sDrive models are front-wheel drive, while xDrive versions offer four-wheel drive. In any case, an automatic gearbox is standard, with seven speeds in petrol models and eight speeds in diesel versions.
So we’re going to be running this for the next few months to see if it can live up to those bold economy claims (unlikely, we know, but it’ll be interesting to see what we can actually get from it in everyday use) and, of course, to see how it stacks up as a used proposition. Is it too early to say our Outlander will live up to those impressive economy figures? Definitely maybe, some might say.The new generation design language employed on the QX50 means up front a large grille with an oversized badge is flanked by narrow headlights with LED lighting signatures. A muscular looking front bumper with large air intakes appears to sit underneath it.
It’s easy to drive, too. So far, I’ve discovered the best thing to do is to sit there and try to work out what methods of propulsion the PHEV’s using. There is a handy energy flow display on the screen that shows you just that and, as with all similar cars, the object soon becomes seeing how long you can keep the car going on full electric drive around town before the engine cuts in. I dare say there’ll be a lot more on that in future reports.
Back to that Thrustmaster wheel: It has an insane amount of force feedback (or lack thereof, like when you’re flying through the air). It also jiggles at idle, which sort of feels like a motor rocking the car back and forth. Like all of these games, “Forza 7” included, the amount of feedback and environmental effects can be adjusted in the menu screen. The suede-covered wheel reacts to the track and the in-game car reacts almost perfectly to the wheel. I found the Scandanavian Flick to be a little harder than in real life. You can really use left-foot braking to load up the suspension and somewhat realistically swing the car around. Keep the gas pinned(-ish) and dab the brakes as needed.
These small indiscretions give the Micra a couple of big black marks against its otherwise impressive package. Don’t get me wrong, if you invested in one you would be getting a superb supermini that is well appointed and is better to drive than most in this class. But the Ibiza and the Fiesta have an added layer of polish that you would expect for a car priced as ours is.
As part of its new turnaround plan, Opel is exploring potential new markets for cars and light trucks outside of its European heartland.
Daniel’s girlfriend, 21-year-old civil servant Liza Matvejera, was a fan of how you sit higher up in the Arona than you do in a supermini, such as the SEAT Ibiza.