Vauxhall Corsa hatchback
Price £8,995 - £16,235
- Good value for money
- Spacious interior and big boot
- Seats feel cheap
- Ford Fiesta more fun to drive
- Question marks over reliability
At a glance
"The Vauxhall Corsa is a comfortable, practical car with some good engines and a competitive price, which all put it much closer to the best cars in the supermini class."
The Vauxhall Corsa has become one of the most enduring nameplates fitted to any car in the UK. It found fame and favour as a driving school car, leading the Corsa to be one of the most popular first cars in the UK.
That's all with very good reason. The Vauxhall Corsa is cheap to buy, cheap to run and very easy to drive. There's a wide range of engines and trim levels, the choice of three and five-door body shapes and even a performance model in the shape of the Vauxhall Corsa VXR. That all means there's something for everyone.
Unlike a lot of models, the three and five-door versions of the Corsa have a very different look. The three-door is more sporty – and space in the back is restricted as a result – while the five-door looks more upright. That's because the five-door is targeted at families, who have more need for space in the back.
The Corsa is a rival to cars such as the Ford Fiesta, SEAT Ibiza, Kia Rio and Toyota Yaris. The current version is the fourth generation of Corsa, and while it retains the previous model's compact dimensions – it's around four metres long – it's been completely redesigned inside and out. The result is a car that feels more upmarket than ever before, with better-quality materials used inside and a more stylish exterior design.
The latest version of the Corsa is closer to its superminis rivals than ever before in most of the areas that matter to small car buyers. However, the Ford Fiesta is more fun to drive and cars like the more expensive Volkswagen Polo offer more of a grown-up feel. Despite this, the new Vauxhall Corsa provides a range of abilities that ensure it's more than just a car to travel from A to B. It's comfortable on the move, and most engines are pretty quiet, too.
The engine choice spans a 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol, as well as 1.2 and 1.4-litre petrols. And there are a couple of diesel options, too. Our top choice is the Vauxhall Corsa 1.0-litre, which is the quietest, fastest cheapest petrol engine to run. Diesel versions of the Corsa are extremely cheap to run and promise up to 88mpg fuel economy if you drive them carefully. They’re not much fun to drive though, as well as being expensive to buy.
The Corsa has been crash-tested by Euro NCAP, but it only achieved four out of five stars, putting it behind many of its rivals.
There's a bewildering choice of nine trims to choose from, including Life, Sting, Sting R, Excite, Limited Edition, Design, SRi, SRi VX-Line and SE, each offering different styling and equipment choices. Our top pick is the Vauxhall Corsa Excite, because it's well priced and features must-have kit such as air-con and Vauxhall's clever IntelliLink audio system.
The Vauxhall Corsa has efficient petrol and diesel engines available to buyers
The Vauxhall Corsa is available with a gutsy turbo petrol engine and its suspension offers good handling.
Tactile materials and redesigned suspension help to make the Vauxhall Corsa very comfortable inside.
The Vauxhall Corsa offers good leg and headroom, as well as a large boot
The Vauxhall Corsa performed poorly in latest Driver Power survey, but new car is an unknown quantity.