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Vauxhall Astra SRi 1.8i 16v

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      01.05.2011 19:43
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      A good reliable family car

      I purchased this particular Vauxhall Astra when it was 6 months old in 2006. The version I bought had the 1.8 16v engine and was 125bhp.

      I bought the car as I had previously owned a mark 3 Astra and had a good experience with it. The SRi is a sporty model, it came with 17" alloy wheels and a spoiler as standard. I was also given the option by my dealer to upgrade it to include a 'sports pack' which included a body kit and 18" alloy wheels this option cost an extra £250 so I declined.

      Second hand these cars can be picked up reasonably cheap, I paid £10,500 for mine which at the time had 10,000 miles on the clock.

      The exterior of the car is vastly improved on the previous mark 4 Astra. The car is a lot sleeker and more rounded not so square looking as the previous model. As standard the SRi comes in a wide choice of metallic or pearlescent colours. You also get a nice stainless steel sports exhaust as standard.

      The interior of the car is very nice, it looks sturdy and durable. You get a silver effect trim around the stereo and the dashboard as standard. You also get alloy sports pedals and alumiunum door sills with the word 'Astra' engraved on them as standard. The seats are described as 'sport seats' which are firm but also fit snuggly to the shape of your body, they are finished with a black cloth interior, which again is the standard on this model. You can of course upgrade if you wanted to pay a bit extra.

      The car is insurance group 8 which provides reasonable insurance for most drivers.

      I owned this car for a year, during which time I was driving around 2000 miles per month, this consisted of motorway driving and city driving. The car was not as economical as I expected it to be. The trip computer which comes as standard showed that the car was averaging about 35 mpg, this increased to 38 mpg when I was driving continuously on the motorway. The running costs are fairly cheap compared to other manufacturers, I had a service carried out with Vauxhall which cost £115. The car was smooth to drive and the gear change was very sleek. I did think that the engine lacked 'omph' though, the car is fairly heavy and I found it to be sluggish off the mark compared to other smaller engined cars I had driven. The driving position in the car was however great, you have a good all round visability and the seats are extremely comfortable especially on those long motorway drives. The seat has an adjustable lumbar support, you can also alter the height of the seat to make it more comfortable for yourself. The car also had plenty of little cubiholes to store various items, this was great for me as I tend to have a lot of clutter in my car!

      All in all this was a great reliable car, I had no mechanical faults at all and it was a good drive. I have since bought another Astra but a 2 litre turbo 200bhp as I felt the car needed a bit more poke!

      I would recommend this as a good average sized family car, the only downside is the depreciation, these cars don't seem to hold their money.

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      21.09.2010 23:34
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      worth a look if you're looking for a sporty hatchback !!

      My review of the vehicle is based around 5 days of driving it around as a rental car and thats it, its not based upon cost of ownership, its not based upon longterm reliability its based upon my impressions of the vehicle while I had it
      I live in the United States, a land of boring cars with alot of power and not much else, recently I had to fly home to England for a funeral and upon my arrival at Heathrow Airport I was given a 59 plate Vauxhall Astra 1.8 Sri with what appeared to be a slightly more aggressive bodykit than I have seen on these vehicles before, and I must say I did think it was attractive, the large 5 spoke alloy wheels filled the wheel arches well and I was impressed with the overall sporty look of the vehicle, especially being partial to Hatchbacks as I am and being starved of them while i've been living in the states.

      Once inside the Cabin I was mildly impressed by the build quality of the vehicle, the interior had a little bit of solidity to it and while being a bit of a german car snob and being spoilt with rock solid interior qualities, I was impressed with the Astra's, I wasn't impressed by the seats however, the drivers seat is too firm and while I could do with losing a few pounds, it is possible to have a sporty and supportive seat without making it seem like its out of the cabin of a rally car ( look at the quality of the seats in a Volvo lately and you'll see what I mean ), my major complaints about the interior, besides the seat are the terrible rain sensing wipers that are too sensitive and don't allow you to have enough control yourself, and the weedy sound system that meant I had to turn it all the way up while i'm driving at motorway speeds and the sound quality was terrible.

