While Opel in the past, under US rule, dared to lack skill and technology, it seems they found a second breath in the Stellantis era. And that also appears in the new Astra. It was designed and built in Germany, but uses a French base, the EMP2 platform, which can also be found on a number of Citroën and Peugeot models. It is a ‘multi-energy platform’ that, in addition to traditional petrol and diesel engines, also offers (plug-in) hybrids and (starting next year) 100% electric drive options.
Up to column B
With its Sport Tourer version, Opel started from the five-door version, which was passed without modification to the back of the driver’s seat. Here you can also find the best seats, with optional ‘AGR-Approved’ copies that support your spine best and are recommended for those who grind for miles or suffer from back pain. And there is also a digital dashboard, a wide wide panel with a counter and an infotainment system screen. The latter can be more friendly and the screen can also be placed a little closer to the drive for greater ease of use. But for some, the Astra is good, even though some materials may be better in less eye-catching parts. In full sun there are also annoying reflections from the top of the dashboard on the windshield.
After column B, the resting life begins. The wheelchair is extended by 57 mm for the new body, but nonetheless the rear leg room remains limited. Could it have anything to do with the thick backs of the AGR seats on our test drive? It won’t worry, but you can’t call it spacious. With an extra 21 cm of extra height behind the rear axle, Opel puts everything on the trunk. It offers a loading surface 109 cm wide and 109 cm deep, which can be extended to a height of 185 cm with a backrest 40/20/40 folding back, although the loading floor is not completely flat.
Intelligent cargo area
There is also space under the ‘Intelli-Space’ loading floor that can be adjusted. How much it depends on the version you choose. In versions with combustion engines, this is 608 liters, about thirty liters below the Octavia Combi, up to 1,634 liters with the rear seats down. With a hybrid plug, a high-voltage lithium battery is installed under the charging floor and the volume drops to 548 and 1,574 liters. In the electric version there is still space under the loading floor for charging cables, and ‘normal’ cars can lose more. Options …
But behind the back seat, Opel has provided small storage compartments, which you can still access even with a full jacket by folding the back seat down. And the canvas for the trunk can also be stored under the loading floor. Actions.
The rear body structure is stylish and closely resembles that of the five doors. So the lights are the same on both versions. If you are running behind Astra, you can find out which version comes from the location of the number plate. And the five doors found space in the bumper, but with the Sports Tourer the tailgate serves as the holder of the license plate, because the sill for loading the station car is very low, 60 cm. Very low price per phone number.
180 hp, later 225 hp
Return to the driver’s seat then, to start the hybrid power plug-in. It includes 150 hp 1.6 liter four-cylinder petrol and 81.2 kW / 110 hp electric motor. All is good for a maximum power of 180 hp and a torque of 360 Nm. The 225 hp version will follow later. The 12.4 kWh lithium battery in the 180 hp version enables up to 60 kilometers of electric drive, although you must be especially careful with the slider pedal. It all feels smooth, but not fast: 7.7 seconds per sprint from 0 to 100 km / h and over 225 km / h. What’s amazing is the silence on the board. 1.6 petrol is hard to hear, except in a full throttle. The 1.2 petrol we drove with for a while, made itself sound more emphatic. The eight-speed automatic can do its job for further improvement, because it often encountered shock during switching up and down.
In terms of usage, plugin hybrids are emerging from its most economical side. At a distance of about 40 miles[70 km]and a few highways, we drove a full two-thirds of the time to reach the use of about two gallons[2 L]. With longer road lengths, such use will no doubt increase, but shorter distances can be completely covered by electricity by selecting the ‘electric’ condition. The handling is excellent, just like that of the Peugeot 308 which shares its chassis. To be controlled, comfortable despite the more dynamic and smooth adjustment of the damper and smooth through each bend, even if the steering wheel can be more direct: The Astra Sports Tourer is clearly based on the German model.
What does it cost?
The hybrid version of the plugin is not immediately easy: in the basic version of ‘Version’ it will cost you at least € 39,750, especially 1,500 euros more than the five-door Astra. If you want a fully equipped model, you pay € 47,450 for the ‘Update’ version. The most affordable Astra Sports Tourer is 110 hp 1.2 petrol with a six-speed manual transmission, which costs € 28,400, or € 32,500 if you want it automatically – but then you increase the reduction rate from Version to Business Edition and you will get 130 instead of 110 hp. The 130 hp diesel with a standard eight-speed gearbox costs at least € 34,900.
If you are looking for a large field with a modern and clean design and solid driving character, then it is certainly not a bad choice for the Opel Astra Tourer. Whether a plug-in is the right choice depends on how you use it, your budget and whether you need it for tax reasons.
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