Vauxhall Astra 1.4T 16V 150 SRi 5dr Hatchback (2017) available from Preston Motor Park Fiat and Volvo

This vehicle is currently in stock at County Motor Works Vauxhall and can be purchased from Preston Motor Park Fiat and Volvo.

01772 950 707

£10,000

WAS £10,500, SAVE £500

This Vauxhall Astra includes parking sensors, air conditioning, sport seats, heated and electric mirrors, cloth seat trim, alloy wheels, cruise control, traction control and cruise control.

01/09/2017

25894

Manual

Petrol

SILVER



We pride ourselves in only providing cars of the highest of standards - all vehicles are taken through a pre-delivery inspection and are fully HPI checked for your peace of mind. We price our vehicles for sale on the basis of age, condition and mileage. The vehicles for sale may have previously been used for business or hire purposes and so may have had multiple users. Where we hold documents relating to vehicle history, these are available for inspection on request and we are happy to address any specific queries before you view or make an offer to purchase any vehicle.


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V5 Document

V5 Document

MOT Certificate

MOT Certificate

Keys

Keys

Manuals

Manuals

Service Log Book

Service Log Book

Body Glass

Electric front/rear windows/one touch facility, Heated rear screen with timed cut off, Intermittent rear wash/wipe, Rain sensor windscreen wipers, Side window demist vents, Solar heat absorbing windscreen, Tinted windows, Two speed windscreen wipers with variable intermittent wipe, Windscreen demist vents

Brakes

Anti-lock braking system (ABS), Electronic Stability Programme, Hill start assist, Traction control

Carpets/Rugs

Fully carpeted load area

Driver Aids

Cruise control + speed limiter, Electric speed sensitive power steering

Driver Information

Central facia display with digital clock, outside air temperature and audio information, Digital fuel gauge with low fuel warning light, Digital water temperature gauge with warning light, Facia mounted Sport switch, Gearshft up/down indication light, Left Key in ignition audible warning, Lights on audible warning, Monochrome display in instrument cluster, Multi function trip computer, Oil life monitoring system, Rev counter, Service due indicator, Speedometer

Driving Mirrors

Body coloured door mirrors, Dipping rear view mirror, Twin electrically adjustable and heated door mirrors

Embellishment Trims

Black facia with piano black trim inserts, Instrument panel bar in piano black, Piano black trim inserts on front doors, Silver air vent surrounds

Entertainment

6 speakers, R4 Intellilink infotainment with 7" screen, DAB, traffic program, USB/iPod, Bluetooth audio streaming A2DP, microphone and Apple Carplay/Android Auto, Steering wheel mounted audio controls

Exterior Body Features

Body colour door handles, Body colour rear roof spoiler, Chrome effect upper window trim, Chrome front grille, Chrome headlight surround, Gloss black finish B pillar, Gloss black finish C pillar

Exterior Lights

Adaptive brake lights, Automatic lighting control, Door to door illumination, Front fog lights, Hazard warning lamps, High level LED centre rear brake light, LED daytime running lights, LED side repeat indicators, Rear fog lights, Reversing light, Tunnel detection for auto light control

Heating/Cooling/Ventilation

Four adjustable facia vents

Interior Features

12V electrical accessory socket in front, 3 spoke leather covered steering wheel with accent stitching, Black door panels with black atlantis cloth inserts, Chrome interior door handles, Driver and front passenger sunvisors, Folding storage box on driver side lower facia, Four load restraint lashing eyes, Front and rear door pockets, Front centre armrest with storage, Glovebox with lid, Interior tailgate handle, Luggage compartment cover, Plain black fabric side bolsters and surrounds, Reach + rake adjustable steering column, Satin chrome effect bezel on steering wheel, Storage compartment in centre console, Titanium headlining, Twin gas assisted tailgate struts, Two drink holders in centre console

Interior Lights

Ambient LED downlighter in facia/centre console, Fade up/down courtesy light, Front courtesy lights, Front red LED ambient lighting, Illuminated load area, Rear courtesy lights, Twin front reading lights with illuminated switches, Twin rear reading lights with illuminated switches

Packs

Driver's ergonomic active seat pack - Astra SRi/SRi Vx-Line/Elite, Driver's ergonomic active seat pack with Formula cloth upholstery- Astra

