The Opel Corsa at Gowan House, Naas Road, Dublin

Opel Launches 6th Generation Corsa

The Opel Corsa at Gowan House, Naas Road, Dublin
The Opel Corsa at Gowan House, Naas Road, Dublin

Opel has launched the 6th generation of the Corsa in Ireland, the brand’s best-selling model to date.

The new Corsa is available from launch with petrol and diesel engines, with an all-electric version ('Corsa-e') due in Ireland this April.

Retailing from €17,975 plus delivery related charges, it is already an international award-winner, crowned AutoBest Best Buy Car of Europe 2020.

Read our review here from the international Opel Corsa launch in Croatia.

James Brooks, Managing Director at Leeson Motors, Opel Importer in Ireland said:

“The arrival of the award-winning, all-new Corsa marks a new departure for the Opel brand in Ireland. It is the first new Opel model to market since Opel Ireland was acquired by the Gowan Group and internationally, it is the first new Opel model produced under the the PSA Group.

A recipe for success, the new Opel Corsa combines high everyday practicality with top technologies, economy, an exciting design plus lots of fun behind the wheel. Indeed, with the new Corsa, Opel is delivering on a promise to make top technologies available to a wide range of buyers, at affordable prices. It represents a huge opportunity to us, as the first new model in what promises to be an exciting produce pipeline over the next eighteen months."

The new Opel Corsa is in dealers now for test drives
The new Opel Corsa is in dealers now for test drives

The new Corsa offers increased interior space and comfort, retaining its renowned German precision for detail. The overall exterior height has been reduced to improve aerodynamics and lower CO2 and consumption. But there's still an increase in front headroom and a longer wheelbase and increased overall exterior length return better cabin space and comfort for passengers. The boot volume is increased (+24 litres) to 309 litres, or up to 1,081 litres with the rear seats folded.

A weight reduction of 108 kg, matched to an improvement in torsional stiffness and lower centre of gravity, delivers greater agility, performance and handling over the previous Corsa model. Available in three trims – SC, SRi and Elite - safety technology features available as standard, or as an option, dependent on trim include Forward Collision Alert with Automatic Emergency Braking and Pedestrian detection, radar-based Adaptive Speed Control, Lane Departure Warning and Traffic Sign Recognition.

The new Opel Corsa also brings adaptive glare-free IntelliLux LED matrix lighting to the segment for the very first time,.

With a choice of two petrol engines (1.2 75bhp or 1.2 100bhp), matched to a manual gearbox or an 8-speed automatic, and a 1.5 102bhp diesel engine manual, the improved Corsa delivers a reduction in CO2 of up to 25%.

The Corsa-e 134bhp returns an electric range of up to 337km (WLTP) and retains the same internal spaciousness and comfort as the petrol and diesel variants. Together with the Opel Grandland X plug-in hybrid, the Corsa-e’s arrival in 2020 marks the starting signal for the Opel electrification-offensive with the Vivaro-e van, and electric Opel Combo Life, Combo Cargo and Zafira Life to follow. Indeed, all Opel model ranges will be electrified with a hybrid or battery electric vehicle by 2024.

First launched in 1982, the Corsa is Opel’s best-selling model, with over 13 million units sold in Europe to date.

It's available now at Opel dealerships nationwide to test drive.

The new Opel Corsa will be available with petrol, diesel and electric powertrains
The new Opel Corsa will be available with petrol, diesel and electric powertrains

The new 2020 Opel Corsa - it's hot!

Opel Corsa 2020 First Drive Review

The new 2020 Opel Corsa - it's hot!
The new 2020 Opel Corsa - it's hot!

There’s an all-new Opel Corsa arriving in dealerships now in Ireland. The Corsa is Opel’s most popular model worldwide and a household name since 1982. Now this historic supermini hero is in its sixth generation - but has never looked better! Built on a new platform, the new Corsa is lighter and more stylish than before with a welcome addition of new technology and equipment. Caroline travelled to Croatia with Opel Ireland to test drive the 2020 Opel Corsa.

