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We bought the car after our previous people carrier, a Toyota Previa, became uneconomical to repair. The Zafira was not my first choice of car, initially we were going to purchase a VW Touran, but have been put off them partly by their used cost (over £3,000 more than the Zafira), and partly by the cheat devices VW have been fitting on their diesel engines.
However, the Zafira Design model we bought is well equipped, with environment control, heated front seats, automatic wipers & lights, sat nav, bluetooth, hands-free, front and rear parking sensors, roof rails, and tinted windows. The only omission is cruise control, but that is fairly straightforward to add afterwards.
The interior is adequate, though a bit creaky - there is an annoying one behind the radio. Seats are very comfortable, with lumbar adjust on the drivers seat, and reach/height adjustable steering wheel. It's very easy on long journeys. I like the folding rear seats - much more practical than the Previa (where we had to remove the rear seats to gain extra space), and there is surprising amount of legroom and comfort for 7 adults.
This is, however, at the expense of the boot. We do miss the boot space - when all 7 seats are folded up, the boot space is tiny, so when grandparents are travelling with us, we have to use the roof rack for luggage. However, as a 5+2 estate car, it is excellent, and the seat arrangements, whilst not as flexible as rivals, is sufficient for our needs.
Power wise, we've got the Ecotec model, which at first felt a little gutless (after driving a 2.4 petrol). However, after adjusting to driving a diesel, there is sufficient power to haul it around, and it's quite a pleasant drive. When cold it does sound a little like a taxi, though is quiet enough once it's warmed up, and noise is not an issue at motorway speeds.
Economy wise, I get 35-40mpg around town, and on a recent trip to Exeter from Manchester achieved 61mpg without trying to hard to drive economically. I am a little concerned about the DPF - at the moment the car goes on a good run once a fortnight, and spends a lot of time driving around town. I've noticed the car does a DPF regen quite regularly. There is no warning on the dashboard, however when stationary the trip computer goes from 0.1mpg up to around 0.6mpg - at that point I understand it's best to keep driving until it finishes. It can be a bit of a nuisance sometimes.
The entertainment unit is very good (Vauxhall Touch and Connect). Hands free works fine on Android and iPhone 6, speakers are good (I'm partially deaf, so appreciate that), radio reception (FM and AM) is excellent, and USB playback is handy - beats my old CD changer. The sat nav is excellent, with full postcode access and ability to add points of interest, though it occasionally refuses to speak, and on a couple of occasions reverted to German. I understand there is a firmware update for the unit, and will be dropping it off at the dealers at some point.
Not owned the car long enough to comment on reliability, or running costs, though it's caused me no problems to date (owned for 4 months).
I purchased this vehicle second-hand six years ago, its first owner being in the Motorbility scheme so was low mileage and regularly maintained; the alternative was a similar age/price/mileage Citroen Picasso. I chose the Zafira based on a more comfortable (upright) driving position, better visibility and the option of seven seats (over the Picasso's five).
During my ownership, I have done over 60 000 miles, having an annual service at a private garage (ie. non-dealership). The only unreliability has been last winter, when I needed to replace the battery which would not hold charge; as the battery appeared to be the original factory fitted one (ie around 8 years old), this was perhaps only to be expected! I have also had to replace the back box on the exhaust (a typical problem on all other Vauxhalls I have owned (Chevette, Astra (3 different models), Nova, Corsa, Cavalier and Vectra). Careful driving and use of Michelin tyres has meant 35 to 40 000 mile tyre life (not quite as good as my Cavalier which gave over 75 000 miles on mainly high-spped motorway runs!)
The one other niggle has been the rear doors no longer operate as part of the central locking; I keep meaning to get an electrician to look at this, but never quite get round to it!
The ride is very comfortable on most journeys, particularly on motorway runs. The leg room in the back is better than many limousine size vehicles, although the most rearmost pair of seats are not so ample and really only suit smaller passengers, and then on shorter routes. The stowage when using these rearmost seats is very small, but when they are folded down, is excellent, better I fell than some estates (as proved by seeing a daughter through three years of University!)
The vehicle as a 1600cc is no sports car, but by using the gears a reasonable performance can be obtained, balancing speed and consumption. Were I to be doing more motorway driving, I might enjoy the extra power of the 1800cc (or even the 2 litre version) but around town, on the school run, etc,. the smaller engine is more than adequate.
