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New Vauxhall Corsa-e Anniversary Edition 2022 review

The Vauxhall Corsa-e Anniversary Edition celebrates 40 years of the brand’s supermini

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

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Verdict

Vauxhall’s celebratory Corsa-e marks a milestone birthday for the brand’s supermini. It’s come a long way over the past four decades, and it’s easy to see why this latest model is Britain’s best-selling car – especially in all-electric form. The range updates for 2022 are solid and the Anniversary Edition looks great and feels like a bit of fun, but it’s backed up by ability.

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Vauxhall bagged a big prize in the UK last year, because its Corsa was the best-selling car of 2021. But the brand has more than just that to celebrate, with Vauxhall having been at the sharp end of the supermini sales charts for 40 years, and this is the landmark milestone the Corsa-e Anniversary Edition celebrates.

This latest all-electric model pays homage to the car that was badged Nova in the UK but Corsa in European markets, with Record Red paintwork inspired by the original Nova’s Carmine Red colour, plus tartan trim for the sports seats as a nod to the Nova SR. Limited to just 1,000 examples in the UK, each celebratory Corsa-e comes with special collectors’ socks that feature both the heritage and modern versions of the special tartan.

The Anniversary Edition is only available to order online via Vauxhall’s website and features plenty of other standard kit, but then, at £31,000 you’d expect so, even with an all-electric version.

Other standard kit includes 17-inch black alloy wheels, a contrasting black roof, more black exterior details and unique ‘Corsa 40’ plaques inside. The Anniversary Edition is based on GS Line trim, so boasts plenty of tech, including a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a seven-inch digital dash, all-round parking sensors plus a rear-view camera, heated front seats and a heated steering wheel, and blind spot alert.

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The special edition benefits from the same upgrades as the regular MY22 Corsa-e, with a new toggle drive selector replacing a more conventional gearlever, but the bigger improvement comes with the range. Vauxhall now claims 222 miles on a full charge, which is up from 209 miles and is thanks to optimisation of the car’s heat pump and a new final-drive gear ratio.

Apart from this, there are no mechanical or electronic changes, which means that the car still uses a 50kWh battery supplying a 134bhp electric motor. The four per cent improvement in range looks even more impressive given that the Corsa uses the same size battery; this is a great example of EVs becoming better further down the line thanks to driver data and feedback.

Despite the tweak to the final drive ratio, performance is still more than swift enough for a supermini. The 0-62mph time of 7.6 seconds is perfectly adequate, but it’s the near-instant 260Nm of torque that makes the 0-30mph dash so swift – and fairly fun – and defines the model. It’s a great town car, with fast, light and precise steering helping to boost agility in urban areas and through roundabouts – or on country roads – exactly where this car will be used.

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The ride is smooth enough, even if the Corsa’s chassis does start to feel a little lumpy over the worst surfaces, but for the majority of the time it’s comfortable and composed. On the motorway, the Corsa-e Anniversary Edition cruises with plenty of refinement, although just remember that you’ll consume more energy and therefore have a shorter range at higher speeds. In warm conditions, we still found Vauxhall’s range predictions to be relatively good, and with a light right foot, more than 200 miles on a full charge should be possible.

With 100kW rapid-charge capability, the Anniversary Edition can replenish its battery to 80 per cent in just half an hour, while a regular home wallbox sees this rise to seven and a half hours, which is still perfectly fine for overnight charges.

On the subject of practicality, the Corsa-e offers a fair level of room in the rear seats – as much as any other Corsa – but at 267 litres, boot space is down on the petrol model’s 309-litre capacity, plus there’s no underfloor storage for the charging cable. But then, this is par for the course with most electric superminis, including the Peugeot e-208 and MINI Electric.

Model:Vauxhall Corsa-e Anniversary Edition
Price:£31,000
Powertrain:50kWh battery/1x e-motor
Power/torque:134bhp/260Nm
Transmission:Single-speed automatic, front-wheel drive 
0-62mph:7.6 seconds
Top speed:93mph
Range:222 miles
Charging:100kW (0-80% 30mins)
On sale:Now
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Sean’s been writing about cars since 2010, having worked for outlets as diverse as PistonHeads, MSN Cars, Which? Cars, Race Tech – a specialist motorsport publication – and most recently Auto Express and sister titles Carbuyer and DrivingElectric

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