Styling

The previous generation Corsa was rather disappointing in the style stakes but that’s been rectified. This new Corsa is seriously desirable in the metal – compact and sporty – with a raft of colour and trim options that depart a different vibe for whatever you’re having yourself. From sporty SRi to city smart Elite, hues ranging from cool grey to cheeky ruby red, the new Corsa has something for everyone! A contrast black roof is available on some models also.

Interior

The interior of the 2020 Opel Corsa has also been extensively modernised. Build quality is good and there is a grown-up feeling in here. It’s quite a conservative cabin so the red trim of the SRi model is a real fun and welcome addition. In Ireland, cars will be specced from standard with a 7” colour touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which will keep younger drivers very happy. Top of the range models get a 10” screen.

The interior of the new Corsa
The interior of the new Corsa

Practicality

The new Corsa carries pretty much the same dimensions as the previous generation of the car. Rear seating is okay for the supermini class but legroom and headroom are not the most generous in the class. The boot volume is up 24 litres to a total of 309 litres. The rear seats split fold 60:40.

Engines

At launch, the Opel Corsa is available in Ireland with a 1.2-litre petrol (75 hp), a 1.2-litre turbo petrol (100 hp) and a 1.5-litre diesel (102 hp). A new electric version, the Corsa-e, will arrive in Ireland in March with a range up to 330 km.

On the road

The new Corsa is lighter, lower and more rigid. The driving position has been much improved and it is now a more engaging car to drive. It sits on a new platform that it shares with the new Peugeot 208 however Opel engineers insist that they have tuned this car 'to be an Opel’.

We can believe it. Opel has such confidence in this car that they took us to the beautiful Dalmatian coast of Croatia and gave us roads that had many twists and turns, climbs and descents, to put the Corsa through its paces and have fun. The car was well set up for this. Yes the suspension is on the firm side but the Corsa is agile and fun to drive as small cars should be.

The Corsa is available with petrol and diesel engines, with a new electric Corsa-e on the way in March
The Corsa is available with petrol and diesel engines, with a new electric Corsa-e on the way in March

We sampled the new 1.2-litre turbo unit with 100 hp in Elite trim and the 130 hp version in the SRi spec. The 1.2 130 hp engine won’t make its way to Ireland. The 100 hp engine is very nice to drive, smooth and chirpy through the gears. A manual gearbox is standard on many models but there’s also a new 8-speed automatic, which we had the opportunity to test. For a small petrol auto combination, on a first encounter it performed well.

Equipment

In Ireland the new Corsa will be available in SC, SC Premium, SRi, SRi Premium and Elite.

The car will be well specced from base with standard equipment including 16” alloys, LED headlights, touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, air con, leather covered steering wheel, cruise control, electric door mirrors and front windows, high beam assist, lane departure warning with lane assist, traffic sign recognition and emergency city braking.

SC Premium will add heated front seats and steering wheel, automatic lights and wipers, anti dazzle rear view mirror and rear parking sensors.

Boot space in the new Opel Corsa
Boot space in the new Opel Corsa

SRi will add Opel Connect, sports style front seats, sport mode switch, LED tail lights, LED front fog lights, 16” Hurricane alloys, chrome tailpipe, black roof and rear privacy glass.

SRi Premium adds heated front seats and steering wheel, auto lights and wipers, keyless entry and start, electric parking brake and electronic climate control.

Elite models have 17” alloys, 10” infotainment screen, Multimedia Navi, heated front seats and steering wheel, auto lights and wipers, fabric and leather effect trim and rear view camera.

Pricing

In Ireland the new Corsa range kicks off at €17,975 for the SC, €18,875 for SC Premium, €23,000 for SRi, €24,300 for SRi Premium and €23,645 for Elite. The new 1.2-litre 100hp engine is available from €21,695 and the diesel from €21,645.

