New Car: 2012 Opel/Vauxhall Zafira Tourer

The Zafira is moving up in the world. In an attempt to scalp Ford’s S-MAX, Vauxhall’s all-new people carrier is larger, more luxurious and sportier to drive – and Auto Express has first official details.

Called the Zafira Tourer, it will sit above the current model, which will continue to be sold, and prices are likely to start at £20,000 – making it around £5,000 more expensive. For the extra money, buyers will be getting a much more desirable car. For starters, it’s better looking.

The production version is every inch as striking as March’s Geneva Motor Show concept, with a slippery shape that gets a panoramic glass roof, bold headlights from the Ampera electric car, and neat slashes in the flanks. Slim A-pillars and lots of glass help reduce blindspots, too.

Inside, Vauxhall claims “limousine-like quality and space”. And at 190mm longer than the current Zafira, it certainly has the latter. A new Flex7 seven-seater arrangement allows the third row to be folded flush with the boot floor, while the second row has three individual seats.

These can be moved fore and aft, while some models feature a middle seat back that can be folded forward and rotated, providing occupants in the outer seats with armrests. These chairs can then be moved forward or back and slid towards the car’s centre, increasing shoulder and elbow room.

Compared to the existing Zafira, the Tourer also has more boot space. It can carry 710 litres in five-seater mode (up 65 litres) and 1,860 litres (40 litres more) with all seats folded flat. Vauxhall claims it will be good to drive, too.

Underneath the skin, it sits on a front-wheel-drive chassis derived from the Insignia, with a longer wheelbase and wider tracks for increased grip and stability. The firm’s FlexRide adaptive damping system will be available as an option.

Engine choices include an entry-level 1.8-litre petrol, a 1.4-litre petrol turbo, and a 2.0-litre diesel in three power outputs. Sales will begin later this year with first deliveries in early 2012.For more details click here.
Thanks to: Auto Express
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