What is it?
This sixth-generation Astra is an almost entirely new car, but some of its engines live on from previous generations, including the old 1.7 litre, 109bhp Isuzu turbodiesel, which is now the least potent oil-burner in the range until the 109g/km 1.3 CDTi turns up next year.
This engine does not go under the Astra’s bonnet unmodified however, because it now meets Euro V emission standards, and its installation has been modified in the quest for refinement.
There’s also a 123bhp 1.7 CDTi - although this is a different and quicker engine, it produces the same combined fuel consumption figure of 60.1mpg and identical Co2 emissions of 124g/km.
What’s it like?
For this 109bhp engine none of these figures is especially competitive, the 104bhp Golf 1.6 TDI beating it on every count for emissions (119g/km), fuel consumption (62.8mpg), 0-62mph (11.3sec) and top speed (117mph), while Ford’s Focus 108bhp 1.6 TDCi also trounces the Vauxhall.
And the same is true on the road. Although the Isuzu motor is much quieter than before, whether you’re sitting behind it or hearing its presence from outside the car, it still sounds like a set of deftly deployed maracas, and there’s a muted over-run growl to match.