Friday, 25 March 2016

2016 Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer


The 2016 Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer is now on sale priced from £16,585 on-the-road, with first cars arriving in Vauxhall showrooms March 2016 after its global debut at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.

One of the UK's top-selling and best-loved cars, Astra is a household name for British car buyers with almost three million sold in the UK over the last 36 years, including 50,000 in the last 12 months. More than 25 per cent of British motorists have either owned or driven an Astra, so reaction to a new model will always be felt across the market.

The Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer is based on an all-new lightweight vehicle architecture with a new design, powertrains and technology. It is built at Vauxhall's Ellesmere Port manufacturing plant in Cheshire. It is the only plant to build this body style.

The Sports Tourer has proved a popular car in the UK market, with sales making it the third most popular estate car sold in 2015 with key rivals including the Ford Focus Estate and the Volkswagen Golf Estate. With a fleet/retail sales split of 80:20, it holds great appeal as a company car, taking drivers from their daily commute to weekend activities. The Sports Tourer will also appeal to private buyers who are looking for a practical family car.
Vauxhall's all-new Astra and Astra Sports Tourer have secured 2,000 jobs at the Ellesmere Port manufacturing plant in Cheshire after workers won a long-term contract and a £140 million investment from GM.
Thanks to the outstanding attitude and work ethic of the workforce, the plant beat world-class competition from across Europe to build the new car.

The facility is a significant contributor to the local and national economies building over five million vehicles since 1964. The factory is a major exporter with 52 per cent of production going to 25 European markets.

At full production it is estimated the plant will build around 680 cars per day and 120,000 per year. It takes about 24 hours to build an Astra, from sheet steel to the finished article, although once the plant reaches its final running speed this is expected to be down to just 22 hours.

UK firms, including those in manufacturing, utilities, construction, transportation and storage, benefit from approaching £70 million gross value added that results directly from Vauxhall's investment in Ellesmere Port (source: Centre for Economics and Business Research).

"The all-new Astra and Astra Sports Tourer are of critical importance to Vauxhall and its manufacturing facility in Ellesmere Port," said Rory Harvey, Vauxhall's Chairman and Managing Director. "I'm very proud of the men and women who build this vehicle to world class levels of quality and productivity."

And this great British success story doesn't end there. The Astra range was designed by a team led by Brits Mark Adams and Malcom Ward. In his role as Vauxhall/Opel's Design Director, Ward follows in the footsteps of both his father and grandfather who both worked at Vauxhall.

Also looking forward to a bright futures is Vauxhall's other UK manufacturing plant, Britain's leading commercial vehicle plant, located in Luton, where the Vivaro van is produced.
Workers in Luton won a similar long term contract to their colleagues at Ellesmere Port. Their agreement runs for 10 years after a £125 million investment that secured 1,500 jobs.

The latest generation Sports Tourer has almost the same dimensions as the outgoing model- length 4,702mm, width 1,871mm and height 1,510mm- however, it offers much more space for passengers and luggage. While the driver can enjoy 26 millimetres of additional headroom, passengers in the rear have 28 millimetres more legroom. The new Astra Sports Tourer can take up to three child seats in the rear and can also carry up to 1,630 litres of luggage thanks to the efficient packaging.

The Astra Sports Tourer demonstrates the evolution of the Vauxhall design philosophy 'sculptural artistry meets technical precision', catching the eye with a lighter, more agile appearance. Inspired by 2013's Monza Concept, the new car's lean design makes the Sports Tourer look more athletic than ever before thanks to work carried out by a design team led by Brit Mark Adams.

Inside, gracefully sculpted shapes are combined with premium materials and functional clarity. Switches and controls are reduced to an absolute minimum, supporting the efficiency and ease of use that is at the core of the Astra. The centrepiece of the new Astra's interior is the award-winning IntelliLink system. The location of the system was carefully selected to ensure both an ideal view of the display as well as easy reach and use.

The Sports Tourer is based on an all-new lightweight architecture. Its body is more lithe and aerodynamic and is also driven by powerful, weight-optimised engines. The new Astra Sports Tourer is up to 190kg lighter than its predecessor. It is the most aerodynamically efficient estate car built by Vauxhall with a co-efficient drag-value of 0.272 making it as streamlined as the five-door variant.

The bodyshell and structure alone are around 85kg lighter. High-strength and ultra-high-strength lightweight steels, more compact subframes as well as modification to the front and rear suspension all contributed to this result. Further size and mass-optimisation measures include shorter front and rear overhangs, an exhaust system that is up to 25 per cent lighter and smaller wheels and tyres that weigh up to 11.5kg less. The brake system has less mass to decelerate, making a more compact design possible (weighing 10kg less) while delivering even better braking performance.