The Opel Corsa B of the 1990s was the most successful Corsa to date
The Opel Corsa B of the 1990s was the most successful Corsa to date

Rivals

Rivals include the Renault Clio, Peugeot 208, Citroen C3, Toyota Yaris and Mazda2.

Summary

The new Opel Corsa is a much improved car. Gone goes the frumpy look and in comes a stylish smart supermini with lots of kerb appeal. Technically, it’s lighter and more fun to drive than before. On price, it’s not the cheapest but when you dig a bit you can see that the entry model is a highly equipped car. The tastier SRi and Elite versions do carry quite a premium, however the Corsa feels fun and special enough to warrant a place in the higher end of the market for stylish, high spec superminis.

Welcome back Corsa!

 


Ford Fiesta vs Opel Corsa Twin Test Review!

Ford Fiesta vs Opel Corsa (2015) Review

Ford Fiesta vs Opel Corsa: Small Hatchback Twin Test

The Ford Fiesta vs the Opel Corsa in my small hatchback twin test!

The Ford Fiesta is consistently one of the bestselling small cars in Ireland. Sometimes popular cars are not always the critic’s choice, but no worries about the Fiesta - it’s universally regarded as a damn good supermini.

The Opel Corsa is another perennial favourite and with the recent arrival of the fifth generation Corsa, I thought it would be a good time to compare these two small hatchbacks side by side.

Models tested:

Opel Corsa 1.4 litre (90PS) Excite

Ford Fiesta 1.0 litre EcoBoost (65PS) Zetec

Click on the links above to read the individual reviews or scroll down for the twin test.

Note: The Opel Corsa and Ford Fiesta models I drove are not direct rivals in terms of engines and power outputs, but I will make allowances for that below.

The lovely Ford Fiesta!
The lovely Ford Fiesta!

Who is the prettiest of all the superminis?

In 2013, the Ford Fiesta got a facelift, making it the first in the European Ford range to wear Ford’s new trapezoidal grille. The effect of this facelift should not be underestimated; the new grille lifts the whole look of the car.

And that’s something that can be said for the Opel Corsa too. The Corsa’s new wider, lower grille is the most obvious exterior styling change for the new Corsa and it gives the car so much more presence compared to the old model. Elsewhere, new body panels with more sculpting, and new rear light clusters, give the Corsa some contemporary style.

So Ford Fiesta vs Opel Corsa: who is better looking? I couldn’t possibly say but both definitely sport an attractive design so no one’s a loser.

Inside the Ford Fiesta and the Opel Corsa

Inside, things are much easier to call. The Opel Corsa has a brand new interior that feels classy, well-built and contemporary. The cabin in the Fiesta looks more austere when compared with that in the Corsa, and a myriad small buttons to operate the radio is off-putting. Still, the controls and switches in the Fiesta are nicely damped, and the white illuminated dials with blue needles step things up a notch in the Fiesta's favour.

But the interior of the Opel Corsa just feels a bit cooler, a bit more premium, especially with the touchscreen fitted as part of the Intellilink infotainment system.

Both cars are available as three or five door models, and the two tested here are five door models. Space-wise, up front there is little to differentiate the Corsa from the Fiesta, but in the rear the Corsa feels more spacious and the higher roof line allows very generous headroom.

The boot is a teeny bit larger in the Corsa compared to the Fiesta (285 litres vs 276 litres), but both have a high load lip, and the Ford carries a spare wheel, while the Corsa goes with just a tyre repair kit. The rear seats can be folded down in both cars, but they don’t fold down flat in either and a 60/40 split folding rear bench is not standard on the Corsa. With the rear seats folded, the Corsa offers a bit more space at 1100 litres, compared to 960 litres in the Fiesta.

The 2015 Opel Corsa
The 2015 Opel Corsa

Driving the Fiesta and the Corsa

I was really impressed with the Corsa’s road-holding ability, comfort and steering. Opel has given the Corsa a new chassis, suspension and updated the steering, so all together, it’s a more sophisticated drive for the Corsa compared to the previous model. The Ford Fiesta is still the more fun to drive of the duo; it feels more elastic, more agile and the steering is sharper.

