Vauxhall Crossland review

Category: Small SUV

The Crossland is well equipped and has a big boot but rival small SUVs are better to drive

Vauxhall Crossland front right driving
  • Vauxhall Crossland front right driving
  • Vauxhall Crossland rear right driving
  • Vauxhall Crossland front seats
  • Vauxhall Crossland boot
  • Vauxhall Crossland driver display
  • Vauxhall Crossland front cornering
  • Vauxhall Crossland front left static
  • Vauxhall Crossland right static
  • Vauxhall Crossland front badge
  • Vauxhall Crossland front detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland alloy wheel
  • Vauxhall Crossland rear detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland rear lights
  • Vauxhall Crossland infotainment touchscreen
  • Vauxhall Crossland seat detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland back seats
  • Vauxhall Crossland interior detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland front right driving
  • Vauxhall Crossland rear right driving
  • Vauxhall Crossland front seats
  • Vauxhall Crossland boot
  • Vauxhall Crossland driver display
  • Vauxhall Crossland front cornering
  • Vauxhall Crossland front left static
  • Vauxhall Crossland right static
  • Vauxhall Crossland front badge
  • Vauxhall Crossland front detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland alloy wheel
  • Vauxhall Crossland rear detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland rear lights
  • Vauxhall Crossland infotainment touchscreen
  • Vauxhall Crossland seat detail
  • Vauxhall Crossland back seats
  • Vauxhall Crossland interior detail

Introduction

What Car? says...

You could see the Vauxhall Crossland as the more sensible sibling of another small SUV from the British car brand – the Mokka.

The Crossland is the slightly more practical option, with a bigger boot and sliding rear seats. Indeed, the Vauxhall Mokka is more about eye-catching styling than practicality and is available as an electric car, whereas the Crossland engine range is limited to a couple of petrol options.

Vauxhall is part of Stellantis – which also includes Peugeot – and both models are based on the Peugeot 2008. However, the Crossland sits on the underpinnings of the previous-generation 2008, whereas the Mokka is based on the latest car.

So does the Vauxhall Crossland still have what it takes to compete with the best small SUVs? After all, rivals range from the Ford Puma and Nissan Juke to the Skoda Kamiq and VW T-Roc. Read on to find out...

"Rival small SUVs are better than the Crossland in a variety of key areas. It's as simple as that." – Steve Huntingford, Editor

Overview

The Vauxhall Crossland is a creditable car in some respects, offering good equipment levels, great seating flexibility and a sizeable boot, but it's mediocre to drive and the rear seats are cramped. If you can get a fantastic deal that makes it much cheaper than anything else, we'd understand you going for it.

  • Good-sized boot
  • Reasonably quiet on motorways
  • Great seating flexibility
  • Cramped rear seats
  • Woeful resale values
  • More expensive to buy than rivals

Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

Strengths

  • +Willing performance

Weaknesses

  • -Quite a lot of road noise
  • -Ride comfort and handling trail rivals

Engine, 0-60mph and gearbox

The Vauxhall Crossland's entry-level 1.2 (110PS) Turbo produces 109bhp, and we think it's the best engine option based on cost and performance.

It comes with a six-speed manual gearbox and is a willing engine when revved, providing enough punch for most situations. The official 0-62mph acceleration time of 10.5 seconds makes it slightly quicker than the Skoda Kamiq 1.0 TSI 95.

The other engine option is the 128bhp 1.2 (130PS) Turbo, which pulls keenly from around 2,000rpm so there's no need to thrash it to get up to speed. It comes with a six-speed automatic gearbox and that works pretty well, although it doesn’t change down as swiftly as a few of the rivals, including the automatic VW T-Roc.

Suspension and ride comfort

There are, quite simply, better-riding small SUVs than the Crossland. If comfort is a priority, the more cushioned Kamiq and T-Roc are better choices. 

That’s not to say that the ride is uncomfortable: it actually absorbs most bumps pretty well. It’s just that those rivals deal with larger abrasions better and feel generally more settled as you drive.

Vauxhall Crossland rear right driving

Handling

If you spend most of your time weaving through urban traffic, the Crossland does a good job. Its light steering makes it easy to nip in and out of lanes, and helps with low-speed manoeuvres.

When you head out into the countryside and along winding lanes, the steering feels accurate and faithful enough for you to guide the Crossland with relative ease. Sadly, though, with less grip and more body lean than some of its lighter-footed rivals, it's not a whole heap of fun. It's also affected by crosswinds on motorways.

