The crossover market has changed drastically over recent years. There used to be a time when you could count the offerings on one hand, but now the market is awash with all manner of options. One of the latest being this, the Vauxhall Grandland X.
It’s mainly gunning after the likes of the highly popular Nissan Qashqai as well as Renault Kodiaq, Peugeot 3008 and Skoda Karoq, and essentially is a mid sized family car that’s been jacked up.
Thanks to Vauxhall’s partnership with PSA, the Grandland X has become a joint project with Peugeot and the 3008, which means that despite its rugged looks, it too is only available with two-wheel drive.
On the road
There’s quite a bit of cross over with Vauxhall’s er crossover. It shares much of the running gear in the Peugeot, that means it’s available with a turbocharged 1.2 litre petrol as well as a 1.6 and 2.0-litre diesel.
The petrol is keen to rev and surprisingly peppy for such a small engine in such a big car. It’s not as nippy as some of its rivals around town but for more performance, we’d look to one of the diesels. Unsurprisingly the 2.0-litre diesel is the quickest, despite never being as quick as you may think.
The ride isn’t too bad either. It’s not as forgiving as the Qashai, but it certainly softens off lumps and bumps in the road easily. The offset though is some pretty wallowy handling.
Despite not being offered as a four-wheel drive, it is surprisingly grippy, and the steering does change direction pretty quickly, albeit not with the type of precision we’d like. Think of it as an assured drive rather than an engaging one and you’ll be on the right lines.
In the cabin
The cabin of the Grandland X is not exactly what you’d call inspiring, but its certainly functional. The steering wheel is fully adjustable and there’s a good range of movement on the seat. There are plenty of soft touch plastics, too, with a fair share of piano black gloss. At this stage, we’re not quite sure how this will stand the test of time or how well it will compete in this area within its class. Needless to say, rival cars offer more durable looking materials.
The dash is well laid out with a 7 or 8 inch touch screen infotainment system, depending on which spec you go for, and it’s placed within easy reach, and climate control dials can be found underneath so there’s no fiddling around trying to change the cabin temperature on the screen, as you have to with the 3008.
Visibility all round is excellent, and parking is made easier thanks to rear parking sensors standard on every model. Top spec models come equipped with a 360-degree birds eye camera, same as you’d find in the Qashqai.
Space is adequate all round, although not as good as the Seat Ateca or VW Tiguan. Shoulder room in the back is fine for three adults and because there’s no transmission tunnel running through the middle of the car, the middle passenger has plenty of leg space.
The seats split 60/40 to help extend the size of the boot, which is an already good shape and size. It’s not the biggest in its class though. With the rear seats in place, the boot offers 512 litres, which expands to 1652 with the seats lowered.
Overall then, the Grandland X is a smart, easy to drive and comfortable crossover that doesn’t do anything particularly badly but doesn’t shine in too many areas either. For most families though, it’ll do more than enough to tick all the practical boxes.
April 12, 2019