Vauxhall blasts back

with Corsa GSi

Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, front
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, front, action
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, side
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, rear
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, interior
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, display screen
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, rear seats
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, boot
Vauxhall Corsa GSi, 2018, badge

A BLAST from the past is coming from Vauxhall with the company bringing back the Corsa GSi.

It's 25 years since the Corsa wore a GSi badge and the newcomer replaces the recently discontinued VXR model.

More warm than hot hatch, the Corsa GSi is powered by the 1.4-litre turbo petrol engine used elsewhere in the range but fettled to deliver 150bhp with a good amount of torque.

It also sits on the VXR platform and comes with sports suspension and uprated brakes with 17-inch rims standard and 18-inches an option for an extra £510.

And that causes an issue, for on all but the smoothest of road surfaces the Corsa GSi can be unsettled by the slightest bump.

Moreover, with 220Nm of torque going through the front wheels it has inherited a tendency for torque steer when driven enthusiastically.

Together, the ride and the steering can make the Corsa GSi a handful and it would have perhaps benefited had Vauxhall opted for a more compliant set up.

At £18,995 the GSi is the new flagship of the Corsa line up and significantly cheaper than the VXR with a lower insurance rating of group 20.

As such it is the same price as the Suzuki Swift Sport but add in some extras as fitted to the version we tried - such as Recaro sports seats at £1,055, bi-xenon headlights at £425 and a factory fitted sat nav at £650 - and the cost went up to a total of £23,055 which puts it in the same league as Ford's Fiesta ST.

Side by side there's no comparison between the two and the same goes for the Corsa's performance which is rated at 8.9 seconds for the 0 to 60 dash, a top end of 129mph and official fuel economy of 49.6 miles to the gallon with a CO2 figure of 139g/km.

On our run in the car we averaged 37.1mpg according to the trip computer, which for a car of such credentials is acceptable.

On the style front, the Corsa GSi is dressed in a sporty fashion with silver elements in the front trim, carbon effect mirror cappings and carbon on the front grille bar, a rear roof spoiler, red brake callipers and a chrome exhaust tailpipe.

With the larger wheels it looks the part but it's a three-door only and boot space is 280 litres expanding to a maximum of 1,050 litres - the same as the VXR.

Inside, as well as the sports seats there's alloy foot pedals and a flat bottom to the steering wheel to complete the sporty touches and the GSi comes with a seven-inch touchscreen and full smartphone compatibility.

Certainly, the Corsa GSi is more affordable than the VXR but it lacks the bite and while it may look the part it is neither as quick nor as accomplished as most of its rivals.

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