There is a good choice of diesel and petrol engines available for both the Corsa and the Fiesta (see Engines & Economy below) and a manual or automatic gearbox is available for both. The Fiesta I drove had the 1.0 litre 65PS EcoBoost (non-turbo) petrol engine, and despite only 65PS and a 0-100kmh sprint time of a lazy 16.8 seconds, this engine is so much better than you would think. It has a lovely three cylinder thrum, loves to be revved and is really brilliant around town. In official terms, it returns just over 65mpg, though rev it too much and you will see a dip in economy. Turbo versions of the award-winning 1.0 litre EcoBoost are available for the Fiesta, but they do command quite a high list price.

My Corsa was fitted with the 1.4 litre 90PS petrol engine that has been brought forward from the old model and sits alongside the old 1.2 litre petrol and 1.3 litre diesels. Two new 1.0 litre turbocharged petrol engines have been added to the Corsa range with 90PS or 115PS. They sit at the top of the range so are quite pricey - though they are very enjoyable to drive. Nonetheless, the 1.4 litre petrol does a good job in the Corsa. There’s plenty of power for town and motorway driving, it’s nicely refined too and returns 55mpg.

The interior of the 2015 Opel Corsa
The interior of the 2015 Opel Corsa

(Some are model specific so check availability with manufacturer)

Ford Fiesta

Opel Corsa
EngineFuelCO2EconomyEngineFuelCO2Economy
1.0 EcoBoost 65PSPetrol99g/km65.7mpg1.2i 70PSPetrol126g/km52.3mpg
1.0T EcoBoost 100PSPetrol99g/km65.7mpg1.4i 90PSPetrol120g/km55.4mpg
1.0T EcoBoost 125PSPetrol99g/km65.7mpg1.0i Turbo 90PSPetrol104g/km64mpg
1.25 60PSPetrol122g/km54.3mpg1.0i Turbo 115PSPetrol115g/km57.7mpg
1.25 82PSPetrol122g/km54.3mpg1.3CDTi 75PSDiesel100g/km74.3mpg
1.5 TDCi 75PSDiesel98g/km76.4mpg1.3CDTi 95PSDiesel87g/km85.6mpg
1.6 TDCi 95PSDiesel95g/km85.6mpg

What are my options?

There are four trim levels for the Opel Corsa –  S, Excite, SE and Limited Edition – and four for the Ford Fiesta – Fiesta, Zetec, Zetec-S and Titanium. Base models for both Corsa and Fiesta get notables like tyre pressure monitoring system, front electric windows and mirrors, and hill start assist, though the Corsa gets remote central locking – you will have to stick the key in the lock to engage the central locking on the entry level Fiesta! But the Fiesta has steering wheel mounted audio controls as standard – you have to go up a trim level for those in a Corsa.

Still there are more treats in both once you start going up the trim levels. Just one step up from entry level, the Fiesta Zetec I drove had notables like alloy wheels, front fog lights, and Bluetooth. The Corsa does slightly better when you take a step up from entry level to Excite trim – as well as the alloy wheels, Bluetooth and front fog lights, you get LED daytime running lights and cruise control. Cruise control is an option for the Ford Fiesta. Air con is standard on SE trim in the Corsa and Titanium trim in the Fiesta.  With regards to infotainment, I find Opel’s Intellilink to have a more attractive interface and be a bit more user friendly than Ford’s Sync system. Both are standard on some models, or can be added as an option.

The interior of the 2015 Ford Fiesta ST - the high performance one!
The interior of the 2015 Ford Fiesta ST - the high performance one!

Which did you prefer?

The Ford Fiesta vs Opel Corsa are equally capable superminis in terms of space, practicality, and drive but there are a few marked differences between them. The Corsa has a more attractive and functional interior and is that bit more spacious in the back. Both are good cars to drive, but the Fiesta is more exciting. The two are competitively priced and you can pick up a well-specced Corsa or Fiesta in the region of €16,000-€18,000. But you will likely want to spend a bit extra for a car with more equipment.

