The saloon is only available with either a 1.6-litre or a 1.8-litre petrol engine which produce 108bhp and 121bhp respectively. Neither is particularly good and only offer merely adequate performance - the 1.8-litre is the more popular choice but with the slack automatic gearbox is actually no faster than the smaller engine. With the manual gearbox the 1.8-litre Lacetti can cover 0-62mph in less than 10 seconds, but the gear shift is neither positive nor enjoyable to use.
The Lacetti saloon drives predictably and safely, with the suspension geared more towards comfort than handling agility. It's not a particularly good car on fast, twisty roads and driving on these routes quickly becomes an unpleasant experience. The body leans into corners and the front tyres run out of grip on tight bends. Although body control is poor, the benefit is a smooth ride over rough roads with decent insulation from potholes.