Opel Astra

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Opel Astra
2012 Opel Astra - First Drive (7927571944).jpg
Overview
Manufacturer Opel
Production 1991–present
Body and chassis
Class Compact car (C)
Layout Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive
Chronology
Predecessor Opel Kadett

The Opel Astra (Lat: Stars) is a small family car (C-segment in Europe) engineered and manufactured by the German automaker Opel since 1991.

It is branded as Vauxhall Astra in the United Kingdom and the Buick Excelle XT in China. The Holden Astra was axed in Australia and New Zealand in 2009 owing to exchange rates making the car uncompetitive, and was replaced by the Holden Cruze. It briefly returned to the Australian market in 2012 as an Opel,[1] but was discontinued after Opel withdrew from the country a year later.[2] On 1 May 2014, Opel announced to export the Astra GTC and Astra VXR (Astra OPC) with Holden badges to Australia and New Zealand.[3][4]

The Astra is now built in the United Kingdom, Russia and Poland.

Naming convention[edit]

The Astra nameplate originates from Vauxhall who had manufactured and marketed earlier generations of the Opel Kadett (the Kadett D (1979–1984) and Kadett E (1984–1991)) as Vauxhall Astra. Subsequent GM Europe policy standardised model nomenclature in the early 1990s whereby model names were the same in all markets regardless of whether the vehicle was being sold as an Opel or a Vauxhall.

As of 2009, there have been four generations of the Astra. In a fashion typical for Opel they are designated with subsequent letters of the Latin alphabet. Opel's official convention is that the Astra is a logical continuation of the Kadett lineage, thus referring to the first generation of Opel Astra as the Astra F (the last Opel Kadett was the Kadett E). Another convention used by GM starts with Astra A, adopting the notion that the Astra is a separate model. Models sold as Vauxhall, Holden or Chevrolet have different generation designations reflecting the history of those nameplates in their home markets and their naming conventions.

Astra F (1991–1998)[edit]

Astra F
Opel Astra F front 20081229.jpg
Overview
Also called Chevrolet Astra
Holden Astra
Opel Optima
Vauxhall Astra
Production July 1991–January 2000 (Opel Astra)
1998–2002 (Opel Astra Classic I)
Assembly Belgium: Antwerp
Germany: Bochum
Germany: Eisenach
Hungary: Szentgotthárd
India: Halol (OIPL)
Italy: Grugliasco (Bertone)
Poland: Gliwice
South Africa: Port Elizabeth (Delta Motor)
Thailand: Rayong
United Kingdom: Ellesmere Port (Vauxhall Ellesmere Port)
Body and chassis
Body style 3 and 5-door hatchback
4-door sedan / saloon
5-door wagon / estate
2-door convertible
3-door sedan delivery (panel van)
Platform T-body platform
Powertrain
Engine 1.4 L Family 1 I4 (petrol)
1.6 L Family 1 I4 (petrol)
1.7 L Family II I4 (diesel)
1.7 L Isuzu I4 (turbocharged diesel)
1.8 L Family II I4 (petrol)
2.0 L Family II I4 (petrol)
2.0 L Family II I4 (turbocharged petrol)
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
4-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,517 mm (99.1 in)
Length Hatch: 4,050 mm (159.4 in)
Sedan: 4,239 mm (166.9 in)
Wagon: 4,278 mm (168.4 in)
Convertible: 4,239 mm (166.9 in)
Width 1,696 mm (66.8 in)
Height 1,410 mm (55.5 in)

The Opel Astra F debuted in September 1991. With the Kadett E's successor, Opel adopted the Astra nameplate, which was already used by Vauxhall for the Kadett D and E (see Vauxhall Astra). It was offered as a three- or five-door hatchback, a saloon (sedan), and an estate (wagon) known as the Caravan and available with five doors only, bringing Opel's run of three-door wagons to an end at long last. A cabriolet was also offered, designed and built by Bertone in Italy. While the Astra F finished production in Germany in 1998, Polish-built Astras remained on offer in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as Turkey, with the name Astra Classic from 1998 to 2002.

The Opel Astra F consisted of two main revisions and was revised in 1995, with the launch of Opel's new Ecotec engine.

Aside from the South Africa-only Opel Astra 200t S, the lead model was the GSi – a 2.0 L I4 16V petrol injected model with 151 hp (110 kW), available as a three-door only. It also featured sports bodykit and widened front seats in the interior. However, this was substituted in 1995 and was renamed as SPORT, although only a limited number were produced and the bodykit was removed also and it could be selected with the lower-powered, but more modern 'Ecotec' version, the X20XEV (136 hp, 100 kW) parallel with the C20XE. In Europe from 1994 all Astra models were offered with the 2.0 L 16V Ecotec X20XEV parallel with the 2.0 L 8V (C20NE) engine, but the three-door and station wagon models could be selected with the 151 hp (110 kW) C20XE engine. Some Astra models had an 1.6 L engine with 83 hp.

After the Astra F was replaced by the new generation Astra G in 1998, the so-called "REDTOP" C20XE engine was also taken out of production.