      One the road I was impressed by the handling of this vehicle, again maybe its because i'm starved of good handling european cars where I live, but I found the Astra to be very willing to be thrown into a corner and the steering to be quite precise, the suspension while stiff wasn't too stiff as to make the vehicle uncomfortable on UK roads but was stiff enough for it to be a rewarding drive when pushed ( I sell Porsche's for a living in the states, and as such demand good driving dynamics ), also pleasantly surprising was the performance of the vehicle, while I wasn't expecting a rocket ship, I was surprised at how lively the 1.8 engine was and how its acceleration seemed quicker than the 9.5 seconds to 60 MPH that is quoted, it did seem to lose a little steam high up in the rev range, but it was ample for most of my needs and managed to get up to speed on the motorways with little pushing on my part, also nice was the 5 speed gearbox which was precise.

      One of the major letdowns for me was the boot space, the hatchback configuration is supposed to give you plenty of options for storage and load, however I found the boot space to be smaller than expected and the hatchback opening to be a little small, it could prove problematic when loading large items into the back.

      Overall I was impressed with this vehicle, I picked it up with around 8,000 miles on and as such the engine was nicely worn in i'm sure, which probably helped, also I got decent MPG getting around 30mpg with a mix of town and motorway driving, I was impressed by the looks of the vehicle and it was aggressive enough to appeal to my long departed boy racer side, without being too aggressive and making me feel like a Chav !!!

      I would certainly drive this again and I could see this being a vehicle I would own !

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      09.02.2010 15:28
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      Improving the looks doesn't make a better thing

      A few weeks ago my company had to hire a car for me due to the fact that someone decided to slide into my car and put it off the road, leaving me stranded for work purposes.
      Anyway, thanks to the brilliant people at Enterprise car hire I ended up with a '59' plate Vauxhall Astra 1.8 Sri , it was either that or a 1.2 litre Ford Fiesta and as I now that the fiesta would have been slower than a snail crawling uphill I decided to opt for the Astra.

      I have driven Vauxhalls before, an Astra, a Vectra, (never again) and even a Chevette, (remember them?), so I knew what to expect from this hire car.

      I must begin by telling you that my usual car is a Focus C-Max, for my sins, but once you've been driving a good sized car like a C-Max it is a little claustrophobic getting into a smaller vehicle.
      I don't want to compare the two cars as they are in totally different classes, the C-Max being a small family car whilst the Astra 1.8 SRi is more a sporty model for the younger generation.

      Anyway, my experience with this Astra is not 100% pleasurable, making me glad that I can hand it back when the insurance company decide what to do with my own car, (you get attached to a car after a few years don't you ), but first the boring bits regarding the specs of the vehicle I have been driving for a while now...

      (You can skip this bit if you want to...)

      * 5 speed Manuel gearbox
      * 5 door hatchback
      * 16V
      * 129 mph top speed
      * 0-60 in 9.5 seconds
      * 52 litre (11.4 gallon) fuel tank, giving approximately 450 miles
      * Runs on unleaded petrol
      * 28.8 mpg Urban
      * 49.6 mpg Extra Urban
      * 39.2 mpg combined
      * Emissions is 172g/km
      * Insurance group 8


      ** What's on offer...

      As standard you get the usual power steering, air conditioning, electric front windows, electric mirrors, central locking, immobiliser and a shabby looking CD/radio.
      And for those safety conscious people you get ABS, (Anti-lock brakes), ELS, (electronic stabiliser) and driver, passenger and front side airbags.


      ** The looks ...

      The outside certainly looks the part of a semi-sporty motor with its curved front and little spot lights either side of the lower front grill, the large main lights stuck to the side.
      The overall curvy shape giving it a bit of charm and style, in fact the only straight part of it is the antenna sticking out of the top at just above the boot.
      It's height isn't great and the doors really do look a little on the long and short side when you open them.
      The metallic paint certainly gives it a nice look, although this one being black certainly shows the slightest of marks.
      It's 16 inch alloy wheels look the right size for the bodywork, there are some cars where there wheels look too small for the bodywork, a little like putting pram wheels on a rolls Royce, but this Astra seems to have got the sizing right, giving it a bit of a boy racer look about it.
      Sadly, when you open the door, or even look through the window, the interior starts to let the looks down with its dull black and grey colour and even duller charcoal cloth seats, even the odd speckle of silver trim doesn't help.
      The only interior brightness you get is from the 'speedo' and 'rev counter', which sits on the dash board right in front of you, although if you position the steering wheel too low you won't see either dial properly.
      Speaking of the steering wheel, well, Vauxhall have done there best to make it look sporty, giving it a nobly grey grip on the 'quarter to 3 position', but it seems to have made it look like a boy racer wearing those leather driving gloves that your grand dad wears.
      To me it seems like the designers leaned toward the fact that the boy racer owner would be going too fast for bystanders to see the inside of the car, thus relying on the neat looking exterior for the sale.

