Vauxhall Astra (2015 – 2022) Review
Vauxhall Astra (2015 – 2022) At A Glance
Insurance Groups are between 11–22
On average it achieves 78% of the official MPG figure
Look beyond the understated styling and you’ll find a surprisingly upmarket cabin, a generous level of standard equipment, efficient engines and some seriously tempting prices. It’s even better if you opt for a post-2019 facelift Astra. Put simply, you’ll get a lot of car for the money if you buy a Vauxhall Astra.
Appearances can be deceptive. The current Vauxhall Astra, introduced in 2015, might look similar to its predecessor, but there were big changes beneath the skin. Improvements across the board mean that the Astra is closer than ever to the Ford Focus and Volkswagen Golf, two cars that dominate the sales charts in the UK. Maybe it’s time to take a second look at the Astra.
Indeed, a subtle facelift in 2019 means that it’s better than ever. Good driving manners, a new range of engines and improved technology are just three of the reasons why a new Astra is such a compelling and credible choice. The 2015 car was good, but the new version is even better, thanks in part to input from Vauxhall’s new French owners.
The styling isn’t a highlight. Although design is a subjective matter, the Astra does little more than blend in with its surroundings. It also looks a little lacklustre when parked alongside one of the many crossovers and SUVs that are fashionable in 2020.
It’s a similar story inside. The cabin offers little in the way of flair and imagination, although the design is simple and modern. There’s a clear and logical layout to the dashboard and instruments, while the quality is high for a volume manufacturer. Highlights include excellent seats, a user-friendly design and a soft red glow from the buttons at night.
Practicality is good, especially if you opt for the Sport Tourer (estate). There’s also a fair amount of room in the cabin, although headroom in the back is a little tight, but less so in the Sport Tourer. Equipment levels are good, even on the entry-level version. Opt for Elite Nav or Ultimate versions for premium levels of kit at an affordable price.
That said, be wary of depreciation. The Vauxhall Astra is quick to shed its value, particularly in the early years, which means buying used is better than buying new. Indeed, the Astra is a used car bargain – an undiscovered gem of the second-hand market.
The driving experience is nothing to write home about, but to continue a theme, it’s better than you might think.
Although it lacks the precision of the Ford Focus, it’s an immensely satisfying car to drive. It’s also a little more mature than the Focus, making it feel like a cut-price Volkswagen Golf. For long distance driving, the Astra is hard to beat, especially if you opt for a diesel engine.
Don’t rule out the petrol engines, especially since the 2019 facelift. The 1.2-litre turbo, which is offered in three power outputs, is a little gem. A terrific blend of punchy performance and efficiency makes it a worthy alternative to the diesel engines.
In case you hadn’t noticed, we rather like the Vauxhall Astra. It’s dowdy image is a problem for other people, which leaves you free to discover one of the most underrated cars of 2020. Don’t be too disappointed if you’re handed the keys to an Astra when you book your next rental car.
Looking for a second opinon? Why not read heycar's Vauxhall Astra review.