South Africa[edit]

The model was also launched in South Africa in 1991, where it was produced under licence by Delta. The "Kadett" name was retained for the hatchback Astras until 1999. The sedan and station wagon models were offered under the Astra name. The Kadett and Astra in South Africa won the title of 'Car of the Year' in two consecutive years (1993 and 1994) even though they were versions of the same car. South African nomenclature was denoted in centilitres, so the Astra and Kadett ranges featured 140, 160i, 180i and 200i models. The South African Astra included a variant with a 2.0 L turbocharged engine called the Opel Astra 200t S. The 200t S was a specific name where Delta Motor Corporation wanted to show the specialty of the type, which could beat the BMW M3 in a quarter mile in that time. The engine (C20LET) in the Opel Astra 200t S was sourced from the Opel Calibra and Opel Vectra A 4x4 2.0 16V turbo, four-wheel drive found in European markets, but local engineers converted the six-speed, four-wheel-drive drivetrain (Getrag F28) to front-wheel drive only and as such it was unique to South Africa.

Other markets[edit]

The Opel Astra also became available in Australasia badged as a Holden, first in New Zealand in 1995, and then Australia in 1996. The first models were imported from the UK, but later models were imported from Belgium. The Holden Astra name had previously been used on rebadged Nissan Pulsar models from 1984 to 1989.

Opel Astra's first generation was imported to Brazil from December 1994 as the Chevrolet Astra, possible because of a lowering of import tariffs. General Motors do Brasil sent the 2.0-liter, 115 bhp engines to Belgium whence the completed cars took their way to Brazil. In February 1996 the Brazilian government again changed the import tariff, from 20 to 70% - making the car prohibitively expensive and leading to its cancellation after just over a year on the market.[5] Instead, the locally built Kadett was updated. The second generation Astra was manufactured in Brazil.

Beginning in March 1995, the Astra sedan was assembled in Indonesia where it was marketed as the "Opel Optima", the name having to be changed since PT Astra is Toyota's long operating local partner in Indonesia.

Awards[edit]

Engines[edit]

Petrol engine
Engine code Engine Displacement Power Torque Fueling system Valvetrain Compression ratio
140I Inline 4 1389 cc 60 hp (45 kW; 61 PS) 103 N·m (76 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.4:1
140IE Inline 4 1398 cc 75 hp (56 kW; 76 PS) 110 N·m (81 lb·ft) Carburetor SOHC 9.4:1
140IS Inline 4 1398 cc 82 hp (61 kW; 83 PS) 115 N·m (85 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.8:1
C14NZ Inline 4 1389 cc 60 hp (45 kW; 61 PS) 103 N·m (76 lb·ft) Single-point fuel injection SOHC 9.4:1
C14SE Inline 4 1389 cc 82 hp (61 kW; 83 PS) 113 N·m (83 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection SOHC 10.0:1
X14NZ Inline 4 1389 cc 60 hp (45 kW; 61 PS) 103 N·m (76 lb·ft) Single-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.4:1
X14XE (Ecotec) Inline 4 1389 cc 90 hp (67 kW; 91 PS) 125 N·m (92 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.5:1
C16NZ and X16SZR Inline 4 1598 cc 75 hp (56 kW; 76 PS) 125 N·m (92 lb·ft) Single-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.2:1
C16SE Inline 4 1598 cc 101 hp (75 kW; 102 PS) 135 N·m (100 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.8:1
X16SZ Inline 4 1598 cc 71 hp (53 kW; 72 PS) 128 N·m (94 lb·ft) Single-point Fuel Injection SOHC 10.0:1
X16XZR Inline 4 1598 cc 71 hp (53 kW; 72 PS) 128 N·m (94 lb·ft) Single-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.6:1
X16XEL (Ecotec) Inline 4 1598 cc 101 hp (75 kW; 102 PS) 148 N·m (109 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.5:1
C18NZ Inline 4 1796 cc 90 hp (67 kW; 91 PS) 145 N·m (107 lb·ft) Single-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.2:1
C18XE Inline 4 1794 cc 125 hp (93 kW; 127 PS) 168 N·m (124 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.8:1
C18SEL (Ecotec) Inline 4 1798 cc 115 hp (86 kW; 117 PS) 168 N·m (124 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 9.9:1
C18XEL (Ecotec) Inline 4 1798 cc 115 hp (86 kW; 117 PS) 168 N·m (124 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.8:1
X18XE (Ecotec) Inline 4 1794 cc 115 hp (86 kW; 117 PS) 170 N·m (125 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.8:1
20SEH (South Africa) Inline 4 1998 cc 130 hp (97 kW; 132 PS) 180 N·m (133 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.8:1
20XE-LN (South Africa) Inline 4 1998 cc 156 hp (116 kW; 158 PS) 200 N·m (148 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 9.8:1
C20NE Inline 4 1998 cc 115 hp (86 kW; 117 PS) 170 N·m (125 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection SOHC 9.2:1
C20XE Inline 4 1998 cc 151 hp (113 kW; 153 PS) 196 N·m (145 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.5:1
C20LET (South Africa) Inline 4 1998 cc 204 hp (152 kW; 207 PS) 280 N·m (207 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection, turbocharger DOHC 8.5:1
X20XEV (Ecotec) Inline 4 1998 cc 136 hp (101 kW; 138 PS) 185 N·m (136 lb·ft) Multi-point Fuel Injection DOHC 10.8:1
Diesel engine
Engine code Engine Displacement Power Torque Fueling system Valvetrain Compression ratio
17D Inline 4 1699 cc 57 hp (43 kW; 58 PS) 105 N·m (77 lb·ft) Bosch Injection Pump SOHC 23:1
17DR Inline 4 1699 cc 60 hp (45 kW; 61 PS) 105 N·m (77 lb·ft) Bosch Injection Pump SOHC 23:1
X17DTL Inline 4 1700 cc 68 hp (51 kW; 69 PS) 132 N·m (97 lb·ft) Bosch Injection Pump SOHC 22:1
X17DT Inline 4 1686 cc 82 hp (61 kW; 83 PS) 168 N·m (124 lb·ft) Bosch Injection Pump SOHC 22:1

