Opel’s Adam Rocks the mini market

2016-06-29 06:00
Opel Adam Rocks features a  two-tone exterior with a swing top canvas roof, increased ride height, cladding around the wheel arches and along the sills, and front and rear skid plates.

Opel Adam Rocks features a two-tone exterior with a swing top canvas roof, increased ride height, cladding around the wheel arches and along the sills, and front and rear skid plates.

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ITS quite appropriate that a car named Adam is so sought after by women.

And it seems it is more than just the name and looks that has made the stylish Adam, that was introduced to South African consumers at the beginning of last year, being named the 2015 Women’s Car of the Year Awards for best car in the hatchback category. It has also averaged impressive sales in excess of 120 units a month.

And while it cannot be described as a true mom’s taxi by any stretch of the imagination it is a highly aspirational car among women – of any age it seems – judging by the reaction from my teenage daughter’s friends during my test drive with it.

And to cater for all the tastes, Opel has brought out two more, limited edition, models in the popular Adam range, the Adam Rocks (at the end of last year) and the sporty Adam S (in February this year).

This is part of Opel’s plans to launch 29 new cars to market globally between 2016 and 2020. Apart from the two new Adam derivates, Opel has also already launched the all new Opel Astra Hatch this year.

To add to the aspirational nature, the Adam Rocks is a limited edition with only 150 units that are available in South Africa.

Express on Wheels took the Adam Rocks on the Mom’s taxi route for a week and despite the fact that it is a 3-door with limited space, my two daughters and I managed to soon get very comfortable in this car – very much as one tends to do with that gorgeous looking pair of shoes that aren’t that comfortable but make you feel so good!

Exterior

Two tone cars are all the rage – and the test model had a black roof and white body. The Adam Rocks boasts the same features and accessories as Adam Glam with added details such as a swing top canvas roof, increased ride height, cladding around the wheel arches and along the sills, and front and rear skid plates.

The people at Opel say that on one hand it’s a micro-crossover and on the other a free-spirited baby convertible.

It is available in three body colours - Red ’n Roll, Saturday White Fever, and Goldbuster.

Interior

The interior, though compact, is as high end and packed with high-tech features as one can get. These include the sound and infotainment system.

And one can customise (accessorise) the interior to one’s own taste. The test model had a beautiful embossed design in black that one just wants to stroke – almost like a nice piece of expensive material.

It has a touchscreen for the audio system and multifunction controls for this on the steering wheel. The high-resolution seven-inch touch screen forms part of Opel’s Intellilink system which syncs with the user’s phone enabling the driver to listen to music, to make use of Apps loaded to their phone (both Android and iOS) and display relevant information on the screen. A number of Apps are pre-loaded, including BringGo navigation and TuneIn internet radio.

The Rocks also features Siri Eyes Free, a unique-in-class feature that integrates the Intellilink system with later-generation iPhones and iPads via a USB cable. It activates Apple’s voice control so that you can ask Siri about the weather, where the next fuel station is, and ask her to remind you to pay the electricity bill.

Then there are the sporty 3-spoke steering wheel and sport pedals. Although there is not much legroom in the back, the backseat passengers can sit back and relax in comfy sculpted seats.

Other comfort features include climate control, height adjustable driver’s seat, height and reach adjustable steering column, power windows and cruise control.

There are also more than enough cupholders, power outlets and USB inputs.

The boot is also quite small, but even this is unique as it is opened by pushing the Opel emblem on the bootlid. The rear seat can be split and is foldable for more bootspace.

Even though this is a compact car with good visibility all round, the Rocks also has Advanced Park Assist with sensors to make sure you don’t damage that nice looking body. This will tell you whether a parking space is large enough to accommodate the car, and once this has been ascertained and the system activated, the car takes charge of steering duties while instructing you what needs to be done with the gears, throttle and brakes to physically navigate into the bay.

Also standard is Side Blind Spot Alert, or SBSA. Using ultrasonic waves, sensors constantly monitor and scan rear three-quarter blind spots alerting the driver of anything in a four-metre danger zone.

Ride

The Adam Rocks has a nippy performance and agile handling and it likes one to put foot to the pedal – and it roars with delight if one does that.

The Adam is equipped with Opel’s ecoFlex engine which was awarded by South African motoring magazine - CAR - in their March issue, which features the editors’ annual Best Buy choices, as their Powertrain of the Year. They lauded the turbopetrol one-litre for its “gutsy performance and frugal consumption,” and went on to describe it as “a prime example of engine downsizing.”

Combined cycle fuel consumption is a mere 5.1-litres per 100 kilometres, with CO2 emissions of just 119 g/km.

It also has a six-speed manual gearbox. Its handling is great as well as the roadholding and good grip – it’s an all-round fun car to drive. Electrically-assisted steering offers a City Mode which increases the power assistance to the steering when needed for manoeuvring in peak traffic and busy parking lots on the mom’s taxi route.

Safety

It has six airbags, plus ISOFIX child seat anchorage, dual seatbelt pretensioners, stability control (ESP Plus) and LED daytime running lights. The all-disc braking system is assisted by ABS and EBD.

Safety features, which can also be classified as convenience features are rain sensing wipers, headlights which activate automatically when the conditions require it, hill start assist, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror and a tyre pressure monitoring system.

Price:

Pricing for the Adam Rocks 1.0T ecoFlex is R287 100.

As part of Opel’s complete care package Adam Rocks comes with a standard five years or 120 000 kilometre warranty, roadside assistance, and a 3 years or 60 000 kilometre service plan.

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