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Vauxhall Astra Test Drive Review

Date: 10 October 2014

Vauxhall's massive push to update its engine technology has led to the Astra GTC getting the 200hp 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine already offered in the Cascada convertible.

Emissions take the car below 160g/km, which is a 13% improvement over the previous 1.6 turbo, and refinement is also better, which is a key characteristic of all Vauxhall's new engines coming through.

The engine is impressive, offering strong performance while still being easier to live with day-to-day than the more hardcore VXR version.

As the top performance models have increased in power, it's left a gap for a more regular quick car around this 200hp mark, but despite the performance, the Astra still has an official 42.2mpg economy figure.

The bad news is that the Seat Leon SC offers 180hp in its 1.8 TSi configuration, but manages 47.9mpg and a 137g/km figure that's 19g/km better than the GTC. With the much better residual value, that helps the Seat to a cost per mile figure that's 8.2p per mile lower than the 200hp Astra GTC.