The Corsa supermini will get a major facelift this year when it receives new electric and hybrid powertrain options and becomes the last current Vauxhall to gain the company’s bold ‘Vizor’ grille.
The British brand hopes heavy visual updates and increased power choices – as well as a rise in electric-only range – will enable the hatch to again become the country’s most popular car, having been pipped last year by the Nissan Qashqai SUV and chased closely by the Tesla Model Y and Ford Puma.
“It has been a phenomenal success. Ever since it landed in the market, it’s been a really important car for us,” vice-president of design Mark Adams told Autocar.
Visually, the biggest changes are at the front, where more muscular and slimline LED headlights join the Vizor grille – a single, solid black panel that sits between those lights.
“It really feels like a very different car and feels much more modern,” said Adams.
“Not only does it look sporty, but it looks more efficient, more aerodynamic and more electric.” The visual changes mean the Vauxhall Corsa will continue to play a major role in rebuilding brand awareness for Vauxhall and, coupled with the new Astra released last year, “certainly ties in with the familiarity”, said Vauxhall boss James Taylor.
Underneath, fresh powertrain options have taken the car a “significant step forward”, said Adams, especially with the Corsa Electric.
The firm now offers a 51kWh battery and upgraded 154bhp motor – both shared with sibling brand Peugeot’s updated e-208 – for an improved 255-mile range.
The current car’s 134bhp motor and 50kWh battery, with 222 miles of range, is still offered. A 1.2-litre mild-hybrid engine, the Corsa’s first hybrid powertrain, joins the range with two power levels: 99bhp and 134bhp. An entry-level petrol engine, with a choice of 74bhp or 99bhp, remains.
Pricing for the updated Corsa line-up is still under wraps, although it is likely to increase from the current £18,015 starting point yet stay below £20,000 – keeping it positioned as Vauxhall’s entry-level model.
The current electric variant starts from £31,931, so a premium, especially in longer-range form, is expected.