Advice for buyers
What should I look for in a used Vauxhall Astra hatchback?
Many Astras will have gone to lease and rental car firms when they were new, so it is worth checking your potential purchase for marks to the bumpers, kerbed alloy wheels and any marks on the seats.
Check the service history on cars that have done high mileage as the cambelt needs changing every 100,000 miles. Vauxhall does have this job listed as part of its fixed-price servicing scheme. If you cannot find any record of the work having been carried out, then check out Vauxhall’s website and haggle, or budget, accordingly.
There were a few recalls for the Astra. In 2010, there was one for the front passenger seat moving forward without warning, another in 2011 to resolve an anti-trap malfunction on the windows and the most important, a recall in 2015 to prevent a potential fire issue – the same as the one that affected the Vauxhall Zafira. The cause in the Astra was said to be a shorting circuit in the cooling fan.
What are the most common problems with a used Vauxhall Astra hatchback?
Owners are generally happy with their Astras, according to our most recent survey. However, some complained of rattles in the interior. This could be as simple as the alloy wheel locking nut if it has been placed in the glovebox, or it could be something harder to diagnose such as a broken clip or loose trim.
Others mentioned the aerodynamic skirt under the front bumper. This is there to decrease fuel consumption, but it can be caught on kerbs, especially if you prefer to drive nose first into a bay when parking.
If your Astra has a diesel engine, then it is fitted with a diesel particulate filter (DPF). This means that the car will need to be taken on frequent motorway journeys to ensure that the DPF can regenerate, as this process is only triggered at high speed. Check how the previous owner has used the car if you are unsure.
Other potential problems with the DPF-equipped cars come if it has been shut off partway through a regeneration. The result is contamination of the oil system with fuel, which leads to the oil level rising gradually over time. This can cause damage to the engine, if it hasn’t already, so it’s worth getting the car checked out.
Is a used Vauxhall Astra hatchback reliable?
Vauxhall did manage to finish ahead of Volkswagen in terms of overall reliability across models. Plus, there is a large network of Vauxhall dealers out there that can fix your car should the worst happen.