Astra G (1998–2004)[edit]

Astra G
Opel Astra G front 20081128.jpg
Overview
Also called Chevrolet Astra
Chevrolet Viva
Holden Astra
Vauxhall Astra
Production March 1998–December 2004 (Opel Astra)
2004–2009 (Opel Astra Classic II)
1998–2011 (Chevrolet Astra)
Assembly Belgium: Antwerp
Brazil: São Caetano do Sul (GM do Brasil)
Egypt: 6th of October City (GME)
Germany: Bochum
Italy: Grugliasco (Bertone)[6]
Poland: Gliwice
Russia: Tolyatti (GM-AvtoVAZ)
South Africa: Port Elizabeth (Delta Motor)[7]
Ukraine: Zaporizhia (AvtoZAZ)[8]
United Kingdom: Ellesmere Port
Body and chassis
Body style 3 and 5-door hatchback
4-door sedan / saloon
5-door wagon / estate
2-door convertible
2-door coupé
3-door sedan delivery (panel van)
Platform T-body platform
Related Opel Zafira A
Powertrain
Engine 1.2 L X12XE I4 (petrol)
1.2 L Z12XE I4 (petrol)
1.4 L X14XE I4 (petrol)
1.4 L Z14XE I4 (petrol)
1.6 L X16SZR I4 (petrol)
1.6 L Z16SE I4 (petrol)
1.6 L X16XEL I4 (petrol)
1.6 L Z16XE I4 (petrol)
1.7 L TD I4 8V
1.7 L DTi I4 16V
1.8 L X18XE I4 (petrol)
1.8 L Z18XE I4 (petrol)
2.0 L X20XEV I4 (petrol)
2.0 L X20XER I4 (petrol)
2.0 L Z20LET I4 (turbocharged petrol)
2.0 L Di I4 16V
2.0 L DTi I4 16V
2.2 L Z22SE I4 (petrol)
2.2 L DTi I4 16V
2.4 L I4
Transmission 5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
5-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,606 mm (102.6 in)
Wagon: 2,611 mm (102.8 in)
Length Hatch: 4,110 mm (161.8 in)
Sedan: 4,252 mm (167.4 in)
Wagon: 4,288 mm (168.8 in)
Convertible: 4,267 mm (168.0 in)
Width 1,709 mm (67.3 in)
Height 1,425 mm (56.1 in)
Convertible: 1,390 mm (54.7 in)

The Astra G was launched in Europe in 1998. It was available as a 3 and 5-door liftback, 4-door saloon, 5-door station wagon (in Opel tradition, known as a "Caravan") and two special versions from 2000: the Astra Coupé and the Astra Cabrio, both of them designed and built by Bertone.[9] The Astra G saw the introduction of a natural gas-powered engine. Its chassis was tuned by Lotus and formed the base of a seven-seater compact MPV, the Opel Zafira. Approximately 90,000 coupes were produced, of which 7000 were cabriolets.[citation needed]

The manufacturing of Astra Sedan continued at Opel's Gliwice plant in Poland after the debut of the next-generation Astra H, with the older model being branded as Astra Classic in a similar fashion to its predecessor, catering to the lower end of the market. This car was offered in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as Turkey with the name Astra Classic II from 2004 to the end 2009. Apart from European markets, these models were sold in Australia and New Zealand as Holden Astra Classic, until they were replaced by the Holden Viva in 2006.

The Astra G was built as Chevrolet Astra in Brazil. It was facelifted in 2003, and was sold in Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, and other Latin American markets until 2011. The GM Brazilian 2.0 8V I4 engine which equips the Astra has the "flexpower" technology, that allows the car to run on both petrol/alcohol fuels, providing 128/140 hp (G/A) at 5200 rpm.

