Overview: Vauxhall Adam
The A-sector is fashion-led — style sensitive. Vauxhall believes that buyers are heavily into customisation as a mode of self-expression, and the Company has seen to it that the Adam can be personalised in — we are told — over a million different ways.
Close to the top of G.M.’s priorities when developing the Adam was to keep percieved build quality high. We hope this has been successful, because the Corsa tends to feel a little bendy and flimsy when you start interacting with it. It’s not alone in this, of course, but a small car needs to feel upmarket if it is ever to sell as a fashion accessory. Vauxhall claims to have used ‘premium materials and design cues often found in the luxury sector’.
Adam, then, is a three-door, four-seater. Whether it is a car or a fashion accessory, it will be unveiled at this year’s Paris motorshow before appearing in U.K. showrooms early in 2013.
Designed by Briton Mark Adams and his team in Europe, the Adam uses a ‘floating’ roof style pinches from the C3 Pluriel and A1. Allegedly it will be the first car in the A-sector to have the option of LED daytime running lights.
The Adam will be available in three trims from launch: Jam (fashionable/colourful), Glam (elegant/sophisticated) and Slam (racy/sporty). Quite apart from the usual choice of body colour, there are also two roof colours, a variety of interior colours, optional equipment and different materials. Customers can even choose their headlining, including an LED-lit starlight roof trim.
The Adam will be offered initially with a choice of three four-cylinder petrol engines: a 1.2-litre of 70PS, plus two 1.4-litre engines with either 87PS or 100PS. All will be available with optional stop-start technology and will be mated to a five-speed manual gearbox. Later on, Adam will become the first car in Vauxhall’s range to adopt a new-generation of small petrol engine, featuring direct injection and forced induction, along with an all-new six-speed gearbox.
Equipment & connectivity
The Adam’s new infotainment system is designed to support new media sources, including Bluetooth, as well as connectivity for smartphones with Android or Apple iOS software. This enables access to internet-based applications, including GPS navigation. The system uses a 17cm full-colour touch-screen display, providing access to a variety of on-board controls.
Round, mechanical clock-style instruments with chrome bezels mark a departure from the dials seen in other Vauxhalls. Customers can also opt for a heated steering wheel — something of a first in this class of car.
The Advanced Park Assist II system, which is an optional extra, is the Bosch self-parking system we have seen elsewhere. It’s a first for a Vauxhall, though. Drivers engage the system with a button on the dashboard, and it tells them when they reach a parking space large enough to accommodate the car. The system then automatically steers them into the parking space, with the driver only needing to control the brake, clutch and gears. APA II uses ultrasonic sensors to work its magic, and always comes in combination with Side Blind Spot Alert (SBSA).
The Adam’s front suspension is by McPherson strut, with a compound crank system at the rear. Wheel sizes range from 16 to 18 inches; and cars that are specified with 17- or 18-inch rims come as standard with a lowered sports chassis. The latest generation ESP system is standard on all ADAMs; the system includes a Hill Start Assist function.