Vauxhall ADAM 1.2i Energised Black Jack 3 door Hatchback (18MY) at Doves Vauxhall Southampton

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General

Badge Engine CC: 1.2
Badge Power: 70
Based On ID: 72946
Coin Description: i
Coin Series: Energised Black Jack
Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 3E
Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 6
Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 1
NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: 87
NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: 72
NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: 4
NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: 65
NCAP Safety Assist %: 81
Service Interval Frequency - Months: 12
Service Interval Mileage: 20000
Special Edition: True
Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 60000
Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: 72
Timing Belt Interval Mileage: 100000
Vehicle Homologation Class: M1

Emissions - ICE

CO2 (g/km): 128
HC+NOx: N
Particles: N
Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft: DOHC
Catalytic Convertor: True
CC: 1229
Compression Ratio: 10.5:1
Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
Cylinders: 4
Cylinders - Bore (mm): 73.4
Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 72.6
Engine Code: A12XEL
Engine Layout: FRONT TRANSVERSE
Fuel Delivery: MULTI POINT FUEL INJECTION
Gears: 5 SPEED
Number of Valves: 16
Transmission: MANUAL

Fuel Consumption - ICE

EC Combined (mpg): 50.4
EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: True
EC Extra Urban (mpg): 61.4
EC Urban (mpg): 38.7

Performance

0 to 62 mph (secs): 14.9
Engine Power - BHP: 70
Engine Power - KW: 51
Engine Power - PS: True
Engine Power - RPM: 5600
Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 85
Engine Torque - MKG: 11.7
Engine Torque - NM: 115
Engine Torque - RPM: 4000
Top Speed: 103

Test Cycles

Emissions Test Cycle: NEDC Correlated

Tyres

Alloys?: True
Tyre Size Front: 215/45 R17
Tyre Size Rear: 215/45 R17
Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
Wheel Style: HURRICANE
Wheel Type: 17" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Height: 1484
Height (including roof rails): N
Length: 3698
Wheelbase: 2311
Width: 1720
Width (including mirrors): 1966

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 38
Gross Vehicle Weight: 1470
Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 484
Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 170
Max. Loading Weight: 369
Max. Roof Load: 50
Minimum Kerbweight: 1101
No. of Seats: 4
Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 9.8

WOULD YOU ADAM & EVE IT? (new2) 03/08/2012

Thinking of a MINI or a Fiat 500? Then you also need to be thinking about Vauxhall's trendy little ADAM. Jonathan Crouch drives the brand's little lifestyle citycar.

Ten Second Review

The ADAM is Vauxhall's refreshingly different take on the small car sector. It tries not to trespass on the territory of the brand's existing citycar and supermini models but does offer a more stylish option that sits somewhere in between for buyers bored by the sight of BMW's reinvented MINI on every drive and unmoved by Fiat's funky 500. Here's a fashionable alternative with an encyclopaedic list of options, bidding for individuality beyond the hatchback herd. The only remaining ADAM body style is the fixed-top three-door hatch and it can now only be had with a 70PS 1.2-litre petrol engine.

Background

The model title's is a nod to Adam Opel, the founder of Vauxhall's European sister company, but is unlikely to start a trend for Biblical car names. The trendy looks disguise the fact that this car is actually quite conventional, running on the underpinnings of Vauxhall's old third generation Corsa. Still, it's the stylish look and feel that will sell this model. True enough, the Griffin brand has brought us some stylish designs in the past, but they've only appealed to a small percentage of the car buying population. Here, we've a Vauxhall with more widespread chic appeal. Let's try it.

Driving Experience

So what's it like on the road? Slide into the seat and there's a very different feel from that provided by a Corsa - or any other conventional supermini come to that. The commanding driving position, the big chunky MINI-like wheel, the wide, low glass area. It all makes you eager to tackle the urban jungle, with the promise of secondary road sportiness beyond. Not too much mind. The only engine that Vauxhall now offers in this car is its old 70PS 1.2-litre normally aspirated petrol unit, the 1.0-litre and 1.4-litre turbo petrol units having been discontinued. To be honest, this entry-level powerplant does struggle a little with the task of pushing nearly 1.1-tonnes of ADAM up the road with any real zip, sixty two mph from rest occupying nearly 15s on the way to a top speed only just over 100mph. As with most models of this kind, while you'll be quite comfortable in attempting a motorway trip of a few hours, you will notice at and around the legal limit that refinement isn't quite as good as you first thought. This is partly due to the lack of a six-speed manual gearbox. The ADAM is much happier around town where a neat 'CITY' button can lighten the steering for easy wheel-twirling that'll get you into the tightest space. Exactly the kind of thing you'd want from a car like this.

