Vauxhall Mokka review 2020

Find out more about the Vauxhall Mokka in the latest MOTORS Review

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Out of 5


  • Excellent level of standard equipment
  • Great for families
  • Android Auto/Apple CarPlay fitted to all models


  • Dull to drive
  • Starting to feel dated
  • Limited engine choice
Model review

Vauxhall introduced the Mokka in 2012 as its first small crossover – sitting in the range as a compact SUV which is similar in size to the Astra hatch.  


It’s built on a GM platform, and is rebranded as an Opel in Europe, and a Buick in the US and China. A Chevrolet version, named the Trax, was also sold in Britain from 2013 to 2015. 


It’s available with both all-wheel and front-wheel-drive, expanding its appeal, while competing against key rivals such as the Nissan Juke, Fiat 500X and Renault Captur. 

Current model

Vauxhall added an ‘X’ to the Mokka’s name in 2016 as part of a rebranding of Vauxhall’s SUV range. The Antara was dropped from the range, with the Crossland X and Grandland X both being launched in 2017 – the latter effectively replacing the Antara.  


There was more to it than that, though, as it had received a pleasant refresh in the process. It received a bolder look, with a sharper nose, new LED daytime running lights, although the rear remained more or less unchanged.  


Most of the main differences in the refresh were on the inside. Vauxhall installed its IntelliLInk infotainment system which added Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as wellIt also got OnStar fitted too, expanding the car’s connectivity features and ‘On Call’ services.  


While Vauxhall initially offered the Mokka X with a range of engines, it has since streamlined its models to leave just two engines.  


In 2019, the British brand added the Mokka X to its Griffin rang– a base trim level that receives a decent amount of standard equipment as standard – that also includes variants of the Astra, Corsa and Adam. 


Being almost eight years old now, the model is admittedly starting to feel dated – and the original wasn’t exactly state-of-the-art when it arrived on the scene either. The facelift that came with the rebranding helped rejuvenate some life into the crossover, but even that was four years ago now.  


Perhaps partially to blame for this is the fact that, with Vauxhall now under PSA’s umbrella and the Mokka X’s origins based back in the GM days, it appears an era behind some of the brand’s newer cars in its line-up.  

Value for money

The Mokka X is by no means the cheapest small crossover, with prices starting from £19,780 – making it noticeably more expensive than the popular Nissan Juke. That being said, the Mokka X does come with an excellent level of kit 


Standard equipment on the Mokka includes a seven-inch touchscreen, automatic wipers, electric climate control and LED daytime running lights, meaning that it’s very well-equipped for the price. Unfortunately, as you jump up the trim levels, the Mokka X starts to look on the pricey side 


Used prices for the Mokka start from as little as £4,000, although £6,000 will get a 2013 example with the economical 1.7-litre diesel engine and around 50,000 miles on the clock.  


As the Mokka X is newer, the cheapest cars cost from £8,000, which will pay for a 2017 1.6-litre diesel model with around 20,000 miles on the clock.  

Looks and image

While the Mokka X does not offer the quirky looks of the Nissan Juke or Renault Captur, it’s certainly not offensive to look at.  


The 2016 update added smart-looking LED daytime running lights, and a more muscular front nose, as opposed to the cutesy one fitted to the Mokka previously. It also looks slightly more like an SUV than other crossovers do, with its commanding driving position, underbody skid plates and plastic cladding, and with all-wheel-drive fitted, too, it can also work as a mild off-roader, too.  


The Mokka X will never be able to rival the interior fit and finish of premium offerings, such as the Audi Q2 and Volkswagen T-Roc, but it makes a pretty good job of it. The interior feels well-built, with soft-touch plastics and a decent fit and finish. The standard seven-inch touchscreen also injects some modern flair into the Mokka’s cabin, helped by some stylish chrome and silver-finish touches.  


Unfortunately, the driving experience lets the side down. While it’s not meant to be particularly dynamic to drive, the steering provides very little in the way of feedback, while it also rolls heavily through the corners if being pushed, although sits comfortably in normal driving. It’s good around town thanks to its light steering, but there’s poor visibility due to some rather intrusive A-pillars and a small rear window. This makes manoeuvring and parking trickier than it should be.  


It’s comfortable, though, with soft suspension delivering a good ride, while wind noise and road noise is also kept at a minimum, even with larger-than-average alloy wheels fitted to all models.  

Video review

Space and practicality

The Vauxhall Mokka X slots in between cars the size of the Nissan Juke and Qashqai in terms of interior space. It offers plenty more legroom than supermini-based crossovers. It’s also easily capable of carrying four adults or five at a push.  


