Vauxhall Astra

Vauxhall Astra review

Interior
Manufacturer price from:£18,665
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Driving position and dashboard

Regardless of your stature, it shouldn’t prove tricky to get comfortable in the Astra. Both the seat and steering wheel have plenty of adjustment, while the pedals and wheel are located in line with each other. All major controls are within reach and easy to locate, too.

However, only higher-spec trims get adjustable lumbar support as standard. It's optional lower down the range and is an option well worth selecting; without it, there isn’t a lot of lower back support.

Keen drivers might also find the standard seats a little flat and unsupportive during hard cornering, although the sports seats fitted to the SRi models are better.

Visibility, parking sensors and cameras

We’ve no complaints with the visibility on offer when looking out of the front of the Astra. Relatively narrow windscreen pillars and decently sized front windows mean you can see out of junctions easily and safely. Unfortunately, rearward visibility isn’t quite so impressive.

Thick rear pillars obscure your over-shoulder view and there’s a noticeable blindspot. This can make parking and other low-speed manoeuvres far harder than you might wish. Rear parking sensors are an option, but only as part of a pricey pack that also includes front sensors.

For not much more, you can buy another pack that includes the sensors, blindspot monitoring and also an automatic parking system. For some buyers, this could be a worthwhile option.

Vauxhall Astra

Sat nav and infotainment

Even the entry-level Design trim has a 7.0in colour touchscreen with DAB, Bluetooth, USB and aux-in ports, smartphone projection and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring.

Sat-nav may not be included but anyone with a smartphone can get Google-based navigation systems free and project them onto the Astra’s screen. Higher-spec models get an 8.0in system with sat-nav optional on all but Tech Line and Ultimate models.

Although it can be difficult to select what you want on the touchscreen (particularly when travelling down a bumpy road), there are handy shortcut buttons to get to all the major functions.

Vauxhall also offers a system called OnStar. This package brings online connectivity, a wi-fi hotspot and a connection to a dedicated call centre, whose operatives can download your requested route directly to your sat-nav. It’s a clever system - but it is set to be switched off from 2020 following the company's sale to PSA Peugeot Citroen.

Quality

Looking around the inside of the Astra, there are plenty of things to be happy about. Soft-touch plastic is spread liberally around the interior, along with gloss-black and chrome trim pieces. Higher-spec models get even more metal-effect parts that help lift the interior beyond the level of many cars in the class.

While good, it’s still a little way behind the Volkswagen Golf and Skoda Octavia. There are still cheap-feeling plastics to be found, while some of the controls don’t operate with the same precision as the Volkswagen's and Skoda’s– such as indicator and wiper stalks that produce a rather hollow click when used.

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Trims
There are 11 trims available for the Astra hatchback. Click to see details.See all versions
SRi
SRi comes with 17in wheels, front foglights, a leather steering wheel, sports seats, a...
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Fuel Diesel, Petrol
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£17,209
Average Saving £4,556
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SRi Nav
Everything from SRi, with added sat-nav...
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£17,864
Average Saving £4,601
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Design
Entry-level Design models receive hill start assist, cruise control, a touchscreen info...
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£17,870
Average Saving £1,035
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Elite Nav
Everything from Elite, with added sat-nav...
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£18,294
Average Saving £4,631
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OUR PICK
Tech Line Nav
While it may be barely any more expensive than Design trim, Tech Line Nav adds a leathe...
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£18,530
Average Saving £1,075
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SRi Vx-line
We are yet to try out this variant...
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£18,625
Average Saving £4,650
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Griffin
We have not written anything about this yet...
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£18,665
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Energy
All the kit of Design plus 17in alloy wheels, a heated steering wheel and heated seats...
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£18,925
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SRi Vx-line Nav
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£19,279
Average Saving £4,696
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SRi Vx-line Nav
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Fuel Diesel
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£21,047
Average Saving £4,819
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Ultimate
This is the top of the Astra range and gets 18in wheels, LED matrix headlights, a parki...
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£21,205
Average Saving £4,830
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