I love this car so much. The performance is very good once you are past the initial turbo-lag. After that point the car pulls strongly to any speed.
Economy is spot on. I average around 48mpg on regular diesel and around 51mpg on BP Ultimate. Nothing to complain about there!
Refinement from this Fiat sourced engine is great. Even at cold idle, engine noise is rarely anything more than a background thrum. When moving along it would be easy to forget the car is DERV powered if it were not for the huge lump of torque low down in the rev range. There is very little, if any vibration transmitted to the cabin.
Comfort isn't perfect, the SRI suspension means some surfaces can be unpleasant to drive on, worn concrete sections of motorway are probably the worst. However, the good side of this set-up is handling that is very sure and confident. Corners can be taken quickly without any body roll or other dramatics.
The seats are a little firm, but I appreciate the good lateral support that keeps me firmly sat in place on B-road blasts. Shame that the steering feel is a bit lacking at those times though.
The interior layout is great, the look and feel of materials is especially praise worthy. The quality of fit and finish is fine too. Things that move (e.g. glovebox, arm rest) all have a nice damped quality to them. Switches feel industructable and yet nice to touch and good to look at.
My only complaint is that some equipment is missing from this 2005 Model Year car that appeared as standard on eariler models, e.g. rain sensitive wipers, passenger seat lumbar/height adjustment and auto-dimming mirrors.
On the plus side, the standard fit Sat-Nav with MP3 support (on this NAV edition) is easy to use and the excellent diesel engine doesn't make me regret going for this later model.
It's the little touches on this car that makes me love it so much. The auto-locking doors, twin trip computers, thumbwheel controls, gas bonnet struts and back wiper that activates on reverse (with the front wipers) are just a few of the little things that make the car feel much more expensive than it really is.
Little niggles? The handbrake is positioned poorly and there is no rear interior light (easily sorted with the help of the parts department, a ten pound note and a craft knife!).
I would buy another without a second thought - but only if Vauxhall stop penny pinching on the specification. There is a very long list of equipment missing (as said before, plus traction control, rear air vents, bonnet struts etc etc) from the latest cars which benefit from no more than a facelift and better handling. Unless you really have to have the facelift, 1.9 CDTI or newer cars, try to source an older Vectra - the late 2002, early 2003 cars are fully loaded in comparison.