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Vauxhall Grandland X 2.0 Turbo D 177hp Ultimate

Date: 02 May 2018   |   Author: Sean Keywood

The mid-sized SUV gets a new range flagship with more power and extra kit.
Standard equipment:
OnStar concierge service, Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, lane-departure warning, rear parking sensors
Engines:
Petrol:
130hp 1.2
Diesel:
120hp 1.6, 177hp 2.0
Trims:
SE, Tech Line Nav, Sport Nav, Elite Nav, Ultimate
Transmissions:
Six-speed manual, six-speed automatic, eight-speed automatic

Vauxhall may have been taken over by PSA Group - owners of Peugeot, Citroen and DS - last year, but when it came to integration its SUV range already had a head start. 

That's because collaboration had already been established on the small Crossland SUV, based on the underpinnings of the Peugeot 2008, and the Grandland X, which is built on the same platform and uses the same engines as the French brand's 3008. 

Power upgrade

To help boost the Grandland X's appeal, Vauxhall has introduced a range-topping Ultimate trim. Where this really stands out, compared with the rest of the range, is under the bonnet, with a 177hp 2.0-litre diesel engine paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. The engine pulls well and is a definite improvement over the slightly sluggish 120hp 1.6-litre diesel available with other trims, while the gearbox generally works well, providing a good range of ratios and shifting smoothly, for the most part. It is occasionally a tad slow to kick down and there's the tiniest hint of jerky up-shifts when accelerating. Overall, it feels more proficient than the manual box available elsewhere in the range, which isn't the slickest.

Vauxhall Grandland X Side

The car rides smoothly over bumps, retaining composure even on subpar road surfaces. This doesn't mean poor cornering performance, either. Obviously, we're not talking sports car levels of handling, but the steering is light and direct, body roll is well controlled and there's more than ample grip.

Refinement is mostly good, although there is a bit of wind noise at motorway speeds and a hint of diesel drone when accelerating.

Extra kit

Other upgrades with the Ultimate trim include an improved sound system, automatic cruise control with intelligent speed adaption, adaptive LED headlights, a panoramic camera and advanced park assist. Apart from these, there's very little material difference from the rest of the range when you climb aboard, although a good amount of soft-touch materials are carried over from lower in the range. The car's build quality feels good for the most part, although items such as the storage compartment by the steering wheel and the electronic handbrake switch feel a bit flimsy.  

Vauxhall Grandland X Interior Smaller

The 8in touchscreen features sharp graphics, but could be a bit quicker to respond. However, the presence of physical buttons beneath the screen for major functions makes it easier to use when driving. There's also an additional digital display integrated in the main instrument panel, displaying information such as speed and sat-nav instructions. 

The seats are well padded and supportive, with a good amount of adjustment, and there's lots of interior space, including  decent rear legroom, though tall adults might find themselves a bit short of rear headroom. 

The boot is a nice size for the segment, at 514 litres, although the opening into which items need to be lifted is rather high.

Cost question

As you'd expect, there's not too much to choose between the Grandland X and the 3008 when it comes to running costs. However, compared with the equivalent top-spec GT trim in the 3008 range, the Ultimate is more than £1,400 cheaper on P11D, and nearly 3p cheaper per mile, although the 3008 has stronger residual values. 

Vauxhall Grandland X Rear Small

Looking away from the Peugeot however, the price of the Ultimate seems rather high, which means some drivers might be tempted to check out similarly priced lower-spec versions of more premium cars such as the Audi Q3 and BMW X1.

P11D: £33,780

Fuel consumption: 57.6mpg

CO2 (BIK band): 128g/km (30%)  

BIK 20/40% a month: £169/£338

Boot space: 514 litres

Engine size/power: 1,997cc/177hp


Verdict


7/10
  • Spacious interior and boot
  • Comfortable seats
  • Composed ride.
  • Interior quality dips in places
  • Price close to premium alternatives

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