Vauxhall Zafira Tourer Review and Prices
What's not so good
Find out more about the Vauxhall Zafira Tourer
The Zafira Tourer got a mild facelift mid-2016 that changed the styling in the front to match the new Astra and also updated the interior with newer tech.
Inside, the facelifted Zafira is a welcome improvement over the old model with its simplified controls and soft-touch materials. An eight-inch touchscreen takes centre stage, with Vauxhall’s OnStar system coming as standard, and featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as desirable options. Thanks to versatile seating the Zafira is very practical – there are several ways to rearrange the rear seats if you want more luggage or passenger space.
After a short drive you’d be surprised by the lively steering, limited body roll and grip of the Zafira Tourer – it’s more fun to drive than most MPVs. The optional adaptive dampers that Vauxhall calls ‘FlexRide’ constantly adjust the chassis to the driving situation or driver preferences via selectable driving modes.
The Zafira Tourer was the first Vauxhall to get the new aluminium 1.6-litre Whisper diesel and it immediately became the most frugal and quietest engine in the line-up. The 2.0-litre diesel, on the other hand, is quite industrial in its operation but has more pulling power – useful if you’re often carting around five people or lots of luggage.
Trim levels are generous – all cars getting air conditioning, cruise control, DAB digital radio and a multi-functional steering wheel, but top-spec cars can cost a lot of money.
The Zafira may not be a first choice for anyone but this latest model is pretty enjoyable to drive and quite frugal too
The Zafira Tourer should definitely be on your shopping list if you’re in the market for a good-looking MPV that drives well. The interior is pleasant, the Flex7 seating option is a bonus for families and trips to the dump, the level of refinement and frugality is also commendable.
It might not be as driver-oriented as the Ford S-Max, but handles well for its size and scores high on safety too. It’s a sensible MPV choice.
How much is the Vauxhall Zafira Tourer?
The Vauxhall Zafira Tourer has a RRP range of £18,215 to £31,610. The price of a used Vauxhall Zafira Tourer on carwow starts at £7,400.
The Vauxhall Zafira Tourer gives you all sorts of different ways to arrange the seats, but the boot isn’t that big and the rearmost seats are really only suitable for children
The Flex7 seating system is really clever, but you have to wonder why more thought didn't go into making the cubbies a bit more useful
The new model has grown so there’s more space inside and the Flex7 seating is as easy to use as ever. There are many ways to rearrange the rear seats – when the middle seat is folded down you can fold up the side bolsters of the backrest and have a pair of long, padded armrests for passengers in the back. The two outer seats can also be manoeuvred inboard for more elbow room.
The rearmost seats, like in most MPVs, are only really suitable for children, but access is very easy thanks to the sliding middle row.
There are plenty of cubbyholes inside but the ones around the driver aren’t that usefully sized. A VW Touran is better in this regard – it has over 40 storage areas scattered around its interior.
The Zafira’s 710-litre boot falls behind the Ford S-Max (965 litres) and SEAT Alhambra (809 litres) but is larger than the Kia Carens’ 492-litre boot. The comparatively small load space is not helped by a narrow floor and a low parcel shelf. Once you fold the seats down the 1,860 litres that open up are still behind the S-Max or Alhambra at max capacity that can pack 2,020 and 2,297 litres respectively.
The Zafira takes corners with limited body roll while remaining cosseting on the motorway – a great balance of abilities
The 1.4-litre turbo petrol is perfectly suited for the school run, but for anything else, the diesels make more sense
Much like the seating possibilities, the Vauxhall Zafira Tourer comes with a good number of powertrain options. There’s a lot to choose from: petrol and diesel engines, automatic and manual gearboxes, and there’s also a start-stop function to aid fuel economy.
Vauxhall has ditched the asthmatic non-turbocharged 1.8-litre petrol that was at the bottom of the line-up and for a good reason – without the help of a turbocharger it used too much fuel and was slow.
The new 1.4-litre turbo petrol, on the other hand, is much better on fuel achieving a claimed combined fuel economy figure of 42mpg and providing the Zafira Tourer with lively performance, along with 154g/km of CO2
Among the diesels, it’s a toss up between the new aluminium 1.6-litre or the 163hp 2.0-litre, the latter has more power, of course. There’s also a more powerful bi-turbo diesel which offers 192hp but loses out on fuel economy, offering about 51mpg.
The 1.6-litre is the cheapest to run with a fuel economy of 68.9mpg and CO2 emissions of 109g/km. The larger engines are inevitably less fuel efficient.
Despite its size the Zafira Tourer’s handing is certainly impressive, with driving pleasure almost at Ford S-Max levels.
The ride, on the other hand, is more of a mixed bag. There’s no doubting the Zafira’s stability, and it deals with bigger bumps well, but its pothole-absorbing capabilities could be better.
There are optional adaptive dampers that are well worth the premium and are highly recommended.
Inside is where people carriers really need to excel, and the Zafira has always been one of the cleverer mini MPVs.