Vauxhall Grandland X 1.2T 130 2017 review

Vauxhall Grandland X

The Vauxhall Grandland X may be a re-skinned Peugeot 3008, but the car is too bland and offers too little to stand out in an increasingly competitive market

If Vauxhall has an issue it is that, far more often than not, it has been too keen to go with the popular flow. Instead of blazing a trail itself, it’s been happy simply putting its own take on concepts and classes that already exist.Rarely, if ever, does a Vauxhall place you at the cutting edge of engineering endeavour, bringing you cars that do things that, in their category, have never been done before. And the only problem with this is that making your cars really stand out on grounds other than financial can be resultantly quite tricky.This new Grandland X is just such an example. It brings Vauxhall to the mid-sized crossover SUV class fully ten years after the Nissan Qashqai turned it into a core category. It sits on the same platform as the Peugeot 3008 thanks to a joint venture agreed long before Peugeot’s PSA parent bought Vauxhall and Opel, is powered by PSA engines and is built, you guessed it, in a PSA factory in France.Actually, Vauxhall has done very well to disguise the Grandland’s origins. It may not look as distinctive as the 3008, but its lines are well proportioned, inoffensive and cleaner than most in this class.Some may find grating the way the car’s stance, brightwork and cladding hint at an adventuring, off-road capability the car absolutely does not have – there is not even an all-wheel drive model and nor does Vauxhall talk of one to come – but it’s a game played to some extent or another by all its rivals and it is the Vauxhall way to join in.Inside, the Peugeot’s flawed but funky i-Cockpit has been replaced by something altogether more sober and Astra-esque. In here and obligatory raised driving position aside, there is nothing to suggest you’re in any kind of SUV at all.Its proportions continue to follow the class norm. I’d say its boot was perhaps a little larger than average and rear room maybe a touch tighter than the norm, but no one shopping in this class will find one a game changer any more than they will the other a deal breaker. Here, as is in so many other areas, it’s there or thereabouts.That said, the car feels very solid and the choice of interior materials is determinedly plush so long as you don’t spend too much time scratching and prodding around below your natural eye line. It’s also conspicuously well equipped with a full suite of active safety measures including lane departure and driver drowsiness warnings, plus forward collision, pedestrian protection and autonomous braking features. When you’re not avoiding an accident, there’s Vauxhall’s OnStar concierge service, Apple and Android players and an eight-inch colour touchscreen for your children to cover in grubby paw prints.But well equipped it needs to be, with even the entry level Grandland X costing £22,310, over £3000 more than base Qashqai or £4000 more than the new and class-leading Seat Ateca.

Source: Autocar Online

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