New Vauxhall Astra vs Ford Focus vs Skoda Scala: costs

Vauxhall has upgraded its family hatchback with steering changes and new engines and infotainment. Is this boost big enough for it to rocket up and join the stars of the class?...

Ford Focus driving

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety and security

Fuel economy will be a major consideration for any company car driver, and in our real-world tests, the Scala achieved the best figure: an impressive 56.6mpg. So, while you wouldn’t call the Focus and Astra thirsty (they managed 50.4mpg and 50.8mpg respectively), the Scala would cost around £500 less to fuel over three years than either at today’s prices.

However, as the car here with the lowest official CO2 emissions, as well as the only one that doesn’t incur the 4% BIK tax surcharge, it’s the Astra that looks the most financially tempting for company car drivers. It costs just £170 per month (rising to £177 from next April) if you’re a 40% taxpayer, while the Focus will cost you £198 (going up to £206) and the Scala an even heftier £211 (and then £218).

Skoda Scala driving

Your fleet manager won’t be quite so happy with the Astra, mind you, because it will cost the company £99 per month more to lease than the Scala and a massive £171 more than the Focus. 

Of course, these cars won’t appeal only to business users; high-mileage private buyers will be drawn to their value as well. And after the application of Target Price savings (which you can take advantage of on the New Car Buying section of our website), the Scala is the cheapest to buy, by £600 over the Focus and a significant £1915 over the Astra.

Something no discount will be able to fix, though, is horrendous predicted depreciation. While the Focus is expected to hold onto a respectable 42% of its value after three years and the Scala 37%, the Astra is predicted to be worth a paltry 29% after that short time.

Vauxhall Astra driving

That should make the Astra by far the priciest on a PCP finance deal, but a huge deposit contribution of £5000 from Vauxhall actually makes it the cheapest – by a decent £90 per month over the Focus.

Given the budget status of the Scala, it’s especially impressive that it’s the best equipped, being the only car here that comes with climate control, keyless entry and rear parking sensors as standard.

All three cars come with automatic emergency braking and lane-keeping assistance, while the Scala proves the safest for adults in the event of a crash and the Focus the best at protecting children.