Used car review: Vauxhall Astra (2015-2021)


31 Aug 2021

The Vauxhall Astra is one of the more sensible cars in the hatchback segment and is well worth considering. A keen chassis, plenty of engine options and a solid interior all add up to a good package.


+ Good engine options

+ Refined driving

+ Feels well built


- No hybrid versions

- Interior is bland

- Average boot space

Verdict: The Vauxhall Astra is a thoroughly competent hatchback that works well as a family car and will suit business users too. Not only does it benefit from a good chassis setup, but there are numerous engines available and a roomy interior. 

Used Vauxhall Astra (2015-2021) review: the five-minute read

There’s no shortage of choice when it comes to shopping for a five-door hatchback and the Vauxhall Astra could well be on your list. The Astra has been a constant sight on UK roads since making its debut in 1979. 

Over the subsequent years it has gone on to sell in huge numbers. The seventh-generation Astra is by far the best to date, going on sale in 2015. There is the choice of a five-door hatch or a load-lugging estate that Vauxhall calls the Sports Tourer.

Closely matching segment leaders like the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus for size, the Astra has decent passenger space and a boot that measures 370 litres — only ten litres smaller than its chief rivals. The Sports Tourer gets a 540-litre boot that can go on to swallow up to 1,630 litres when the seats are put forward.

The styling is modern and the Astra looks attractive in the right specification. On the interior the sensible side to the Astra is clear, with no lack of black plastics throughout, although it’s worth noting that the cabin seems to be solidly built. 

You get either a 7-inch or 8-inch central touchscreen display depending on the specification grade, including a DAB radio. Vauxhall’s infotainment system is basic but easy to navigate. Some may prefer to use the Android Auto or Apple CarPlay for smartphone mirroring.

Older models did come equipped with a manual handbrake, while later versions switched to an electronic version that frees up more space between the front seats. Two cupholders, generous door bins and a decent glovebox mean provide plenty of storage throughout the interior. 

Rear passengers are unlikely to complain about the amount of legroom and headroom in the back either. As all Astras are only front-wheel-drive, there isn’t a bulky transmission tunnel robbing foot space in the rear. The middle seat is narrower than the two outer seats, so do consider that if you regularly have a full accompaniment of passengers.

The Astra is right up there with the top cars in the segment for handling and refinement when it comes to driving. It is a very comfortable car to make big journeys in and the 1.5-litre diesel is particularly frugal when ticking off those motorway miles. Both road and wind noise aren’t all that high, demonstrating how well insulated the Astra’s cabin is. 

Vauxhall’s range of petrol engines also impresses especially the 1.2-litre units. These three-cylinder engines can pull the Astra along quite comfortably and it’s not difficult to regularly see upwards of 50mpg from them.

So why is the Vauxhall Astra so popular? Well, aside from competitive pricing, the Astra is quite a decent car to drive. With crisp, direct steering the Astra makes light work of driving in town and can reward some keener driving on B-roads. This Vauxhall is a car that gets the task done without fuss and is a terrific all-rounder.

For great Vauxhall Astra deals click here

Extended read…

Used Vauxhall Astra (2015-2021) Interior and infotainment 

Even though it appears to be a sea of black plastic, the interior of the Vauxhall Astra is well made and is every bit as solid and robust as its more premium competitors. There is plenty of adjustment with the driver’s seat and the steering wheel, so finding a comfortable driving position shouldn’t be much of an issue for most people. Vauxhall even has seats that medical professionals have recognised for its excellent back support. That’s positive news if you do hefty distances.

Door bins can swallow a large drinks bottle and there is some storage within the centre console with more room underneath a tray cover that reveals two cupholders and additional storage under the centre armrest.

Rear passenger room is on par for the segment, with little to separate the Astra from rivals like the Ford Focus, Kia Ceed or Volkswagen Golf. As is typical with these cars, two passengers will be comfortable in the back, but it gets cosy with three seated in the rear. 

Used Vauxhall Astra (2015-2021) Practicality and boot space

Used Vauxhall Astra (2015-2021) engine and gearbox

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Used Vauxhall Astra (2015-2021) driving

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31 Aug 2021