2020 Vauxhall Corsa: new vs used

Fancy a 2020 Vauxhall Corsa? With prices from £15,550 it's expensive for a small car, unlike the outgoing Corsa, yours from £5,000 or less

John Evans
Jul 30, 2020

The 2020 Vauxhall Corsa may be sharper looking than the outgoing model and more high-tech, but it also brings with it a new car price tag. Sitting between the new Peugeot 208 and Renault Clio, the new Corsa is competitively priced - for a new car that is - but it's still far more expensive than a nearly-new version of the outgoing car. So which is the better choice?

While the cheapest all-new Corsa, the 1.2i 75hp SE 5dr, will cost from £15,550 - serious money for a small, basic car - BuyaCar has low-mileage, 2019-registered examples of its predecessor priced from just £7,795, available to buy right now.

So, is the old model a better buy with the huge cash savings available, or is the new model worth waiting - and saving up - for? To answer that, let’s examine the newcomer first and then compare the pros and cons of both cars.

All-new 2020 Vauxhall Corsa

Vauxhall Corsa

The new Corsa is muh more sophisticated than the old one in pretty much every respect. It’s certainly roomier and its kinder to the environment thanks to new, more efficient engines. It also looks more up-to-date and better placed to take on the strong value and fun-to-drive Ford Fiesta.

With Peugeot, Vauxhall’s new owners, now firmly in control, the new Corsa borrows its engines and many of its major parts from the all-new Peugeot 208. As a result, it’s powered by a choice of efficient, three-cylinder, turbocharged 1.2-litre petrol engines and a 1.5-litre diesel. There's also a pure-electric version, though this is notably more expensive than the petrol and diesel versions.

Vauxhall says the new model is more comfortable and better to drive than the outgoing car but if all you want is a small, comfy, good value car, is the new versions really worth spending so much more money, or does the outgoing car give you everything you need for many thousands less? This is the question you have to ask yourself.

Trim-wise, there are four main specifications with names shared with the old model. However, as is Vauxhall’s habit, each offers an enhanced version bringing more kit along with a higher price, and multiplying customers’ options to a bewildering number.

Opening the batting is SE - also available in more upmarket SE Nav, SE Premium and SE Nav Premium forms. It’s a misleading name since in basic SE form highlights extend only to 16-inch alloy wheels and an seven-inch media system. For basic essentials such as electric windows you have to upgrade to SRi trim, which also has a bolder bodykit, tinted windows and parking sensors but costs a whopping £3,000 more than the standard SE models.

Then there’s comfort-oriented Elite Nav trim that builds on sportier SRi with a rearview camera and assorted driver assistance packs, and slightly higher prices again. The new Corsa range is topped off by Ultimate trim with 17-inch alloys, leather seats and radar pack, which gives the car some autonomous driving capabilities.

This version also costs a steep £25,990 - a staggering £3,000 more than the most expensive Ford Fiesta you can buy. So is the new Corsa really worth such high prices, or would you be better off spending much less and getting the outgoing model? Keep reading and we'll you to decide whether old or new suits you - and your budget - best. 

2014-2019 Vauxhall Corsa

This model was launched in 2014 but owes its origins to a version launched as long ago as 2006. Despite this, it remains one of the UK’s best-selling new cars. This is partly due to its keen pricing (discounts and nearly new deals have always been impressive) and how pleasant it is drive.

Its four-cylinder engines are a little underpowered and not as economical as more recent motors, but are priced accordingly and actually represent pretty good value for money. The newer, three-cylinder 1.0-litre petrol turbos are more expensive but punchier, more refined and more economical. On all versions, the steering and suspension are impressive providing a good balance of comfort and control.

The Corsa is also a decently roomy car for its size. Five-door versions are easier to live with, as are high specification versions with a split-folding rear bench. At launch you could pick from no fewer than 11 trim levels but this has reduced to nine at the time of writing.

We'd recommend avoiding the most basic models and going for a mid-range version such as SRi or Energy trim. There's also the newest Griffin special edition models, introduced as Vauxhall geared up for the all-new Corsa to stimulate sales of the outgoing model. VX-Line adds sports suspension and a natty bodykit while GSi versions are reasonably quick and comfortable. The sporty VXR is a raw-edged rival to the Ford Fiesta ST.