An excellent car only let down by niggling penny pinching failures by Vauxhall. This is a top of the range Elite model but does not even have an engine temperature gauge. Safety features such as a load securing net are a chargable extra. Some features are not publicised such as the heat reflective windscreen. This is a very efficient feature that keeps the car cool when parked in the summer sun, but has the downside of reducing the reception ability of my SatNav - a point not documented.
The overall economy is very good when driven sensibly. Tax and insurance are low and the annual service at a Vauxhall dealer is within my budget. My average fuel consumption is 48.3 mpg, a slight reduction on the 49.4 it returned whilst new.
Automatic headlights and windscreen wipers work well and usually anticipate my requirements pretty well and it is rare that I find the need to manually switch these devices.
Unlike earlier Zafiras, the windscreen demist is very efficient and the heating and coolling systems work well.
The car is skittish in crosswinds which I put down to its height as an MPV, but this is not a great problem. Comfort on long journeys is good with excellent seats and relaxing use of cruise control.
Visability is poor due to the thick pillars at the sides of the windscreen. This can be a particular problem when turning right or negotiating round abouts as the blind area is exactly where you are looking for the kerb.
The flexibilty of load carrying is excellent and what really sold me the car. It can be a 7 seater with the two very good rear seats that fold totally flat when not required.
Had the car for just over four years, covered slightly under 85,000 Miles and it's honestly great.
It's our one family car so it covers a 60 mile work commute daily, routine shopping and jobs which includes the dreaded supermarket multi-storey, transport of small children to school/ nursery etc, use for visiting family the other end of the country and also some caravan towing at holiday times. Add to all this that there is a double bass player in the family and the versatility is really stretched.
It's not the most exciting of things to drive but it's comfortable, safe, ridiculously practical and also manageable in tight spaces/ car parks which is essential as we live in the city where street parking in is a daily bind.
The extra 2 seats render the boot pretty much useless and they are only for kids really although they've got us out of a few spots so as an occasional thing they are great.
My only reservation is that it's a bit on the thirsty side compared to the published figures. I think it would have to be a 200+ mile trip at a steady 56 MPH with no stops before that would start happening! All the same, the 1.9 Diesel returns us around 42 MPG combined so it could be much worse.
I'd definitely stick the Zafira on the list of possibles for versatile family cars...
I own a new Zafira Tourer 1.4 Turbo. These superb vehicles were launched alongside the existing Zafira rather than to replace them (and were slightly more expensive). As a result they have not been well promoted and you do not see many on the roads compared to the ordinary Zafira models. However, I cannot praise the new Zafira Tourer highly enough. They have everything good taken from the existing Zafira in them, plus lots of little tweaks and extras that turn a great car into a brilliant one. The flexible seating is fantastic and readily accommodates 4, 5, 6 or 7 passengers in complete comfort. The 1.4 engine was a concern (since my previous ordinary Zafira had a 1.8) but the Turbo makes up for the reduced capacity big style - and I have the bonus of my road tax being in a lower price band. Any criticism that the existing Zafira had poor front left & right sight lines because of overly large windscreen pillars have been dismissed with the Tourer's panoramic windscreen. Even the one without built-in sunroof offers superb forward left & right sight lines - there are no blind spots. The only thing I missed out on was Bluetooth, but I am told it is available on certain models. A sheer joy to drive both long distance and in town. 5 *****
My Zafira is 10 years old, has a petrol/LPG engine but I can currently only run it on petrol. I had a slight bump in it at about 3 miles an hour in November 2012. This upset the LPG system and although I have spent over £700 on it since no one has come up with the answer to put it right. It still hesitates occasionally when run on gas and have had the crank sensor replaced twice during this time due to the engine hesitating. The latest opinion on what is wrong is the LPG injectors are worn causing the gas pressure to fluctuate BUT stocks of Vauxhall injectors are all used up, alternative injectors are available but the relevant linkage to fit them is almost impossible to get and will cost £500 to supply and fit,
My Vauxhall Zafira is a lovely car to drive but expensive to run on petrol, although, over the years it has not proven to be cheaper when run on LPG because parts and labour for repairs and servicing have proven so expensive. I would not recommend a petrol/ LPG car to anyone in light of my experience.
OK, so first of all I would get a Zafira with a bigger engine. Possibly a diesel, certainly a 1.8 or 2.2 - simply because the 1600 engine strains at over 3,000 revs at 60 miles per hour.
Secondly, it isn't the most economical car in the world, and when we bought it from new in 2001, it would cost us nearly £40 to fill up. Now it's nearer £80.
