Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer estate (2017-2019) - Interior & comfort
The latest Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer has an interior that draws close to the class best
The Vauxhall Insignia has always provided a comfortable environment for those who cover high mileage and the Sports Tourer does nothing to sully the name’s reputation. On the contrary, it takes all the virtues that made the previous model so popular and builds on them with enhanced quality, style and feel.
The Insignia Sports Tourer is also extremely spacious, but all that room to lounge in would be wasted if the ride let the side down. Fortunately, the only sensation likely to tarnish passenger comfort is a slight fidget over motorway bumps and expansion joints, present on all models irrespective of the size of wheels fitted. Even the 20-inch wheels that distinguish the GSi models are tolerable when the suspension is in 'Sport' mode and barely noticeable in 'Tour' mode.
The ride is particularly worthy of praise around town and at lower speeds, where potholes and drain covers are shrugged off with grace. Quietness is impressive, too, with little noise kicked up by the tyres on the road or the wind as it rushes past the windscreen top and door mirrors.
Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer dashboard
The dashboard in the previous Vauxhall Insignia was visually impressive, but was rapidly overtaken by rivals in terms of material finish. Its maker has made some effort to amend that issue for the latest model, though, and the Sports Tourer is a big step forward.
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The majority of materials within arms reach from the driver’s seat are of a standard that either equals or approaches that of rivals – although the Vauxhall still falls a little way short of the class-leading Volkswagen Passat. It’s pleasingly styled, too, albeit not with such flair that it makes other cars seem old-fashioned.
What does impress is that thought has been put into practical daily use. You can see this in small details like the ledge under the infotainment touchscreen that allows you to rest your hand while making gestures on the screen. The climate-control switchgear is uncomplicated and easy to use, and the instrument dials are clear and legible at a glance.
If anything, the Sports Tourer’s standard equipment list impresses more than any other of its attributes, especially when its low starting price is taken into account.
Trim levels are shared with the Grand Sport hatchback, and even the entry-level Design model – which handsomely undercuts the Skoda Superb Estate – features autonomous emergency braking, a touchscreen infotainment system with DAB radio, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, keyless entry and cruise control. It wears distinctive LED running lights and ‘structure’ wheel covers that successfully mimic the look of alloy wheels. It also benefits from access to Vauxhall’s OnStar service – an online support system with concierge, recovery and safety applications.
Design Nav adds sat nav to an upgraded infotainment system, the touchscreen of which grows from seven to eight inches. Next up is SRi, which adds 17-inch alloy wheels, a rear spoiler, front foglights and automatic wipers, and is further distinguished by a darker tint to the rear windows. The upgrade from SRi to SRi Nav represents better value than that from Design to Design Nav – the incremental cost is identical, but you get sports seats, dual-zone air-conditioning, rear USB sockets and additional interior lighting in addition to sat nav.
Those in search of sporty looks will like the SRi VX-Line with its bodykit and dark interior headlining. It also boasts a heated, flat-bottomed steering wheel and a 4.2-inch colour display in the instrument cluster. Stepping up to Tech Line Nav adds all-round parking sensors, additional front seat adjustment and chrome interior highlights.
Top of the range is the Elite Nav, with leather upholstery, heated seats front and rear, an eight-inch digital dashboard display and LED headlamps, as well as a BOSE stereo system. This trim level also offers the 2.0-litre turbocharged engine with mandatory four-wheel drive. By the time you get to this end of the line-up, the Insignia Sports Tourer starts to be a less attractive proposition in terms of value for money, so we'd recommend sticking with the Design Nav model.
The GSi is effectively a sporty equivalent to the Elite Nav, and can be spotted by its 20-inch wheels and 10mm lower ride, different bumpers and side sills, as well as a gleaming set of chrome exhaust pipes. A set of figure-hugging leather sports seats and a flat-bottomed steering wheel give the driving position a sporty feel, and there's a head-up display as standard. It's a good looking package, but doesn't really offer much more driving excitement than other – and far cheaper – models in the line-up.
Even though every model is generously equipped, buyers still have scope to further personalise the Insignia Sports Tourer. Metallic paint is an optional extra, as is a glass sunroof. All-year comfort can be improved with the Winter Pack One – this adds heating to the steering wheel, front seats and front windscreen.
We recommend a proper spare wheel, too – you can choose one as an optional extra in lieu of the standard tyre-inflation kit. Entry-level Insignias will benefit from the optional parking sensors, too – on a car this lengthy, they really ought to be fitted as standard.
The Insignia is also available with Vauxhall’s latest range of custom paint finishes, including the option to match its colour to any sample you provide for a cool £5,300. This is as well as Vauxhall Exclusive metallic, pearl effect, solid or tinted clear-varnish paintwork, giving a wide range of potential finishes.
Choose the Exclusive Black Pack for the Insignia GSi and chrome trim is swapped for black on the grille, foglamp surrounds and window frames for £500.