Price-wise there’s an old-model Corsa to suit a range of budgets. Prices start at around £5,000 for a 2015-reg 1.2 SXi with less than 20,000 miles. Meanwhile, you don't have to spend more than £10,000 to get a low-mileage, 2019-reg mid-spec 1.4 75hp. That’s terrific value. Meanwhile, £16,000 is enough for a well-equipped, 1.4i 90hp in Energy trim. However, for £16,350, you could have an all-new 1.2i 100hp SE.

2014-2019 Vauxhall Corsa vs 2020 Vauxhall Corsa

No question: a nearly new Corsa – something like a 2019-reg 1.4 75hp Griffin with less than 1,000 miles on the clock – is great value for money at less than £10,000. If you’re an undemanding driver requiring a reasonably attractive and well-equipped runabout for a round of urban drives interspersed with the occasional longer motorway run, it’s just about perfect. That it costs £5,000 less than the cheapest all-new Corsa is the icing on the cake.

In fact, for the same price as the cheapest all-new model - £15,550 - you could have a more powerful old-model 1.4T 150hp Red special edition Corsa with less than 20 miles on the clock. The all-new Corsa is almost as enticing especially since it’s likely to be a big improvement on the old model, however, it would be the most basic 1.2i 75hp SE - with half as much power and a five-speed gearbox. The outgoing Red edition has a six-speed ’box, and is probably better equipped.

The new 1.2i Corsa is available with a six-speed gearbox, but because it’s paired with the more powerful 100hp engine, it costs £16,350. Still, it would be our preference over the cheaper but more basic five-speed, 1.2i 75hp version.


Which to buy - new or used Vauxhall Corsa?

The answer to this question is likely to come down to how much money you have to spend. Simply put, a used or even nearly new, old-model Corsa is much, much cheaper than an all-new one and if it’s all your budget will allow, you get far more car for your money here. It’s still a capable all-rounder.

On the other hand, given how much better the all-new Corsa is likely to be, we’d have to think twice about spending more than £15,000 on an old model. The new car’s 1.2-litre Peugeot engine may be less powerful on paper but it’s a great performer that’s also very efficient. In addition, the new model is likely to be safer, roomier and more practical than the outgoing car so on balance it looks to be the better long-term buy.

If you’d rather spend less, though, the outgoing Corsa offers far better value, with nearly-new models coming in for less than £10,000. If all you want is a comfortable, reasonably spacious supermini, then you can still get a very decent and capable car for a whole lot less money.

The best deals, however, come in the form of well-equipped two-year old models that are still in warranty - and may have covered less than 20,000 miles - and are available for around half as much as even the most basic new model.

With the Corsa being a relatively simple, long-lasting car that should prove sturdy and easy to live with, real bargain hunters may want to look at 2015 models for around £5,000 to £7,000 - even in low-mileage form. You can expect to need to spend a little more maintaining a 2015 model compared with a newer car, but parts and servicing for such a common model should prove inexpensive.

Current Vauxhall Corsa-model deals

We have 1335 used Vauxhall Corsa models ready for you on BuyaCar, prices start from £4,250 for 2015 models with reasonable mileage, with more expensive options reaching £34,615 for the highest spec outgoing models, some of which have hardly seen the road. For less than £3,000 more you could be getting a much more powerful and much better-equipped Corsa than the brand new entry level model.

If you're looking for a finance deal, we have prices starting from £97 per month and rising to £616 per month. You'd be hard pushed to find a better deal on a used Vauxhall Corsa, check our favourite options below.

2019 Vauxhall Corsa deals from under £10,000

Corsa Griffin 1.4 16v 75hp 3dr 2019

2019/68, 1,000 miles, £9,898

Vauxhall means business with the Griffin, a model it has supported with an advertising campaign boasting of its generous specification. It’s not kidding with automatic lights and wipers, a heated windscreen, sports style seats, a comprehensive media system and unique body styling being just a few of the car’s highlights.

The downside is the model’s rather puny 75hp petrol engine that requires a hefty prod of the accelerator to do its stuff but if you’re an undemanding driver more concerned with looks and value, this nearly new Corsa is for you.

Corsa SRi 1.4 16v 75hp VX-Line Nav Black 3dr

2019/68, 20 miles, £12,995

This trim builds on sporty SRi specification with the addition of sports suspension, a body kit and larger alloy wheels. It’s a tasty-looking model pitched at the Fiesta ST-Line but lacks that model’s sharp drive. It’s under-engined, too; the hard-working 1.4-litre motor struggling to exploit the car’s impressive cornering ability.

