So is the Astra GTC an expensive Astra, or a modestly priced sports hatch with great performance and handling?
Comfort and Refinement
The GTC’s cabin in Sport trim is very similar to the Astra hatchback’s interior, but this higher-grade SRi has a more special ambience with extra details like the leather-trimmed steering wheel and door inserts, and the dashboard enhanced with a mix of mock-aluminium and carbon fibre-look inserts. The SRi also has rally-style sports seats, which hug the body and give good added support and security for the kind of rapid driving on twisty country roads that this car really relishes.Refinement is reasonable for the kind of car it is, which means a sporty engine note and some resonance from the exhaust, but there is not much wind noise and modest road rumble from under the car.
Safety and Security
The standard safety kit on this car includes six airbags, active head restraints, seat belt pre-tensioners, a pedal release system, and an extensive range of electronic braking aids: as well as anti-lock brakes it has electronic brakeforce distribution, hydraulic brake fade assist, cornering brake control and emergency brake assist. Also standard are cruise control, steering wheel audio controls, air conditioning and electric front windows.
Extra standard kit on the SRi includes hill start assist, dark tinted rear windows, auto lights and wipers. It also comes equipped with a remote control ultrasonic security alarm system, automatic lighting with tunnel detection, rain sensitive wipers and an electro-chromatic anti-dazzle rear-view mirror.
The test car was fitted with a Navi 600 colour monitor satellite navigation and a CD-MP3 player with Aux-in and USB connection. The AM/FM radio has 36 station pre-sets, and the system has 20 watts per channel and seven speakers. Sound quality is very good.
- Renault Megane Coupe
- Audi A3 3-door
- Volkswagen Scirocco
What We Liked
- Vibrant performance
- Sporty handling
- Svelte looks
- Discreet badging, not too in-your-face
- 20,000 mile service intervals
What We Disliked
- Deserves a more special cabin
- Aluminium-look trim, not genuine
- Access to back seats a bit awkward
What We Would Like To See
- One of these parked outside ready to be driven somewhere
So is the Astra GTC an expensive Astra, or a modestly priced sports hatch with great performance and handling? That depends on your viewpoint, and it is probably a bit of each. No question that it is the most desirable model in Vauxhall’s Astra range, sporty looking, a fun drive and a car that puts a smile on your face on a twisty road. It’s a class act and we like it a lot.1 March 2012
Vauxhall Astra Road Test Data
|Model Reviewed||Vauxhall Astra GTC SRi 2.0 CDTi|
|Performance (manufacturers data)|
|0 - 62 mph||8.4 seconds|
|Top Speed||131 mph|
|CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures)||g/km|
|Economy (NEDC Figures)|
|Extra Urban||65.7 mpg|
|Euro NCAP Rating||5 stars|
|Warranty||Lifetime / 100,000 miles|
|Price (when tested on the 01/03/12)||£22,430|