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Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer due this year

Vauxhall has revealed details of the forthcoming Astra Sports Tourer, which will go on sale in October 2010. It promises to be more practical and better equipped than the outgoing Astra Estate, but starting prices are lower with the 1.4i 16v VVT 100bhp ES model costing £16,575 - around £500 less than the existing entry-level variant.

The newcomer carries a premium of £995 over the five-door hatchback and has a suitably large load area with 500 litres of luggage room while standard equipment levels look good too with all models getting air conditioning, curtain airbags, Electronic Stability Control (ESP), an electronic parking brake (EPB), an aux-in socket and Active Safety front head restraints. One useful option is FlexFold, which lets you lower each section of the 60/40 split-folding rear seatbacks in the walls of the cargo compartment at the press of a button housed.

There are four trim levels, ES, Exclusiv, SE and SRi with the top 2.0 CDTi 160bhp SRi model costing £22,685. One of the most popular models is expected to be the 110bhp 1.7 CDTi ES which costs less than the outgoing 90bp 1.3-litre CDTi Astra Estate Life, yet delivers more power and emits less than 120g/km of CO2.

The Sports Tourer is likely to account for around 10 per cent of all Astra sales and like the new Astra hatchback, will be built at Vauxhall's Ellesmere Port plant in Cheshire, while its upper-body structure has been engineered at the Vauxhall Engineering Centre in Bedfordshire.

Click here to read our 2010 Paris Motor Show A-Z guide

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