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.