Safety

3x3 point rear seatbelts, Child locks on rear doors, Height adjustable front seatbelts, Passenger airbag deactivate switch, Pedal release system, Seatbelt pretensioners on front/outer rear seats, Seatbelt warning, Six airbags - Driver's dual stage airbag/front passenger's dual stage airbag/front seat side impact airbags/full size curtain airbags, Tyre pressure monitoring system

Seats

60/40 split folding rear seat, Front seat back storage pockets, Height adjustable and removable rear head restraints (x3), Height adjustable front head restraints, Isofix child seat mounting points on outer rear seats

Security

Electronically protected audio, Engine Immobiliser & Deadlocks, Freewheeling door locks, Locking wheel bolts, Remote control central locking, Remote control ultrasonic security alarm system, Visible vehicle identification number

Vanity Mirrors

Driver and front passenger illuminated vanity mirror with flip up covers

General

Badge Engine CC: 1.4
Badge Power: 150
Based On ID: N
Coin Description: T 16V 150
Coin Series: SRi
Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 16E
Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 6
Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 1
NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: 86
NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: 84
NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: 5
NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: 83
NCAP Safety Assist %: 75
Service Interval Frequency - Months: 12
Service Interval Mileage: 20000
Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 60000
Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: 72
Timing Belt Interval Mileage: 100000
Vehicle Homologation Class: M1

Emissions - ICE

CO2 (g/km): 136
HC+NOx: N
Particles: N
Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft: DOHC
Catalytic Convertor: True
CC: 1399
Compression Ratio: 10.0:1
Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
Cylinders: 4
Cylinders - Bore (mm): 74
Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 81.3
Engine Code: B14XFT
Engine Layout: FRONT TRANSVERSE
Fuel Delivery: TURBO INJECTION
Gears: 6 SPEED
Number of Valves: 16
Transmission: MANUAL

Fuel Consumption - ICE

EC Combined (mpg): 47.9
EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: True
EC Extra Urban (mpg): 58.9
EC Urban (mpg): 36.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Max: 6.6
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Min: 6.4
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Max: 6.6
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Min: 6.4
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Max: 5.6
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Min: 5.4
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Max: 9.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Min: 9.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Max: 6.3
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Min: 6.1
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Max: 42.8
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Min: 44.1
WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Max: 42.8
WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Min: 44.1
WLTP - MPG - High - Max: 50.4
WLTP - MPG - High - Min: 52.3
WLTP - MPG - Low - Max: 30.7
WLTP - MPG - Low - Min: 31
WLTP - MPG - Medium - Max: 44.8
WLTP - MPG - Medium - Min: 46.3

Performance

0 to 60 mph (secs): True
0 to 62 mph (secs): 7.8
Engine Power - BHP: 150
Engine Power - KW: 110
Engine Power - PS: True
Engine Power - RPM: 5000
Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 181
Engine Torque - MKG: 25
Engine Torque - NM: 245
Engine Torque - RPM: 2000
Top Speed: 134

Test Cycles

Emissions Test Cycle: NEDC Correlated

Tyres

Alloys?: True
Tyre Size Front: 225/45 R17
Tyre Size Rear: 225/45 R17
Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
Wheel Style: 5 TWIN SPOKE
Wheel Type: 17" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Height: 1485
Height (including roof rails): N
Length: 4370
Wheelbase: 2662
Width: 1809
Width (including mirrors): 2042

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 48
Gross Vehicle Weight: 1820
Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 1210
Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 370
Max. Loading Weight: 617
Max. Roof Load: 75
Max. Towing Weight - Braked: 1550
Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: 620
Minimum Kerbweight: 1203
No. of Seats: 5
Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 11.5

ASTRA-NOMICAL? (new2) 12/07/2019

Vauxhall has rejuvenated its MK7 model Astra family hatch. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.

Ten Second Review

Vauxhall has delivered us a smarter, cleverer and more efficient version of its British-built seventh generation Astra. A fresh range of three cylinder petrol and diesel engines bring the oily bits up to date and make a big difference to running costs. Plus safety now meets today's higher class standards and you can specify extra high-end luxury features you couldn't have had before. In short, this Astra's now worth a second look.

