six years old, so no liability by Vauxhall or by the original supplying dealer. This would have depended on its maintenance record anyway. If wholly Vauxhall serviced and always on time then they might have a case to answer. We might be starting to get more reports of failures of the 1.4T in Meriva and Astra. Not a deluge, but a few more, suggesting there might be a problem. Could be from not idling the engine before switching off when the turbo is very hot. This ends up carbonising the oil in the oil feed to the turbo and cutting down oil circulation.
Answered by Honest John
Can you recommend a car with a low boot lip for wheelchair loading?
"I would like your advice on behalf of my elderly parents please. They are looking for a new small SUV or hatchback with a low boot lip to load my sister's wheelchair without having to lift it up too high. They currently have a Vauxhall Meriva and have told me they are considering the Ford C-Max, but if you know of any better alternatives I'd appreciate your input."
The Ford Tourneo Connect might work out better for them. Or a Citroen Berlingo Multispace or Peugeot Partner Tepee. Lower rear load deck.
Answered by Honest John

What does a Vauxhall Meriva (2010 – 2017) cost?