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Saturn/Opel/Vauxhall Astra  
User currently offlineHjulicher From Liechtenstein, joined Feb 2005, 880 posts, RR: 2
Posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 19623 times:

Hey Everyone,

The US just got the Astra, which has already been around a long time in Europe. I'm wondering what people think about it, since it's practically unchanged from the European versions. I really like the quality of the car, the outstanding value for what you pay, and the styling.

European, if you drive or own this car, can you tell me what you like and dislike. The standard engine for the us is the 1.8l ecotec. Also, I test drove the car, but I found that the instrument panel was hard to see through the steering wheel. I'm 6'2", so that could have something to with it.

Also, the Astra's in Europe have a lot of options that aren't available in the US. Does anyone know how difficult it would be to get some of the options, like auto-up windows (US Astra only has auto down). I think it requires just a code to the computer. Can you get an armrest for the two front seats.

I really like the Astra, and it has the coolest sunroof in this segment. Also has automatic windshield wipers. Let me know.

Thanks.


LH 442
32 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 1, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 19615 times:

Euuhhhhh...my '96 Peugeot 406 had automatic wipers...not a big deal.

UTA  checkeredflag 



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineFiatstilojtd From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 19606 times:



Quoting UTA_flyinghigh (Reply 1):
had automatic wipers

I think he was talking about the window going up and down automatically after pushing the button a little bit longer, not the wipers....


User currently offlineAirTranTUS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 19605 times:

I saw an ad on Facebook for the car and thought it wounded familiar to the European models, but didn't look further into it until now.

Quoting Hjulicher (Thread starter):
Does anyone know how difficult it would be to get some of the options, like auto-up windows (US Astra only has auto down).

Do auto-up windows have a safety feature so someone doesn't get a body part stuck while it is going up?


User currently offlineFiatstilojtd From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 19599 times:



Quoting AirTranTUS (Reply 3):
Do auto-up windows have a safety feature so someone doesn't get a body part stuck while it is going up?

Some do, some don't. The cars that do not have that safety-stop already have severely injured children in the back, but for example some of the Astra models here only have that feature on the driver-window.


User currently offlineDAL767400ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 19599 times:



Quoting AirTranTUS (Reply 3):
saw an ad on Facebook for the car and thought it wounded familiar to the European models,

That's pretty much true for Saturn's entire model lineup. Of the 5 models they currently offer, only the Outlook doesn't have an Opel counterpart (Astra=Astra, Vue=Antara, Sky=GT, Aura=Vectra).


User currently offlineSv2008 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2006, 622 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 19581 times:

By Sunroof, did you mean this?

http://www.autozine.org/Car_Photo/Opel/Astra_GTC_Panoramic2.jpg

http://www.roumazeilles.net/news/fr/...l_Astra_Panoramic_1600x1200_05.jpg


User currently offlinePilotdude09 From Australia, joined May 2005, 1777 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 19551 times:

Would assume the Vauxhall model will be the exact same as the Holden (Australia) version??

Personally i wouldnt be seen dead in an Astra! let alone drive one......



Qantas, Still calling Australia Home.........
User currently offlineDougloid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (6 years 8 months 2 days ago) and read 19518 times:



Quoting Hjulicher (Thread starter):
Also, the Astra's in Europe have a lot of options that aren't available in the US. Does anyone know how difficult it would be to get some of the options, like auto-up windows (US Astra only has auto down). I think it requires just a code to the computer. Can you get an armrest for the two front seats.

I really like the Astra, and it has the coolest sunroof in this segment. Also has automatic windshield wipers. Let me know

The Decline of Western Civilization.

The first concrete news that western civilization was on the way down the shitter was when everyone decided that having inane conversations with people on cellphones was better than saying hello to the person next to you in the grocery checkout.

As this disheartening news was slowly being internalized, it was discovered that people had plumb forgot that you can wind the windows up and down manually on the many cars that dotted the landscape at that time, and that you can actually tell when it's raining so you can start the frackin wipers.


