All-new 2021 Vauxhall Astra: engine details announced

New Vauxhall Astra arrives with brand’s ‘Vizor’ face, new technology PHEV powertrains and a fully-electric model

  • Eighth-generation Astra gets brands ‘Vizor’ face
  • Features Vauxhall’s ‘Pure Panel’ digital dashboard technology
  • Will get a pure-electric powertrain alongside the plug-in hybrid

The new Vauxhall Astra was revealed earlier this year and now the brand has confirmed performance and economy details for the top-selling family hatchback. Alongside this announcement, the brand has also confirmed that an electric Astra-e will be launched in 2023.

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When it goes on sale next month, the new eighth-generation Astra will be available with a choice of petrol, diesel and range-topping plug-in hybrid (PHEV) powertrains. It sports a bold new design with the brand's ‘Vizor’ grille and an array of upgraded technology.

Pricing for the new Astra has yet to be confirmed, but we expect it will cost slightly more than the old model, starting at around £22,000. First deliveries are slated to arrive early next year.

2021 Vauxhall Astra: engines, performance and platform

The new Astra sits on the same underpinnings as the latest Peugeot 308 and shares several of the same engines.

At the top of the range, a pair of PHEV powertrains are offered. Both combine a 1.6-litre petrol engine with an electric motor, producing 178bhp or 222bhp respectively. Vauxhall claims the lower-powered 178bhp model manages 0-62mph in 7.7 seconds and a top speed of 140mph, with the 222bhp version taking 7.5 seconds and a slightly higher top speed of 146mph.

According to Vauxhall, both PHEV powertrains are capable of up to 35 miles of pure-electric running from a 12.kWh battery. Official fuel economy ranges from 201.8 to 256.8mpg with CO2 emissions of 24-31g/km. Every PHEV version of the Astra is front-wheel drive with an eight-speed automatic gearbox.

Stick with conventional engines, and a 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine is also available alongside a 1.5-litre diesel. The petrol range starts with the 108bhp version, which manages fuel economy of up to 52.3mpg and emissions of 122-127g/km when equipped with a six-speed manual gearbox. Above this, the 128bhp petrol is officially capable of up to 52mpg and emissions of 123-125g/km with a manual. An automatic gearbox is also available with this engine, dropping fuel economy to 51.4mpg.

The diesel engine produces 128bhp and is only available with an automatic gearbox. Officially, the diesel Astra can achieve a claimed maximum of 64.3mpg, making it the eco-champion of the regular Astra line-up.

2023 Vauxhall Astra-e

The electric Vauxhall Astra-e will go on sale in 2023, joining the existing Corsa-e and Mokka-e in the brand’s electric line-up. While full details have not yet been announced, it’s likely the Astra-e will use the new Stellantis SLTA Medium platform and a 60kWH battery giving it a range of around 250 miles between charges. Externally, the model is likely to retain the same styling as the regular versions, aside from the addition of a charging port and aerodynamic alloy wheels.

Design and styling

The biggest change for the eighth-generation Astra is the new nose, which features the ‘Vauxhall Vizor’ design. This features a smoothed-off front grille panel and upswept LED headlights that are designed to blend seamlessly together into one continuous panel spanning the front of the car.

At the rear, Vauxhall has added ‘Astra’ badging across the tailgate, along with a new angular rear bumper.

While exact styling specifications are yet to be fully revealed, we’d expect the new Astra to be available with a bold palette of colours, with personalisation options including a black painted roof and a range of alloy wheel designs.

Interior and technology

The interior of the new Astra has undergone a complete redesign, borrowing all of the technology from the new Mokka. This includes the brand’s Pure Panel dual-screen infotainment setup with a pair of 10-inch displays for the digital dial cluster and infotainment screen, which are housed in a single trim surround to make it look like one large continuous digital display.

Elsewhere, the redesigned dashboard features fewer physical controls than the old car, with essential functions like the climate control now operated via the touchscreen. A new steering wheel also features, with a three-spoke design and a new control layout on each of the left and right spokes.

Vauxhall claims the new Astra will be more upmarket inside, with a range of high-quality materials, plusher interior surfaces and more supportive front seats that can be had with ventilation and massage functions.

Driver assistance tech has also been upgraded, with a total of four cameras dotted around the car’s bodywork and a series of radar and ultrasonic sensors. This is all operated via Vauxhall’s IntelliDrive safety suite, which can accelerate and change lanes with driver supervision. In models equipped with an automatic gearbox, the system can bring the car to a stop and set off in traffic.

Other safety features include a 360-degree parking camera and an active lane positioning function that can help steer the car to keep it centred in a lane when driving. Rear cross traffic alert and traffic sign recognition also feature.

Practicality and dimensions

According to Vauxhall, the new Astra has a 13mm longer wheelbase (the distance between the front and rear wheels) at 2,675mm. This means it should be more spacious in the back, with more space for rear passengers. Overall, the new car measures in at 4,374mm long and 1,860mm wide. The boot measures 422 litres, which is 41 litres more than a VW Golf.

Read our review of the new Mokka and see where the current Astra features on our list of best used cars and best automatic cars to buy now.

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