Vauxhall Agila: driven
* Practical and economical * Grumbly diesel engine * From £11,630...
Vauxhall Agila 1.3 CDTi Ecoflex
Need a practical runaround that wont cost the earth to run? Then you might want to look at the Agila Ecoflex.
Vauxhall usually reserves its Ecoflex badge for models that have efficiency measures such as low-rolling-resistance tyres and longer gearing, but the little Agila simply relies on its low weight and a small, economical engine.
Its 74bhp 1.3-litre diesel unit emits just 120g/km of CO2 and average fuel economy tops 62mpg so it limits the damage to your bank account and to the environment.
The engine is a pleasant surprise. Yes, its a bit grumbly, but it doesnt feel out of its depth beyond urban limits. Its flexible, too, so swift overtaking moves are possible.
The Agila also ticks all the right boxes when on family duties. The cabin is surprisingly spacious: theres enough room for most drivers up front, and even the tallest teenagers will be comfortable in the rear.
Boot space is on the small side, but there is underfloor storage and the rear seatbacks fold down.
The Agilas small size also makes parking into tight spaces a cinch, even though the thick rear pillars restrict over-the-shoulder vision.
However, there are a couple of bad points. Bumps thump into the cabin, road noise begins to irritate on a long journey and there are some cheap-looking interior plastics.
However, the biggest quibble is with the price. At £11,630, the Agila is expensive for a supermini especially when the near-identical Suzuki Splash is at least £1000 cheaper and has more standard equipment.
Green and family-friendly supermini shame about the price