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If money could talk, it would ask for the Zafira -- new or old

OPEL is gambling on money talking with its Zafiras -- old and new.

The new Zafira Tourer goes on sale in March and prices start at €28,495 ex-works.

But in acknowledgment of economic realities, where many potential buyers just can't stretch to the extra couple of thousand euro, it is keeping a version of the current model as well -- at €25,995.

So you can buy the Tourer or opt for a 1.7-litre diesel (Club version) of the existing seven-seater.

I put it to Opel that one would cannibalise the other, but it was adamant there is method in its approach.

The old one has been a great piece of work, though it is, in my humble opinion, looking dated.

In comparison, I was really taken by the new Tourer.

Here is a lovely cabin and a nice sense of roominess. It is big and comfortable, which competes again with key rivals that many felt had stolen its thunder.

It has exceptional seating/ luggage flexibility and wrests back the crown it created for itself when the first Zafira came on the scene. And the one I drove was a pre-production model.

The upgraded chassis and bigger wheelbase give it a really solid feel with nice handling.

Watch out for the 2-litre ecoFLEX common rail diesel with Start/Stop. The seating is set up in such a way that six passengers can sit with ease -- and the second row gets 'lounge' seats.

Opel has refreshed most of the range in one way or another. There are changes to the large-family/fleet Insignia and there is the high-performance Astra GTC.

The marque is offering a four-year warranty and, in anticipation of a tough year, a new finance package. Interesting to note that its 2.0 CDTi diesel ecoFLEX (130bhp and 160bhp) are now in Band A.

The GTC sports coupe gets its sporty characteristics from the Insignia OPC.

It looks great but can still take four adults.

Prices start at €23,495.

Irish Independent