If you're in the market for a small city car then the Vauxhall Viva, despite its strong points, shouldn't be at the top of your list. You could, for example, buy the Suzuki Celerio for a similar £7999. It's lighter, it's faster, it gets air-con, DAB and Bluetooth as standard, it has a bigger boot and it's more entertaining to drive.
What's particularly frustrating is that the Viva feels to have a lot of unlocked potential. If the engine was a little more flexible, air-con was standard and more sound deadening fitted, then it would easily be elevated from an also-ran to a commendable choice. Perhaps these revisions, such as the option of a more powerful turbocharged engine, will arrive later down the line.
If it has been denied the much-needed turbocharged engine purely to differentiate it further from the Corsa and Adam, and prevent it siphoning off their sales, then that's a crying shame. It would represent a missed opportunity and a half, given how neatly engineered and finished the car is otherwise, and it would have given the edge it needed in a hotly contested sector.
Alas, as the Viva sits, it simply doesn't do enough to stand out - unlike the original.