Vauxhall and Opel recently introduced their updated and refreshed answer to the Ford Fiesta, the 2015 Corsa E. The new Corsa retains the outgoing model’s platform and some of its engines, however it’s been heavily overhauled with all-new body panels, a revised suspension setup and a more up-to-date interior. The United Kingdom’s Autocar magazine recently sat down with Vauxhall/Opel design chief Mark Adams and the Corsa program manager Andreas Zipser to learn more about the development of the newest iteration of the supermini.
One of the most important changes to the Corsa E over the D-generation model is its interior. Adams says “the oldest thing in the old car was the interior,” so the team focused on bringing it up to date with the rest of Opel/Vauxhall’s model lineup. The car rides on the same platform as the old car, but this has also allowed it to retain its roomy interior, a trait Adams and his team were adamant about keeping in the new car.
Keeping the Corsa’s platform was also beneficial for styling, Adams says. There were certain aspects of the Corsa they wanted to keep such as its recognizable shape and consistent four-meter (13 foot) footprint and keeping the same chassis made this easy. Zipser said the “Corsa’s silhouette is very recognisable and that’s helpful,” when asked if the car’s similarities to the outgoing model worry him.
The engineering team was focused on making the Corsa more refined, both in its ride and handling traits. Zipser said the car’s suspension is “completely changed,” with all-new subframes and a different rear torsion beam. The electric steering has also been upgraded and retuned following a change of the car’s electrical architecture.
The carryover over 1.0 -liter naturally aspirated three-cylinder engine has also had “40 parts acoustically optimised,” in order to improve its NVH (noise, vibration, harshness) while the carryover diesels have new cylinder heads and new injectors, Zipser said. An all-new 1.0-liter turbocharged Ecotec engine will also be available in the Corsa E.
Read Adams and Zipser’s interview with Autocar in its entirety here.