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Opel fires up the petrol Corsa

Wednesday, 10th July, 2019 4:46pm

Opel has already shown off the all-electric version of its new Corsa, but now here’s our first look at the petrol (and diesel, if you really must) versions of the crucial new supermini.

In fact, Opel refers to these combustion engines in the Corsa as ‘classic’ powertrains — an interesting semantic choice. The petrol engined lineup is based around 1.2 litre three-cylinder engines brought in from PSA Peugeot Citroen — which of course now owns Opel, and the Corsa also shares its platform with models from Peugeot and Citroen.

That 1.2 engine starts with a 75hp model, which has CO2 emissions from 119 to 146g/km on the WLTP emissions and economy test. Opel claims that it will return up to 5.3 litres per 100km (53mpg).

Next up is a turbocharged version of that engine, with either 100hp or 130hp. The 100hp version has CO2 emissions starting from 121g/km, and fuel economy in that same 5.3 litres per 100km range. The 130hp is a little thirstier — 127g/km and 5.6 litres per 100km, but that’s still a realistic 50mpg. The Corsa has been made much lighter than before, which doubtless will help with its efficiency. That base 75hp model clocks in with a weight of just 980kg, some 100kg lighter than the outgoing Corsa.

Performance also benefits — the new Corsa is quicker to 100km/h from rest, by up to one second depending on the model. It’s also lower than before (by 48mm, something Opel says is ‘coupe-like’) while the driving position has dropped by 28mm, which helps to give it a lower centre of gravity.

There will be a 102hp diesel model too, with a 1.5 litre engine, but this is expected to be of minority interest only, and could quite possibly not be offered in Ireland.

In the cabin, there’s a choice of seven- or ten-inch touchscreens, Opel Connect internet services, live fuel prices, and driver aids which include traffic sign recognition, blind spot assist, lane-keeping steering, and a detection system that keeps an eye on the side panels of the car when you’re parking, to make sure you don’t clip a low-lying bollard.

“The reaction to the presentation of the all-electric Corsa-e – an electric car for everyone – has been phenomenal,” said Opel’s chief executive Michael Lohscheller.

“The Corsa with classic combustion engines will follows in its wheel tracks. Combustion engine or electric drive? At Opel, thanks to the multi-energy platform, both are possible in one model. The customer decides.”

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