Now based on a Stellantis platform – rather than General Motors like the outgoing Astra – it uses the same underpinnings as the new Peugeot 308 and a Citroen C4. Vauxhall says this makes the new car more fun to drive and also allows for plug-in hybrids to be introduced.
Vauxhall hasn’t announced full details on what these will be, but it will likely be the same setup as that found in the firm’s Grandland SUV. Here, it combines a turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol engine with an electric motor, with power outputs of 177bhp and 222bhp likely. Regular petrol and diesel engines will still be offered, ranging in power from 108bhp to 128bhp.
Then, of course, there is the Astra’s striking new design, which takes elements seen on the latest Mokka. These include Vauxhall’s new ‘Vizor’ front end, which wraps the headlights and griffin emblem behind a clear piece of glass. More advanced ‘IntelliLux’ Matrix LED headlights are also fitted, which can be left on full-beam all the time, and then filter the light automatically around other traffic and cyclists, for example.
While very similar in terms of outright dimensions to its predecessor, the new model has a longer wheelbase, aiding interior space, while boot space also increases from 370 to 422 litres.
Inside, the interior layout mirrors the Mokka’s, with no traditional dials on display, with all versions getting a digital screen that merges into the main infotainment system. Both screens measure up to 10 inches, while wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Paul Willcox, managing director of Vauxhall, said: “The new Astra arrives with sensational design and class-leading levels of technology. With the choice of an electrified powertrain, it has been developed with utmost precision, down to the smallest detail. We are confident the next generation Astra has all it takes to become another best seller and continue to attract new customers to the brand.”
Prices for the new Astra are yet to be announced, but expect a slight increase on the outgoing model’s £19,740 starting price when orders open later in the year. First deliveries aren’t expected until the beginning of 2022.