User currently offlineHjulicher From Liechtenstein, joined Feb 2005, 880 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 19477 times:



Quoting Sv2008 (Reply 6):
By Sunroof, did you mean this?

No, the US version's sunroof is a panorama roof for the front and back, and half of it opens. lot's of light can get through. The model that I test drove seemed to have the pinch lock protector because the window that had the sticker sheet with the details on it, wouldn't go up because of the resistance. Some auto-down windows have two steps when pressing the button, slightly and it goes down, push more and it's automatic. I wish the window would go up automatically too. Shortsighted on GM's part not to include this simple feature.

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 8):
As this disheartening news was slowly being internalized, it was discovered that people had plumb forgot that you can wind the windows up and down manually on the many cars that dotted the landscape at that time, and that you can actually tell when it's raining so you can start the frackin wipers.

Why shouldn't windshield wipers be automatic. They aren't simply there to be activated automatically, actually on are volvo they are automatic, but you have to engage them everytime the car starts for them to be automatic. It's good in rainy conditions because they work at different frequencies depending on the amount of rain. Why be resistant to advances in technology? Just because a car can do things for the driver doesn't mean that the driver has is incapable of performing these functions. I guess you could say the same things for autopilot and the fact that planes fly themselves these days.



LH 442
User currently offlineMD11junkie From Argentina, joined May 2005, 3148 posts, RR: 57
Reply 10, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 19475 times:



Quoting Fiatstilojtd (Reply 4):
Some do, some don't. The cars that do not have that safety-stop already have severely injured children in the back, but for example some of the Astra models here only have that feature on the driver-window.

All Opel Vectra do in all windows. This was a feature in my dad's '95 Vectra GLS. I imagine Opel has made this standard across their models...



There is no such thing as Boeing vs Airbus as the queen of the skies has three engines, winglets and the sweetest nose!
User currently offlineWildcatYXU From Canada, joined May 2006, 2623 posts, RR: 5
Reply 11, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 19471 times:



Quoting DAL767400ER (Reply 5):
That's pretty much true for Saturn's entire model lineup. Of the 5 models they currently offer, only the Outlook doesn't have an Opel counterpart (Astra=Astra, Vue=Antara, Sky=GT, Aura=Vectra).

Are you sure? While the Aura is built on the same platform as the Vectra and the Saab 9-3, Aura has the same wheelbase as the G6 (roughly 20 cm longer compared to Vectra). It's not the same car. Not to mention that the Sky was here before the GT...


User currently offlineFiatstilojtd From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 19454 times:



Quoting MD11junkie (Reply 10):
All Opel Vectra do in all windows. This was a feature in my dad's '95 Vectra GLS. I imagine Opel has made this standard across their models...

It really depends on the country where the car gets delivered....there are huge differences within the same model-range.


User currently offlineBill142 From Australia, joined Aug 2004, 8451 posts, RR: 8
Reply 13, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 19453 times:



Quoting Pilotdude09 (Reply 7):
Would assume the Vauxhall model will be the exact same as the Holden (Australia) version??

Hell no. Australia gets a very basic stripped down version compared to Europe.

Quoting Pilotdude09 (Reply 7):
Personally i wouldnt be seen dead in an Astra! let alone drive one......

I have AH Astra (Current model) and I find it to be a pretty good car.


User currently offlineDAL767400ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 19428 times:



Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 11):
Are you sure? While the Aura is built on the same platform as the Vectra and the Saab 9-3, Aura has the same wheelbase as the G6 (roughly 20 cm longer compared to Vectra). It's not the same car.

All of those models you mentioned are based on GM's Epsilon platform, as is the Chevy Malibu and the Cadillac BLS. They may all look different, but not every car family based on one platform can look as similar as Citroen C1, Toyota Aygo and Peugeot 107.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 11):
Not to mention that the Sky was here before the GT...

