Opel says next-generation Astra is lighter, roomier, more agile

Article by Andrew Christian, on May 12, 2015

Opel has made its new Astra more competitive in the compact car segment by making it more spacious, more agile, and lighter. The brand has released the first official image of the next-generation Astra, which will be going up against the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus. Opel considers this new model to be its key in sustaining profitability after having incurred so many losses.

The picture shown is of a heavily camouflaged car, which CEO Karl-Thomas says will have a “fantastic design” and will have a “very affordable price.” He also said during a video presentation that this Astra will “redefine” the segment with its connectivity that’s best in its class, emotional design, and German engineering.

This Astra has shorter dimensions but its cabin will be significantly more spacious. In the statement, Opel said that the Astra’s weight has been reduced, making it more frugal and more agile. The Astra will be available with the latest fuel-efficient engines from the brand. Vauxhall, Opel's sister brand that’s based in the UK, will also be selling the Astra.

It will start selling this October, only a month after it made its debut at the Frankfurt auto show. The Astra’s technical details were not announced yet. According to reports, 150 kg have been cut from the current car. Like the existing model, it will be available as a five-door, station wagon, and three-door.

It will have GM's OnStar connectivity package – the first Opel to feature this technology. The Astra had been the brand’s top volume model but last year, the title was taken by the Corsa subcompact.

JATO Dynamics said that sales in Europe of the Opel/Vauxhall Astra climbed by 1.5% to 46,915 units in the first quarter. Opel sold 78,361 units for a 21% increase. In the quarter, VW Golf sales grew almost 3% to 132,815 units. Meanwhile, the Ford Focus volume had a slight decline by 0.4% to 60,739 units.

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