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With its youthful design, improved overall quality and easy-to-drive nature, the new Opel Corsa is a compact hatchback that represents a fresh way forward for the brand.

13 Nov 2020


In March 2017, Groupe PSA agreed to buy Opel from General Motors. The original sixth generation Corsa F project was already being developed, but it was restarted after switching from a GM platform to the PSA Common Modular Platform.

Thus, this new Corsa is the first Opel model developed under the PSA ownership. Will this change of ownership take the brand forward in a fresh new direction?

Taking a peek

The Corsa's sharp, youthful design matches its overall cheerful disposition
The Corsa is a cute little compact hatchback. Look past the extensive decals on our test car, and underneath is a sharp and rather elegant-looking car. With its pinched out lines, pointy nose and squat stance, the Corsa manages to exude a sense of playfulness.

Step inside, and it becomes immediately obvious that this car was developed on a PSA platform. There are certain immediately identifiable Peugeot bits, such as the gear lever, cluster and infotainment graphics, as well as some of the various buttons around the cabin. It can initially be a tad confusing, but it's a matter of time before you get used to it.

Infotainment functions are accessed via a 10-inch colour touchscreen
The cabin is a reasonably pleasant space to be in. Build quality is quite good, there's a reasonably good selection of equipment, and overall comfort is high. Wireless charging comes as standard, and there's also Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.

Problems? The air-con takes quite a long time to get properly cold, and with the weather averaging 36oC the past couple of days, that's less than ideal.

The positioning and angle of the indicator/wiper stalks are also rather awkward. They are high up on the steering column, and also angled quite sharply upwards. If you have your hands at the three and nine o-clock positions on the steering wheel, you have to stretch a fair bit to operate the stalks.

Zipping around

The 1.2-litre engine, with 128bhp and 230Nm of torque, delivers good in-gear acceleration
The Corsa is powered by a 1.2-litre engine producing a peppy 128bhp and 230Nm of torque, paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Initial pickup is a little languid, but once you get going the in-gear acceleration is actually quite good. Power delivery is smooth, and the engine is quite refined and quiet considering it's a three-pot.

As the Corsa is relatively lightweight, driving it is effortless. It nips around with ease, and the ride is generally quite good except over the harshest of bumps. The steering is light, though steering response is vague at best. Overall, it's a relatively cheerful and easy drive. 

The Corsa also gets a number of safety features including Traffic Sign Recognition and Lane Keep Assist.

Step ahead

With improved refinement and quality, the new Opel Corsa definitely represents a step forward for the brand
The effect of Groupe PSA's takeover of the Opel brand can be clearly seen in the Corsa. There is an uptick in overall quality and refinement, even while retaining a certain youthful peppiness that any good compact hatchback should have.

Will the Corsa win over many new customers? I'm not entirely sure. The brand as a whole still lacks appeal here in Singapore, though this Corsa should go some way to convince potential buyers that the Opel brand shouldn't be overlooked.

Car Information

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Price

: $95,500

Engine Type

:

3-cylinder in-line 12-valve Turbocharged

Engine Cap

:

1199cc

Horsepower

:

95kW (128 bhp) / 5500 rpm

Torque

:

230 Nm / 1750 rpm

Transmission

:

8-speed (A)

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)

:

8.7sec

Top Speed

:

208km/h

Fuel consumption

:

21.3 km/L

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opel  opel corsa  corsa  psa  gm  opel psa  hatchback  opel hatchback  compact hatchback