A taxi version of the Brazilian sourced model, powered with gasoline 2.0 engine was sold in Chile as the Chevy Urban.[10][11]

In 2004, GM's Russian joint venture GM-AvtoVAZ launched the four-door version of the Astra G as the Chevrolet Viva. It was sold through Chevrolet dealers in Russia, while Opel dealers were selling the newer Opel Astra H. Sales were poor from the start due to high pricing: the only version launched was equipped with a 1.8L engine with an above-average trim level, placing the Viva's price above the Toyota Corolla.[12] A project costing $340 million was selling less than a thousand cars annually[12] (801 cars in 2007);[13] rumours of shutting down Chevy Viva production circulated as early as summer of 2005.[14] GM-AvtoVAZ shut down small-scale production of the Viva in March 2008.[12]

V8 Coupe in DTM[edit]

The Astra G series Coupé look was used for the V8 powered dedicated race cars in the DTM series. These DTM cars are purpose built race cars with barely any parts taken from the road cars save for lights or door handles. The car's bodywork featured gull-wing doors that were each supported by two gas struts. The race cars were powered by 4.0L V8 engines with nearly 500 hp (370 kW). Opel did poorly during several season of DTM as only Manuel Reuter placed significantly in the championship once, taking second in the inaugural season 2000. Opel won the 24h Nürburgring in 2003, though.

XTreme[edit]

The Astra XTreme, a concept presented at the 2001 Geneva motor show, was a single-production V8-powered Astra based on the G-series Astra DTM. Like the DTM race car, it featured a 4.0 litres (240 cu in) V8 engine, producing 444 hp (331 kW), gull-wing doors supported by gas struts, carbon fiber panels, and race-specification interior with five-point seatbelts.

Stock Car Brazil[edit]

The season of 2005 also joined the history of Stock Car. In addition to the category have become multi - the first time the Mitsubishi Lancer ran alongside the Chevrolet Astra, on 30 October 40 cars Stock Car V8 engine performed an unprecedented race outside of Brazil worth points for the championship. It was a round to the side of TC 2000, the main category of Argentina and in July had run in Curitiba (Autodromo Internacional de Curitiba). The Autódromo Juan y Oscar Gálvez received an audience of 70,000 people. Giuliano Losacco was the winner with Mateus Greipel second and Luciano Burti third.

The engine was a V8 Chevrolet 350 imported from the United States by JL, similar to that used in Busch Series, the second category of NASCAR, equal and limited to 450 hp (336 kW). Thus, the automaker GM is now sponsoring the category, providing the fairing of the Astra, making room for other manufacturers could enter the category with low investment.

Astra H (2004–2009)[edit]

Astra H
Opel Astra H Facelift front.JPG
Overview
Also called Chevrolet Astra
Chevrolet Vectra
Holden Astra
Saturn Astra
Vauxhall Astra
Production March 2004–2009 (Opel Astra)
2009–present (Opel Astra Classic III)
2007–2009 (Chevrolet Vectra)
2008–2009 (Saturn Astra)
Assembly Belgium: Antwerp
Brazil: São Caetano do Sul (GM do Brasil)
Egypt: 6th of October City (GME)[15]
Germany: Bochum
Poland: Gliwice
Russia: St. Petersburg
United Kingdom: Ellesmere Port
Designer Friedhelm Engler[16]
Body and chassis
Body style 3-door hatchback (GTC)
5-door hatchback
4-door sedan / saloon
5-door wagon / estate
2-door convertible (TwinTop)
3-door sedan delivery (panel van)
Platform Delta platform
Related Opel Zafira B
Powertrain
Engine 1.4 L Z14XEL I4 (petrol)
1.4 L Z14XEP I4 (petrol)
1.6 L Z16XEP I4(petrol)
1.6 L Family I I4 (turbocharged petrol)
1.8 L Z18XE I4 (petrol)
2.0 L Z20LEL I4 (turbocharged petrol)
2.0 L Z20LER I4 (turbocharged petrol)
2.0 L Z20LEH I4 (turbocharged petrol)
2.2 L Z22SE I4 (Australia)
1.3 L CDTI Diesel I4
1.7 L CDTI Diesel I4
1.9 L CDTI Diesel I4
2.0 L Flexpower I4 (Brazil)
2.4 L Flexpower I4 (Brazil)
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
5-speed semi-automatic
4-speed Aisin 60-40LE automatic
6-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase Hatches & TwinTop: 2,614 mm (102.9 in)
Sedan & Wagon: 2,703 mm (106.4 in)
Length 5-door hatch: 4,249 mm (167.3 in)
3-door GTC: 4,288 mm (168.8 in)
Sedan: 4,587 mm (180.6 in)
Wagon: 4,515 mm (177.8 in)
TwinTop: 4,476 mm (176.2 in)
Width 1,753 mm (69.0 in)
TwinTop: 1,759 mm (69.3 in)
Height 5-door hatch: 1,467 mm (57.8 in)
3-door GTC: 1,415 mm (55.7 in)
Sedan: 1,458 mm (57.4 in)
Wagon: 1,500 mm (59.1 in)
TwinTop: 1,411 mm (55.6 in)

The Astra H was launched in March 2004 as a five-door hatchback, whilst a five-door estate launched late 2004 and a sporty three-door hatchback, designated the GTC (Gran Tourismo Compact) for European markets, Sport Hatch in the UK and the Coupé in Australia, launched in 2005. The GTC has the option of a windscreen called "panoramic windscreen" (unique for a production car at the time of its launch) which extends into the roof area. Based on the then-new Delta platform, its size was increased compared to the previous version. Production came until the end of 2009, excepting the TwinTop which continued to be manufactured until November 2010.