Vauxhall CROSSLAND image
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If you fancy some joy behind the wheel, you can do no better than the Ford Puma, which is a cracking thing to whizz around in. The Seat Arona is tidy to drive too.

Noise and vibration

The Crossland's engines are a bit noisier than the 1.0 TSI engines in the Kamiq and T-Roc, and they thrum the most when accelerating from a low speed. They send some vibrations back into the interior – most obviously through the gearlever – but you can also feel the steering wheel and pedals buzzing at times.

Speaking of the gearlever, the 1.2 (110PS) Turbo's manual gearchange isn't that good. The lever has a long throw and it's not very slick or precise. That's not a problem you'll have in most rivals (or even the Vauxhall Mokka).

Meanwhile, the Puma has a far slicker snickety gear change, although the Crossland 1.2 (130PS) Turbo’s auto gearbox does changes fairly smoothly.

At 70mph, the Crossland is prone to the effects of wind gusting over its door mirrors. Road noise isn’t too harsh, but the Peugeot 2008 and the T-Roc are much quieter on motorways.

"The Crossland's engines are punchy but coarse, while the handling is uninspiring. It can't hold a candle to the fun-to-drive Ford Puma." – Neil Winn, Deputy Reviews Editor

Interior

The interior layout, fit and finish

Strengths

  • +High driving position
  • +Great visibility
  • +Physical air-con controls 

Weaknesses

  • -Interior materials are a bit disappointing
  • -Potentially awkward pedal arrangement

Driving position and dashboard

Most people will find the basics in the Vauxhall Crossland pretty good. There's lots of steering-wheel adjustment (in, out, up and down) and plenty of seat adjustment, including for the seat base angle and length. The seat has electrically operated four-way lumbar adjustment and is comfy but lacks side support.

Our biggest gripe is the lack of space between the clutch pedal and the side of the footwell – if you've got big feet you'll snag the clutch pedal every time you pass it in search of the footrest. Also, the pedals are offset to the right, which some drivers will find tiresome on long journeys.

At least you get physical knobs and buttons for the heater controls, so they're less distracting to use when you're driving that the touch-sensitive controls in the VW T-Roc. The Crossland gets a tiny digital driver's display with old-fashioned dials, whereas the T-Roc gets a much better screen.

Visibility, parking sensors and cameras

Visibility out of the Crossland isn't too bad at junctions because the side window-line is quite low and the middle pillars are set back far enough that they don't impede your view. In fact, the view out is much better than in the DS 3 and Peugeot 2008.

The rear pillars are quite wide compared with those on the Skoda Kamiq – which is one of the easiest small SUVs to see out of in any direction. To help you park, the Crossland comes with front and rear sensors, and a 360-degree camera.

Every Crossland comes with LED headlights. They're much better for picking your way along unlit roads at night than halogen bulbs, which are still fitted to certain versions of the Kia Stonic.

Vauxhall Crossland front seats

Sat nav and infotainment

You get an 8.0in touchscreen infotainment system in the Crossland, which also includes a DAB radio, six speakers, Bluetooth, built-in sat-nav and, importantly, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone connectivity. 

The infotainment software is very similar to previous-generation Citroën and Peugeot models. Some of the icons are a bit small and you'll find much quicker and more useable systems in the Seat Arona and Skoda Kamiq, and the VW T-Cross and T-Roc.

We’d much prefer a dial rather than having to prod the touchscreen all the time, but in defence of the Crossland, it’s now almost impossible to find that in the small SUV class. For example, the new Mini Countryman doesn't have a rotary controller like the previous model's.

Quality

The Crossland's interior looks smart at a glance, but while there are some chrome and glossy details, it's mostly covered in scratchy plastics that feel cheap and, in places, not very sturdy.

A Nissan Juke has a much more pleasant ambience – as do the Skoda Kamiq and VW T-Roc.

"The Crossland's interior is okay at best. It feels dated by today's standards." – Will Nightingale, Reviews Editor

Passenger & boot space

How it copes with people and clutter

Strengths

  • +Good head room all round
  • +Big boot
  • +Comes with sliding rear seats

Weaknesses

  • -Rivals offer more width
  • -Limited rear leg room

Front space

Access through the Vauxhall Crossland's big front doors is good, and once you're inside, there's plenty of head and leg room, even if you're tall. The VW T-Roc is wider, so if you prefer to have more distance between you and your passenger, that’s worth considering instead.