Another plus on the efficiency side is the latest-generation Vauxhall engines. They distinguish themselves with their compact and ultra-efficient design: for instance, the new 1.4 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo engine now weighs less. Its aluminum engine block alone is 10kg lighter than the cast-iron block of its predecessor.

Reduced weight also leads to noticeably higher agility while saving fuel and CO2 emissions. The Sports Tourer with the 1.0-litre Turbo and Easytronic 3.0 combination is an economical and clean high-tech petrol engine. The engine portfolio has helped boost efficiency with outputs ranging from 110PS to 200PS and fuel consumption and combined CO2 emissions of up to 83.1mpg and 89g/km respectively.

For the first time on a Vauxhall, the tailgate can be opened without a touch or a remote control. In combination with "Keyless Entry and Start" a simple small kicking motion under the rear bumper is enough to open the tailgate. A further kicking motion under the bumper will close the tailgate. The clever system can detect any obstruction and stops the mechanism in case of an emergency. The tailgate can still be opened by a switch on the driver's side of the car or via the key's remote control.

In order to improve loading space the Sports Tourer Elite model comes with 40/20/40 foldable rear seats enabling even more flexible loading space configurations. The FlexOrganiser product range with side rails, dividing nets and various fastening options is available as an option so that all loaded materials can be stored safely and tidily.

The new Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer features a range of fuel-efficient petrol and diesel powertrains. Lightweight construction sets the latest engine range apart from previous generations. They are smaller, more compact and lighter while simultaneously being more powerful and frugal. The new Astra Sports Tourer diesel with 110PS, for example, achieves 83.1mpg while only emitting 89g/km of CO2.

All diesel units have a displacement of 1.6 litres - including Vauxhall's top-of-the-range BiTurbo engine. In combination with six-speed manual transmission, Start/Stop, the 1.6 BiTurbo CDTi with 160PS can achieve up to 67.3mpg and emits as little as 112g/km of CO2.
Performance and power generation of the BiTurbo engine are comparable to that of a 2.0-litre engine. The top-of-the-range engine develops a maximum torque of 350Nm from just 1,500 rpm. The Astra Sports Tourer with the 1.6-litre BiTurbo can reach a top speed of 137mph. Its performance is almost identical to that of the 35PS more powerful and higher displacement 2.0-litre predecessor.

The superiority of the common rail engine comes from the sequential, two-stage turbocharging. A small VGT (variable geometry turbine) turbocharger is responsible for the exemplary responsiveness without "turbo lag" in the low rpm range. The specifically designed larger turbocharger takes over more and more as engine-speed increases. Therefore, the Astra 1.6 BiTurbo CDTi can react spontaneously to accelerator commands and has reserves at all power ranges.

The new Astra Sports Tourer with the BiTurbo diesel weighs almost 150kg less than its predecessor. This is down to the consistently applied lightweight construction of the bodywork and chassis and the intelligent component design. The aluminum cylinder block and cleverly devised packaging are the two main factors here. The new two-stage turbodiesel is around 20 per cent more efficient than the outgoing 2.0-litre unit of the predecessor.

The 1.6 ECOTEC Direct Injection Turbo is the most powerful petrol engine available for the Astra Sports Tourer. The 200PS turbocharged direct injection engine boasts an impressive 300Nm of torque, enabling the Astra Sports Tourer to achieve 0-60mph in 7.2 seconds. Maximum speed for this engine is 146mph and achieves fuel consumption of 45.6mpg on the combined cycle with CO2 emissions as low as 142g/km.

This unit is also impressively smoothe throughtout its range. To achieve this, Vauxhall engineers have optimized the induction and exhaust systems. Despite direct injection and focused combustion, engineers were able to substantially reduce noise levels compared with the previous engine. As a result of these 'sound-engineering' measures, the customer will appreciate quiet and smooth idling, with a pleasant sound quality even at high road speeds, engine speeds and loads.

Based on an all-new lightweight vehicle architecture, the new Astra Sports Tourer has stepped forward in technical development. An uncompromising focus on mass reduction and compact design has delivered a lightweight chassis with driving dynamics finely honed in key areas such as suspension, brakes and steering. This has resulted in greater agility, better handling, improved responsiveness and enhanced ride comfort. In a nutshell, this new-generation estate is more engaging and fun to drive.