Design and Build

The only remaining ADAM body style is the fixed-top three-door hatch. At under 3.7m in length, this Vauxhall is actually shorter than many of its citycar rivals and a full 300mm shorter than a Corsa supermini. But there's more to it than that. The tall height and the considerable width - it's actually wider than a Corsa - positions it visually as a bigger car than it actually is. A clever trick, which also pays dividends inside. As in a Fiat 500, the high roof gives a spacious feel, something that here is further underlined by the greater width and glass area. But all the smoke and mirrors in the world can't create space where there isn't much and Vauxhall's claim that this design can 'comfortably seat four adults' requires for fulfilment the directive that those in the front should be very short-legged indeed. And at the wheel? Well, as a buyer you'll have opted for a decor finish that's either restrained, wilfully extrovert or more likely, a feel that's somewhere between the two. Out back, a prod on the rear Griffin badge reveals a 170-litre boot that lies size-wise somewhere between slightly smaller shape of a MINI and the slightly larger one of a Fiat 500.

Market and Model

The ADAM value proposition is based on a pretty simple trade of size against style. The idea is that, just as with a MINI or a Fiat 500, you should get a citycar-sized runabout (think tiny Ford KA or Volkswagen up!) for the cost of something supermini-shaped (think Corsa or Fiesta), with compensation provided by a super-sized helping of style and desirability. Only one engine is offered, a 70PS 1.2-litre normally aspirated petrol unit and there's only now one three-door fixed-top body shape, the 'Roacks Air variant with its electric fabric sunroof top having been discontinued. Prices start at around £14,000 for the base 'Jam' version, but if you want more equipment, there are limited edition 'Energised' and 'Griffin' versions available for a limited time. The 'Jam' variant comes with air conditioning, cruise control, 16-inch alloy wheels, a leather-covered steering wheel and a multi-function trip computer, but its 4-speaker audio system lacks a DAB tuner. Key options include rear parking sensors; a 'Driving Assistance' pack that gives you navigation, auto headlamps and wipers and an anti-dazzle rear view mirror; and a 'Winter Pack' that gives you heat for the front seats and steering wheel.

Cost of Ownership

No small car has get by these days without a reasonable set of running cost returns - and this one's no different. The single 1.2-litre 70PS petrol unit manages 44.8mpg on the WLTP combined cycle and an NEDC-rated CO2 return of 128g/km. What else might you need to know? Well, as an owner, you can download a useful 'MyVauxhall' app via which you can take care of your Vauxhall online and book maintenance visits. At point of purchase, you can get a pre-paid 'Vauxhall Care' servicing plan. For a relatively small monthly payment over three years, this will cover you for three services and an MOT, plus it'll give you three years of roadside assistance. Finally, you'll also need to know that Vauxhall includes a three-year, 60,000 mile warranty as standard, a package that can be extended up to five years and 100,000 miles at extra cost. A year's free breakdown cover is also provided, along with a six-year anti-corrosion guarantee.

Summary

So the name's unusual. And so, for Vauxhall, is the approach. This most blue-collar of all mass-market makers is here offering us an intriguing little fashion-led citycar. At a price almost anyone can afford. The tiny lifestyle city statement this car represents is a well familiar one of course and most potential buyers tend to pursue it at the wheel of either a Fiat 500, a MINI Hatch or a DS3. The ADAM remains an interesting left-field choice though, at a relatively affordable price. We're disappointed that the scope of the range has been slashed back so much but if you're urban-based, the sole remaining 1.2-litre normally aspirated petrol unit might suit you quite happily anyway. If the price is right, the ADAM still has what it takes to appeal.

WOULD YOU ADAM & EVE IT? (family) 03/08/2012

Vauxhall's little ADAM is a properly trendy little lifestyle-orientated small runabout. Yes, something you could even consider buying over a MINI. June Neary checks it out

Will It Suit Me?

I'm always suspicious when a car maker claims to have produced a car 'especially aimed at someone like me'. After all, how exactly do they know what 'someone like me' might like? They don't of course, the brand in question assuming, in the case of the Vauxhall ADAM I've been looking at this week, that my preferences lie in the bespoke personalisation of my chosen wheels to my exact lifestyle. To be fair, that's not overly far off the mark. I am one of those people who likes their car to reflect them. I'm not overly bothered about 0-60 times and newton metres of torque. And I don't need enough space to accommodate the von Trapp family in the back. I would, on the other hand, very much like a compact runabout that at low cost, I could spec to look like nothing else on the road. So who knows, I may very well be target market for the Griffin brand's trendy little tiddler. On that basis, I was keen to try one.

