Motoring News

2021 Opel Corsa: Making light of extra power

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – The beginning of 2021 saw Opel SA hit the ground running with the solo launch of the Opel Corsa Edition as a South African teaser for a larger range of the popular small cars. Now the main manne in the line-up have arrived, too.

They are the Corsa and the Corsa Elegance models – three more budget, but well-equipped, cars from the sixth generation of Corsa with a choice of 1.2-litre naturally aspirated or turbocharged models.

2021 OPEL CORSA. Image: Supplied

The two engines are offered in South Africa in conjunction with two gearboxes – five-speed manual and six-speed auto – each offering what Opel describes as ”having significant advantages such as lower fuel consumption and lower CO2 emissions, and high driveability”.


They’re said to be more advanced and more dynamic, than any previous version.

The Corsa, Opel points out, is one of the lightest vehicles in the segment at 980kg in its lightest form and has the latest 1200cc engines with a claim of lower fuel consumption and reduced carbon emissions.


The Corsa, according to Opel, is one of the most aerodynamically optimised vehicles in its class – achieved after Opel engineers and designers took the vehicle through rigorous testing and fine-tuning at the Research Institute of Automotive Engineering and Vehicle Engines in Stuttgart University’s wind tunnel.

2021 OPEL CORSA. Image: Supplied

The result was an impressive drag coefficient of 0.29 thanks to a reduced frontal area of 2.13 square metres, meaning the Corsa pushes more easily through the air. ”That, coupled with the light weight of the vehicle,” Opel says, ”requires less energy to move and stay in motion.”

READ MORE Opel features on Carman’s Corner

Further aerodynamic improvement was achieved by using flat underbody panelling front to rear to reduce air turbulence; and a roof spoiler weighs in too with atmospheric efficiency to reduce lift on the rear wheels and achieve one of the most stable of vehicles.

2021 OPEL CORSA. Image: Supplied

Opel points out that the improvement in efficiency through the engine range is reflected in the driving performance. While the new Corsa Elegance (96kW) reaches a maximum speed of 208km/h its predecessor needed 15% more power (110kW) to get to 207km/h.

The cars can rightly claim to be ”sporty” given a zero to 100km/h sprint passing in 8.7sec – 0.2sec quicker than its predecessor.

2021 OPEL CORSA. Image: Supplied

There are also what Opel describes as ”exciting and approachable” technological improvements: safety benchmark on Elegance trim, 180⁰ reversing camera, lane-keeping, road-sign recognition, forward collision (handy in a traffic queue!) alert, pedestrian identification, and emergency pre-braking.

The IntelliLink infotainment is equipped, according to model, with a 19cm touchscreen or digital cluster, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity.

The Elegance adds heatable front seats, diode headlights and auto high beam.


Corsa R274 900 1.2 55 kW 5-speed – R274 900
Corsa Edition – 1.2 55 kW 5-speed – R294 900
Corsa Elegance – 1.2 Turbo 96kW 6-speed a/t – R386 900

2021 OPEL CORSA. Image: Supplied

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