The aging Vectra B was replaced in Brazil with a sedan version of the Astra H, named Chevrolet Vectra, until it was replaced by the Chevrolet Cruze in 2009. The model was matched with the others models offered in Brazil. This version was offered as an Opel in some Eurasian markets in 2006, following a debut at the international auto show in Istanbul, Turkey, including Ireland in 2008.[17] This was manufactured in Gliwice, Poland.[18] Also in 2006, the Astravan, a 3-door van variant of the estate, was launched. In September 2007, a version of the 5-door Astra was launched in Brazil, marketed as Chevrolet Vectra GT to differentiate from the already existing Astra, which was replaced by the Chevrolet Cruze hatchback in 2011.

GM Russia launched SKD assembly of Astra on a temporary production site near Saint Petersburg in February 2008, with a potential capacity of 25,000 vehicles annually.[19]

The Chevrolet Astra was withdrawn from Mexico in 2008 as a result of withdrawal of Opel products from the brand, replaced by the Chevrolet Cruze sedan for the 2010 model year.

A first for any major European car is the availability of digital radio on some versions of the new Astra, while for the Astra product class first are electronically controlled chasiss (IDS+) and AFL (Adaptive Forward Lighting).

The Opel Astra Classic III from Bochum was offered for sale as 5-door hatchback and estate in some Eastern European markets[which?].

At the end of 2012, the Astravan was replaced by the new Opel Combo D (whom the Astra H had already ended).

OPC[edit]

During 2005, Opel introduced the OPC version of the Astra GTC (Sold as the Astra VXR in the UK) which is powered by an updated version of the 2.0 L turbo Family II engine (Z20 LEH) producing 240 PS (177 kW, 237 bhp) and 320 N·m (236 lb·ft) of torque. Standard features of the OPC version include sports bodykit and recaro interior, a six-speed manual gearbox, xenon headlamps and 18-inch alloy wheels amongst others.

This vehicle was sold until late 2009 in Australia and New Zealand by Holden Special Vehicles as the HSV VXR. HSV VXRs are sold as standard with full leather trim, climate control, 6 disc CD and 19-inch alloy wheels. HSV VXRs were badged as per the UK Vauxhall Spec models, but without the usual rear boot badge. Inside the Opel Blitz appears on the steering wheel with an OPC dashboard. The Astra OPC was also sold as the Chevrolet Astra OPC in Chile.

TwinTop[edit]

In 2006, the Astra TwinTop arrived. The "TwinTop" name also applies to the smaller Tigra refers to a folding hard-top coupé version of the car. In the case of the Astra, the TwinTop has a three-part folding metal roof which sits in the upper half of the boot space, leaving considerable luggage space below it. Still marketed as a four-seater, the rear seating space is smaller than a "normal" Astra. The TwinTop was available in three trim levels with a range of engines in each, including a 200 PS (147 kW; 197 hp) 2.0 L turbo and the 1.9 CDTI diesel in 150 PS (110 kW; 148 hp) form. The TwinTop was discontinued in November 2010 along with the 3-door GTC.

Stock Car Brazil[edit]

In Brazil, Chevrolet Vectra (Astra H) substituted the Chevrolet Astra on Stock Car. The V8 is still the same, apart that now they use Ethanol instead of Petrol.

Saturn Astra[edit]

Saturn Astra 5-door

The Saturn Astra debuted during the 2007 Chicago Auto Show.[20][21] Intended to replace the Ion as the brand's smallest model, the Saturn Astra was a captive import built in Antwerp, Belgium.[22] It was offered in three and five-door hatchback body styles, with sales starting on 2 January 2008. Only one engine was available: a 1.8 L Z18XER inline-4-cylinder gasoline engine with variable-valve technology producing 138 hp (103 kW) and with an available five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic transmission.

The Astra XE was available only on the five-door hatchback bodystyle version; this was the basic trim level for the Saturn Astra. The upmarket XR trim level was available in both the three and five-door hatchback. 17-inch (430 mm) alloy wheels were standard with the XR, while the XE made do with steel wheels and plastic covers.[23]

In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) crash tests the Astra earned a Good overall score in frontal impacts, while in side impacts it received a Marginal overall rating. Front and rear head curtain airbags and front seat-mounted torso airbags were standard.[24]

General Motors predicted sales of between 30,000–40,000 vehicles a year in the United States. Sales were slow, due initially to a large glut of unsold Ions and later the uncertainty surrounding the Saturn brand's future. In 2008 only 11,968 were sold in the US[25] and in 2009 this fell to 6,298.