And? I never said the GT was there before the Sky. And if you wanna be technical, it was Pontiac's Solstice that was the first version of the Kappa platform to hit the market. Other models offs that platform are the Daewoo GT2, Vauxhall VX Lightning and Saturn Curve, though the 2 latter likely will never see production. Same goes for the proposed new Chevy Nomad, which would probably have been the most estranged Kappa model.


User currently offlineWildcatYXU From Canada, joined May 2006, 2623 posts, RR: 5
Reply 15, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19419 times:



Quoting DAL767400ER (Reply 14):
All of those models you mentioned are based on GM's Epsilon platform, as is the Chevy Malibu and the Cadillac BLS.

And all above mentioned are different cars. So why would you call the Aura America Vectra? Now, let's extend your logic further: Skoda Fabia is the Czech Polo, Octavia is the Czech Golf, the Ibiza is the Spanish Polo etc...

Quoting DAL767400ER (Reply 14):
And if you wanna be technical, it was Pontiac's Solstice that was the first version of the Kappa platform to hit the market.

And? The GT is the Saturn Sky, not the Solstice.


User currently offlineSv2008 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2006, 622 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19417 times:



Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 11):
Are you sure? While the Aura is built on the same platform as the Vectra and the Saab 9-3, Aura has the same wheelbase as the G6 (roughly 20 cm longer compared to Vectra). It's not the same car.

I don't think extending (or reducing) the wheelbase is that difficult, many cars have it.


User currently offlineDAL767400ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19413 times:



Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 15):
So why would you call the Aura America Vectra?

Saturn Aura:

Opel Vectra:

Notice something???


User currently offlineWildcatYXU From Canada, joined May 2006, 2623 posts, RR: 5
Reply 18, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19412 times:



Quoting Sv2008 (Reply 16):
I don't think extending (or reducing) the wheelbase is that difficult, many cars have it.

Sure, but the Aura compared to Vectra is longer, wider, has a larger wheelbase, completely different engines, different basic transmission, yet some call it the American Vectra. Why?


User currently offlineDougloid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19411 times:



Quoting Hjulicher (Reply 9):
Why shouldn't windshield wipers be automatic. They aren't simply there to be activated automatically, actually on are volvo they are automatic, but you have to engage them everytime the car starts for them to be automatic. It's good in rainy conditions because they work at different frequencies depending on the amount of rain. Why be resistant to advances in technology?

An advance in technology? You've got to be kidding, right? I mean, seriously, now. What you're talking about is a very expensive and overly complicated gadget.

The Decline of Western Civilization, continued.

The third early warning sign of the imminent free fall of western civilization was when it was noticed that most people saw nothing odd in symptoms one and two, supra, and in fact thought that everything was normal.


User currently offlineSv2008 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2006, 622 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19411 times:

I don't know about the Aura.

User currently offlineWildcatYXU From Canada, joined May 2006, 2623 posts, RR: 5
Reply 21, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 19402 times:



Quoting DAL767400ER (Reply 17):
Notice something???

Yeah, there is a similarity, but the cars are far from identical. Oddly, the lift-back Vectra (because that's what you've posted) is more similar to Aura than the sedan. Now, you want to tell me that liftback equals sedan? Believe me, if the Aura would be a stretch of lift-back Vectra with available EU engines (especially diesel) and manual tranny, I'd be at the Saturn dealership tomorrow.


User currently offlineHjulicher From Liechtenstein, joined Feb 2005, 880 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (6 years 8 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 19388 times:



Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 21):
Believe me, if the Aura would be a stretch of lift-back Vectra with available EU engines (especially diesel) and manual tranny, I'd be at the Saturn dealership tomorrow.

