Vauxhall has revealed the first pictures of the brand-new Astra, which sets the standard for efficiency and low emissions with a range of petrol and diesel powertrains. Building on the wide success of the outgoing model, customers will benefit from reduced CO2 and fuel consumption, as well as a series of class-leading technology and equipment.
Meticulous development in the wind tunnel also made a significant contribution to the reductions in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. At 0.26 Cd, the Astra is the most aerodynamic car in its five-door hatch back class. And at 0.25 Cd, the Astra Sports Tourer is among the best-in-class.
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.
The Astra’s chassis has been further developed with new shock absorbers increasing comfort.
The new turbocharged petrol and diesel engines, which are as economical as they are lively, are primarily responsible for the exemplary efficiency. The low consumption and CO2 figures are also enabled by the modern six-speed manual gearboxes, the seven-speed continuously variable transmission (CVT) and – for the first time at Vauxhall – a new nine-speed automatic.
The compact, three-cylinder, turbo petrol units are available with 1.2 and 1.4-litre displacements. With power outputs extending from 110PS to 145PS and maximum torque from 195Nm to 236Nm, they achieve an excellent balance between performance and efficiency.
The Astra 1.2 is combined with a smooth-shifting six-speed manual gearbox while the Astra 1.4 is available exclusively with a new seven-speed continuously variable transmission (CVT). With the CVT, Astra drivers can enjoy the convenience of automatic gear changing or select gears themselves via the shift lever.
Integration of the water-cooled exhaust manifold in the cylinder head contributes to quick engine warm-up, which lowers emissions after a cold start.
Typical for Vauxhall is the excellent transient throttle response of the petrol engines – at 1,500 rpm, 90 per cent of the maximum torque is already available within 1.5 seconds of pressing the accelerator.
The Astra’s 1.5-litre, three-cylinder diesel engines offer 105PS and 122PS, as well as 260 to 300Nm of torque. The common rail fuel injection system operates at up to 2,000 bar.
Instead of the precise, six-speed manual gearbox, the most powerful diesel is optionally available with the seamless shifting of a new nine-speed automatic transmission, which is making its debut at Vauxhall in the Astra.
The new diesel engines feature an electrically-activated turbocharger with variable geometry turbine vanes (VGT) and, similar to their petrol counterparts, a balance shaft in the block for additional refinement. Likewise, the exhaust manifold is also integrated in the cylinder head.
Optimum exhaust after-treatment of the Astra 1.5 diesel is delivered by the emissions reduction system consisting of a passive oxidation catalyst, AdBlue injector, SCR catalyst and Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF).
The latest Astra is available with 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 even 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. The view of the traffic behind the vehicle on the monitor is more distinct and precise, while the contrasts are more visible in the dark.
Astra customers will enjoy high levels of connectivity with the smarter, faster and more intuitive Multimedia Radio, Multimedia Navi and Multimedia Navi Pro systems. All systems are compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The top-of-the-line Multimedia Navi Pro – already featured in the Vauxhall Insignia flagship – has an eight-inch colour touchscreen and can also be operated by voice control. Connected Navigation services with real-time traffic information and online map updates 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 new 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.
Comfort is a top priority in the new Vauxhall. A practical feature when travelling, compatible smartphones can now also be charged inductively via wireless charging on selected models. All the driver needs to do is place their smartphone into an opening in the centre console.
The high-end Bose sound system, featured on selected models, transforms the new Astra into a concert hall. Seven loudspeakers, including a RichBass subwoofer under the boot, ensure optimum listening pleasure. The driver and passengers are surrounded by a rich sound, regardless of where they are in the vehicle. In addition, up to eight different sound profiles can be stored via the digital amplifier.
Last but not least, the new Astra introduces a heated windscreen on selected models, making driving in the winter safer and more comfortable. Thin, almost invisible wires in the windscreen ensure that Astra drivers always have a clear view of the road on frosty days.