Background

Despite Vauxhall's best efforts over more than three decades and six different generations, their Astra has rarely been the family hatchback its drivers would ideally have chosen to own. Not because it's ever been a bad car: just never a class-leading one. The kind of model you bought because it was good value. Or more likely, because you were given the keys by your company Fleet Manager. This seventh generation version was tasked to do better - and the signs are that in this facelifted guise, it just might. As you may expect, it's smarter-looking, but more importantly, it's significantly more efficient than before thanks to a range of fresh 3 cylinder petrol and diesel engines; the most frugal diesel can eke nearly 65 miles out of a gallon of DERV on the now much-stricter WLTP official test. And even the petrols can get around 50mpg. It still drives well too.

Driving Experience

The key changes here lie beneath the bonnet. Previously, there was just a single 3 cylinder engine in the range. Now the old units have gone and the line-up is built around this format. There are two fresh petrol units, a 1.2 developing either 110, 130 or 145PS and mated to 6-speed manual transmission. And a 1.4 putting out 145PS which has to be had with a new 7-speed CVT auto 'box. All the engines develop reasonable pulling power, with outputs ranging between 195 and 236Nm. Vauxhall's particularly pleased with throttle response with these engines, claiming that 90% of their pulling power is available within 1.5 seconds of pressing the accelerator. The diesel engine is new too, a 1.5-litre three cylinder powerplant offered in two states of tune, 105PS and 122PS. The more potent unit gets the option of a new 9-speed auto gearbox. These engines feature an electrically-activated turbocharger with variable geometry turbine vanes and, similar to their petrol counterparts, a balance shaft in the block for additional refinement. Torque output figures vary between 260 to 300Nm. There are no suspension or handling changes, which means that this MK7 model continues with a relatively simple torsion beam rear suspension system, a set-up enhanced with a so-called 'Watts linkage' feature to improve cornering stability.

Design and Build

You'd struggle to recognise this facelifted model as being different from earlier versions of the MK7 Astra design. The only visual changes lie with small tweaks to upper and lower sections of the front grille, these apparently contributing to a more aerodynamic profile. As before, buyers choose between the standard five-door hatch body shape, or a five-door Sports Tourer estate variant. Fortunately, the exterior lines of the silhouette are wearing well. A nice touch is the 'floating' roof, an effect created by a dark trim on the C-pillar and highlighted by a chrome strip that runs the length of the roof. Inside, there are no changes but extra comfort can be specified in the form of high-end features like a wireless charger, a heated windscreen and a BOSE sound system. As before, infotainment's taken care of by the available Multimedia Radio, Multimedia Navi and Multimedia Navi Pro systems. All systems are compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone-mirroring and the top-of-the-line Multimedia Navi Pro set-up has an eight-inch colour touchscreen and can also be operated by voice control. Rear seat space is class-competitive, as is boot space, 370-litres in the hatch and 540-litres in the Sports Tourer.

Market and Model

Prices aren't very different from before, starting from just under £19,000 and range up to around £30,000 across the range of hatches and estates spread across the usual wide range of trim options ('SE', 'Business Edition Nav', various 'SRi' options, 'Elite' and 'Ultimate'). Vauxhall wants to emphasise that safety standards have taken a decent step forward with this facelift, courtesy of the installation of a new digital front camera, which is both smaller and more powerful than before thanks to a faster processor. It now not only recognises vehicles, but also pedestrians, greatly improving safety. Furthermore, thanks to the high-resolution camera, traffic sign recognition can now process more traffic signs and show them as symbols on the display. The digital rear view camera, available on selected models, is also more powerful, and works in conjunction with the new Multimedia Navi Pro infotainment system. Most models get Connected Navigation services with real-time traffic information, a set-up that uses online map updates to make the journey more relaxed, while the navigation display itself appears with redesigned symbols in a fresher, more modern look. The same applies to the instrument cluster, which features a redesigned digital speedometer. Optionally available is the E-Call emergency call function. If needed, help is just seconds away by pressing the red button. If the seatbelt tensioners or airbags are deployed, the system automatically makes an emergency call.

