The first thing you notice when entering the Insignia is how downright small the interior is, especially when comparing it with the somewhat large exterior. It's not exactly cramped, but there is a small feeling of claustrophobia, especially when sitting in the rear. This is all "thanks" to a couple of reasons.
First of all, the swooping roof line is coupe-ish and beautiful and all, but it sure doesn't help in providing ample head room for the passengers. Also, since our car was all-wheel drive, the transmission tunnel for the rear wheels splits the space for the rear passengers' legs in half, making the car more suitable for four and a half persons instead of five.
Don't get the wrong idea now, the Insignia doesn't exactly have a cramped interior, but it certainly leaves more to be desired after hearing it's only four centimeters (about one and a half inch) shy of a Mercedes-Benz E-Klasse's length, which is in a totally different segment. As far as the quality of the fit and finish compared to the last generation Vectra, an improvement is certainly felt, apart maybe from the "plastic chrome" bit around the gear lever.
The ergonomics suffer as a consequence of a design which is more beautiful than functional and the amount of buttons and switches all around the interior could have been toned down a bit. In other words, even though all the buttons are large enough to be pressed with winter gloves on, there are simply too many and the arrangement takes some time getting used to.
Another beautiful but completely non-functional item in the interior are probably the chrome rings around the dashboard dials. They certainly look cool and give a more premium feel but they reflect any source of light coming from behind the car, making the driver feel like a distress signal turns on the dash every time someone is signaling behind you.
All in all, the interior design is very nice and provides a somewhat cozy feeling every time you step inside, especially in the front. Another point of attraction is most certainly provided by the optional sports front seats our test car came equipped with, which, to our knowledge are the first orthopedic seats to ever be fitted on a car. They provide both great lateral support and a level of comfort which is probably matched only by business class seats.Continue reading