Vauxhall Astra delivers free Vehicle Excise Duty

The Astra hatchback has been updated for 2011 with a new 1.7-litre CDTi ecoFLEX engine delivering 17 per cent fewer CO2 emissions than the previous 1.7-litre engine.

However, despite sub-100g/m CO2 emissions, the ecoFLEX engine also delivers more power – 130PS – than the previous 125PS engine.

Vauxhall has achieved this by making the engine more efficient and reducing the amount of friction in the six-speed gearbox.

The Astra also includes an energy-recuperation system designed to store energy from the brakes to charge the battery and LED daytime running lights to reduce the amount of power needed.

The engine also makes use of Start/Stop technology, first seen in the Vauxhall Corsa ecoFLEX model, which is capable of turning the engine off when the car is stationary in order to save fuel in busy stop-start traffic.

Other features such as low rolling-resistance tyres and improved aerodynamics via an active aeroshutter at the front help to boost fuel consumption and bring down CO2 emissions to record levels.

Fuel economy in the new Vauxhall Astra ecoFLEX is 76.3mpg on the combined cycle, making it the most efficient car in the range.

The result is lower running costs for private buyers and businesses. In the case of the latter, the Astra ecoFLEX delivers exemption from the London congestion charge and inclusion in the lowest 13 per cent band of Benefit in Kind tax.

The new Vauxhall Astra 1.7 ecoFLEX will be available in Exclusiv, SE and SRi specifications, but prices will be unveiled closer to the launch date.

This, says Vauxhall, will be ‘soon’. However, a final launch date has not been confirmed for the latest eco-model in the Astra line-up.