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Car trim reviews

Vauxhall Corsa SE

The Vauxhall Corsa SE represents the most luxurious model in the range - losing the sporty trappings of many other models in favour of improved comfort.

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Competing with the Ford Fiesta, Volkswagen Polo and cars like the Honda Jazz and Kia Rio, the Vauxhall Corsa certainly has its work cut out for it, but with nine different trims to choose from, as well as three and five-door bodystyles, plus a wide range of fuel-efficient engines, there should be a Corsa for everyone.

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Choose a Vauxhall Corsa SE and there's a long list of standard equipment, including 16-inch alloys, air-conditioning, Bluetooth hands-free calling, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with stereo controls, automatic headlights and front and rear parking sensors.

The three and five-door SE comes with the option of a 1.0, a 1.2 or one of three 1.4-litre petrol engines – including one with an automatic gearbox. There's also a pair of 1.3-litre diesels that both emit less than 100g/km of CO2, meaning road tax is free.

Good points

The Corsa SE offers a number of features you'd usually expect to find on much larger, more expensive models, such as heated electric front seats. It offers a sense of occasion you won't find elsewhere in the Corsa model range.With that in mind, the Corsa SE is pretty good value – but that shouldn't stop you haggling hard for additional discounts.

Bad points

Where the case for the Vauxhall Corsa falls down is with its drive and ride. Other newer competitors do a better job, being both more fun and more comfortable – especially around town.The 1.3-litre diesel is a little noisy, while the smaller petrol engines need to be revved hard to keep up with traffic. Only the 1.0-litre can really compete with the best of the Corsa's rivals.

What you get

  • Alloy wheels
  • Passenger & Driver airbag
  • Front fog lights
  • Manual air conditioning
  • Leather steering wheel
  • Cruise control
  • Automatic wipers
  • Bluetooth

Recommended optional extras

  • Metallic paint
  • Digital radio

Our choice

The Vauxhall Corsa SE is best suited to the 1.3-litre diesel engine – making it cheap to run and comfortable on the motorway.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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