Cost of Ownership

Put simply, you're not going to find an Astra that's going to cost you a huge amount to run. Even the 1.4 petrol turbo returns up to 49.6mpg on the WLTP cycle and up to 132g/km of WLTP-rated CO2. For the two 1.2-litre units, the WLTP figures are up to 54.3mpg and up to 120g/km of CO2. The 1.5-litre CDTi diesels will manage much more. Both the manual black pump-fuelled models manage up to 64.2mpg and up to 117g/km. While the 122PS auto returns up to 57.6mpg and up to 130g/km. Vauxhall reckons these figures are helped immeasurably by this Astra's slippery bodywork - it's the most aerodynamic car in its class with a sleek 0.26Cd. For the Sports Tourer, the figure is 0.25Cd. The aero-benchmarks have been achieved through numerous measures, including an engine compartment cover, deflector-shaped rear axle control arms and a full-face shutter. The upper and lower portions of the new Astra's radiator grille automatically open and close independently of one another, further improving the frontal airflow. The underbody optimisation improves the drag coefficient by reducing turbulence. With all the new engines, integration of the water-cooled exhaust manifold in the cylinder head contributes to quick engine warm-up, which lowers emissions after a cold start. And the diesel unit gets passive oxidation catalyst, an AdBlue injector, an SCR catalyst and a Diesel Particulate Filter.

Summary

In a family hatchback class stuffed with appealing options, it would be easy perhaps to overlook this seventh generation Astra - or at least to assume it to be an also-ran in this tightly-fought segment. You shouldn't do that - and it isn't. Especially now. The new engines bring this Vauxhall back to the forefront of the Focus segment and offer levels of efficiency that rivals struggle to beat. And your local dealer is likely to give you a very sharp deal too. Assuming you get that, you'll also get yourself a car that feels quite up to the challenge posed by an army of efficient, plush and dynamically able rivals. Of course this facelift's package of improvements have helped here - the slightly smarter look, the extra safety provision and the additional luxury features. Best of all, it's mainly British, with hatch and estate models built at Ellesmere Port near Liverpool to a quality at least as high as anything the Japanese brands can manage. That reason alone might be enough to give this car a place on your family hatchback shortlist. Fortunately for Vauxhall, there are also many others.

ASTRA-NOMICAL VALUE? (used) 17/07/2015

By Alan Taylor-Jones

Introduction

The Vauxhall Astra feels like a bit of a national institution, a nameplate that has signified a small, affordable family hatchback for over three decades. The range has grown over the years and was especially wide in sixth generation guise, with the core five-door model joined by a capacious estate, a coupe-like three door GTC model and a tyre shredding VXR hot hatch. The MK6 Astra was introduced in late 2009, but here, we're going to concentrate on the facelifted line-up, which arrived in 2012 and lasted Vauxhall until the seventh generation version's introduction in the Autumn of 2015. You'll find plenty of these late-model MK6 Astras about - and they appear to offer plenty for the money. This Vauxhall can prove to be a very efficient choice too, if you select your engine carefully. Pick one of the newer turbocharged petrol engines or a frugal 1.6, 1,7 or 2.0 litre diesel, then match your choice to a plush trim level and you've potentially got a cracking used buy. We show you why.

Models

Models Covered: (3 & 5 door hatchback and estate 1.4, 1.6, 1.4 T, 1.6 T, 2.0 T petrol, 1.3, 1.7, 1.6, 2.0 diesel [Expression, Design, Excite, Limited Edition, Tech Line, Tech Line GT, Sri, BiTurbo, Elite, VXR])

History

Despite Vauxhall's best efforts over thirty years and five different generations, their Astra has rarely been the family hatchback its drivers would ideally have chosen to own. Not because it's ever been a bad car: just never a class-leading one. The kind of model you bought because it was good value. Or more likely, because you were given the keys by your company Fleet Manager. At the launch of this MK6 version in 2009 though, greater efforts than ever before were made to ensure that 'want one' factor. So it was bigger, sharper to drive and nicer to sit in. And back then, it looked like a very complete proposition indeed. By 2012 though, much had changed in the family hatchback segment. The intervening period saw the introduction of all-new versions of this car's closest two segment rivals, Ford's Focus and Volkswagen's Golf, as well as complete re-designs of other important sector contenders like SEAT's Leon, Honda's Civic and Toyota's Auris. Plus there was the rise of the South Koreans, with new generation versions of the Kia cee'd and Hyundai i30, models that had become increasingly difficult for family hatchback buyers to ignore. Hence the need, in the Autumn of 2012, for a package of Astra changes designed to keep this car current in such an increasingly close-fought family hatchback sector. These created the smarter, higher-tech, more efficient car we're looking at here.