With a large number of unsold cars remaining on dealer lots, GM announced it would end import of the Astra.[26] In June 2009, GM announced its intention to sell the Saturn Corporation to Penske Automotive Group but this never was concluded and in 2010 General Motors discontinued the Saturn brand.

Engines[edit]

Engines were available with 5 and 6 speed manual transmission, Easytronic semi-automatic gearbox with 5 speed, and also 4 and 6 speed automatic transmission. In the beginning there were petrols 1.4 90 PS, 1.6 105 PS, 1.8 125 PS and new 2.0 Turbo engine with two versions: 170 PS and 200 PS. Diesel lineup were 1.7 CDTI with 80 PS, 100 PS, and 1.9 CDTI engines with 120 and 150 PS. During production some engine got more power like 1.6, 1.8, 1.7, 1.9 and 2.0 Turbo with 240 PS was introduced in 2005 in OPC/VXR version. 1.3 CDTI 90 PS was introduced in 2005 and he replaces 1.7 CDTI with 80 PS.

After restyle at end of 2006 / beginning of 2007, new engines were introduced: 1.6 Turbo engine with 180 PS which replace 2.0 Turbo with 170, and 1.7 CDTI with 125 PS.

Petrol engine
Model Engine Displacement Power Torque Note CO2 emission (g/km) Years
1.4 VVT I4 1398 cc 90 PS (66 kW; 89 hp) at 6000 rpm 125 N·m (92 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 129
100 PS (74 kW; 99 hp) at 6000 rpm
1.6 VVT 1598 cc 105 PS (77 kW; 104 hp) at 6000 rpm 150 N·m (111 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 158 2004–'07
115 PS (85 kW; 113 hp) at 5500 rpm 155 N·m (114 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 155 2006–
1.6 Turbo 180 PS (132 kW; 178 hp) at 5500 rpm 230 N·m (170 lb·ft) at 2200–5400 rpm 168 2006–'09
1.8 VVT 1796 cc 125 PS (92 kW; 123 hp) at 6000 rpm 170 N·m (125 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 187 2004–'06
140 PS (103 kW; 138 hp) at 6000 rpm 175 N·m (129 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 169 2005–'09
2.0 Turbo 1998 cc 170 PS (125 kW; 168 hp) at 5400 rpm 250 N·m (184 lb·ft) at 1950 rpm 218 2004–'06
200 PS (147 kW; 197 hp) at 5400 rpm 262 N·m (193 lb·ft) at 4200 rpm 226 2004–'10
240 PS (177 kW; 237 hp) at 6000 rpm 320 N·m (236 lb·ft) at 2400 rpm OPC/VXR 223 2005–'10
Diesel engine
Model Engine Displacement Power Torque Note CO2 emission (g/km) Years
1.3 CDTI I4 1290 cc 90 PS (66 kW; 89 hp) at 3800 rpm 200 N·m (148 lb·ft) at 1700–2500 rpm 109 2005–'09
1.7 CDTI 1686 cc 80 PS (59 kW; 79 hp) at 3800 rpm 170 N·m (125 lb·ft) at 1700–2500 rpm 119 2004–'05
100 PS (74 kW; 99 hp) at 4000 rpm 240 N·m (177 lb·ft) at 2300 rpm 138 2004–'10
110 PS (81 kW; 108 hp) at 4000 rpm 260 N·m (192 lb·ft) at 2300 rpm 138 2007–
125 PS (92 kW; 123 hp) at 4000 rpm 280 N·m (207 lb·ft) at 2300 rpm 119 2007–'09
1.9 CDTI 1910 cc 100 PS (74 kW; 99 hp) at 4000 rpm 260 N·m (192 lb·ft) at 1750–3250 rpm 154 2005–'09
120 PS (88 kW; 118 hp) at 4000 rpm 280 N·m (207 lb·ft) at 1750–3250 rpm 159 2004–'09
150 PS (110 kW; 148 hp) at 4000 rpm 320 N·m (236 lb·ft) at 2000 rpm 159 2004–'09

Astra J (2009–present)[edit]

Astra J
Opel Astra J front 20100725.jpg
Overview
Also called Buick Excelle XT
Vauxhall Astra
Holden Astra
Production September 2009–present (Opel Astra)
Assembly Germany: Rüsselsheim
Poland: Gliwice
Russia: St. Petersburg
United Kingdom: Ellesmere Port
Designer Uwe Müller[27]
Body and chassis
Body style 3-door hatchback (GTC)
5-door hatchback
4-door sedan / saloon
5-door wagon / estate
Platform Delta II platform
Related Buick Verano
Chevrolet Cruze
Opel Cascada
Opel Zafira Tourer C
Powertrain
Engine 1.4 L Family 0 I4
1.4 L Turbo Family 0 I4
1.6 L Family 1 I4
1.6 L Turbo Family 1 I4
1.8 L Family 1 I4
1.7 L CDTi Diesel I4
2.0 L Turbo Family II I4
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
6-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,685 mm (105.7 in)
3-door GTC: 2,695 mm (106.1 in)
Length 5-door hatch: 4,419 mm (174.0 in)
3-door GTC: 4,466 mm (175.8 in)
Sedan: 4,658 mm (183.4 in)
Wagon: 4,698 mm (185.0 in)
Width 1,814 mm (71.4 in)
3-door GTC: 1,840 mm (72.4 in)
Height 5-door hatch: 1,510 mm (59.4 in)
3-door GTC: 1,482 mm (58.3 in)
Sedan: 1,500 mm (59.1 in)
Wagon: 1,535 mm (60.4 in)

