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OPEL MOKKA 1.2T GS LINE

MOKKA, ANYONE? |

The Opel Mokka 1.2T GS Line offers the perfect balance between practicality and arresting looks. We already know what choice we would make. The more challenging question would be – which colour would we have it in?

With an ever-increasing catalogue of options in the compact crossover segment, the agony of choice from a cornucopia of options shouldn’t be envied. Capitalising on this ongoing trend, Opel has added to this ever-growing list with a new crossover offering that has graced our roads since May 2022. 

Boasting dashing looks, generous kit, and fun performance, the all-new Mokka GS Line has a lot to offer. If our seven-day stint with the car is anything to go by, you probably want to reconsider that purchasing decision.

EYE-CATCHING DESIGN

If you are an introvert who prefers to fly below the radar, this beauty is not for you. The Mokka is a certified attention magnet, particularly in its range-topping GS Line trim. Unlike the reserved styling of some Opel models in Mzansi, the Mokka’s primary focus is on being a statement piece. The body boasts athletic lines, which stylishly tie in with the new aggressive front end. While the Mokka shares a platform with the Peugeot 2008, it is 150 mm shorter, a couple of notches lower, while it retains the same width that culminates in a stocky yet aggressive aesthetic that appears alluring. While there are two trims on offer, our favourite is the GS Line trim we had for review, which came with a contrasting gloss black roof, black trim around the bumpers, tinted windows and 17” alloys. Capitalising on the attractive design, Opel also treated the GS Line to a mouth-watering selection of vivid paint colours, which add to its kerb appeal.

NEW FROM TOP TO TOE

After such a dramatic first impression, we’re pleased to note that the interior designers did not drop the ball either. The cabin is befitting the Mokka’s flair, blending a modern design with requisite modern tech. The driver faces a digital instrument cluster, complemented by a 10” infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and a 180-degree rear camera. Tech addicts will also appreciate the cabin’s wireless charging pad and three USB ports. Dual-zone climate control is fitted as standard. The cabin is genuinely premium and benefits from faux carbon fibre inlays, satin silver finishes, and leather upholstery.

We did mention that there is a catch, and this comes in the form of rear-seat practicality. That short wheelbase and sloping roofline might do wonders for the vehicle’s aesthetics, but compromises rear occupant comfort. Being 1.9-metres tall, I could not sit behind the driver’s seat when I set it in my ideal position. This demonstrates how sparse the room is at the rear that is best suited for young children. Definitely not the vehicle for ferrying your tall rugby-playing lookalike friends. 

Cargo space is also not best in class at 310 litres – it is bested by the Hyundai Kona’s 544 litres, but is sufficiently larger than the Mazda CX-30’s 295 litres.

BEHIND THE WHEEL

Impressive. While the Mokka comes with a modest 1.2-litre 3-cylinder turbo-petrol, it churns out a generous 96kW and 230Nm. The engine is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission, delivering power to the front wheels. A 9.2-second sprint to 100 km/h is possible and definitely feels more entertaining than it sounds.

There are three driving modes to enjoy, each playing a unique role in giving the Mokka a multi-personality driving feel. You can hustle the Mokka if the need arises, exploiting that eight-speed ‘box with the steering-mounted shifter pedals if the mood demands. The Mokka is also a relatively light vehicle, which, together with its stubby wheelbase, allows it to be an agile toy to play in. After a week of city driving, and granted that I had a bad case of heavy right foot, we were pleased to realise average fuel consumption just shy of 7-l/100 km.

LAST WORD

The Mokka impressed us with its tremendous kerb appeal right off the bat. It went on to earn a place in our hearts with its fun personality on the road and premium cabin. This doesn’t, however, translate into the kind of practicality one would expect from a compact crossover. That said, we doubt this will affect the vehicle’s success, given South African buyers’ propensity to choose looks over practicality. The success of those ever-popular SUV coupes is a testament to this. The Mokka is a personal case and will find its place among people who are lured by its seductive demeanour. 

Report by BRYAN KAYAVHU | Images © OPEL SOUTH AFRICA

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