Now which are you going to buy? Well, you may indeed fall for the charms of the Opel Corsa’s cabin. It’s where you spend most of your time for sure and the quality, attractive design, straightforward infotainment and overall execution is a major plus for the Corsa. The improvements to the car under the skin and availability of good, frugal engines mean the Opel Corsa is a far from disappointing drive.

However, if you are the type of driver that wants the best driving small hatchback, the one with that extra bit of sparkle, there’s only one option and that’s the Ford Fiesta. It feels far sportier than its demure exterior might suggest; there is athleticism about the way it dances around corners and pin sharp steering enhances your connection to the road. There is a good engine line-up too and one of the EcoBoost petrols would make a perfect mate for this baby Ford!

Opel Corsa 1.4i ExciteFord Fiesta 1.0 EcoBoost (non-turbo) Zetec
Price€16,495€16,850
Engine1.4 litre four cylinder petrol1.0 litre three cylinder petrol
Power90PS65PS
0-100kmh13.2 secs16.8 secs
Economy55.3mpg65.7mpg
CO2119g/km99g/km
Tax€200 per year€180 per year

 

We really liked the little Ford!
We really liked the little Ford!

Caroline Kidd


The 2015 Opel Corsa

2015 Opel Corsa 1.4-litre Petrol Review

The 2015 Opel Corsa
The 2015 Opel Corsa

The pretty cobbled streets and tree-lined avenues of Paris were a fitting location for the debut of the stylish, new fifth generation Opel Corsa just before the 2014 Paris Motor Show. The launch was a real statement of intent by Opel and all the stops were pulled out to give the fifth generation of Opel’s bestselling small hatchback the best possible start in the world.

Aside from the smarter looks and a brand new interior, we were promised a driving experience more comparable to a larger, more expensive car in terms of comfort and precision, with a new chassis, suspension, steering and engines to deliver the goods.

I got a good impression of the car on our first drive of the Corsa in Ireland at the launch in November. Now it’s time to find out if the new Opel Corsa can really deliver, as I give it a thorough road test on Irish roads.

Opel Corsa Video Review

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7B-hyOOs1U]

I’m happy to report that the new Opel Corsa can now definitely hold its own in fashionable company. The new lower, wider grille and new ‘wing’ shape headlamps at the front are a real highlight and give the Corsa the presence it needs to stand out and be memorable. I love the sculpting along the sides of the car (all the body panels are new), and there’s more definition at the rear too with new light clusters that lift the look of the car.

The test car was finished in a lovely metallic grey blue, which is more interesting to look at than grey and gave the car a grown-up, chic look. For the bold, you can choose red, lime green and even yellow - as well as some more conservative body colours. If you are prepared to sacrifice rear doors, the three door model looks particularly sporty with a more coupé-style roof line.

But stick with the five door model and you will be amazed by the rear headroom and easy access to the rear from the wide-opening doors. There is also generous legroom and a good sized boot of 285 litres. I would have no complaints about space in the Corsa by supermini standards.

Inside the 2015 Opel Corsa

The jewel in the crown is the Corsa’s brand new interior. It’s youthful , fresh and trendy with an interesting mix of surfaces and materials used, including classy gloss black and satin chrome. It looks particularly good with the 7” touchscreen fitted as part of the Intellilink infotainment system (more on that later). There’s a cool simplicity to the white-illuminated instrument dials and sporty steering wheel. For me, the essence of what makes it a great interior is that it’s glam without being over the top, and simple without being boring.

The interior of the 2015 Opel Corsa
The interior of the 2015 Opel Corsa

Out on the road, the Corsa feels very solid and stable at speed and through corners. The car has a new chassis and Opel engineers have lowered the car’s centre of gravity by 5mm to make the car more stable.

