Exceptional MPV versatility from the Opel Zafira
Motor Corporation joins the MPV market with the introduction of the
versatile Opel Zafira seven-seater. Key am
ongst the attributes of this compact newcomer is unprecedented interior versatility and the ability to achieve various configurations without having to remove any of the seats.
With the Zafira, Opel is venturing into a segment of the market it has never been before, at least not in SA. However, in Europe the Zafira – and its Astra sisters – have made such an impact that it is now the market leader in the segments it competes in, ousting even the renowned VW Golf.
A large measure of its success is due to its
versatility. With the Zafira it is possible to use the vehicle to its full
advantage as a two seat load carrier with 1700 litres of cargo space one
way, and provide seats for seven on the way back thanks to the ingenious
“FLEX7” seating system. The beauty of the system is that it takes just
one pair of hands to achieve the transformation.
“FLEX7” seating system was developed by Opel engineers and
incorporates all three rows of seats in a 2-3-2 arrangement. An ingenious
feature is the mechanism of the two individual third row seats. To fold
these away, one only has to press a button to release the locking
mechanism, push the head restraint down, and flip the seat over into a
specially formed recess in the floor. The result – a flat, spacious
The second-row bench seat travels back and
forward up to 540 mm, providing for a flexible distribution of the load
and passenger areas with the rearmost seats folded away. With only two
people sitting in the second row a large through loading hatch can be used
to accommodate long objects. The 60:40 split fold down backrest provides
for further versatility. If even more space is required, the whole middle
bench seat can be folded up to rest behind the front row of seats.
Measuring in at 4,32 meters long, 1,74 wide
and 1,68 high, the Zafira is compact in exterior dimensions and has a
class leading low drag co-efficient of 0,33. Extensive use is made of
lightweight materials in the construction and the Zafira, with an average
sized driver on board, will weigh in at just around 1375 kilograms,
lighter than the average competitor in the class. Together with the front
wheel drive layout and with the assistance of electro hydraulic power
steering, this adds up to a recipe for an extremely agile and safe MPV.
comes form Opel’s Ecotec Z18XE1 engine with a maximum of 92 kW and 170
Nm of torque developed in the engine’s mid-rev range. This provides a
sea-level 0 - 100 km/h time of 11,5 seconds and a top speed of 188 km/h.
Fuel economy is an exceptional 8,6 litres per 100 km on average. In city
driving this peaks at 11,4 litres per 100 km.
As with other vehicles from Opel, the
Zafira’s chassis design is based on the DSA (Dynamic Safety chassis)
philosophy. The body is fully galvanised for high resistance to corrosion.
The comprehensive safety package includes Opel’s patented Pedal Release
System that acts to limit injuries to the feet in a sever collision, twin
full size airbags for driver and passenger, seat belt pre-tensioners work
in conjunction with the air bags. Side impact beams are fitted to
all doors. ABS is standard for the South African specification Zafira with
disc brakes fitted all round.
Interior equipment includes air-conditioning, a Phillips Radio/CD combination with eight speakers and satellite controls for the system on the steering wheel. The front windows are power operated as are the side mirrors. Trim is jacquard cloth and the steering wheel is leather covered and is adjustable for both reach and height. Remote central locking is provided.