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£28,525 when new
Out to land a punch on the smug, Germanic nose of that uppity Audi A4 Allroad, this is the Vauxhall Insignia Country Tourer. See, like the Audi, the Country Tourer gets 4WD and extra suspension travel, hovering it somewhere between family estate and SUV-crossover jobby. Like the Audi, it dishes up all the traction you could reasonably require, offers hectares of space inside and cruises comfily. But, unlike the Audi, the Country Tourer is smartly priced: starting at £26,499, it undercuts the cheapest diesel A4 Allroad by some seven grand. Take that, Ingolstadt! Not quite. Not with an engine like this. The CT’s only powerplant is a 2.0 CDTi, available in 161bhp and 192bhp flavours. We suffered the weedier version, a chugging, clattering brute far removed from the smooth latest generation of VW units.
And then there are the nav controls. To reduce complexity, Vauxhall has replaced the Insignia’s button-fest with a touchscreen. And then, increasing complexity again, added a trackpad behind the gearshifter. This trackpad doesn’t work very well. In fact, navigating through maps or radio stations is like solving a Rubik’s cube while wearing oven gloves.
Which renders the Country Tourer a valiant but fruitless swing for Vauxhall.