What You Get

Though the aesthetic improvements made to this improved MK6 model Astra were subtle, they did succeed in giving it a much fresher look. We're talking here of the five-door hatch and the Sports Tourer estate: the other Astra bodystyle option, the GTC Coupe, had been introduced as recently as the end of 2010, so needed little visual re-fettlement. And it's that GTC that provided the inspiration for many of the aesthetic changes made to this facelifted range. Take the front end which, as well as a redesigned bumper, got a more pronounced GTC-like lower grille, while the upper grille got a more prominent wing-like chrome bar and the option of LED daytime running lights. The rear was revised too, with smarter rear panel styling and a chromed lower moulding. Of course, the whole effect was even more aggressive if you went for one of the top performance models - the BiTurbo diesel or the VXR hot hatch for example, both of which got bespoke bodykits. Otherwise though, it was as you were for sixth generation Astra buyers. People for whom size tended to matter. Back in 2012, this was, after all, just about the largest car in this segment of the market. Vauxhall boasted that it was longer than virtually all of its main rivals, sat on a longer wheelbase and was just about the only family hatch buyers could have that was over 1.5m tall. That's something that as a used buyer, you'll notice most on the rear seat. A fully-grown adult really can sit comfortably in the middle for decently long periods alongside passengers who'll appreciate the fact that you can slide your feet properly right under the seat in front. So yes, this really is a proper 5-seater in a way that many of its rivals simply aren't. In fact, there's basically as much space here as you'll find in the brand's apparently bigger Insignia model. One reason for buying the larger car might, perhaps, be that its boot betters the 351-litre bay in the Astra by 149-litres, but with all the seats flattened, the Astra actually offers around 200-litres more than its supposedly bigger stablemate, with 1216-litres available. There's also a useful two-level floor that you can position to suit your load. If you need more, then the Sports Tourer estate delivers 500-litres of boot space with all the seats in place, a figure that rises to 1550-litres when you flatten the rear bench. Even the GTC coupe is a lot more spacious than you might imagine, delivering a 380-litre boot that can be extended to 1165-litres if need be. And at the wheel? Well, this sixth generation Astra's cabin felt very plush for its class back at the 2009 launch, but by 2012, rivals had improved to the point where the interior of this Vauxhall merely felt par for the class. The nice touches remain though, like the elegance of the dashboard design and the smart chromed rings around the dials and switches. We like the tiny red mood lights around the base of the front doors and under the gear lever that on plusher models, throw a welcoming glow across the cabin at night. And the properly practical features that suggest this car to have been designed by real people - like the way that the storage bins in the doors can actually hold a 2.0-litre bottle of drink. Or the false floor in this lidded cubby that will hide your iPod. It's true that because the centre console is rather crowded with small switches, the dash doesn't offer the most immediately intuitive layout you'll come across but once you adjust to what everything does and how it does it, you'll bond with it pretty well.

What You Pay

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What to Look For

As is always the case with mainstream family hatches, you'll want to keep a look out for thrashed company hacks or ex-hire fleet vehicles. Ensure that the car has been serviced on the button and that the mileage on the service record stamp tallies with what the odometer says. It's also worth checking the car for accident damage, as many cars will be de-fleeted early if they've had a prang and have been repaired. Ask the seller explicitly if the car has had accident damage and inspect the usual points for overspray and kinks in the under-bonnet flitch plates. The engines tend to be tough units with no serious problems to report.

Replacement Parts

(approx based on a 2011 Astra 1.4 Exclusiv excl. VAT) Expect a replacement clutch to set you back £165, while front brake pads can be found for around £25. Rears are nearer £40, while a radiator will cost around £150. Alternators are slightly pricier, nudging the £320 mark, so make sure your prospective used car is generating a healthy current to its battery.

