Vauxhall Insignia driving experiences please?

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  • Vauxhall Insignia driving experiences please?
  • bradley
    Member

    Looking at getting a new car suitable for a family of 4. These seem fairly well priced and in my price range. I currently drive a Vauxhall Vectra so “driving thrill” is not high on my priority.

    jordie
    Member

    They are comfy and loads of space inside, I had 2ltr Diesel pretty good mpg on a long run too. I you do buy one and need some cheap roof bars give me a shout.

    speed12
    Member

    In my opinion, not as good as the Vectra before it. They certainly aren’t bad, but it just doesn’t feel like you have much connection to the car – not in that way of wanting to hoon it round in a diesel family car, but just in that you wonder sometimes if the steering is actually reacting to you turning the wheel. But stil drive able and the cabin is fairly decent, and seems comfortable (not driven our pool car on anything but short journeys).

    My thing with it is that cars like the Insignia, Mondeo, etc should really be dull to drive because they just do everything well – nothing exciting or unexpected happens, but it just gets you from point a, to point b a long way away, in comfort, with no drama, and carrying whatever you need. In a Mondeo I just switch off (in a good way!) as it does that perfectly. With the Insignia, there is always something that causes me to make a comment at some point in a journey.

    But yeah, certainly not a bad car so would be worth a test drive I reckon. I’d be looking at the Mondeo as well though – there is a reason it is so popular.

    Premier Icon angeldust
    Subscriber

    Spectacularly dull. If I ever get one as a hire car (booked through work so usually not my choice) I am immediately depressed because the interior is just so boring. Mondeo and Mazda 6 are superior in that price range. I get to drive a wide variety of cars and Vauxhalls are always the most boring and have the most depressing interiors. However, if you have no interest in cars/can’t tell the difference in quality, they are perfectly adequate. I’d rather walk than drive one.

    Premier Icon captain_bastard
    Subscriber

    They are great for motorway mile munching, would echo comments above about the disconnected drive feel, But so long as your interested in a 2 b rather than driving ”experience’ you’ll get on fine

    Premier Icon bearnecessities
    Subscriber

    The experience changes dramatically with trim level, more so than other cars.

    There is no point looking in rear view mirror.

    Very ‘dark’ inside, high door levels.

    Latest incarnation has a few improvements/tweaks. Estate is mahoosive. I managed to fold a double bed into it (just!).

    Basically, a well specified one is an ok place to be.

    b r
    Member

    My thing with it is that cars like the Insignia, Mondeo, etc should really be dull to drive because they just do everything well – nothing exciting or unexpected happens, but it just gets you from point a, to point b a long way away, in comfort, with no drama, and carrying whatever you need

    +1 And not just those, but the premium brands too.

    I use to do up to 1000 miles per week; what you need is a safe, quiet, fast (enough to overtake safely and never have to change down for hills), good handling car that won’t let you down. Anything else is just ‘dressing’.

    Oh, and normally the bigger the car the better it is at the above.

    Premier Icon tomd
    Subscriber

    I had one with work for about 3 months. It was OK, it was fairly comfortable car to drive. I was doing mixed motorway / backroads every day and it was fine. I think it was a 1.8 petrol although can’t be sure, it was certainly plenty quick. Only thing I didn’t really like about was the poor visibility (big pillars, high door levels). It also developed some annoying rattles and squeeks from the trim which was dissapointing for a brand new car. Having said that, definitely worth considering if the price and size suit your needs.

    Perhaps you could get used to it but I found the electronic handbrake to be so bad that it would put me off ever buying one .

    Premier Icon Bregante
    Subscriber

    Is that standard across the range Neil? We had a couple of Astra’s at work with the electronic handbrake and I hated them. Most pointless accessory in a car ever imo and it would be top of my list to avoid when buying my next car.

    shifter
    Member

    In my Astra the electric brake works on the pull or push of a switch, is it different in an Insignia? 🙂

    steviegil
    Member

    I went through the same thing as you early last year Bradley. Criteria was to be roomy enough for family of 4 and a dog. Tested all the variants out at the time, best was a 200bhp Smax diesel but this was priced at £26k iirc, didn’t get on with the Mondeo at all, Octavia Vrs was good but felt small compared to the others. I ended up with an insignia diesel tourer, plenty of room (even if smaller than the old Vectra estate) good economy, drive decent and really good warranty from network Q..

    As above, most of these cars are much of a muchness, generally quite bland, do the family stuff well, great mile munchers and reasonably cheap to run/maintain, drive them all and make your choice 🙂

    craigxxl
    Member

    Only had one as a hire car and it was dull but comfortable. Like Angeldust said it just does what you ask of it and nothing else. As a Mondeo driver it’s a much better car to drive than the Insignia. You could do worse and get a Pug 507 which should be banned on safety grounds as it will send you to sleep at the wheel it’s that amazingly dull.

