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Vauxhall Astra BiTurbo: Test Drive Review

Date: 07 January 2013   |   Author:

Category: Lower medium
P11D price: £24,095
Key rival: VW Golf GTD

Vauxhall's most powerful ever diesel engine has made the transition from the Insignia to the Astra.

All three bodystyles - GTC coupe, Sports Tourer estate and the five-door hatch driven here - will receive the engine, and the timing coincides with a barely perceptible mid-life facelift for Vauxhall's fleet favourite, with new front and rear bumpers joined by increased use of chrome detailing and new options and colours across the range. But without putting pre- and post-facelift cars side by side, it's tricky to spot the changes.

The BiTurbo model is a 195hp version of the firm's 2.0-litre diesel engine aimed at Volkswagen's Golf GTD, of which a new version arrives next summer. The BiTurbo's efficiency impresses for such a powerful model, with CO2 emissions of just 134g/km and a fuel figure of 55.4mpg.

It's easy to spot the BiTurbo.

Coming in just the one trim level, it has a unique bodykit, twin exhaust pipes and 18-inch alloy wheels, while interior upgrades include bolstered leather seats, a sports steering wheel and alloy sports pedals.

There's also no mistaking it for any other Astra in the range on the road. We've already shown an affinity with this engine when we sampled it in the Insignia, and it's even better in the Astra with the two turbochargers offering excellent acceleration immediately when required, although like most Vauxhall diesels, refinement is still an issue, especially at idle and under acceleration.

The other issue is cost. At more than £24k, you're into the kind of cash that can get a pretty well-specced, although less powerful, premium hatch, which although won't perform quite as well as the BiTurbo, will have a BMW, Audi or Mercedes badge that will entice some potential buyers from what is - from a heart rather than head perspective - the pick of the Astra range.

Vauxhall Astra BiTurbo 2.0 CDTi 5dr
P11D price£24,095
Model price range£12,995-£26,995
Fuel consumption55.4mpg
CO2 (tax) 134g/km (20%)
BIK 20/40% per month£80/£161
Service interval20,000 miles
Insurance (1-50)group 26
Warrantyfirst owner/100,000mls
Boot space min/max351/1216 litres
Engine size/power1956cc/195hp
Top speed/0-62mph141mph/7.8secs
On sale Late 2012
VerdictEnticing engine
impresses but
it’s not cheap


Enticing engine impresses but it’s not cheap