There is also a new speed sensitive power steering system and Opel have worked hard to give us more “feel” in the steering. This was best tested on some of the country roads I always drive the test cars on – the kind of roads that swiftly show you how good a car’s steering and handling is. When you turn into a corner, the Corsa holds the road well and you can really feel the connection between the inputs you are putting on the steering wheel and what the wheels are doing. It’s very precise – I like that.

Driving the Opel Corsa

The Corsa has a new suspension and Opel has tweaked the damping characteristics to make it more comfortable. They’ve improved the roll behaviour and while there is a limit to how much speed the car can comfortably take as you are cornering, certainly on a country road driving within the speed limits you will not be disappointed. If it’s comfort you’re after, the Corsa coped well over pock marked roads and it took motorways in its stride too.

My test car was powered by a punchy 1.4 litre 90bhp petrol engine that has been brought forward from the old car. It’s well up for the job, with enough zip in the lower gears to make it nippy around town and it picks up speed easily on the open road with a good bit of flexibility in the gears so you are never too far away from the power.

Following the trend for squeezing more power from a smaller engine with the aid of a turbocharger, Opel has added a brand new 1.0 litre turbocharged petrol to the Corsa range, available with 90bhp or 115bhp. Both are mated to a new generation six speed manual gearbox. You can read more about what I thought about Opel’s new engines here. On paper, they are more economical, faster from 0-100kmh, and have a raspier engine note which petrolheads will love - but they are also more expensive and only available on top level trims in three and five door Corsa models.

The Corsa is available with a range of petrol and diesel engines
The Corsa is available with a range of petrol and diesel engines

What are my options?

There are a range of petrol and diesel engines with good economy and low running costs available for the Corsa. The 1.3 litre diesels have been reworked to make them more refined and responsive, and the 95bhp version has CO2 emissions as low as 87g/km. My 1.4 litre 90bhp petrol test car returns just over 55mpg from official sources and real world economy was not too far off that.

There are four trim levels: S, Excite, SE and Limited Edition. Excite trim is expected to be popular with a spec including cruise control, alloys, front fog lights, LED daytime running lights and Bluetooth included as standard. SE is a bit posher again and adds more equipment, and is exclusive to the five door model. Limited Edition is exclusive to the three door model and is OPC inspired with sporty touches to the interior and exterior, and a sports suspension under the skin.

The Intellilink infotainment system is standard on SE and Limited Edition, though it can be added as an option for €350. It offers connectivity with your smartphone and access to a selection of apps from a 7” touchscreen.

Our test car had a “Winter Pack” added for an extra €395 that included a heated steering wheel and heated front seats (awesome). It was also fitted with an electrically operated sunroof for €961. Though that might be an expensive treat too far, it did make the cabin brighter.

High performance versions like the Opel Corsa GSi are also available
High performance versions like the Opel Corsa GSi are also available

Are Opel Corsas good cars?

The supermini segment is an extremely competitive one so does the Corsa have what it takes to compete at the top of its class?

I think so. There is a touch of class to the styling, while inside the cabin seems to combine the best parts of simple, intuitive design with a bit of glitz and glam. There are a great choice of engines, from frugal diesels to sparkly petrol power. It is a shame that the new turbo engines will be a little out of the budget range for most Corsa buyers but that said, I didn’t feel let down by the 1.4 litre petrol I tested, with enough power at disposal, matched with decent economy and refinement.

Best of all, the new Corsa feels like a very well-engineered car, without any of the compromises one might expect in ride quality for its small size - and steering that is as sharp as any keen driver would expect. In that respect I think Opel has achieved what they set out to do with this new Corsa – deliver a driving experience more comparable to a larger, more expensive car in terms of comfort and precision. The Corsa really has grown up.

Caroline Kidd

Price: €16,495 (Corsa range starts at €14,895)
Engine: 
1.4 litre four cylinder petrol
Power: 
90bhp
0-100km/h:  
13.2 seconds
Economy: 
55.3mpg (5.1l/100km)
CO2 Emissions:  
120g/km
Motor Tax: 
€200 per year