    BurnBob
    Member

    Brilliant cars. Had the 160hp diesel for 3 years, 50,000 miles. Only issue was power steering hose failure which was a known fault and fixed under warranty. Loads of room for a family of four. Just make sure it’s a hatchback you get and not a saloon which both look identical. I don’t get why they did the two models?!
    I would reccomend.

    hora
    Member

    I had a 150bhp diesel Insignia auto on hire to go camping (600mile round trip).

    I liked it- some aspects I’d change (the steering feel and where the cup holder etc is) but overall I was surprised. I wouldn’t have an auto one though as I couldn’t beat 37mpg average.

    Edit- just found thoughts from the time:

    http://mobile.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?h=0&f=23&t=1197693&mid=0

    Premier Icon smogmonster
    Subscriber

    Ive had 2, the diesels are great VFM, and ride pretty well, if a bit ‘crashy’. Avoid the petrol 1.8 like the plague….horrifically slow and I NEVER achieved higher then 28mpg even whilst driving like Miss Daisy. Just shockingly poor. The Estates don’t have a vast amount of room either.

    andyt1054
    Member

    We currently have 3 of the vxr insignias at work, I’ve been driving them for around 6-8 months or so in my current role, since they replaced the old volvo’s . Bearing in mind the cars are running 24 hrs a day and they do get thrashed going to incidents both on the motorways and urban driving, they all appear to be holding up remarkably well, non have failed so far and most are circa 70-80k on 62 and 63 plate motors. Performance wise, they are probably a bit quicker than the T5’s, no where near as stable at v high speed though. I only know of 2 failures, both of which were crashed into and not the fault of the cars.

    If I was to have a moan I would say the gear boxes are a bit crunchy from first to second and they do have a bit of a blind spot on the front quarter, other than that they seem really nice cars, quite good loading capacity too in the boot. From what I’ve heard from colleagues they are a lot better than the new Astra’s they now use as “beat” cars, apparently the blind spot is huge and performance/load space not great and nowhere near as good as the focus’es they replaced.

    BlindMelon
    Member

    I would avoid like the plague, especially if its your own money you are spending.

    I’ve had one now for almost 4 years and 80k miles as my company car and it has been very unreliable, is uneconomical and fairly expensive to service/maintain. It has been back to the garage 6 times in about 3 years for 2 electrical faults, power steering failure, electric hand brake failure, blown turbo and seized hand brake.

    Its had 2 sets of front discs, one set of rears and numerous pad replacements. And last week the front badge fell off, this is also a known fault with the fixing of it. It costs £122 plus vat if you want Vauxhall to stick it back on.

    I have the 2.0 diesel (160) and get at best 45 mpg and average around 41, so its very thirsty.

    All this aside I actually enjoy driving the car, its spacious, very comfortable and eats the miles. I disagree that the interior is poor, its quiet and has no rattles. Its much quieter than my wife’s Golf which is the same age.

    However I would NEVER choose to spend my own money on an Insignia. The negatives unfortunately outweigh the positives.

    hora
    Member

    Looking at getting a new car suitable for a family of 4

    With associated baggage etc?

    £11,495 for a diesel:

    http://www.pentagon-vauxhall.co.uk/offers/new-car/new-vauxhall-zafira-exclusiv-mpv-offer

    Premier Icon Flaperon
    Subscriber

    I like mine. I just wanted a motorway mile musher for the trip to work with room for a couple of bikes. Does the job nicely. MPG can be all over the place but generally averages 60. Lowest is 48 (probably due to strong winds and me running late for work), highest 79.

    MrGrim
    Member

    I’ve got the 2.0 CDTI ecoflex vx-line sports tourer. I’ve had it for a year now and done 13,000 miles since new.

    Positives:
    Good fuel economy, I get around 740 miles out of a tank
    Comfortable – I can drive 5-6 hours at a time without struggling
    ICE – Built in Sat Nav is good although no postcode look up is a pain sometimes. Ipod integration is good.

    Negatives:
    Vx-line versions have 20″ wheels, tyres are expensive and wheels are easily curbed in multi-story carparks. If I was going again I would have got the non sporty trim.

    Boot is massive, but low at the entrance on the tourer which is a huge pain.

    In the last week I have towed 3 early (59/60 plate) 2.0 diesel’s with cooked engines. There is a plastic ribbed coolant junction on the front of the engine that develops a hairline crack. This causes a gradual loss of coolant leading to catastrophic overheating. All three drivers said there were no warning lights or overheating showing on the temp gauge.
    Be very wary, keep looking- there are better cars out there.

    i am on my second company one after a head on crash in the first.

    They have good safety features and scrunch nicely at the front.

