The SUV Addiction
SUVs have gained quite a reputation for themselves. With their petrol and diesel counterparts being labeled as gas guzzlers, it’s hard to argue that driving an electric SUV is a sustainable choice when it weighs as much as 3 tons. Now, I’m not here to lecture or judge anyone for their preference for SUVs. In fact, I quite like them too. They offer ample space, comfort, and even if off-road capabilities aren’t necessary, it’s nice to have that elevated driving position in traffic. Moreover, when it comes to electric cars, the positioning of the battery works well with the SUV design. But here’s where physics comes into play.
A Matter of Physics
The inherent tallness of SUVs poses a challenge to their efficiency. Their lack of aerodynamics leads to greater energy consumption, as more power is needed to push them through the air. In addition, their top-heavy nature affects their performance in corners, making them less enjoyable to drive. So, if you’re looking for the spaciousness of an SUV without compromising on efficiency or driving experience, there’s a solution for you.
The Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric
Enter the Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric. While the folks at Vox may cringe every time someone refers to it as an estate, it is indeed a sports tourer designed for touring. Currently, the market offers limited options when it comes to electric estates, with the MG5 and the Porsche Taycan being notable contenders.
An Alternative to SUVs
The Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric presents an enticing alternative to SUVs. It combines the practicality of an estate car with the benefits of an electric vehicle. With its sleek design and improved aerodynamics, this electric sports tourer offers a more efficient drive, reducing energy consumption and ultimately benefiting the environment.
Beyond the environmental advantages, the Astra Sport Tourer Electric delivers an impressive driving experience. Its lower center of gravity and improved handling make cornering a breeze, adding to the overall enjoyment on the road. Whether it’s a family road trip or a daily commute, this electric sports tourer ensures a smooth and comfortable ride.
The Final Verdict
In conclusion, if you’re in search of a vehicle that combines the space and practicality of an SUV with the efficiency and driving dynamics of an electric car, the Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric is a compelling choice. It challenges the notion that SUVs are the go-to option, offering an appealing alternative and contributing to a greener future. So, next time you consider an SUV, think about the Astra Sport Tourer Electric and explore the possibilities it brings to the table.
The Spacious Interior and Storage
The Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric certainly delivers when it comes to providing ample space. Designed with company car drivers in mind, it combines the practicality of a traditional estate car with the efficiency of an electric vehicle. With the tax incentives offered for electric vehicles, it’s no wonder that this model is gaining popularity among professionals who need to transport goods for work.
One of the standout features of the Astra Sport Tourer Electric is its generous 56 L boot. This provides plenty of room to carry essential items, such as carpet samples or documents, between appointments. However, it’s worth noting that the storage space falls slightly short compared to its petrol counterpart, which boasts an impressive 1553 L capacity with the seats folded down. Despite this, the Astra Sport Tourer Electric still offers enough space to accommodate your needs, including those unexpected situations where you might need to pack in a hurry.
The Driving Experience
When it comes to the driving experience, the Astra Sport Tourer Electric does not disappoint. Having already tested the hatchback version, we were impressed with its performance and this model only builds upon those strengths. The electric powertrain ensures a smooth and seamless drive, and the handling is just as impressive as its petrol sibling. Whether you’re navigating city streets or cruising on the highway, the Astra Sport Tourer Electric delivers a comfortable and enjoyable ride.
Comfort and Materials
In addition to its practicality and performance, the Astra Sport Tourer Electric also excels in providing a comfortable and luxurious interior. One of the notable improvements over the hatchback version is the comfort of the front seats. While some may have found them lacking in the hatchback, the Sport Tourer Electric boasts more comfortable seating, as confirmed by a respected German back association. The materials used throughout the cabin are of high quality, although some may find them a bit scratchy. Additionally, the dark color scheme may not appeal to everyone, as it can make the interior feel a bit cramped.
Efficiency and Structure
The Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric certainly stands out in terms of efficiency. As the most efficient car I’ve ever driven, it delivers over 5 m per kilowatt hour—a noteworthy achievement. Vauxhall has taken a clever approach with the electric version of the Sport Tourer. They have integrated the battery as a structural component, resulting in a stiffer body shell compared to the hatchback, plug-in electric vehicle (PEV), or petrol versions. This structural enhancement not only enhances the car’s overall ride quality but also eliminates any creaks and groans that can sometimes be heard in other vehicles.
Precision Steering and Comfort
One standout feature of the Astra Sport Tourer Electric is its precise steering. Unlike SUVs, this car doesn’t suffer from excessive head sway when navigating corners or uneven road surfaces. The combination of its well-calibrated steering and a lower center of gravity ensures a smooth and controlled driving experience.
The Astra Sport Tourer Electric boasts a claimed official range of 256 miles, which, admittedly, is not particularly impressive compared to some competitors. However, it achieves this range with a 54 kWh battery. This means that despite its larger build, the car consumes roughly the same amount of power as a supermini. Consequently, you can expect to spend less time and money on charging, which is a positive aspect. However, considering the rapidly advancing range capabilities of electric vehicles, one might expect a larger battery capacity.
While the Astra Sport Tourer Electric offers a decent range, it might fall short in comparison to other electric car options on the market. For instance, the MG5 provides a range of 326 miles and costs £9,000 less, making it an attractive alternative. Additionally, the Skoda Enyaq offers more interior space, similar efficiency, and a lower starting price—further expanding the range of choices for consumers.
More Modern and Nicer to Drive
You could actually have a Tesla Model Y for the cost of this ultimate trim too, and that has an interior which is about the size of Belgium. Now this car is certainly more modern and nicer to drive, more solid feeling than the MG, but that £99,000 does niggle in the back of your head.
Consider the Cost
Of course, most of these cars will be bought by a company and it’ll be fed into an accountant spreadsheet and will come out as a monthly leasing cost. But even so, if you’re the company car driver, you’re going to have to pay an extra £100 a year in tax to have this over the MG and that might sting a little, which means the poor Astra Sport Tourer is a little bit lost.
I mean it’s a nice enough car, I’d like driving it, it’s efficient. You could even say it’s astronomical and, of course, it’s got enough space, so you can sleep in it. Whether you’ve had an argument with the wife, but it’s not achingly desirable. You’re not going to go to your fleet manager and beg that he lets you have one of these, rather than a Skoda Enyaq iV. And you’re not going to pay extra out of your wages to have one either, and that’s a shame. It means it needs to compete on value and it just doesn’t.
I mean, the entry level…
Overall, the Vauxhall Astra Sport Tourer Electric proves to be a worthy contender in the electric vehicle market. Its spacious interior, practical storage, and comfortable driving experience make it an attractive option, especially for company car drivers. While it may fall slightly short in terms of cargo space compared to its petrol counterpart, it still offers enough room to meet most needs. The combination of style, performance, and efficiency make the Astra Sport Tourer Electric a compelling choice for those in search of a versatile and eco-friendly vehicle.