The New Vauxhall Astra | Part Three

The New Vauxhall Astra

Vauxhall Astra

Design - Dynamic lines and intelligent use of space
  • Powerful appearance
  • Balanced proportions
  • Easy rear passenger access
  • Strong feeling of spaciousness
  • Keyless entry, Keyless start system from autumn ’04 on

With its expressive, dynamic appearance the new Vauxhall Astra makes a strong statement in the sector. A complete departure from the fourth generation’s more conservative design, the new, fifth generation car represents the latest stage in Astra’s evolution.

Cleverly designed to balance every proportion, the new Astra is highly pleasing to look at. The work of GM Europe’s design guru, British-born Martin Smith, Astra has a well-composed architecture that works well with its sleek, taut surfaces and bold outlines to give the newcomer an exclusive appearance, which clearly sets it apart from all of its competitors.

Astra Chassis Brings New TechnologyTo Sector
  • New Astra builds on predecessor strengths
  • Dynamic suspension systems linked for the first time in compact segment
  • Suspension layout designed for easy tuning
  • IDS Plus debut
  • Sports switch for SRi
One of the main criteria when developing the new Astra was to create a car which is truly rewarding to drive. Vauxhall’s engineers had a solid starting point in the shape of the fourth generation Astra - which won many plaudits for its ride and handling - and so used the outgoing model as the basis for the new, but with many detail changes under the skin. And Vauxhall is confident it has a winner on its hands when it comes to driving the new Astra.

The basic chassis architecture is similar to the outgoing model with conventional MacPherson struts and lateral control arms at the front, while the rear wheels are attached to a specifically adapted torsion beam axle with a double-walled, U-shaped profile. In addition, extensive work has been carried out to refine the chassis and to make it as adaptable as possible for easy tuning according to specific models in the range.

continues... | Part Four
Published 24 February 2004 Melanie Carter
 

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