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What Car? says

3 out of 5 stars

For Easy to live with; folding hard-top roof; reasonable boot space

Against Only two seats; compromised handling

Verdict Compact and attractive roadster, shame it's not so good to drive

Go for… 1.4 Sport

Avoid… 1.8 Exclusiv

Vauxhall Tigra Coupé Cabriolet
  • 1. The entry-level 90bhp 1.4-litre is the best buy, with reasonable insurance and fuel costs
  • 2. Servicing costs are reasonable and similar to those of the Corsa on which it's based. Using an independent garage will also save you money
  • 3. The 1.4-litre averages 46.3mpg and emits 146g/km, with the 1.8-litre at 36.7mpg and CO2 of 185g/km. The diesel does an average of 61.4mpg and emits 124g/km of CO2
  • 4. The door seals can leak, so check the interior and seals for evidence of moisture or water stains. You should also inspect thoroughly and test the complex folding roof
  • 5. Entry-level Tigras come with alloy wheels, front electric windows, remote central locking and a CD player
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Vauxhall Tigra Coupé Cabriolet full review with expert trade views

The second-generation Tigra was based on the Vauxhall Corsa (00-06). It has just two seats, but that means there’s decent space for the occupants. The boot is a good, useable size even when the roof is stowed.

It doesn't feel terribly sporty, but with the roof in place it's fairly composed and copes well with bumps. However, drop the roof and the chassis’s limitations become apparent, with excessive body flex and poor ride quality.

Trade view

The 1.4-litre Sport gives you decent specification as standard, but will keep running costs down.

Matt Sanger
What Car?'s Used Car Editor

The entry-level 90bhp 1.4-litre is the best buy, with reasonable insurance and fuel costs. There’s also a 122bhp 1.8-litre version, which doesn’t feel much faster, but costs noticeably more to run.

If you want an automatic car, then you’re confined to the exceptionally rare 1.4-litre Easytronic version.

Entry-level Tigras come with alloy wheels, front electric windows, remote central locking and a CD player, but the Sport is the better option with upgraded alloys, improved cabin- and body trim, and an MP3 player connection. However, air-con was optional on low- and mid-spec Tigras, so check to see if it’s fitted. The elusive Exclusiv gets leather, stability control and air-con as standard.

Trade view

Relatively cheap way to get the wind in your hair, but it’s not very engaging to drive.

Matt Sanger
What Car?'s Used Car Editor

Servicing costs are reasonable and similar to those of the Corsa on which it's based. Using an independent garage will also save you money.

The 1.4-litre model averages 46.3mpg and emits 146g/km of CO2, with the 1.8-litre at 36.7mpg and CO2 emissions of 185g/km. The diesel does an average of 61.4mpg and emits 124g/km of CO2.

Insurance ranges from group 15 on lower-spec cars, to group 26 for the 1.8-litre.

Trade view

The 1.4-litre Sport gives you decent specification as standard, but will keep running costs down.

Matt Sanger
What Car?'s Used Car Editor

The Tigra has not been the most reliable of cars with several common complaints.

The door seals can leak, so check the interior and seals for evidence of moisture or water stains. You should also inspect thoroughly and test the complex folding roof.

Rear visibility is a little restricted with the roof up, so have a quick look for reversing damage on the bumpers and check the larger alloy wheels on Sport versions for signs of damage.

There have been two recalls on the Tigra, one concerning the passenger-side airbag, and the other that water can get into the ABS system and create a short circuit, and possibly a fire. Get a dealer to check that both have been fixed.

Trade view

Relatively cheap way to get the wind in your hair, but it’s not very engaging to drive.

Matt Sanger
What Car?'s Used Car Editor
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