Motoring review: Performance and economy from the new Opel Grandland X PHEV

Test drive: The new Opel Grandland X PHEV

Breda Corrigan

Reporter:

Breda Corrigan

Email:

bcorriganmotoring@gmail.com

Motoring review: Performance and economy from the new Opel Grandland X PHEV

The new Opel Grandland X PHEV

Born in Germany, and made for Ireland, the new Opel Grandland X SUV is based on the same platform as the multi award-winning Peugeot 3008 SUV.

Thanks to Opel’s 2017 takeover by the PSA Groupe (Peugeot’s parent company) the Grandland X shares many parts with the French SUV, and comes with a similar range of engines and gearboxes. The latest powertrain to join the Opel Grandland X line-up is a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid (PHEV), which can be specified in a front-wheel-drive format with 225bhp, or an all-wheel-drive with 300bhp (HYBRID4)

Impressive Cabin

The cabin of the new Grandland X makes maximum use of the space available, and excellent ergonomics are guaranteed as a result. The instrument panel and centre stack with touchscreen are clearly laid out, and horizontally aligned to the driver.

The centre stack has three horizontal rows of controls for fast and intuitive access to infotainment, climate control and chassis functions. The interior surfaces have a high-quality look and feel, providing the occupants with a feeling of supreme comfort in all seats. They benefit from the SUV-typical elevated seating position that facilitates access and ensures good visibility.

Typical first-class Opel comfort is ensured by the AGR (Campaign for Healthier Backs) certified ergonomic seats as well as a heated steering wheel and heated front seats in the Grandland X PHEV.

Test Car

My test car was an Opel Grandland X PHEV (HYBRID4) Elite All-Wheel-Drive eight-speed automatic, finished in striking Pearl White premium metallic paint. With 300bhp and a hefty 520Nm of combined torque available from the 1.6-litre petrol engine and two electric motors, the 0-100km/h sprint can be completed in just 5.9-seconds, while leading to a top speed of 233km/h.

Official WLTP (real-world test procedures) fuel consumption tests show that as little as 1.2-litres of fuel is consumed per 100kms driven on a combined driving cycle.

On The Road

On the road, the Grandland X PHEV possesses a soft and composed ride quality, while the precise steering is well weighted and provides terrific feedback to the driver.

Uneven road surfaces are tackled with ease, and the car exudes an overall ‘Germanic’ feeling of solidity. Like most plug-in hybrids, the Grandland X has a number of different driving modes to choose from. As long as there is charge in the battery, ‘Electric’ mode keeps the Hybrid4’s petrol engine switched off and instead uses a rear-mounted electric motor.

For more urgent acceleration, a second motor connected to the gearbox up front provides more than adequate acceleration up to 134km/h. With the accelerator pedal pressed hard, the petrol engine cuts in for maximum acceleration. ‘Hybrid’ mode uses a mixture of the petrol engine and electric motors to suit the current or upcoming situation, with the option to preserve battery power for later in the journey should you need it.

There is also a ‘AWD’ mode that ensures all four wheels are driven at all times, through a combination of petrol power and electricity, and finally a ‘Sport’ mode that prioritises performance and rapid response from the two power sources.

The Grandland X PHEV is serene when running purely on battery power and is very easy to drive in a smooth and controlled manner.

It is possible to drive up to 50km in pure electric mode, while an intuitive regenerative braking function, with gear-selector adjustment, can boost this range by up to 10%.

Simple Charging

The Grandland X PHEV keeps the charging process very simple. Its 13.2kWh battery can be charged just like a fully electric vehicle at all public charging stations, or at home by cable or Wallbox. Charging via a standard cable (mode 3) can be completed in three and a half hours, while an optional on-board charger can cut this time by 50%.

Verdict & Pricing

The new Opel Grandland X PHEV is the German brand’s first plug-in hybrid, combining outstanding performance with impressive economy, while emissions of just 30g/km translate into annual road tax of just €170.

Pricing for the new Opel Grandland X PHEV starts at just €35,950 (inclusive of an SEAI grant and VRT rebate) for the FWD 225bhp model, with the AWD 300bhp (HYBRID4) edition attracting a €10,600 premium.

With the power of an SUV and the intelligence of a hybrid, the Opel Grandland X has it all. For a limited time you can discover Opel’s low-cost 2.9% APR finance offer, with three-years free servicing too.

Contact Fitzpatrick’s Opel Naas on 045 875880.