Still, a one-year-old example with delivery mileage for less than £13,000 is an absolute bargain and underlines just what excellent value for money the outgoing Corsa is.

Corsa 1.4T 150hp GSi 3dr

2019/68, 3,000 miles, £11,991

Unlike the other, lesser-powered 1.4-litre petrol engines in the Corsa range, this 150hp version has no difficulty punting the model along (0-62mph takes 8.9 seconds). It’s an easy drive that requires just a light foot to keep up with traffic.

Think of it as a more civilised antidote to the full-on VXR featured below so has that model’s 18-inch alloys, bonnet vent and a rear spoiler but sits on more comfortable suspension.

2017 Vauxhall Corsa deals from under £7,000

Corsa 1.4 16v 75hp Energy AC 3dr

2017/17, 13,000 miles, £6,827

This mid-spec trim manages to pack a lot of value with air-conditioning, heated front seats, a 7.0-inch touchscreen media system, automatic lights and 16-inch alloy wheels all on the menu.

Again, the 75hp 1.4-litre petrol engine is an underwhelming affair but if your primary objective is to get around in comfort at the wheel of a well-appointed and relatively up-to-date car, it’s well worth a close look.

Corsa 1.4 75hp SRi VX-Line 5dr

2017/67, 10,000 miles, £9,100

Just like the aforementioned Black edition of this trim, SRi VX-Line featured here gives the Corsa head-turning looks allied to a comprehensive specification.

Sporty suspension brings some welcome crispness to the handling but don't expect it to feel quite as sharp as a Fiesta. Instead, focus on this Corsa’s sheer value for money.

Corsa 1.3 CDTi 95 SRi 5dr

2017/67, 21,000 miles, £8,149

There are two diesel engines in the Corsa with this 95hp version being the most powerful. They’re not especially refined but they are economical and would suit a driver doing high mileages, where the diesel engine should pay its way with low fuel bills.

SRi trim is a bit over-the-top for such a workaday car, with more kit than you might need, but it’s welcome all the same and makes the car feel more desirable.

Corsa 1.6T VXR 3dr

2017/17, 13,000 miles, £11,499

The VXR is the hooligan in the Corsa line-up, and we’ re not exaggerating. Where its rival the Fiesta ST is poised and sophisticated, the hot Corsa is a little rough around the edges.

It’s a fairy uncompromising car and not for the faint-hearted, with a firm ride and powerful engine, but again, it’s incredible value for money.

2015 Vauxhall Corsa deals from £5,000

Corsa 1.4 90hp SE 5dr

2015/65, 16,000 miles, £7,199

Going a little older brings the Corsa’s slightly more powerful 90hp 1.4-litre petrol engine into the frame. Paired with high-spec SE trim – heated front seats, split-fold rear seat, parking sensors, chrome body detailing and 16-inch alloys – it’s an enticing proposition and at this money, a compelling one, too.

Corsa 1.4 100hp SRi AC 3dr

2015/64, 19,000 miles, £6,999

SRi trim brings a sporty look without the SRi VX-Line premium (or that version’s sports suspension). It’s a sound choice since you still get an awful lot of kit (a media system with audio streaming and a digital radio, sports-style front seats and 16-inch alloy wheels) for a lot less money, while the standard suspension is more comfortable without being soft and mushy.

Corsa 1.0T 115hp LE 3dr

2015/15, 27,000 miles, £5,890

The 1.0-litre turbo petrol engine is the interesting point about this version. It’s a rival for the ‘EcoBoost’ engines in the Ford Fiesta. It produces 115hp and while it’s not quite as quick as the more powerful Fiesta (0-62mph takes 10.3 seconds - slightly longer than the EcoBoost) it completely changes the character of the Corsa. The engine spins up to speed freely, is responsive and incredibly refined making it a little jewel and well worth seeking out.

Corsa 1.2 SXi AC 3dr

2015/64, 17,000 miles, £5,000

Four years old with a low mileage and in a mid-spec trim is where the Corsa is at its best. You won't find better value for money and weighed against the all-new model whose starting price is £10,000 more, this example makes a whole lot of sense.

Consequently, you could buy three of this model for less than one entry-level new Corsa - just in case you wanted to confuse your friends by turning up to different events in different colour Corsas.


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