But its size and comfort are superb - we have used it for school runs, for excursions, camping trips, holidays to Europe and back. Our sons have grown up through their teenage years and University with this car (they are now all young men), and we still regularly do long return trips up the motorways and the A1 with no ill effect. The only time we have to call the AA are for tyre blow-outs (a side effect of the current urban obsession with speed bumps).
As and when we get another car to replace this one, it would probably be with a Zafira again - bigger engine, so that we can keep our revs low (this one labours over 60 mph, especially when full of people and luggage).
Purchased second hand in 2008.
My main issue is about reliabilty as every so often the engine warning light comes on and promptly puts the car into 'limp mode'. It is always a worry as we travel abroad quite a bit, but my mechanic showed me how to clear the warning lights with use of a cheap read and erase fault code reader (about £11). This saves time and money in keep going back to a main dealer to run it through a diagnostic test, as actually, there isn't really anything wrong.
I downsized from a Ford Galaxy to the Zafira, but still wanted availabilty of 7 seats, even though the kids were now young adults - comfort in back seats is another issue on long journeys, as they are rather thin, with not much padding.
On the plus side, acceleration is excellent for an automatic and it has 'sport' mode, which is great to use on the odd occasion.
Probably would not purchase another Vauxhall
Petrol engine is powerful enough to haul along a full load and is very quiet, also no road noise. Fuel economy is 35mpg under all conditions which is a bit disappointing, I used to get the same fuel figures off my earlier cars over 30 years ago!
Running costs apart from fuel are very reasonable. However tyres are very expensive!
Comfort: Good on long motorway journeys, but apart from that very uncomfortable on normal roads, due to stiff suspension and the terrible state of our roads. I have just come out of hospital after major surgery and the journey home from the hospital was hell. My driver had to crawl along to manoeuvre the uneven road surfaces and avoid pot holes etc.
Reliability has been good apart from an air conditioning fault that our Vauxhall main dealer couldn't fix, had to go to a air con specialist
Space and practicality excellent, that's why we chose this make/model
Brilliant 7 seater easily converted into 5 seater
1.8 engine excellent torque and power
Use as 7 seater with family; saves use of two cars, then gives overall petrol and car parking economy.
Good all round visibility. Accomodates good-size roof box for folding chairs, tents, wind-breaks, and holiday gear.
Fantastic space in boot when used as a 2 seater Can carry ladders, Christmas tree, lawn mower, 2 cycles etc
Brilliant flexible seat design as 3 seater, 4, seater, 5 seater, 6 seater or 7 seater
There cannot be a better family car. We have owned all makes of cars, but our last 4 cars have come from the Zafira stable.
Compared with other MPV's , the Zafira price is the most affordable, and in our view, offers best value.
Possible disadvantage: no spare wheel on most recent models.,
Would like parking distance control/alarm to be standard on all models.
I have had this vehicle from new and have covered over 110,000 miles and have found the boot-size to be excellent for ferrying my student off-spring to and from university with their worldly possessions. The fact that it seats 7 has more recently come into play with parents giving up driving and so can still take them on family days out without compromising too much on comfort.
Being a diesel it is the most economical vehicle I have owned and typically averages over 50mpg on all driving but on motorways up to 60mpg.
Mostly reliable it has required a new alternator at 85,000 miles, a new clutch and flywheel at 98,000. I do feel that it is poor design or lack of quality of materials used that a new clutch also necessitates a new flywheel. I have heard that clutch and flywheel replacement is common across other makes of cars as well so it's not just a Vauxhall issue.
Several points arise from 2 years use.
Whoever designed the pillars to the front, side of the windscreen deserves to be dismissed. Add to it the front door jamb - the A-post - and you have an area 18 inches wide that blocks the view when turning right.
And as for the unconventional handbrake lever, with the transverse handle - totally out of keeping with ALL previous cars I have driven.
Hhad the chance to ride in a JAZZ recently. Much quieter. But a little smaller, especially the boot capacity.
I own a 50 year old classic car that is geared 22mph per 1000rpm in overdrive top gear. The Zaphira is geared the same in 5th gear, so what progress has Vauxhall made in these 50 years.
Probably will NOT go for another Vauxhall. The Japanese seem to recognise how to make a good feeling car.
After a very bad experience with a brand new Peugeot 207SW in respect of faults, servicing, franchise and customer services, I purchased another new Zafira.
Having owned one previously I knew exactly what I was getting and was very pleased indeed to return to a reliable, practical vehicle.
