The new Opel Crossland SUV has been on sale across the country for the past few months. It replaces the Crossland X, which had replaced the old Meriva.

Crisp and compact on the outside, spacious and versatile on the inside, the Crossland is the first car in the Opel range to adopt the brand’s unmistakeable new Vizor front face signature. The newly restyled Opel Crossland gains extra comfort and technology equipment and features an improved chassis.

After a few weeks driving electric and automatic versions of petrol and diesel cars, it was a pleasant change to get behind the wheel of a car with a manual gearbox and old style hand-brake. And while this is a really modern car it also had another old-style touch, as it had a proper spare wheel.

I spent a fair bit of time in the petrol version of the Crossland during Lockdown earlier this year. Naturally the diesel version is just a little bit noisier, but with all the talk of electric and hybrid cars, I think there are still a lot of people especially in rural areas, who prefer diesel. The 1.5-litre diesel version I drove was very frugal.

It’s reassuring to know that you have a proper spare wheel in the boot if driving in rural areas, where I suppose it’s fair to say you are more likely to get a puncture.

James Brooks, Managing Director at Leeson Motors, the Irish Importer of Opel, said: “The new Crossland retains all the key ingredients the Crossland X predecessor model had, that made it such a success for Irish buyers. Comfortable, practical, spacious, keenly priced and powered by efficient engines, our new Crossland model now brings to market the stand-out, new Opel front style signature and a smart new rear finish.”

Opel Crossland interior.

More comfort and safety features have been added to offer a really attractive package for drivers looking for the perfect compact family crossover with SUV looks. The arrival of the Crossland heralds the start of a complete rejuvenation of the Opel model line-up this year.

The cabin is straightforward and features a touchscreen as standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. All the controls are easy to use and the interior of the car is brighter than the Opel Mokka that I drove a few weeks back. I really liked the high driving position.

Available in seven different body colours and in SC, SRI and a range-topping Elite trim, the new Crossland is powered by a choice of a 1.2-litre 83bhp stop-start petrol 5-speed manual, a 1.2-litre 130bhp turbo stop-start petrol, 6-speed automatic, a 1.5-litre 110bhp turbo stop-start diesel and a 1.5-litre 120bhp turbo stop-start diesel.

With prices starting from €22,395, standard equipment from level one SC include a plethora of extras. You get: hill start assist, cruise control with speed limiter, lane departure warning, enhanced traffic sign recognition, 6 airbags, leather steering wheel, manual air conditioning, rain sensing windscreen, automatic lights, DAB radio, USB connectivity and a 12-volt socket.

The sporty SRI trim, from €23,895 plus delivery, is packed with features over the SC trim, to include park assist front and rear, rear view camera, and many more goodies. Then the range topping Elite trim starting from €25,395, is the ultimate in luxury.

The 1.5-litre diesel Elite version that I drove will cost you €27,595. Road tax is €200.