Review

Vauxhall Astra VXR hatchback

Price  £28,070

Vauxhall Astra VXR hatchback

reviewed by Carbuyer

Pros
  • Stunning looks
  • Blisteringly quick
  • Comfortable for this class
Cons
  • Pricey to buy
  • Expensive to run
  • Renaultsport Megane is better

At a glance

The greenest
VXR 2.0i 280PS Turbo 3dr £28,070
The cheapest
VXR 2.0i 280PS Turbo 3dr £28,070
The fastest
VXR 2.0i 280PS Turbo 3dr £28,070
Top of the range
VXR 2.0i 280PS Turbo 3dr £28,070

"The most powerful car in its class, the Vauxhall Astra VXR also offers sharp handling to match its impressive straight-line speed."

The Vauxhall Astra VXR hot hatchback sits at the very top of the Vauxhall Astra range Focused on driving thrills, this car is all about delivering serious speed to people who still want the size and practicality of the standard Astra.

To achieve this, Vauxhall has fitted the VXR with a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine that produces 276bhp. This power output makes it one of the most powerful cars in is class, with acceleration from 0-62mph taking a mere 5.9 seconds.

The engineers at Vauxhall have aimed for involving handling as well as speed in a straight line, and this has meant tweaks to the steering and suspension setups. The result is a car with a tremendous amount of grip and an adjustable suspension that can be made extremely firm for excellent body control in corners.

The VXR's three main rivals are the Ford Focus ST, Renault Megane Renaultsport and Volkswagen Scirocco R. All of them have various different strengths and weaknesses, but the VXR is only really beaten by the Renault in terms of driving pleasure.

Despite the performance available and the speed-orientated setup of the car, the VXR is still very usable on an everyday basis. It has a pretty large boot, and although it's only available in three-door form, space in the rear seats is actually quite good once you’re in.

The car comes with plenty of standard equipment, but it's likely to end up costing you more than most of its rivals. Whether you decide to take the plunge is likely to depend on how smitten you are by the VXR's looks and power.

MPG, running costs & CO2

2 / 5

The engine in the Vauxhall Astra VXR uses a lot of fuel

Engines, drive & performance

4.4 / 5

The Vauxhall Astra VXR is extremely quick and generates plenty of grip

Interior & comfort

2.1 / 5

The Vauxhall Astra VXR's suspension is very firm but other cars in this class are worse

Practicality & boot space

3.2 / 5

Despite the stylish looks, the Vauxhall Astra VXR is surprisingly practical

Reliability & safety

3.5 / 5

The Astra GTC on which the VXR is based has proved to be reliable

What the others say

4.5 / 5
based on 3 reviews
5 / 5
It's incredibly fast – the fastest in its class – but its sophisticated chassis finally makes all that power usable. Yes, the ride is firm and the price very high, but if you want a head-turning hot hatch that promises real driving thrills, this is it.
4 / 5
"It is a hot hatch that can also do the boring stuff and let us not forget, comes with Vauxhall's "Lifetime" (100,000-mile) warranty. If only it covered tyres..."
4.5 / 5
Keep the engine on the boil, though, and you can cover ground at an astonishing rate. What's more, the VXR soaks up bumps and broken tarmac in a way that you simply wouldn’t credit given our test car's huge 20in wheels and 35-profile rubber.
What owners say 
5
5 /5 based on 2 reviews
100%
 of people would recommend this car to a friend

Owner rating:

4 star   0
3 star   0
2 star   0
1 star   0
Last updated 
11 May 2015
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