This is why I'm all excited about the Astra. Even the key fob is the opel, just with a saturn badge, and in fact, if Saturn could execute all their cars like rebadged opels without really changing them, I'm sure a lot of people would be at the Saturn dealership. Hey, 3 years ago my dad would joke to be that we should go to the saturn dealership at which point I would run away like hell. But their product is much improved from what they had, and although they may not be as fuel effecient as the japanese, they have their own qualities.

I heard that GM is planning to give the Astra next year the 1.4l Turbo to improve fuel efficiency which I must say really isn't great on the Astra, and I drove the 5-speed manual, and at 110km/h or 70mph, the engine was running at 3200 rpm, so that wasn't thrilling either. The gear box is geared incorrectly in my opinion. Despite these facts, I can't decide whether to buy an Astra, Rabbit (VW Golf outside NA) or a Vovlo C30 1.0 with just the basics. The engines in all three cars are quite different, and the price rises a bit. Also I was looking at slightly used A4 2.0T for 20000 as well. It's a hard price point. I want to buy american (I'm from detroit, and I've never had an american car), but at the same time, does the quality of the car counterbalance the weakness of the engine. The rabbit will have 170hp and 170ft/torque. the Volvo is much higher and both these cars come with better warranties.



LH 442
User currently offlineUTA_flyinghigh From Tunisia, joined Oct 2001, 6495 posts, RR: 50
Reply 23, posted (6 years 8 months 10 hours ago) and read 19345 times:

Automatic wipers are not a on-touch thingy. They work using a detector behind the windshield which measures the amount of rain and adjusts the wipers accordingly :

http://www.autogazeta.com/g/378/406.jpg

The thingy behiond the windshield.

UTA  checkeredflag 



Fly to live, live to fly - Air France/KLM Flying Blue Platinum, BMI Diamond Club Gold, Emirates Skywards
User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 53
Reply 24, posted (6 years 8 months 9 hours ago) and read 19327 times:



Quoting Dougloid (Reply 19):
An advance in technology? You've got to be kidding, right? I mean, seriously, now. What you're talking about is a very expensive and overly complicated gadget.



Quoting UTA_flyinghigh (Reply 23):
Automatic wipers are not a on-touch thingy. They work using a detector behind the windshield which measures the amount of rain and adjusts the wipers accordingly :

I'm with Dougloid on this. Automatic rain-sensing wipers are solving a problem that doesn't exist. Every single car I've driven with them included suffers the same problems, that they either decide to come on when a single drop of rain has fallen within a 20 mile radius, or that they consider the onset of the Great Flood insufficient grounds to actually turn on.

Then they consider that the mud thrown up from the car in front is some form of rain, and they promptly smear the whole lot across the windscreen, leaving you blind for half a second until you get the washers going.

Can't stand them. If it starts to rain, pull the lever.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
25 Post contains images UTA_flyinghigh : I never said they were the best thing since sliced bread. I merely explained how they (are supposed to) work. UTA
26 Hjulicher : On Volvo cars, you need to activate the sensor, at which point they begin to operate. I agree that during winter months, road splash doesn't set them
27 Post contains images StasisLAX : The Saturn version is similar to the Opel version, but it is not identical by any means. It's powered by the same 1.8-liter DOHC four that powers som
28 Banco : The Vauxhall Astra VXR in the UK is a 2 litre, not a 1.8. I'd be surprised if the Holden version is different. And given the 6 litre monsters availab
29 Post contains images Cornish : This being the country that voted a hybrid 6l V8 SUV US Green car of the Year Mind you the Saturn Aura was voted US Car of the Year, when the Europea
30 Banco : Good Lord, was it really? The latest Vectra is a lot better than previous versions, but it isn't even close to being a class leader. It isn't even th
31 StasisLAX : TheCarConnection.com stated that the Astra convertible and wagon would not be sold in the U.S. due to the costs of re-engineering them to meet U.S. s
32 Banco : Still sounds unlikely. EuroNCap is not exactly easy to get through - and incidentally a number of American cars have flopped it, relatively speaking,
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