    The visibility however is awful. After over 2 years i still cannot reverse park or parallel park properly. it looks like the car is nearly touching whatever is behind, but is actually several feet away.

    There are several blind spots.

    It is mostly comfy, although am having trouble with the seating in mine recently. It is massive, but the big boot can be difficult to get things in and out of as the opening is relatively small, and is hard to reach into the depths due to the sticky out bumpers.

    I had a tourer for a week or so which was nice. Helped by the fact it was an elite model. Once i got over the novely of the auto opening boot, it became a pain as took ages to open and shut though.

    Standard spec is nice though. It does have lots of rattles and squeaks at only 25k miles though.

    I have 2litre diesel 130 model and averages about 52mpg with combination of shorter rural journeys and the occaisional long motorway (steady) drive. Not as good as it should be and not as good as the vectra i had previously.

    Ultimately though, i would not spend my own money on it.

    Premier Icon joat
    Subscriber

    You will repeatedly bang your knee on the curved bit of plastic that goes from the steering column to the door when you get in. Other than that it’s a generally benign experience.

    scottyjohn
    Member

    I really like the look of them, but a friend who is an AA man said it was the car they see the most problems with. He advised to never touch one with a barge pole. Might just be anecdotal rubbish, but hes a good guy and I trust his opinion 🙂

    BlindMelon
    Member

    In the last week I have towed 3 early (59/60 plate) 2.0 diesel’s with cooked engines. There is a plastic ribbed coolant junction on the front of the engine that develops a hairline crack. This causes a gradual loss of coolant leading to catastrophic overheating. All three drivers said there were no warning lights or overheating showing on the temp gauge.
    Be very wary, keep looking- there are better cars out there.

    I forgot that I had a similar issue to this as well. Intercooler had gone.

    bigG
    Member

    I had a relatively low spec eco friendly model (which strangely enough had more power than more expensive models) It was the sports tourers aka estate. I did 60k miles in two years and found it a pretty pleasant place to spend driving time. Decent stereo, comfy seats etc. The estate is not as massive as it looks, especially not compared to my current car (Passat estate). Wheel arches and rear tailgate intrude into the available space.

    b r
    Member

    What’s wrong with the Vectra?

    shifter
    Member

    Which engine Flaperon? What’s your average read right now?

    Premier Icon brassneck
    Subscriber

    Had a hatch on hire a few times, good spec ones. Very nice indeed.
    To address some points above, I had parking sensors 🙂 and as hires I’ve no view on longevity or otherwise.

    Avoid the 1.8 petrol, I put it in 6th on the motorway and it nearly stalled.

    Diesel was a really good though, would be great for a family of 4. Nice place to be in, quiet, comfy, seemed reasonably economical for the short times I had them.

    scottyjohn – Member 
    I really like the look of them, but a friend who is an AA man said it was the car they see the most problems with. He advised to never touch one with a barge pole. Might just be anecdotal rubbish, but hes a good guy and I trust his opinion

    I would have to agree with my colleague on this one!

    Premier Icon siwhite
    Subscriber

    We use them in a similar role to AndyT.

    Terrible things, I wouldn’t buy one in a month of sundays. Visibility is horrendous out of the sides and back.

    Some genius decided that we needed the 2.0 litre 4×4 petrol for motorway patrol – as a consequence we rarely achieve more than 15mpg when driven at anything other than town speeds. Boot is quite small in the estate as well.

    They are frequently off the road, waiting parts which have to be ordered from Germany.

    bradley
    Member

    b r – Nothing wrong with the Vectra really just wanting something more modern. Vectra is looking a bit tatty too after interface with a few pheasants, one at 70mph and after someone stoved all the side in when they hit and run the other week. I have considered just upgrading to say a top spec diesel Vectra…

    If you are considering buying a dull, boring soulless Vectra try an Avensis instead. Equally dull, boring and soulless but with the added bonus that it will never, ever go wrong.

    Premier Icon Pook
    Subscriber

    Borrowed my dad’s for a week in Exmoor. Never have I been in such crippling pain from driving a car as that one. So uncomfortable. Under powered, dull and wallowing.

    after driving home i have remembered the other minus points. Whenever you open the boot on a wet day, the water will all run into the boot onto your clothes or whatever is in there.

    The steep curve to the rear doors also means that when putting children in their seats, you or they will bang your head on the roof.

    b r
    Member

    b r – Nothing wrong with the Vectra really just wanting something more modern. Vectra is looking a bit tatty too after interface with a few pheasants, one at 70mph and after someone stoved all the side in when they hit and run the other week. I have considered just upgrading to say a top spec diesel Vectra…

    Keep the Vectra.

    You could swap it tomorrow and then you hit another pheasant…

    jordie
    Member

    There is alot of them with no front badge.

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