The Astra J is based on the General Motors' Delta II platform and debuted at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany.[28][29] The car has taken most of its styling from the new Opel Insignia, with many of the higher options fitted as standard. Full production came on line at Vauxhall's Ellesmere Port Plant at the end of September 2009. Deliveries began in December 2009.

The Astra was developed at Opel's 'International Technical Development Center' (ITDC) in Rüsselsheim and continues Opel's design language, ‘sculptural artistry meets German precision’ first introduced on the Insignia. The Astra features a torsion beam rear suspension with Watt's link.[30] Infotainment and car navigation systems are supplied by Bosch.[31][32]

The Opel Astra came third in the European Car of the Year award in 2010.

The station wagon version of the Astra - dubbed the 'Sports Tourer' by Opel, debuted at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, and went on sale shortly afterwards, with a starting price of £16,575 for the ES version, then Exclusiv, SRI and SE versions, with the SE costing from £20,345. This is cheaper than the previous estate, but has more standard equipment. The adoption of the "Sports Tourer" name finally brought to an end Opel's traditional "Caravan" designation for its station wagon derivatives.

Shanghai GM launched the Chinese specification of the Opel Astra hatchback, which is badged as the Buick Excelle XT. This car went on sale in January 2010. Three engines were announced: Ecotec D-VVT 1.6 L, 1.8 L and 1.6 L Turbo.

In September 2012, a notch-back sedan version of the Astra joined the range. This was named Buick Excelle GT in China, Buick Verano in North America and Opel Astra sedan elsewhere.

The Astra sedan was first presented at the 2012 Moscow International Automobile Salon.

GTC[edit]

A 3-door version dubbed Astra GTC was introduced in July 2011.[33] Externally, it retains very few design elements of the old 5-door model. It has a sportier appearance, with a much more 'sculpted' chassis. It features a HiPerStrut front suspension from the Opel Insignia OPC which helps alleviate torque steering. A Watt's linkage is present in the rear suspension, to minimize lateral movement of the axle. The wheelbase is enhanced to accommodate wider low-profile tyres. Similarly to the Astra H GTC, a 'panoramic windscreen' option is available. The Astra GTC was awarded a 5 star rating for its performance under Euro NCAP safety tests. In late 2013, a new 1.6 Turbo EcoTech engine with 200PS output replaced the older 180PS engine of the same capacity, meaning the 1.6 Turbo replaces the BiTurbo Diesel as the fastest non-OPC model in the range.

Sedan[edit]

A sedan version of Astra J appeared 2011 in China as Buick Excelle GT, and in 2012 as Buick Verano in North America and as Astra in other places. It was presented at the 2012 Moscow International Automobile Salon.

This is not sold in the United Kingdom, although it is available in some other right hand drive markets, such as Ireland (as the: Astra Saloon),[34] Malta,[35] and South Africa.[36]

OPC[edit]

The OPC trim of the Astra GTC has been available since 2012. The car will feature a turbocharged 2.0 L direct injection engine with a power of 206 kW (280 PS; 276 hp) and torque of 400 N·m (300 lb·ft), HiPerStrut front suspension, a mechanical limited slip differential, an electronically controlled FlexRide active suspension, and Recaro-style sport seats, OPC badge on gear knob, steering wheel, and on instrument dials and different and distinctive front and rear bumper, rear standard spoiler as well as optional OPC spoiler compared to GTC version. It comes with 19 inch alloy rims as standard and optional 20 inch alloy rims which are lighter than those 19 inch. 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) time is 6 seconds and top speed is limited to 250 km/h (155 mph).[37]

Engines[edit]

Engines are available with the 5-speed or 6-speed manual transmission. The only optional available automatic transmission is the 6-speed with active select mode, which can be ordered for the 1.4 turbo, 1.6, 1.6 turbo and 2.0 CDTI depending on region. From 2011, Start/Stop was introduced in certain countries on some models, and from 2012 an overboost function was added to the 1.4 turbo. [Engines with (S/S) are in bold in CO2 column]. The engines are Family 0/Family 1/Ecotec/MGE (gasoline), and MultiJet/Circle L/GM MDE (diesel).

