Vauxhall Combo Life (2018–)

Last updated 3 July 2019

 
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Comfortable and easy to drive, three Isofix points, very spacious and practical, twin sliding doors make getting in simple, available as a long wheelbase seven-seater, modern interior.
Citroen Berlingo is more stylish.
Updated 6 June 2018
Prices for Combo Life announced

Priced from £20,530 on-the-road, the Combo Life comes in two trims, Design and Energy, with Energy models available as either a five- or seven-seater. Customers can also choose between two wheelbases:...

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Introduction

Vauxhall may no longer build the Zafira but that doesn't mean it has given up on MPVs. Filling the gap is the Combo Life, available as a standard five-seat model or a long wheelbase seven-seater badged XL.

The shape may look familiar and that's because it's one of a trio alongside the Citroen Berlingo and Peugeot Rifter. Vauxhall is of course now owned by Peugeot Citroen but thanks to the considerably different front end styling, the Combo Life does at least stand out as a model on its own.

From the looks there's no hiding the fact this is based on a van, but this is a case of not judging a book by its cover. Vauxhall may have never offered an MPV version of the Combo before, but Peugeot Citroen has plenty of experience and it shows.

Not only is the interior spacious and practical as you'd expect, but it's also pleasingly wel finished. Yes there are of course lots of hard plastics, but it feels more like a vehicle that's built to withstand busy family life rather than something that's merely cheap. The neat air con controls, leather trimmed steering wheel and high quality touchscreen all add to the feeling that this is more car than van. 

That filters through to the drive. The Combo Life was designed as a car first and van second, and while you wouldn't describe it as enthralling to drive, it's far better than many will think. It rides well, even when empty, but most impressive is the way it tackles corners with plenty of grip, helped by responsive steering.

But what really sells the Combo Life is the practicality. Both models come with three Isofix points on the second row so you can fit three full size car seats. The sliding side doors make getting children (or yourself) in and out easy. XL models have extra seats in the back which can be removed if not needed, although they are heavy and cumbersome. Both versions offer a whopping amount of boot space, even with the seats up: 597 and 850 litres from glass to seat. 

The engines include the impressive 1.2-litre petrol which would be our choice if you're not doing big mileages. Alternatively there's a 1.5-litre diesel available in two versions - either 100PS or 130PS. The latter is available with an eight-speed automatic.

As a practical and no nonsense family car, the Combo Life has much to offer, especially the XL. It may not be the most stylish choice, but it's very likeable and surprisingly good to drive. It also comes very well equipped as standard although with prices starting at more than £20k this is no budget choice. 

List Price from £16,080 +VAT
Buy new from £11,695 +VAT
Contract hire from £177.00 +VAT pm
 

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