Citroen Grand C4 Picasso vs Vauxhall Zafira Tourer

Vauxhall has fitted its Zafira Tourer with a clean new diesel. How does it stack up against roomy Citroen rival?

These days, a great MPV needs more than just space; it has to be refined, stylish and good to drive. So while the seven-seat Vauxhall Zafira Tourer is smart and solidly built, up to now it’s been hampered by a dated 1.7-litre diesel.

Citroen Grand C4 Picasso review

Vauxhall Zafira Tourer review

Can an all-new 1.6-litre CDTi engine help it take the fight to the class-leading Citroen Grand C4 Picasso?

The Citroen scores with its bold looks and modern cabin, and the 2.0-litre HDi model has already beaten the Renault Grand Scenic and Kia Carens. Now we test the efficient 1.6 e-HDi for the first time.

Both high-spec MPVs cost just over £23k and promise nearly 70mpg. Which is in the box seat?

Head-to-head

Engines

Vauxhall's new 1.6-litre diesel debuted at last year’s Geneva Motor Show, and meets Euro VI emissions rules. It’s the first in a raft of powertrain upgrades from the brand, and will launch in other models soon. It has more power and torque than the Picasso’s e-HDi, at 134bhp and 320Nm, although the Citroen engine is cleaner. And on our test, it proved more frugal, averaging 35.9mpg.

Family life

Nothing tests a car’s durability more than family life. The Zafira’s cabin materials look and feel a bit tougher than the Picasso’s. But with parent-friendly features like a child view mirror, wipe-clean tray tables and electronic child lock control, the Citroen is also well suited to family use.

Gadgets

Our Citroen featured the optional self-parking system. This scans spaces and remotely operates the steering, parking the car for you. But the operation is slow – you’re better doing it yourself with the standard reversing camera.

1st place - Citroen

Excellent running costs and a practical cabin make the Citroen a class leader. With low emissions, great economy and just enough performance, the 1.6 e-HDi is the pick of the range. Exclusive trim is well equipped, while the eye-catching styling only adds to the appeal.

2nd place - Vauxhall

This new 1.6-litre diesel has given the Zafira Tourer a real boost. Comfortable and refined, it’s a quality MPV. But it doesn’t have three full-width middle row seats and isn’t as practical as the Citroen. It’s not as modern inside and out, either, so the Vauxhall just comes up short.

   Citroen Grand C4 Picasso Exclusive e-HDi 115 manualVauxhall Zafira Tourer Tech Line 1.6 CDTi ecoFLEX
On the road price/total as tested£23,255/£24,700£23,175/£24,075  
Residual value (after 3yrs/36,000)£10,093/43.4%£9,594/41.4%  
Depreciation £13,162 £13,581   
Annual tax liability std/higher rate£742/£1,485£740/£1,480  
Annual fuel cost (12k/20k miles)£2,112/£3,532£2,298/£3,380  
Ins. group/quote/road tax band/cost18/£380/B/£2016/£339/B/£20  
Cost of 1st/2nd/3rd service£256/£328/£293£253/£340/£253  
         
Length/wheelbase 4,597/2,840mm4,658/2,760mm  
Height/width 1,656/1,826mm1,685/1,884mm  
Engine  4cyl in-line/1,560cc4cyl in-line/1,598cc  
Peak power/revs  112/3,600 bhp/rpm134/3,500 bhp/rpm  
Peak torque/revs  270/1,750 Nm/rpm320/2,000Nm/rpm  
Transmission  6-spd manual/fwd6-spd manual/fwd  
Fuel tank capacity/spare wheel55 litres/sealant58 litres/sealant  
Boot capacity (7/5/2 seats)165/692-793/2,181l152/710/1,860 litres  
Kerbweight/payload/towing weight1,320/830/1,500kg1,571/839/1,450kg  
Turning circle/drag coefficient10.8 metres/0.30Cd11.4 metres/0.30Cd  
Basic warranty/recovery 3yrs (60,000)/1yr3yrs (60,000)/1yr  
Service intervals/UK dealers12,500 (1yr)/22520,000 (1yr)/413  
Driver Power manufacturer/dealer pos.24th/27th 26th/18th   
Euro NCAP: Adult/child/ped./stars86/88/68/5 94/83/53/5   
         
0-60/30-70mph 12.1/12.6 secs10.9/10.9 secs  
30-50mph in 3rd/4th 4.8/7.6 secs 4.3/6.4 secs   
50-70mph in 5th/6th 9.8/15.0 secs8.6/11.6 secs  
Top speed/rpm at 70mph 117mph/2,000rpm120mph/1,900rpm  
Braking 70-0/60-0/30-0mph 49.4/36.0/9.2 metres52.0/37.8/9.2 metres  
Noise outside/idle/30/70mphN/A N/A   
Auto Express econ (mpg/mpl)/range35.9/7.9/434 miles33.0/7.3/421 miles  
Govt urban/extra-urban/combined 62.8/74.3/70.6mpg61.4/74.3/68.9mpg  
Govt urban/extra-urban/combined 13.8/16.3/15.5mpl13.5/16.3/15.1mpl  
Actual/claimed CO2/tax bracket211/105g/km/16%229/109g/km/16%  
         
Airbags/Isofix points in middle rowEight/Three Six/Two   
Auto box/cruise ctrl/parking sensors£500/yes/yesNo/yes/yes   
Climate control/leather/heated seatsYes/£750*/noNo/no/no   
Metallic paint/xenon lights/sunroof£520/£750/£699^£525/no/no   
Sat-nav/USB/DAB radio/BluetoothYes/yes/yes/yesYes/yes/yes/yes  

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