In February 2014, Opel introduced its all-new engine - GM Medium Diesel engine, the so-called "whisper diesel" 1.6 CDTI engine with 136 PS, and later with 110 PS.[38]

Petrol engine
Model Engine Displacement Power Torque Note CO2 emission (g/km) Years
1.4 VVT I4 1398 cc 87 PS (64 kW; 86 hp) at 6000 rpm 130 N·m (96 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 129
100 PS (74 kW; 99 hp) at 6000 rpm
1.4 Turbo VVT 1364 cc 120 PS (88 kW; 118 hp) at 4200 rpm 200 N·m (148 lb·ft) at 1850–4200 rpm N/A in UK 138
140 PS (103 kW; 138 hp) at 4900 rpm 200 N·m (148 lb·ft) at 1850–4900 rpm
1.6 VVT 1598 cc 115 PS (85 kW; 113 hp) at 6000 rpm 155 N·m (114 lb·ft) at 4000 rpm 147
1.6 Turbo VVT 180 PS (132 kW; 178 hp) at 5500 rpm 230 N·m (170 lb·ft) at 2200–5400 rpm 168
1.6 Turbo SIDI 1598 cc 170 PS (125 kW; 168 hp) at 6000 rpm 260 N·m (192 lb·ft) (overboost 280 (207)) at 1650–4250 rpm 144 2013–
200 PS (147 kW; 197 hp) at 5500 rpm 280 N·m (207 lb·ft) (overboost 300 (221)) at 1650–3500 rpm GTC 154 2014–
1.8 VVT 1796 cc 140 PS (103 kW; 138 hp) at 6300 rpm 175 N·m (129 lb·ft) at 3800 rpm Russia & China 159
2.0 Turbo 1998 cc 280 PS (206 kW; 276 hp) at 5500 rpm 400 N·m (295 lb·ft) at 2400–4500 rpm OPC/VXR 189 2012–
Diesel engine
Model Engine Displacement Power Torque Note CO2 emission (g/km) Years
1.3 CDTI ecoFLEX I4 1248 cc 95 PS (70 kW; 94 hp) at 4000 rpm 190 N·m (140 lb·ft) at 1750–3250 rpm 109 (2009–)
104 (2011–)
2009-'14
1.6 CDTI ecoFLEX 1598 cc 110 PS (81 kW; 108 hp) at 3500 rpm 300 N·m (221 lb·ft) at 1750–2500 rpm 97 2014–
136 PS (100 kW; 134 hp) at 3500–4000 rpm 320 N·m (236 lb·ft) at 2000–2500 rpm 104 2014–
1.7 CDTI ecoFLEX 1686 cc 110 PS (81 kW; 108 hp) at 3800 rpm 260 N·m (192 lb·ft) at 1700–2500 rpm 119 (2009–)
99 (2011–)
2009–'14
125 PS (92 kW; 123 hp) at 4000 rpm 280 N·m (207 lb·ft) at 2000–2700 rpm 119 2009–'11
130 PS (96 kW; 128 hp) at 4000 rpm 300 N·m (221 lb·ft) at 2000–2500 rpm 99-123 2011–'14
2.0 CDTI 1956 cc 160 PS (118 kW; 158 hp) at 4000 rpm 350 N·m (258 lb·ft) at 1750–2500 rpm 129 2009–'11
165 PS (121 kW; 163 hp) at 4000 rpm 119 2011–
2.0 CDTI BiTurbo 195 PS (143 kW; 192 hp) at 4000 rpm 400 N·m (295 lb·ft) at 1750–2500 rpm 134 2013–

Facelift[edit]

In June 2012, a facelift was announced. Visual changes occurred at the front and back of the hatchback and sports tourer, and a saloon was introduced to certain markets. Engine wise, the 2.0 BiTurbo CDTI 195 PS from the Insignia from autumn 2012 and a new 1.6 L 170 PS turbocharged SIDI Ecotec direct injection unit from the new MGE engine family will be available from early 2013.[39]

It has been reported that the seventh generation Astra will enter production at Ellesmere Port in 2015.

Facelift version of Astra J are comeback to Australia of Astra (as Opel), available as 5-door hatchback, Sport Tourer and GTC 3-door hatch.

Motorsport[edit]

Manuel Reuter's Astra which formerly competed in the DTM.

An Astra won the Andros Trophy for three consecutive years starting in 2000.

An Astra was used in the 1994 Super Tourenwagen Cup season. In 2002, 2003 and 2006, three different drivers were European Rallycross Champions in the Division 2 driving Astras. The 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007 and 2008 runner-ups also raced in that car. Christian Ledesma was 2004 TC 2000 champion with an Astra and Matías Rossi took that title in 2006 and 2007.

The Astra has been used in the shape of silhouette racing cars as well. It was featured in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters from 2000 to 2003 (Manuel Reuter was runner-up in 2000) and the Stock Car Brasil from 2004 to 2008 (Giuliano Losacco won the tournament in 2004 and 2005). In 2009, the Astra G body was replaced Stock Car Brasil by a Vectra, which is in fact the same as the Astra H.

The car has also been raced in the Russian Touring Car Championship, the 2004 European Touring Car Championship season, the 2006 Swedish Touring Car Championship season, the 2008 European Touring Car Cup and the 2013 European Rallycross Championship season.

References[edit]

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External links[edit]