The boot space offered is 356 litres – bigger than both the Nissan Juke and Mini Countryman. The flexible rear seats also fold completely flat, revealing a practical 1,372 litres. The boot also has a good shape to it, with a relatively low lip which make getting heavy objects in and out of the rear simpler. There’s also plenty of storage space, too, with higher-spec models being offered with even more cubby holes.  


While the Mokka X has never been tested by Euro NCAP, the last-generation Mokka scored very well in the safety tests – receiving a five-star rating. Adult and child occupancy ratings were particularly impressive.  


Automatic emergency braking, plenty of airbags, Isofix sockets and electronic stability control are all fitted as standard, too.  



Vauxhall only offers two engines on the Mokka X – one petrol and one diesel unit.  


The petrol engine is a 1.4-litre direct-injection unit which delivers 138bhp and 200Nm of torque. It produces reasonable performance, but is just too thirsty to recommend if you regularly cover motorway miles or long journeys.  


The diesel is a 1.6-litre turbocharged engine, which produces 134bhp and an impressive 320Nm of torque.  While other diesel engines are more efficient, the torque delivered from it is more than most offered in crossovers of this size. It’s slightly quicker than the petrol – managing to get from 0-60mph in 9.3 seconds.  


Both engines are available as standard with a six-speed manual ‘box and front-wheel-drive, with the option of having all-wheel-drive or a six-speed automatic transmission, too.

Running costs

The petrol engine returns 44.1mpg and CO2 emissions of 150g/km in its cleanest guise, while the diesel will be significantly cheaper to run for both private buyers and company car buyers, with its claimed fuel economy figure of 58.9mpg and emissions of 131g/km. Be aware though that choosing a Mokka X with all-wheel-drive and/or an automatic gearbox will have a noticeable effect on running costs and emissions.  


The Mokka X shouldn’t be too much to insure either and is comparable with rivals. Insurance groups range from 1to 16 depending on powertrain and trim level chosen.  

Things to look out for

In reliability surveys so far, the Mokka X has performed well. While few faults are known about the latest model, the only issue worth noting about the old Mokka was a tendency for the diesel engine’s DPF filter to get clogged up if used on short journeys. While this can be a problem with many diesel engines, be particularly cautious of diesel engines with very low miles for their age, and once owning one, ensure it is regularly taken on longer journeys.  



The Vauxhall Mokka X sits in a market that is overflowing with offerings. In this case, it’s easier to list them. Rivals include the Citroen C3 Aircross, Honda HR-V, Hyundai Kona, Kia Stonic, Mazda CX-3, Nissan Juke, Nissan Qashqai, Peugeot 2008, Renault Captur, Seat Arona, Skoda Karoq and Toyota C-HR.  


Some of these options will get you a bit more flair, character and style than the Mokka X, and in some cases cost less tooHowever, the Vauxhall is a reliable choice that will get you the job done, while offering a decent amount of kit to keep buyers happy – so it’s not worth ruling out. 



As mentioned before, the Mokka X doesn’t hold its value particularly well. Early examples have plummeted in value, while two-year-old examples have nearly halved in price already. This means that the Mokka X is a fantastic option on the used market, particularly when considerable savings can be had on delivery mile examples. It’s worth noting that Vauxhall often heavily discounts its new cars, though.  

Trims explained

Six trim levels are available on the Mokka X – Griffin, Griffin Plus, Design Nav, Active, Elite and the range-topping Elite Nav trim.


Though the base trim, Griffin is marketed by Vauxhall as an almost special edition that gets you some nice standard kit. It’ll get you things like sat nav, cruise control, electrically adjustable door mirrors. Step up to the Griffin Plus, and it adds 19-inch alloy wheels, rain sensor windscreen wipers, heated front seats and a heated steering wheel as standard.

Starting at £19,780


The Active comes as standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, a driver’s armrest, cruise control and LED daytime running lights. Elsewhere there is automatic lights and wipers, electric door mirrors, a leather steering wheel, electric windows all around and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror. On the infotainment front, there’s a seven-inch touchscreen with Bluetooth, DAB radio, USB connection and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Starting at £22,640

'Design Nav'

This trim costs less but adds equipment. It’s tailored more towards fleet buyers and adds a larger eight-inch touchscreen with satellite navigation and European maps.

Priced from £20,640


Next is Elite, which adds black leather upholstery, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, aluminium door sill covers and tinted rear windows.

Priced from £25,140

'Elite Nav'

Elite Nav costs £700 more, adding the same eight-inch touchscreen fitted to the Design Nav, but now with satellite navigation.

Priced from £25,840


  1. Superb standard equipment levels
  2. Ideal as a family car
  3. Dull to drive
  4. Excellent connectivity fitted as standard
  5. Top-spec models are expensive
  6. Limited engine choice …
  7. … And neither are particularly efficient
  8. Comfortable ride
  9. Good standard safety kit
  10. A great crossover option, just avoid top-spec models