Storage space is not as generous as it is in the Skoda Kamiq but you still get plenty of trays and a couple of cupholders. The door bins are long but shallow and the glovebox is very small.

Rear space

Ultimately, the Crossland is beaten on rear space by many small SUV rivals, including the Ford Puma, the Nissan Juke and – most convincingly – the Kamiq, which offers an astonishing amount of space for its size. 

Head room is not a problem, but if you’re more than 6ft tall and the person in front of you has their seat slid right back, you'll have very little knee room. On the plus side, the foot space under its front seats is fine and the central tunnel that runs along its floor isn't as pronounced as it is in other competitors.

Just as it is in the front, the Crossland isn’t particularly wide so you'd be better off with the broader T-Roc if you often carry three adults in the back.

There's not a lot of storage space in the back, with just a couple of small door bins and map pockets on the backs of the front seats. There's a rear armrest too.

Vauxhall Crossland boot

Seat folding and flexibility

Every Crossland comes with 60/40 split-folding rear seats, for when you need more boot space. That’s a match for most of its rivals but isn’t as versatile as the 40/20/40 configuration you’ll find in the Mini Countryman

The thing is, the Crossland’s rear seats have a trick up their sleeves – they allow you to slide them back and forth, prioritising either rear leg room or boot space. Not many small SUVs offer those.

Boot space

At 410 litres – or up to 520 litres if you have the sliding seats all the way forward – the Crossland’s boot is bigger than most rivals', including the Juke’s and the Kamiq's. The Ford Puma – with its big well under the floor – has more boot space overall, but you'll easily get a buggy or a couple of medium-sized suitcases in the back of the Crossland.

On top of the boot's size, it's also usefully square and comes with a height-adjustable boot floor. If you raise it up, there's hardly any lip down from the bottom of the tailgate opening and you get a smooth floor when the rear seats are folded down.

"Being able to slide the rear seats back and forth is very useful, because it allows you to create extra leg room or boot space – that's a layer of versatility you won't always find in rivals." – Dan Jones, Reviewer

Buying & owning

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Strengths

  • +Lots of standard kit

Weaknesses

  • -Expired Euro NCAP rating
  • -Weak resale values
  • -High list price

Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2

The Vauxhall Crossland is no longer available in a choice of trims – you can only buy what used to be the top trim, Ultimate. As a result, the starting price is around the same as for the VW T-Roc and higher than for entry-level versions of the Ford Puma, the Kia Stonic, the Nissan Juke and the Skoda Kamiq.

Worse still, the Crossland is predicted to lose its value more quickly than rival small SUVs over three years. That's bad news if you're thinking of buying on PCP finance because it can push up the monthly cost. To make sure you get the best price, check our new Vauxhall deals page

The Crossland's engines officially average around 45mpg, which is competitive, but the Puma 1.0 Ecoboost 125, which has mild-hybrid tech, is more fuel efficient, with lower CO2 emissions. That means the Puma will attract less BIK tax if you get one as a company car – although a plug-in hybrid or electric car will fall into an even lower tax band.

Equipment, options and extras

The Crossland's sole trim, called Ultimate, comes with all the bells and whistles. The equipment list includes 17in alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, automatic windscreen wipers, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, keyless entry and start, an infotainment touchscreen and plenty of other kit.

Vauxhall Crossland driver display

Reliability

Vauxhall's performance in our 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey wasn't great: it finished in 30th place out of 32 brands, beating only Alfa Romeo and Cupra.

The Crossland comes with a three-year, 60,000-mile Vauxhall warranty and a year’s roadside assistance. That's in keeping with the cover from the majority of other manufacturers, but doesn't match the five-year warranties Hyundai and Toyota offer, let alone Kia’s seven-year, 100,000-mile package.

Safety and security

The Crossland achieved a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating when it was tested in 2017, but that rating has expired, due to the tests getting more stringent every year. 

Even so, it does come with all the safety kit that you would want, including automatic emergency braking (AEB), a driver drowsiness monitor, blind-spot monitoring, six airbags and lane-departure warning.  

"Having an expired Euro NCAP safety rating and no standard AEB isn't great for safety-conscious families." – Claire Evans, Consumer Editor


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