I am achieving 36mpg with a fair amount of city/town driving, which is pretty reasonable for a large MPV petrol and I have had absolutely no faults or issues in the 7 months I have owned same. The 1600 is obviously a wee bit sluggish accelerating uphill when loaded but that is to be expected for such a large car.
I did however purchase a spare wheel/tyre, which I carry in the boot as I was not happy just having the inflation kit.
Delighted to own a Zafira again, great family car.
When I bought this Vauxhall it was three years old with a good service record which I kept up, This car has never let me down starts whatever the weather, comfortable to drive even long distances on holiday loaded to the roof plenty of room for passengers and luggage for its size I have found it very economical over the years and although considered upgrading I am reluctant to get rid of such a reliable vehicle, Easy to get in and out of even for older relatives. Taking everything into account a good all round vehicle The road tax is high for some reason, And some Vauxhall parts ie rear wiper blade are expensive, I found that going to my local Peugeot garage for servicing and any repairs more reasonable than Vauxhall dealership, have recommended to friends and family,
I have a 2008 Zafira
It is a 1.6 Litre petrol engine.
Very nice driving position with good all round views.
Cockpit a bit plastic and could do with being a bit more on the quality side.
Two seats in the floor are useful when need to carry more people.
Normal passenger seats push right up and makes the space in the rear huge for car boot or market day.
Economy is around 36-38 MPG urban and around 40-42 MPG on a run.
Running costs are reasonable and no real nasty suprises.
Speed is not important as it is a family car but motorway driving at 70 MPH around 4000 RPM is pretty comfortable.
I paid £5000 for it on dealer finance and i find this reasonable at 8% flat.
When it comes to replacing it i would consider buying the same model again.
Pleased with this model after travelling in a friends car
Has excellent space and is very versatile with extra seats (but much reduced boot space) if needed-(seats 5-7)
Have even transported a fridge/freezer from local store with ease (rear seats folded down)
Love the boot space and ease of handling-great for elderly relatives and friends as easy to get in and out of due to higher seat levels/body
Makes for good road vision in general when travelling--only downfall is the windowscreen/side window vision (because of wider supports to windscreen frame?)--but ok when you are used to it and make allowances
Not bad on running expenses-average I guess
Yes I would definately buy another one
The Zafira (bought one year old in 2004) is a versatile vehicle for a one car household, and surprisingly comfortable for the price. The 1800cc engine performs well on long journeys, though it is a bit too eager in towns. Fuel economy not fantastic, but in keeping with the weight of the vehicle. As we use public transport much of the time, we do not do a high mileage. This is the longest we have kept a car before (second hand) replacement. The air-con & a few other electric items have failed and are not worth replacing, similarly the trim and some paintwork are deteriorating, but we are loathe to part with the car, as the accommodation is so good.
Really good family car bought 7 years ago. Lots of space, excellent boot. The 1.6 engine offers good performance, the acceleration and ability to stay at high speed is great. The car is a bit dated now as it's 7 years old, doesn't have an iPod connection for example. I've spent a lot of money recently on repairs such as electric windows, exhaust, wheel bearings and ignition pack. All in all a good family car. 62,000 miles and still going bar the above mentioned. Would I buy another one? No. My kids are older and don't need the space. Something more sporty now I think. And not a Vauxhall. I want a BMW or an Audi although can't afford either : (
I bought the car in March 2013 to enable me to carry children and grandchildren in one vehicle. It is roomy, comfortable and very adaptable. The rearmost seats are fine for the grandchildren, but adults would find it a squeeze. The boot is tiny with the back seats up but roomy with them folded down (very easy to do), and cavernous if you also fold the centre row.
Performance is surprisingly good from the 2 litre 130PS engine, and fuel economy of around 50 mpg is good considering the size of vehicle.
Main gripe - there have been a number of unexplained scratches on the bodywork - maybe bad luck or is the paint finish not quite hard enough?
This is The best all round car I've experienced.
The seating options, even in this 10yr old model, are fantastic, with the rear seating folding flat for maximum space.
This older model is also very robust. It has had two minor tail end shunts, with barely visible damage to the rear bumper. one of those resulted in the other car losing the front bumper.
The engine has now covered 81+k miles, I got it at 44k. It is still responsive, and despite the weight of the car, reasonably sporty, (something I've known in Vauxhalls for many years.)
When I finally replace it, I will get a newer version, and only hope I'm as happy.