Vauxhall Insignia hatchback

Price  £16,944 - £27,404

Vauxhall Insignia hatchback

reviewed by Carbuyer

  • Attractive styling
  • Decent choice of engines
  • Comfortable driving position
  • Entry-level cars sparsely equipped
  • Rear headroom is tight
  • Poor resale values

At a glance

The greenest
SRi NAV 1.6CDTi 136PS S/S ecoFLEX 5dr £22,424
The cheapest
DESIGN 1.8i 140PS 5dr £17,184
The fastest
SRi VX-LINE NAV 2.0i 250PS Dir Inj T S/S 5dr £23,894
Top of the range
ELITE NAV 2.0CDTi 170PS auto 5dr £27,644

"The Vauxhall Insignia is styled to look more like a coupe than a family car, but it can’t match the Ford Mondeo for driving fun."

The Vauxhall Insignia has won plenty of awards since its launch and Vauxhall targets this model at premium saloons such as the BMW 3 Series, Audi A4 and Mercedes C-Class. In truth, though, the Insignia and its predecessor the Vectra have always been more of a match for large family cars such as the Ford Mondeo or Citroen C5 and Honda Accord.

Vauxhall has plenty of experience of building big family hatchbacks, and it shows in the Insignia's pretty, coupe-like looks, practical interior and decent range of engines. Buyers can have anything from a small 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine all the way up to the 2.8-litre, 321bhp V6 that powers the Vauxhall Insignia VXR Supersport. There's a wide range of diesel engines, too, offering varying mixes of power and fuel economy.

The Insignia received a mid-life facelift in 2013, bringing improvements in styling, quality and driver engagement. Vauxhall also gave it a more appealing look and a refreshed cabin, reducing the number of buttons on the centre console. Now all Insignias get a touchscreen to navigate through the major functions. Should you choose a model equipped with sat nav, you also get a touchpad that's used to work through the menus and write characters.

One of the most appealing options that Vauxhall offers on the Insignia is the eight-inch TFT instrument cluster for around £400. This replaces the traditional analogue dials with a large screen that can show a range of information, from a speedometer and rev counter to your current fuel economy and driving efficiency. This is a nice touch and looks very modern thanks to its clear, colourful display.

It's also worth pointing out that the least powerful diesel engine – the 118bhp 2.0-litre CDTi – isn't the best option in the range, even though Vauxhall expects that most Insignia buyers will choose it. Our recommendation is the marginally punchier 138bhp version, since it's just as efficient, isn’t that much more expensive to buy outright and accelerates strongly from low revs.

MPG, running costs & CO2

3.3 / 5

Vauxhall Insignia diesel models are cheap to run, but not the best in class

Engines, drive & performance

3.3 / 5

The Vauxhall Insignia is a great long-distance cruiser

Interior & comfort

3.5 / 5

Headroom in the back of the Vauxhall Insignia feels tight

Practicality & boot space

3.5 / 5

The Vauxhall Insignia has a big boot and a practical cabin

Reliability & safety

3.3 / 5

The Vauxhall Insignia scored the maximum five stars in Euro NCAP crash tests

What the others say

3.4 / 5
based on 4 reviews
4 / 5
"The Insignia feels a fresher than the Passat and Ford Mondeo, but it still isn't as good to drive as the latter."
3 / 5
"The Vauxhall Insignia is excellent value as a company car, but it falls short of the class leaders in other areas."
3.5 / 5
"Vauxhall's Insignia wins fans thanks to its low running and service costs, its space, high levels of equipment and good dealer support."
6 / 10
"Not the best car in this uninspiring, fleet-orientated end of the segment but a very worthy effort."
What owners say 
4.3 /5 based on 273 reviews
 of people would recommend this car to a friend
Last updated 
3 Jul 2015
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