      So for me overall the exterior looks the part, albeit targeting the younger generation, but the interior really does bring it back down to earth with an axel shattering crash.

      And for those interested in putting anything of size in the boot, well you can as it is quite a good size. A boy racer could easily fit a dozen crates of lager and several packs of alcopops and still have room for a friend or two, although they might have to take out the shelf if they want to look out of the window.

      ** So that's the looks then, what about the rest..?

      Getting into the vehicle is not an easy feet, unless you're a contortionist with little or no body fat at all. I mean, I'm not the fattest of blokes and I'm quite bendy at the best of times but this car just seems to make it difficult to actually get into, sometimes making you look like a drunk driver as you push yourself into it, one leg on the road and one leg trapped under the steering wheel, with that police officer smiling as he walks over to you, notepad and handcuffs at the ready.

      Once you do manage to get into the drivers seat it's a matter of adjusting everything until you've found your comfortable position, this is quite easy to do as it is the same in most modern cars, adjust the height of the steering wheel, pull your seat forward/backwards, higher/lower it until you're happy.

      That was it, I was finally happy as I sat a few inches off the tarmac below me so I took it for a bit of a test drive just to get used to the handling and its capabilities, trying not to compare it to the C-Max, but constantly thinking about the big differences between the two, realising instantly how much easier it is to get into the C-Max.


      ** My experience with the performance...

      The modal I have been driving is a 1.8 litre and allegedly goes from 0-60 in just over 9 seconds but as I have not had the opportunity to test that statement we will just have to rely on what it says on the book, although if I get the chance I'll certainly let you know.
      It certainly makes a noise when you press the accelerator, the engine roars like a lion, alright, maybe not a lion, more like a cat with laryngitis, but it is still a noise which will attract attention.
      Then I put it into first gear, or should I say forced it into first gear after double clutching and a bit of brute force, (this may be due to previous bad drivers who hired the vehicle before me).
      It is a bit snappy when you let the clutch out and pull away so make sure you take your time our the inevitable embarrassing stall may happen, leaving you red faced and panicking to restart the engine.

      So I was finally off, heading down the road in this 'sporty' Astra, wondering why it was taking the strength of a grizzly bear on steroids to change gear, the car jerking slightly as the gears cogs chomped together, making me look like a learner driver, (and no I'm not a learner driver).
      As I drove along, slightly struggling with the gears but getting a little used to them the more I changed gear, anyone driving along a main 'A road' in rush hour knows exactly how many times you have to change gear as you crawl along at the speed of a one legged horse dancing on ice.



      Anyway, over the next few days I got used to the car and it's rather annoying ways, quickly realising that if I wanted to listen to the radio/CD player I had to turn the volume up to almost full pelt due to the noise of the noisy engine as I sped along the road, so there was no chance of opening the windows if I wanted to enjoy a bit of Beethoven, good job it had air conditioning so I could keep the windows steam free.
      No wonder those young drivers blast that head banging music out if that's all they can hear over this cars engine grumbling.

      Although this has power steering, which is supposed to aid you in turning the steering wheel easily, well what a loud of cobblers that is, in fact I have to use more brute strength to turn the wheel when doing something like a three point turn so I would hate to think what would happen if I had to turn at speed... I'd no doubt end up sliding into a tree instead of getting round the corner.
      Luckily though the handling is simply brilliant for a Vauxhall, even if the ride is rough. It grips the road as if the tyres had been smeared with glue, taking corners as if slotted into grooves in the tarmac. (I did not test this at high speed as I consider myself a safe driver and speeding is not something I do, plus if I did crash it my boss would not be happy)
      The brakes were keen, stopping me in an instance, so I had to get used to them or risk being slapped in the face by the windscreen every time I wanted to stop. In fact, the handling and the braking are the best thing about this car, although the 16 inch alloys with a branded logo on them certainly help the handling

      It is a good job the handling is good as the suspension is terrible, giving one of the most uncomfortable rides I have had in a long time. I felt every little bump on the road, and believe me there are a lot of bumps on the road, going over speed bumps is suicidal and may even pull your back out, even at crawling pace. It is one of the hardest rides I have ever had, even from a Vauxhall.

