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Vauxhall ADAM 1.4 87PS

MADAM, I'M ADAM (some text hidden)

By Jonathan Crouch

The Vauxhall ADAM's late to the boutique hatchback party, but if you hanker after a bit of individuality, your car has arrived. Jonathan Crouch reports on the 1.4 87PS petrol version

Ten Second Reviewword count: 48

The Vauxhall ADAM is undoubtedly one of the more interesting small car choices around. It's hugely customisable both inside and out and looks strong value for money. The 1.4-litre engines aren't that exciting but return decent fuel and emissions numbers. Here we look at the entry-level 87PS variant.

Backgroundword count: 210

You didn't really think every other car manufacturer was going to let MINI have its own way as a manufacturer of boutique, highly personalised small cars did you? Other big companies eyed the profits BMW was raking in through MINI and set to work claiming a slice of that pie. Fiat launched its similarly retro-inspired 500 and then came Citroen with the DS3, a vehicle that owed nothing to prior designs. Vauxhall is now trying to elbow its way into this stylish clique with its ADAM, a small car very much in the DS3 mould. But where Citroen, Fiat and MINI all have a certain chic appeal to their badges, Vauxhall has never enjoyed that benefit. It's caught squarely in the blue collar mass market, not even cheap enough to employ the inverted snob appeal of a marque such as Dacia. So does the ADAM have to try harder in a market sector where 'try hard' spells social suicide? Time will tell how the market takes to this interesting car. We take a look at the 87PS 1.4-litre petrol model here as it's likely to be the biggest seller. If you like the thought of a car that's intimately personalised to your own tastes, this might just be your thing.

Driving Experienceword count: 248

The nuts and bolts first. The ADAM rides on a cut down version of the Corsa's chassis. It's been extensively re-engineered to suit the demands of the shorter wheelbase but it's quite a simple setup with a set of MacPherson struts up front while the rear end utilises a torsion beam set-up. The ride quality is firm although low-speed manoeuvres are easy due to a CITY mode, which increases the electronic power steering system's assistance at lower speeds. At higher speeds the steering isn't the most feelsome system around, but then the ADAM isn't being targeted at those who might otherwise choose a sporty VXR model. As an urban scoot, it's nigh-on perfect. There are two 1.4-litre engines with either 87PS or 100PS. We tried the lower powered of the two. Both are mated to a five-speed manual gearbox which again makes motorway journeys less than ideal as they could benefit from a longer gear for better refinement and economy. The engine is 'tried and tested' which means it's a little long in the tooth and needs working to get the best from it. Go with the 87PS unit and you'll see 62mph appear on the clocks in 12.5 seconds on the way to a top speed of 110mph. In comparison, the 100PS engine's numbers are 11.5s and 125mph. Is the ADAM a great car to pedal along a back road? No. But then that's not what its focus is. A Lamborghini Aventador makes a lousy removals van.

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Pictures (high res disabled)

Statistics (subset of data only)

Min

Max

0-60 mph (s):

12.5

Boot capacity min (litres):

170

Boot capacity max (litres):

663

Combined mpg:

51.4

55.4

CO2 (g/km):

119

Extra urban mpg:

64.2

67.3

... and 8 other stats available

Scoring (subset of scores)

Category: Small Runabouts

Performance
50%
Handling
70%
Comfort
70%
Space
60%
Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

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