Vauxhall Agila -

Used Car Review

Vauxhall Agila, front
Vauxhall Agila, front
Vauxhall Agila, rear
Vauxhall Agila, rear
Vauxhall Agila, interior
Vauxhall Agila, side
Vauxhall Agila, interior
Vauxhall Agila, boot

ALTHOUGH it's a city car, the Vauxhall Agila is bigger and more practical than others like the Ford Ka and the Fiat 500, making it a lot more useful.

It is a five door for a start, which makes things much easier if you have children. and it is roomy and flexible on the inside, with fold-flat back seats giving the capacity of a small van.

It was built in the same Polish factory as the Suzuki Splash and the two cars are basically very much the same.

Most Vauxhalls and all Fords are now sadly built outside Britain and Sunderland-built Nissans and Swindon-built Hondas have way more British content.

The Agila is available with a 1.0-litre petrol engine, which has either 64 or 68bhp, and a 1.2 with either 83 or 92bhp. There's also a 1.3-litre diesel with 73bhp that's very economical.

The 1.0-litre 68bhp engine is only just man enough for the weight, taking 14.2 seconds to get to 60 miles an hour from rest, but the 1.2-litre is more perky and nippy, taking 11.6 seconds.

The smaller unit is better on economy though - a 60mpg best as against 55 for the 1.2-litre.

The 1.3 diesel is capable of 62mpg and covers the sprint in 13.5 seconds.

All drive the front wheels through a five-speed gearbox and they seem to be very good value secondhand. An automatic was offered on the 1.2 petrol, but was less economical and slower.

Comfort is pretty good over most surfaces, refinement is fair and road holding safe and sure without coming close to the best in the city car class.

There is good all round vision and there is good head and legroom - even in the back.

While it may not be a mini-MPV, the Agila has a lot of the elements of a people carrier that help to make it very practical.

Tall sided styling frees up plenty of headroom for passengers and also adds to the amount of load space.

The boot is a reasonable size to begin with and it can be extended by dropping down the 50/50 split rear seat.

Some will also come with the option of the DualFloor, which gives additional storage space under the boot floor.

Entry model is the Expression and it comes with real ‘Post Office' spec. This means manual windows, power steering and a folding rear seat, but not the split/fold one other models.

The S model improves this with central locking and electric front windows and door mirrors, but you have to choose the sub-level S A/C to get aircon.

The SE adds alloy wheels, but you still only get four airbags and no stability control. These are serious omissions when the equivalent Suzuki gets six airbags and ESP.

Prices are well down now because production ended in 2013, but there are still a few around with history and low mileage.

Pay about £1,770 for a '13 13-reg 1.0-litre S, or £2,950 for a '14 14-reg 1.2-litre SE.

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