Review: Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008)
Far better than previous Vectra. Now with decent handling and an excellent ride. Plenty of safety kit. Roomy in the front. Big boot. Good looks.
Not as sharp to drive as a Mondeo. Limited rear legroom. The 2.2DI can be heavy on the oil. Reports of parking brake failures.
Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008): At A Glance
- On average it achieves 95% of the official MPG figure
The new Vectra is a big car for big people. It's so big in the front seats that trying to get comfortable I felt like I'd shrunk.
So that's the first piece of good news for our growing population.
What does a Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008) cost?
Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008): What's It Like Inside?
- Boot space is 500–530 litres
Big continues at the back. The yawning chasm of a boot looks like it would cheerfully accommodate an entire flat-pack kitchen. So if you ever see a new shape Vectra with a top-box, the family inside it is probably moving house. But all that baggage space does come at a price and in this case it's rear legroom. Even I found it uncomfortable to sit behind myself, so while a giant would be happy in the front seat, he'd better not regard the new Vectra as family transport.
Child seats that fit a Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008)Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.
What's the Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008) like to drive?
- Engines range from 1.8i 16V Saloon to 3.0 CDTi V6 Estate
- Readers report Real MPG to be between 19–58 mpg
The belt-cam FIAT/Alfa/GM 1.9 litre 150PS diesel is very impressive. Not as gruff and ‘sudden' as VAG's new 140PS 2.0 litre. But with masses of mid-range torque that fling the car forwards in 3rd and 4th gear. I can't imagine any mid-managers relegated from their 3.0 litre V6s feeling short-changed in that department. Vauxhall certainly gets its gearing right these days. The 150 pulls around 35mph per 1,000rpm in 6th which is not only pleasant and relaxing, it means that a legal 70 you're at the perfect revs to quickly increase speed if you need to without changing down. And in contrast to last week's Astra turbo, instead of drinking petrol at 30 - 35mpg you're sipping diesel at 40 - 45mpg.
The car sits on the same ‘Epsilon' platform as the current SAAB 9-3, so it's far from the stodgy old pudding the previous Vectra was. I suspect it rides a lot better too, but wasn't able to judge that properly because someone had seen fit to ‘bling' the test car up on optional 19" alloy wheels shod with thin strips of 235/35 ZR19 rubber. So, of course, while accelerating hard, any imperfection in the road surface had it torque-steering all over the place. Braking on the uneven surfaces now provided before most roundabouts also upset it quite badly. Even road markings could be felt through the steering. Yet, in spite of this, the ride over traffic harming measures was not too bad. So I strongly suspect that on more sensible, standard 17" wheels and tyres there would be less to complain about. And there would be no grouches at all on the 215/55 R16s of lower spec Vectras.
I'm not getting at Vauxhall here. These days, motors have to appeal to everyone and if they hadn't put 19" alloys on the options list, then the aftermarket definitely would have.
So what's the verdict? Better or worse than a Mondeo? I remain a Mondeo man because it's still a sharper handling car. But whereas the difference between a Mondeo and the old Vectra used to be chalk and cheese, now they're no more than different kinds of cheeses. So if someone told me they preferred their new Vectra to a Mondeo I wouldn't get into a silly argument.
|1.8i 16V||39 mpg||-||173 g/km|
|1.8i 16V Estate||38 mpg||-||180 g/km|
|1.8i 16V Saloon||39 mpg||-||173 g/km|
|1.9 CDTi 120||50 mpg||-||154 g/km|
|1.9 CDTi 120 Estate||49 mpg||-||157 g/km|
|1.9 CDTi 120 Saloon||50 mpg||-||154 g/km|
|1.9 CDTi 150||50 mpg||-||154 g/km|
|1.9 CDTi 150 Estate||49 mpg||-||157 g/km|
|1.9 CDTi 150 Saloon||50 mpg||-||154 g/km|
|2.0i 16V Turbo||33 mpg||-||206 g/km|
|2.0i 16V Turbo Estate||32 mpg||-||211 g/km|
|2.2i 16V Direct||38 mpg||-||180 g/km|
|2.2i 16V Direct Estate||36 mpg||-||187 g/km|
|2.2i 16V Direct Saloon||38 mpg||-||180 g/km|
|3.0 CDTi V6||41 mpg||-||186 g/km|
|3.0 CDTi V6 Estate||41 mpg||-||186 g/km|
|VXR||27 mpg||-||250 g/km|
|VXR Estate||27 mpg||-||252 g/km|
Real MPG average for a Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008)
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.
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.
What have we been asked about the Vauxhall Vectra (2002 – 2008)?
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