Danni road tests a Vauxhall Mokka X Elite Nav 1.4i turbo 4x4
20 November 2017
For what is a mainstream manufacturer, Vauxhall has been somewhat reserved in its choices of market in recent years. Its choice to enter the ever-popular crossover segment was a good one, though. Danni Bagnall explains why.
The Vauxhall Mokka was first launched in 2013 and has proved to be a popular option in its segment. As a rival to the well-liked Nissan Juke model, which was revealed back in 2010, the Mokka certainly looks more forward-thinking.
To the outside is a pretty edgy design, with some nice sporty accents appealing to the younger market. There’s body-coloured electronic heated door mirrors, some pretty swish 18-inch alloy wheels, giving a sporty feel to the model and to the front is a winged horizontal front grille and LED daytime running lights, while to the back are LED rear lights. Vauxhall also has a great choice of colours available, including Amber Orange, Lava Red and the vibrant Boracay Blue.
Our test model was the 152bhp Vauxhall Mokka X Elite Nav 1.4i turbo 4x4, complete with six-speed automatic transmission and start stop technology. With the Mokka range starting at a little over £17,000, our test model tots up to a total price of £29,830 thanks to the four-wheel drive tech and add-ons such as premium LED adaptive forward lighting (available at a cost of £1160) BOSE premium sound system (£595) and a £110 spare wheel. The automatic transmission is also a £1,200 addition.
Upon getting into the car, the black leather ‘sport’ seats hug you and allow you to change them enough to get a comfortable seating position. Comfort is right up there in this car, the only thing that really lets it down is the arm rest. It’s placed right over the manual handbrake. Yes, you can move it up out of the way if you want to use it, but it becomes a bit of a faff, especially as it’s a more comfortable drive with it down. The little button on the top of the handbrake is unnecessary, too. Materials used all round are of good quality, with the centre console functions all being very easy to use and in one place.
Out on the road, the 1.4-litre turbo petrol unit is impressive. It pulls well for a car of its size with such a small displacement. It has a 0-60mph of 9.4seconds and a top speed of 120mph, however, economy isn’t great. Vauxhall claims an mpg of 44mpg combined and a claimed fuel tank capacity of 506 miles; however, after my week with it I’d say true figures to be more around 35-40mpg. Steering is direct and has a nice weight to it. There’s also very little in the way of body roll – it is surprisingly composed through some of the country lanes I come across daily on my commute from Ware, Hertfordshire, to Peterborough. Having been designed for urban driving, the addition of four-wheel drive means its pretty capable off-road too. It performed well in the recent ice-cap conditions we experienced earlier in the month, too. The adaptive technology means that the car changes with the conditions. So, if you happen to be cruising on a nice dry road, power is sent to the front wheels only, helping with efficiency, with power being shared between the front and rear wheels should conditions be of a slippery nature. The cruise control system is without doubt one of the easiest on the market to use. The function is activated via the face of the steering wheel and couldn’t be any simpler, with one button to activate it and two to change the speed up and down.
To the inside, four trim levels are available, including Active, Design Nav, Elite and Elite Nav – the latter being our test model featuring equipment such as a USB port – despite it not being obvious where it is in the cabin(it’s on the bottom of the flip up cover to the centre console) and being pretty fiddly to put your cable into) Bluetooth, an 8-inch colour touchscreen display with smartphone connectivity, dual-zone climate control, electrically heated front seats and steering wheel (a blessing during these winter months) silver effect roof rails, dark tinted rear windows and chrome effect side window trim. Space inside is good, too, with headroom and leg room space adequate enough to fit five adults comfortably. Boot space is also pretty good, with the size coming in at 356-litres. ABS, electronic traction control, ISOFIX, stability control system, as well as hill hold technology and front and rear radar-type parking distance sensors are all among the included safety technology. Ours also came with the £285 rear view camera option.
In terms of running costs, we’ve already mentioned the economy, but CO2 emissions equal 150g/km putting it in tax band E. Road tax is therefore £200 for the first year and £140 a year thereafter. Vauxhall’s three-year warranty (or £60,000miles) is also included.
The Vauxhall Mokka really is a serious contender in its segment. It looks great and features nice materials, with easy-to-use functions. The leather seats are comfortable and it has the much-needed ISOFIX technology for a car of this type. Its petrol engine performs well, even if it is quite high revving and it’s a pretty well-priced crossover option. Vauxhall’s delayed entry to the crossover segment is quite obviously a positive one, offering a competitive alternative in the Mokka.
Our Mokka personal lease deals for this range-topping model are around £284.99/month inc. VAT for a realistic 8,000 miles per year.