Practicalities

As long as you accept the compromise here - that you pay supermini (ie. Fiesta and Corsa) money but get a smaller citycar (ie. Ka and Fiat 500) shape, you won't be disappointed. As in a Fiat 500, the high roof gives a spacious feel, something that here is further underlined by the greater width and glass area. But all the smoke and mirrors in the world can't create space where there isn't much and Vauxhall's claim that this design can 'comfortably seat four adults' requires for fulfilment the directive that those in the front should be very short-legged indeed. To be fair, it's virtually impossible for something this short to properly seat two fully-sized people in the back, something most ADAM owners will rarely want to do anyway. But for those occasions when friends do need transport, they'll feel less claustrophobic here than in just about any small lifestyle runabout I can think of. It's certainly much nicer in the back than it would be in a MINI, a car which offers a rear seat position that even kids object to. And at the wheel? Well, as a buyer, you'll have used the enormous trim choice range to complete a decor finish that's either restrained, wilfully extrovert or more likely, as in the case of the car I tried, a feel that's somewhere between the two. This aside, curiously enough, it does feel quite MINI-like, a feeling engendered mainly by provision of the same kind of over-sized chunky steering wheel which actually rather adds to the intended feeling of impending fun.

Behind the Wheel

It's based on a Corsa. Aside from that, I don't need to know very much more. Except for the fact that, as well as only being able to specify three doors, you can't have a diesel engine. Vauxhall says there's no need in this segment - but that doesn't seem to have put MINI and Fiat off from offering one. As for which of the five petrol engines you should choose, I'd probably avoid the old-tech 1.2 in favour of one of the 1.4s, an 87PS unit that manages 62mph in 12.5s on the way to 109mph. And a 100PS engine that improves things further to 11.5s and 115mph. Ask for something a little more hi-tech and the designers will point to the 115PS three cylinder turbo 1.0-litre petrol unit. Those in search of hot hatch performance can also opt for the 150PS 1.4-litre turbo powerplant fitted to the potent 'GRAND SLAM' model. As with most tiny cars of this kind, while you'll be quite comfortable in attempting a motorway trip of a few hours, you will notice at and around the legal limit that refinement isn't quite as good as you first thought. This issue isn't helped on the normally aspirated 1.2 and 1.4-litre models by the absence of a six-speed manual gearbox. All variants are much happier around town where a neat 'CITY' button can lighten the steering for easy wheel-twirling that'll get you into the tightest space. Exactly the kind of thing you'd want from a car like this.

Value For Money

What would you expect to have to pay for a car with more bespoke personalisation opportunities than a Rolls Royce? If I were to tell you that the starting figures - in rough terms, £11,500 to around £17,000 - are about what you'd pay for an ordinary (albeit slightly larger) Corsa supermini, then I think you'd be quite pleased. Of course, Vauxhall are banking on your being tempted to spend quite a lot more than that on the lengthy options list - something you very well might do. There's a choice of 'JAM', 'SLAM', 'GLAM' and 'GRAND SLAM' trim levels but if you take my advice, I'd just get a basic 'JAM' and bespoke add-in your own favoured extras. You start outside with the bodywork and the roof, which can be painted the same way or in contrasting colours, all bearing flamboyant names like 'James Blonde', 'Papa Don't Peach', 'Men in Brown', 'White my fire' or my personal favourite 'I'll be Black'. If you want, you can jazz up the chosen paint colour with special decal packs - 'Splat' for the JAM, 'Fly' for the GLAM and 'Stripes' for the SLAM. Many of these decals are also included in a bold selection of option packs designed to take your fashion statement to the next level - the main choice being between a simple two-tone 'Black' or 'White' approach or the bolder 'Twisted' or 'Extreme' packages. That only leaves wheels, with a wide choice between 16 to 18-inch alloy rims with interchangeable colour clips that you can click on or off as the fancy or the season takes you. And that whole idea of interchangeable fashion is carried on inside. As with the wheel clips, these fascia decor and door surround panels come in a huge range of bold colours (some are even backlit by glowing LEDs) and can be clipped on and off to suit your changing tastes - or those of subsequent owners. So you can go a bit extreme if you like, safe in the knowledge that it won't necessarily leave your car as being completely unsaleable at trade-in time.

Could I Live With One?

I rather think so. The ADAM's look isn't as instantly eye-catching as a MINI or a Fiat 500 but I have to say that it's growing on me. And it's certainly possible to create the car far more to your own personal taste. In other words, were I in the market for a little lifestyle runabout, this Vauxhall might really be my kind of car. And I never thought I'd find myself saying that.

Vauxhall ADAM average rating: 5/5 (1 reviews)

- 16/10/2017, owner of a Vauxhall Adam 1.2i Energised 3dr

User rating: 5/5

User comment:
I had an Adam before which was unfortunately involved in an accident. I didn't hesitate in getting another one, I love my Adam and as a driving instructor, my pupils love it too!

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