      ** Just for fun...

      Inside the car, just above the stereo, there is a little tiny button with the word 'sport' on it, so, after checking the manual to see what this little tiny button did, I decided to press it to see what happened.
      The manual claims that when this button is pressed it tightens the suspension and improves the steering so as to give that more sporty feel....
      Well, when I pressed it in for the required few seconds I waited in anticipation for the different feel to the car... but I felt no difference in the handling at all. The steering remained as heavy as ever and the suspension didn't improve one little bit as I drove along the road...
      What was I doing wrong?


      In all, in my experience with this Astra 1.8 SRi 16V, this is not the performance car that it claims to be and is certainly not the sporty car that the body work states.
      It looks nice from the outside, then again sprouts look quite nice on the outside, but the inside really does need a bit of attention.
      The 'sporty' performance is as impressive as Eddie the Eagle's skiing skills and the ride is as gentle as sliding down a stair carpet naked.

      As I said earlier, the Astra I am driving at the moment has been hired for me by my company but after a quick check on prices this particular model is on sale for around £15,000 - £20,000 OTR, (dependant on extras)

      Would I pay 15K for this car..?
      Not a chance.
      I wouldn't even pay half that for this particular model as it just wasn't what I expected and there are so many better vehicles out there for a few grand less.

      It may be nice looking, have a little bit of power under the bonnet and grip the road like Velcro but getting into the car takes the skills of a athlete and the ride is as rough as wiping your bottom with sandpaper.
      So for me the bad points out way the good point by far so I would personally steer clear of this new shape Astra and look elsewhere for a better vehicle, unless you're a bendy boy racer with a great sound system and a strong back bone.

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        14.08.2008 01:27
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        I'd never buy one

        The Astra. It's been about for donkeys and to be honest I don't think the new ones are much better than the old ones. I myself own mk4 VW Golf and I love it. A few months ago I looked at buying a new Astra. I test drove a 1.6 petrol model and was NOT impressed. The main thing that put me off was the apparent lack of quality compared to my Golf and the fact that the steering wheel controls were so badly worn. The demonstrator car I test drove only had a few thousand miles on the clock and it was in a right state! The controls were all in a silver finish, but it had been done on the cheap. White plastic spray painted silver. The silver finish had already started to wear off! I soon decided to keep my beloved Golf.

        *Fast forward a few months*

        So there I was, sat in traffic chatting to my passenger in my 03 reg Golf when *SMASH*.... I was hit badly from behind. The other car was a 02 reg Clio and that was a clear write off. My Golf just needed a bit of work doing to the back bumper. So while my car is in at the garage being repaired what do I get as a hire car.....? A 08 reg Astra with fewer than 5k on the clock!

        First impressions...
        The Astra looks very nice, the hire car I was given was a 1.9tdi with all the bells and whistles. Colour coded trim, fog lights, alloy wheels, climate control, i-pod port and even heated leather seats! Great... you would think.

        Exterior quality....
        The Astra feels like a solid car, only it lacks the quality. Even though the hire car I was given had less than 5000 miles on the clock somebody had already ran a key down one of the doors. The paint job seems to of been done on the cheap as it is a VERY thin layer of paint. When the paint on my Golf was scuffed from the crash you could see it was as thick as pig sh!t. So the apparent thin layer of paint stood out quite a lot on the Astra. Secondly while washing the car before it was returned to the hire company (I had to return it clean otherwise be charged) I noticed the bodywork seems very flimsy. If you press on the bodywork it bends quite easily, especially on the doors - this is not something I am used to! All in all the outside looks nice, but compared to my Golf the finish looks and feels very cheap. I would not expect to find such a great difference given the new Astra is priced in roughly the same price range as a new Golf.

