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Edition # 9
Review - Vauxhall VX 220 Verti-Go
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vauxhall car image Vauxhall VX 220 Verti-Go

After what can only be described as a motoring journalists frenzy, this week the silk was drawn back to reveal Vauxhall's VX 220 Verti-go. No, your eyes are not deceiving you - this baby will quite literally drive you up the wall. Vauxhall say this is the only way forward if inner city parking problems are to be conquered.

However, the question is: at £25,000 for the base 220 plus £32,000 to convert it into a Verti-go would you still want one? Well for £57 grand you could have a nice Merc or Porsche, but to me they seem rather grounded. So will it catch on? It should do, because in one sense it catches on very well - and if it does, the only way is up.

Wreckered road test
Before Andy Cunliff, the demonstration driver, took the wheel he explained that the VX 200 handles exactly as the old 220 did but now as an added bonus it performs the unthinkable and climbs walls.

Under both the back and front bumper you will find Vauxhalls patented "rightangulator" which in essence is a conveyerage system which simply pistons a rack pin up and onto the vertical surface. Voila, you're upright.

Yeh, yeh, yeh, but how does it stick to the walls? Fancy tyres? Yep! And then some. If you want to convert your existing 220 into a verti-go then prepare yourself for a whopping bill because each tyre is electronically linked to a s.m.e.g. system..... Oh no, not another dab, rds, abs bunch of rubbish to have to remember!

Don't panic, it's a simple, Silicon Management Elevation Generator. When the rightangulator is activated s.m.e.g. is released in small amounts (5 millilitres each tyre) and a rolling bond is established between surface and tyre and up you go.

On the road
Andy Cunliff, the demo driver, is a big fat liar. The
car does not handle just as the regular 220 does
- in fact on the weekend that I had it on loan, it behaved like a sloth on Nitol. Sluggish would be
an understatement. The weight of the bigger tyres, the rightangulator and the smeg tanks, has
stripped the trademark oomph from the 220.
It didn't have the strength to pull a nightie off Kylie Minogue, but at climbing walls it was immense.
Scary - but immense.


I took my son Jerico to his grandmother's on
Saturday (she's 15 up in a high-rise) and with a
rope and sucker pack from the glove- box we clambered in through her lounge window for
some tea and buns.

I have to say I love the idea, but come on Vauxhall: no-one is going to take you seriously if all you can do is go up and not get down to some exciting road play.

In the cabin
Well, as I hinted earlier, it's a VX220 in name only because the modifications required to make this car drive vertically seriously impedes the cabin space. For a kick off - the steering wheel is closer (uncomfortably so) than before due to a rack shift to allow space for the pins of the rightangulator.

The glovebox has been taken up with a rope and sucker pack, but worst of all the already meagre space behind the front seats is
completely given over to the smeg tanks which, let me tell you, don't smell too great when the cabin heats up.

The passenger front seat is ample enough, but when I took my wife for a spin in the early evening of Sunday there was so little legroom in the footwell that she had to have her legs up and more or less spreadeagled on the dash. It was either that or her feet may have uprooted the smeg pipe running across the floor. Surely Vauxhall don't consider this an enjoyable ride. Valerie certainly didn't, although, all credit to her, she didn't mind the smell of the hot smeg as much as I did.

Overall rating: empty space gifOverall Verdict: Get real Vauxhall

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