On the Road

Back in the steam age, an inventor called James Watt (remember his name from school history lessons?) invented a linkage system created to constrain the movement of a steam engine piston in a straight line. Over a century later, this Astra's engineers turned again to the same concept. When applied to a car's rear suspension, this Watts linkage reduces sideways motion between the axle and the body of the car in a way that they claim is more space-efficient, lighter and adjustable than the multi-link rear suspensions used in the Focus or the Golf. As to whether it all works, well, if you regularly corner your family hatchback on its door handles, you'll probably still find a Ford Focus to be a slightly more engaging drive. The rest of us though, will find this a well-judged compromise that matches the Ford for ride comfort and is pretty much as good as anything else in the class when it comes to an engaging drive. Both the dampers and the slightly vague electric power steering were tuned specifically for British roads but owners wanting to do some further fine tuning of their own could specify extra-cost FlexRide adaptive suspension with 'normal', softer 'Tour' or stiffer 'Sport' modes: it was standard on plusher models. A slick gearshift (5-speeds on lower-order engines but 6-speeds thereafter) and well-judged pedal weights also go in the plus column. Overall then, this Astra is a highly polished drive. Which would be pointless without an equally good showing under the bonnet. Here, it's a case of knowing your engine. To be honest, the budget-level 1.4 or 1.6-litre normally aspirated entry-level petrol units represent older and resolutely unremarkable Vauxhall technology, even if the performance they offer (rest to sixty in 14s on the way to 105mph in the case of the base 87PS 1.4 16v variant) will probably be enough for most. Unfortunately, the far superior 1.4 and 1.6-litre petrol turbo units were limited to buyers of the sporty SRi trim level and to GTC coupe customers who also got a 280PS 2.0-litre powerplant in the top-of-the-range VXR hot hatch. Diesel drivers could specify a five-door hatch or a Sports Tourer estate to get themselves the entry-level 95PS 1.3-litre CDTi unit, but all Astra bodyshapes got the 1.7-litre CDTi engine many preferred, with a choice of either 110 or 130PS outputs. In 130PS guise, sixty from rest is 10.4s away en route to a maximum of 126mph. We can't really see much point in going beyond this to the 165PS 2.0 CDTi diesel, but it is tempting, if you can afford it, to look at the top-of-the-range Astra diesel, the potent 195PS BiTurbo unit, capable of rest to sixty in just 7.8s on the way to 141mph.

Overall

There are lots of options if you're looking for a family hatchback from the 2012 to 2015 period and in a class packed with noteworthy cars, it would be easy perhaps, to overlook this facelifted MK6 model Astra - or at least to assume it to be an also-ran in this tightly-fought segment. You shouldn't do that - and it isn't. Or at least it isn't if you choose your engine and spec carefully. The really desirable and efficient variants may well require you to negotiate a sharp deal with your seller to keep within budget, but if you can do that, then you'll get yourself a lot of car for the money. Yes, there are sharper-handling contenders in this segment but few rivals are better built or more efficient. It's worth looking at this later facelifted post-2012 version of the sixth generation design, rather than the original version. If you can do that, then you get yourself smarter looks, more efficient engines and extra hi-tech features. And, as ever with an Astra, there's a huge selection of used vehicles to choose from, so be patient and negotiate hard. Do that and you'll almost certainly come away with a very good deal. On a surprisingly good car.

SPACE ACE (family) 12/07/2019

The much improved version of Vauxhall's seventh generation Astra family hatch takes some beating. June Neary checks it out..

Will It Suit Me?

Golf, Focus, Astra: these are three of the car names that UK motorists know best, primarily because they are attached to three of the cars that UK motorists buy most. They're family hatchbacks and along with the likes of SEAT's Leon, Peugeot's 308, Renault's Megane, Toyota's Corolla and quite a few others, they fight it out for sales in one of the most competitive car market sectors there is. The problem for us car buyers is which one to choose and Vauxhall is confident it has the answer in the shape of an improved version of its seventh generation Astra. I've got to admit that the Astra has sometimes left me cold over the years. Yes it was always good value but sometimes you want more. In its recent incarnations, that's what Vauxhall's star performer has started to deliver, this enhanced MK7 model being smarter, cleverer and more efficient than before. It may look similar to the previous version, but don't be deceived: much has changed here.