        Interior quality....
        The inside of the car also looks very nice. This one has a nice black sheen finish rather than the cheap silver finish in the car I test drove. Build quality is a lot better although the dashboard and door panels have a somewhat plastic feeling to them. Controls are also relatively well set out. However I have found a number of problems. The heated leather seats are very uncomfortable.... They're a sports seat design and although I am an athletic build and only a 32" waist when sat in the driver's seat you feel like your bum is being funnelled down to a point. I would expect 'larger' passengers to find this more uncomfortable. I couldn't seem to be able to adjust the steering wheel to a position I felt comfortable with and the lumbar support was pretty useless given the lack of padding on the seats. The seat height adjustment did come in very useful as this is something I'm used to adjusting quite often on my Golf. The CD player is okay and it was nice to have an I-pod port as I'm used to having this in my golf. However the sound quality of the speakers was not very impressive.

        I also found the climate control was pretty rubbish. When set to auto it didn't seem to do much and even when setting the temperature to high it didn't make any real effort to heat the car to the set temperature. In the end I set it to be manually controlled. On the plus side I did find the button that electronically folds the wing mirrors in a nice touch.

        Driving...
        The car is quite nice to drive. Acceleration is VERY responsive and the 6 speed gear box is nice. The cruise control is a very handy feature for both motorway and about town driving as I can never stick to 30mph lol
        I found the breaks somewhat over responsive and the clutch was quite heavy/hard to press down. Steering is nice and responsive however I tend to drive like a boy racer and the car does not seem to have as much grip on tight corners as my Golf does.

        Other bits....
        The boot is a decent size although there does not seem to be much legroom for back seat passengers. It's nice to have a good quality flip key similar to that of my VW... It doesn't have the cheap nasty feel some other flip keys can have and the central locking works as it should.

        That's all I have to say really. I know this isn't the greatest review and I've probably missed loads of bits off but I just wanted to share the parts that stick in my mind about this car... sadly more bad than good. It's just a general quick review from somebody who only drove one of these cars for just over a week. All in all it's nice to drive and has some decent features but the poor build quality and passenger comfort let it down drastically! If you want my advice skip this car and buy a VW!

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          29.08.2006 10:47
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          Not what you would expect from a top end model, no different inside to the base model.

          *~*~Introduction~*~*

          This review is based on my experience of using the Vauxhall Astra each week for regular motorway journeys down South every week for work.
          The Vauxhall Astra has been said to have been developed to offer technical sophistication and exceptional comfort, I wonder if my review will agree with that…read on if you wish to find out.

          *~*~Exterior Appearance~*~*
          The Astra SRi looks tasty I am definitely not a fan of the Vauxhall's but even I have to admit this model is a pretty attractive car.
          The model I am reviewing is the 3 door hatchback complete with a sleek spoiler, body colour bumpers, mirrors and tinted glass.
          My absolute pet hate is the black plastic on the Vauxhalls and the SRi has definitely skipped on this. The standard black trim on the car is replaced with colour coded trim which gives it a much sexier appearance.
          Front fog lights are another sporty feature to the car which no doubt will be used in the incorrect manner, i.e. when it is not foggy.
          The spoiler comes pretty low down on the rear window so although it looks good it is also a fairly good obstruction as well.
          The car is fitted with 17" alloy wheels that are pretty decent and come complete with locking nuts, in their own little case rather than just thrown in the glove compartment.

          Rating of Exterior Features 8/10
          Its svelte looks, sporty engine line-up and attractive styling means it has the indulgent feel of a coupe.

