The first PHEV to wear the Griffin badge delivers hot hatch pace – but can it match premium competition for ride refinement and interior finish?
What is it?
Meet one half of Vauxhall’s two-step journey towards electrifying its entire passenger car line-up by 2024 – a journey set to make its other significant stride forward in just a few months with the arrival of the Corsa-e electric supermini.
The Grandland X Hybrid4 is the first ever plug-in hybrid to wear a Vauxhall badge, 2012’s Ampera being, strictly speaking, a range-extender electric car rather than a PHEV. With a 13.2kW battery, it can deliver as much as 35 miles of zero-emissions range – enough, says Vauxhall, for 80% of customers to do the majority of their driving on electricity alone. A 7.2kW wall box can then recharge it in under two hours, though only if you pay £500 for the option.
Of more interest to the average Autocar reader? That this is also the most powerful production Vauxhall on sale today, a pair of electric motors and PSA’s familiar 1.6-litre turbocharged four-pot petrol engine sending 296bhp to all four wheels. 0-60 takes a claimed 5.9 seconds, or enough to raise the eyebrow of the average hot hatchback owner.
In the UK, the all-wheel drive Hybrid4 starts with with the well-equipped SRi Nav trim, at £41,500. Our test car, a top-spec Ultimate Nav which adds niceties such as advanced park assist, premium audio and bespoke LED headlights, was an altogether more ambitious £46,650. That isn’t too far removed from premium plug-ins from Audi, BMW and Volvo. Fleet customers may be more tempted by the Business Edition at roughly £37,000, but private buyers may want to wait for the less pricey, front-drive only variant set to follow later in the year, with an equally attractive benefit-in-kind tax rate.
Read more: Autocar