Practicalities

At the wheel, it's all quite smart, if rather forgettable. But extra comfort can now be specified in the form of high-end features like a wireless charger, a heated windscreen and a BOSE sound system. As before, infotainment's taken care of by the available Multimedia Radio, Multimedia Navi and Multimedia Navi Pro systems. All systems are compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone-mirroring and the top-of-the-line Multimedia Navi Pro set-up has an eight-inch colour touchscreen and can also be operated by voice control. From a practicality perspective, this Astra is usefully bigger than most family hatchbacks, with plenty of space for a couple of six-footers in the back so long as the front seats aren't right back on their runners. There's even an abundance of headroom back there, despite the car's plunging roofline. That means getting kids and child seats in and out is that much easier. Boot space is class-competitive, 370-litres in the hatch and 540-litres in the Sports Tourer estate.

Behind the Wheel

Put the Astra through its paces on the road and it's hard not to come away impressed. It's still no Ford Focus but it soaks up bumps well and turns into the bends easily, aided by a stiff chassis and torque vectoring that helps with cornering traction. As before, this Vauxhall does without the kind of independent rear suspension system you'd find on a rival Ford Focus, instead favouring a neat Watts linkage system that claims to reduce sideways motion between the axle and the body of the car as you go through the corners. Engine-wise, it's all change with the revised version of this seventh generation model. There are two fresh petrol units, a 1.2 developing either 110, 130 or 145PS and mated to 6-speed manual transmission. And a 1.4 putting out 145PS which has to be had with a new 7-speed CVT auto 'box. All the engines develop reasonable pulling power, with outputs ranging between 195 and 236Nm. Vauxhall's particularly pleased with throttle response with these engines, claiming that 90% of their pulling power is available within 1.5 seconds of pressing the accelerator. The diesel engine is new too, a 1.5-litre three cylinder powerplant offered in two states of tune, 105PS and 122PS. The more potent unit gets the option of a new 9-speed auto gearbox.

Value For Money

You'll be paying from just under £19,000 to around £28,000 for mainstream versions of this Astra. The range is based around this five-door hatchback bodystyle, but if you want a bit more versatility, then there's the option of finding a price premium of around £1,000 for the Sports Tourer estate version. Vauxhall wants to emphasise that safety standards have taken a decent step forward with this facelift, courtesy of the installation of a new digital front camera, which is both smaller and more powerful than before thanks to a faster processor. It now not only recognises vehicles, but also pedestrians, greatly improving safety. Furthermore, thanks to the high-resolution camera, traffic sign recognition can now process more traffic signs and show them as symbols on the display. The digital rear view camera, available on selected models, is also more powerful, and works in conjunction with the new Multimedia Navi Pro infotainment system. Most models get Connected Navigation services with real-time traffic information, a set-up that uses online map updates to make the journey more relaxed, while the navigation display itself appears with redesigned symbols in a fresher, more modern look. The same applies to the instrument cluster, which features a redesigned digital speedometer. Optionally available is the E-Call emergency call function. If needed, help is just seconds away by pressing the red button. If the seatbelt tensioners or airbags are deployed, the system automatically makes an emergency call.

Could I Live With One?

If you were slightly put off the Vauxhall Astra by the dull but worthy versions of a few years back, it's definitely time to reacquaint yourself with this famous family hatch. The original version of this seventh generation Astra impressed and this smarter design is a stride forwards again. It's not as sharp as a Focus to drive, but to be frank, I don't really care about that and I don't think many other family hatch buyers will either. More relevant is the fact that in terms of comfort and refinement, this Vauxhall is close to the top of this highly competitive class. In short, there's not much not to like.

Vauxhall Astra average rating: 4/5 (18 reviews)

- 13/05/2019, owner of a Vauxhall Astra Sri Ecoflex S/S

User rating: 5/5

User comment:
I've always loved to have a Vauxhall car and when the opportunity came I did not hesitate on my choice of car. It's lovely and am enjoying every minute of it.

- 08/04/2019, owner of a Vauxhall Astra 1.4T 16V 150 Elite 5dr

User rating: 5/5

User comment:
This is my second Astra and the drive and comfort is second to none.

- 03/01/2019, owner of a Vauxhall Astra 1.4T 16V 150 SRi 5dr

User rating: 3.5/5

User comment:
Nice car, fast. Would be nicer with heated seats and steering wheel as I had them in my 16 plate Corsa. Nice and roomy. Petrol goes down a lot when driving on the motorway.

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