          *~*~Interior Appearance~*~*
          On all other Vauxhalls I have ever driven or seen the majority have been let down with the interior, now based on the exterior alone I would purchase one of these cars a nice size and a good engine size, but the interior does that definitely generate a sale…..erm sadly not.
          Inside the car, on first impressions it does look good the roof is a really dark grey which gives you the feeling that the car is a lot smaller than it is, the black interior is also a contributing factor to that however it still looks really cool and I like the look of it.
          The drivers controls are basic even on this model height adjustable seat, in my experience this is a common feature on all new cars as I know my base model fiesta has this and the SRi being one of the cars in the top end of the range I thought it would come with the thigh support with the professional looking booking seats but no this is another additional extra, one freebie that Vauxhall have kindly added in has to be the lumbar support for the driver seat, how kind, shame they didn't put some padding in there so that they are less uncomfortable. When you have a brand new car you do expect it to be better than older cars, this car is not, the seat is very hard and the bucket seats for the front passengers are very firm and I imagine could get very easily worn with much use getting in and out of the car.
          The Driver has instrument panel light dimmer so that they can alter the brightness of the lights on the dashboard this is controlled by a small wheel to the right of the driver next to the steering column.
          Rev counter and odometer are also on the car, which again is nothing great to boast about its all standard features.
          The Astra Sri does have a small computer built in which has trip information great if you have to measure your mileage on the journeys; it calculates the interior/exterior temperature ok not need to have features but fairly handy I suppose. The trip computer does tell you how many miles you have travelled and a lot of other information that is not what I call a useful feature the money would've been better spent on some better seating.
          The dash is standard black plastic and nothing different from any other model that I have seen before, there is some silver trim present on the ventilation side of the doors and the stereo in the centre consol and some of the instrument panel is also finished off with the silver trim but its nothing impressive. The silver trim that runs along the top of the doors would've been better remaining black and maybe adding the colour to the door handles and locks rather than the rather cheap plastic trim to the front of the car.
          In my opinion the interior of this really stylish car makes it "nothing special" and I am back to my original opinion that with Vauxhall's you really don't get much for your money.
          The instruments are clear and are surrounded with a brushed aluminium bezel, which when lights are on light up orange which is clearly visible on the black background.

          A large display screen in the centre of the dash gives audio, climate control and trip computer information. It is a bit difficult to master. A neat touch is Adaptive Forward Lighting (AFL), fitted to every model. AFL is bi-xenon headlamps that move with the steering direction, to give better illumination around corners great if you find it difficult driving on unlit backroads. On the motorway or at high speeds, the light beam is raised by 15 degrees to provide better lighting.

          Rating of Interior Appearance 4/10
          This is based on the cheap look which really brings the quality of the vehicle down, this is one of the top spec models yet inside is no different to a base model a lot lower in price.

          *~*~Entertainment Features~*~*
          The Sri comes with a CD player, again a pretty basic feature for such a top end model surely I would've thought a multi-disc would've been a nice feature for the customer paying out all this money but no such look.
          The stereo system is nothing special its plain, its boring, the remote control on the steering wheel gives you something to play with during the journey, changing tracks, radio stations and adjusting the volume.
          The simple controls show that not much money has been spent on this facility and again contributes to the poor standard of the interior.

          Rating of Entertainment Features 2/10
          Very poor, I would expect something a bit more upmarket than the same stereo that is present in other models and the only difference being that it is in the brushed aluminium colour, I would not be impressed if I bought this car and it had the same interior as Bob next door with a model that cost him £5000 less!


          *~*~Seating and Comfort~*~*
          I know I have briefly touched on this on the interior appearance of the Sri but I do feel it needs a bit more explanation and of course a rating.
          If you go and look at one of these in the Vauxhall Showroom I guarantee the interior will look great, for the first 5 minutes of sitting in the seats I loved them but then I got the wriggles, the back began to feel uncomfortable and my bottom started to ache from the lack of padding. The rear seat has half the thickness of my little fiesta and I was shocked to see that the actual width of the cushion was only about 40mm!!!
          Great sports seats but not so great comfort.
          At the front of the vehicle located on either side of the courtesy light are reading lights which are there for comfort of the passengers.
          The sports pedals are a great feature to have if a sporty car is your thing, I admit they look stylish and could be the most expensive item in the interior of this Vauxhall Astra, the distance between the pedals is pretty good even for those with big feet.
          The steering column is easily adjustable for rake and reaches and can be set up perfectly for you, so you get the maximum comfort when driving.
          The wing mirrors are electrically adjustable, operated from the Drivers side via the touch of a button. Simple so no awkward twisting of the body to look at those blind spots as they can be adjusted easily.


          Rating of Seating and Comfort 4/10
          Very poor and think Vauxhall could do a lot more to improve this.

          *~*~Heating and Ventilation~*~*
          Air conditioning is a must for both my partner and I as we suffer from Hay fever so its always a bonus when it is included in the vehicle.
          The control has a 4 speed fan and contains an interior pollen filter ideal for hay fever sufferers.
          As with all cars the vents are located next to the doors and in the centre console of the vehicle and are easily adjustable, these are finished off in the silver trip an added feature of the Sri.
          The control panels are simple and easy to operate with a chunky knob to control the temperature.

