I recently had the pleasure of driving the Opel Corsa GSI, and given South Africa’s history with the GSI badge, I was excited to see what this sporty little car had to offer as it sets the tone for the return of the legendary badge. The new design of the Corsa GSI lends itself more to everyday driving, whilst elevating its sporty nature to a more luxurious level than its predecessor.
The Corsa GSI has a typical sporty appearance with large air intakes in the front with sports creases on the front side doors. It has two-tone side mirrors, and a rear spoiler on the rear. The wheels are 18 inch alloys, and give the car a great look. The signature Opel grille for me always seems to be a smile.
The interior of the Corsa GSI is spacious and luxurious, boasting Recaro Sports front seats, a flat bottomed “sport steering wheel” and alloy pedals that make a simple trip to the mall feel like you are ready to take a spin on track. The infotainment system is easy and straight forward to use and comes with both Apple Car Play and Android Auto offering a whole range of functionality.
Performance and Safety
The Corsa GSI has a 1.4 litre turbo petrol engine which delivers excellent throttle response and torque, additionally it also features a specialised GSI-calibration making the Corsa even more responsive. The OPC sport suspension keeps you firmly on the ground as though you’re connected to a train track, and the brakes respond well to urgency of sudden stops. The six-speed gearbox is a little slow at first but packs a powerful punch in second & third gear whilst sixth gear is best for cruising and preserving fuel. The GSI gets from 0 to 10km/h in 8.9 secs, with a top end of 205 odd km/h.
The Corsa is equipped with no less than six airbags as well as ABS, EBS, tyre pressure monitoring system and hill start assist ensuring you have the perfect compromise between safety and performance.
Fuel consumption is rated at 6.4-litres/100 km( claimed) which is rather impressive for a car of these performance capabilities.
The Corsa GSI is priced at R365 900 which is cheaper than the other hatchback sports cars in the same segment. It comes with a 3-year/60 000km service plan and 3-year/120 000km warranty.
I thoroughly enjoyed this test as it has the perfect balance of a sports car that is not out of place for everyday driving. Fuel efficiency and luxury finishes are on your side at this price point compared to other cars in this segment. The beauty of the exterior was not lost on me and earned me a few compliments and whistles of appreciation too!