          Rating of Heating and ventilation 5/10
          Easy to use controls and quick heating / cooling of the vehicle.

          *~*~Safety and Security~*~*
          Vauxhall I have to admit are pretty good on this area.
          The SRi is fitted with remote control deadlocking which covers doors, tailgate and fuel filler cap. The remote control is operated by two buttons one which opens and one which locks simple.
          Inside the vehicle there is a central locking switch located on the centre console and this will lock the doors from the inside of the vehicle, deactivated by pressing the button and pulling the door handle to exit.
          Vauxhall have fitted electronic theft protection for the audio equipment but in my opinion it would be a great advantage if someone wanted that monstrosity.
          One feature that may be useful to the more forgetful person was the audible alert when the key is left in the ignition but a bit of a pain if you leave it in the ignition with a passenger in the car!
          The remote control has a range of 3 metres and operates from indoors, which in my opinion is ideal when the alarm is going off and you can see the car from inside and its raining, a great feature is the auto lock facility that if no doors have been opened after 5 minutes of the car being unlocked then the car will simply lock once more.
          The alarm system monitors the doors, luggage compartment, bonnet, vehicle tilt, ignition and the passenger compartment so with this car you get some peace of mind.

          Dual front, side and curtain airbags, seatbelt pre-tensioners and Active Head Restraints, which reduce the risk of whiplash, ensure that should you be involved in an accident you will have more measures in place to reduce the result of injury.

          Rating of Safety and Security 8/10
          This car is probably one of the safest on the roads and made me that little bit more confident in the car on the road.

          *~*~Driving the Car~*~*
          Okay so finally we get to the bit that matters most the performance of the car and to talk about "THE" button.
          The sports button is what makes this car attractive to me again, it does this by improving the control and handling on the road as it does stick to the road making it a lot more responsive to any controls issued to it, the suspension stiffened and sports springs and dampers have been fitted to give a sportier drive. The car is confident through corners and suffers very little body roll. As the majority of my journeys in the car are on motorways I really test the car out and its not at all sluggish but the sport button doesn't make it go faster so its not all that magic and I realize I've got the wrong model!. The brakes are responsive and react well when a sudden stop is required.
          This car is the 1.8i with 125 bhp not to fast but fast enough and is still fairly economical with the fuel with 35 miles to the gallon.
          With regards to visibility on first appearance this car would seem to be pretty restrictive and as the driver you wouldn't be wrong despite forward visibility being good, the chunky windscreen pillars can be obstructive when pulling out of T-junctions and sharp corners and it's difficult to see out of the rear screen when the car's fully loaded as the spoiler does come pretty far down the rear screen and when I reversed out of our drive in the cul de sac didn't even see the young girl fly behind the car in a scooter, not a great result in terms of visibility.
          The electro-hydraulic power steering is map controlled which means that the cars speed and the rate at which the steering wheel is turned determines the level of power assistance and results in superbly weighted steering that is direct and precise. The turning circle is 10.55m (34.6ft).
          The SRi model is also equipped with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD), Cornering Brake Control (CBC), Emergency Brake Assist (EBA), Electronic Stability Programme-plus (ESP-plus) and 'Sports' driving mode switch which are designed to assist the driver in maintaining control during acceleration, cornering and avoidance manoeuvres ensuring that the Vauxhall Astra SRi is safe and surefooted.

          Rating of the Driving 7/10

          *~*~Summary~*~*
          In my opinion this car looks better than it actually is although it is packed with safety features and great styling there is a serious lack of comfort and the styling has reduced the visibility of the drive.
          For rear passengers it is extremely difficult to exit the car with the sloping roof and there is not too much legroom.
          I think this car is suited for the younger generation with no children or an older couple as although the capacity is for 5 passengers I would hate to have to go on a long journey and be stuck in the rear seats.
          Boot space is pretty good and when the seats are folded there is enough room to fit a good few boxes in as our trip to Ikea proved.

          Overall the car is good to drive and looks good, if you like features and a sexy interior then this car is not for you.

          The car comes in a range of engine sizes and believe me Vauxhall have plenty of added extras that can be put on your package to increase the price, bought for new from £16,000 for the Sri model and after about 3 years you can expect the car to be worth around £6500 if you think this cars worth it go for it and prove me wrong with the comments as I am not convinced.

          Thanks for reading kellylouj

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