The uncompromising weight reduction of the new Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer befits both agility and efficiency. The weight of the bodyshell alone was reduced by 85kg. Further chassis related measures helped to shed a further 50kg. Weight of the front and rear suspension was reduced, and high-strength and ultra-high-strength steels as well as more compact subframes were used. In the Astra Sports Tourer less weight does not mean less strength - the new body structure's torsional rigidity has not been compromised and actually registers an increase, up from 18.6 to 19.0 kNm/degree. This solid structure ensures a firm foundation for optimising the new Astra's handling and ride characteristics, as well as helping to attenuate the passage of noise and vibration into the cabin.

The top mountings of the MacPherson struts are de-coupled to separate the paths of spring and damper loadings. To reduce unsprung weight and optimise weight distribution, the combined strut carrier is in aluminium, while the anti-roll bar is in hollow steel. The lower, L-shaped control arms are made of mass-optimised sheet metal and attached through two bushings to a steel front subframe. The suspension geometry and the tuning of the bushings are designed to provide both lateral stiffness and longitudinal compliance for excellent handling and good ride comfort. The rearmost bushing is also elastomerically damped, helping to prevent the transmission of road shocks through the steering wheel.

This latest evolution of the MacPherson strut layout results in excellent roadholding and has been developed in combination with the improved, electrically-powered steering to deliver precise control and handling characteristics.

The dual-circuit braking system comes in one of three combinations: '15-inch' specification (276mm ventilated front discs with 264mm solid rear discs), '16-inch' specification (300mm ventilated front discs with 288mm solid rear discs); plus a '16-inch/15-inch' alternative which uses the larger front and smaller rear discs.

Electronic Stability Control (ESC) is standard across the range. The ESC yaw sensor in the centre of the car detects movement around the vertical axis and another sensor on the steering column measures the steering angle being applied. These inputs are then correlated with the speed of the vehicle, and the system is programmed to execute whatever actions will most effectively prevent the onset of a loss of control. Depending upon the driving situation, it is possible for braking to be applied to one, two or three wheels at once, and, if necessary, the electronic throttle opening may be reduced.

The new Astra Sports Tourer's rack-and-pinion steering system is electrically powered to help reduce fuel consumption. This speed-sensitive system is 18 per cent lighter and more energy-efficient, requiring less power assistance at all speeds. Additionally, Smooth Road Shake (SRS) compensation helps reduce any steering wheel vibration which may be caused by a road wheel imbalance. Drift Pull Compensation (DPC) automatically corrects any pull or drift tendency to keep the vehicle steering straight ahead.

The latest generation of the Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer will bring driver assistance systems and comfort features to the compact class. The Astra Sports Tourer features the full LED IntelliLux matrix light as well as the latest-generation front camera with enhanced capabilities and functionalities such as Collision Mitigation Braking and Collision Imminent Braking.

A comprehensive active and passive safety concept is the basis for outstanding protection in the new Astra Sports Tourer. The rigid passenger cell ensures the least possible deformation and the largest possible survival space in crash conditions. To accommodate the impact energy in case of a crash, the front, sides and rear of the passenger compartment are surrounded by energy absorption zones that deform in a controlled manner. The Sports Tourer comes equipped with an intelligent and dynamic lighting system, IntelliLux, that automatically and continuously adapts to the traffic situation while offering the maximum lighting capacity.

Using input from the front-mounted camera to detect the light source from a vehicle approaching or immediately ahead, IntelliLux automatically deactivates individual LEDs in the relevant zone which could blind other drivers, simply masking out the area around the light source. The rest of the road and its surroundings remain brightly illuminated in high-beam mode. The LED segments are automatically switched back on as soon as the light source from other vehicles is no longer detected. With its high degree of precision and virtually instantaneous adaptability, IntelliLux LED with glare-free high beam (GFHB) functionality is the most advanced headlamp system currently available.

Numerous assistance systems benefit from the latest-generation front camera. It has higher image-processing power and an increased detection rate. One example is Traffic Sign Assist, which can detect and display road signs and LED signs. In conjunction with Navi 900 IntelliLink, Traffic Sign Assist also continuously checks the front camera and navigation data for relevance. In the new Astra Sports Tourer, speed limits are permanently displayed on the screen located between the speedometer and the rev counter, thus reducing the risk of exceeding the speed limit.

The new Astra Sports Tourer can activate Following Distance Indication on the central display, which utilises the front camera to detect moving vehicles on the road ahead, calculating and displaying the distance in time. A green car symbolises the vehicle in front, and if the distance to the car in front is insufficient, the Headway Alert function is automatically activated and the symbol turns amber.

Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning are both available with the new Astra Sports Tourer. Recognising road markings, it gently turns the steering wheel in addition to the well-known alerts if the driver should unintentionally veer out of lane. If the corrective action does not prevent departure, the amber Lane Keep Assist icon flashes and provides warning tones as the lane marker is crossed to provide a Lane Departure Warning alert.
The Sports Tourer offers Forward Collision Alert with Collision Mitigation Braking functions. The Forward Collision Alert (FCA) feature assists drivers in avoiding or mitigating the impact of front-end collisions. In case of a potential collision, it warns the driver with a loud audible alarm, a visual warning in the instrument cluster and an LED projection on the windscreen. The system now also includes Integrated Brake Assist and Autonomous Emergency Braking. Vauxhall's award-winning ultrasonic Side Blind Spot Alert provides an additional safety net both for Astra Sports Tourer drivers and other road users.

Occupants of the Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer can enjoy outstanding connectivity thanks to Vauxhall OnStar. The infotainment offering includes two latest-generation devices of Vauxhall's award-winning IntelliLink system, bringing the connected world of smartphones and apps into the car. One is alreadycompatible with the latest Android 5.0 Lollipop and Apple iOS 8 (or higher) smartphones, while the other will follow suit shortly. With the integration of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, users can access maps, message reading and third-party apps (depending on the integration system) via the car controls and its large touchscreens (up to eight inches).

OnStar, launched in the summer of 2015, is one of the cutting-edge service and safety features available in the new Astra Sports Tourer. It turns the car into a powerful a 4G/LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot, enabling up to seven devices to be connected to the car network. The built-in 4G LTE structure is integrated into the vehicle's electrical system. As OnStar comprises an independent SIM card encapsulated in its module, customers are not required to have a smartphone to use connected services.

OnStar gives access to a broad portfolio of services such as emergency services, roadside assistance and remote control through the myVauxhall App. OnStar's key principle is that subscribers are connected to real people. OnStar Advisors are located at the high-tech Vauxhall OnStar Contact Center in Luton. They are multilingual in order to be able to answer in the subscribers' own languages and are available 24/7, 365 days a year.

At a push of the red SOS Button, OnStar users can request assistance whenever they deem it necessary, for example if they witness an accident. But OnStar is also there in case one cannot ask for help personally. For example, if an airbag deploys, OnStar is alerted automatically. An advisor will then contact the subscriber and call them in the vehicle via the OnStar module to determine if help is required. If there is no response, the advisor will immediately send emergency responders to the exact location of the vehicle.

The Privacy Button allows the subscriber to mask the position of the car and become invisible to the system: OnStar subscribers are in complete charge of their data. However, to ensure maximum safety for subscribers, OnStar will automatically overrule the privacy command in case an airbag is deployed.

In addition, OnStar subscribers can contact advisors from anywhere via the smartphone app. The app also enables the subscriber to remotely access important vehicle data such as oil life and tyre pressure, or to remotely lock or unlock their car.

The infotainment functions can be controlled via the touchscreen located on the centre console, via remote control on the steering wheel (selected functions only) or via voice control. In order to minimise the risk of distraction, the most important information can be repeatedly displayed directly under the drivers' eyes in the colour instrument cluster located between the speedometer and the rev counter.

In combination with Onstar, smartphones can easily be connected to the car's Wi-Fi Hotspot. This brings additional phone integration benefits such as real-time traffic information or the latest maps, and thanks to the map data being stored on a server instead of the phone, it saves memory on the device.

All models come with Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, audio streaming, Aux-in and USB ports. DAB+ enables better radio selection and reception. In addition, Navi 900 IntelliLink offers a high level of personalisation - the home screen can be tailored according to customer preferences. It also offers a favourites concept, which gives users the possibility to adapt the infotainment system to their individual needs. Up to 60 favourites including radio stations, phone contacts, playlists, navigation destinations, etc. can be stored.

The all-new Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer will be in showrooms in March 2016 priced from £16,585 on-the-road.

The new Sports Tourer, built at Vauxhall's manufacturing plant in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, follows hot on the heels of the highly-acclaimed five-door model and is up to £1,870 less expensive than the outgoing ST with a simplified range. The new Astra Sports Tourer range includes Design, Tech Line, SRi and Elite, with Nav versions of the SRi and Elite trims also available.

Range highlights include the 1.0-litre three-cylinder Turbo Start/Stop ecoFLEX model priced from £17,285 on-the-road. With an Easytronic five-speed automatic transmission, the same model achieves an impressive 97g/km CO2 emissions. The range-topping 1.6-litre (200PS) is available in SRi trim priced from £21,725 on-the-road. The diesel offering includes the 1.6-litre 'Whisper Diesel' (110PS) Start/Stop ecoFLEX model (prices start at £18,785 on-the-road) that achieves 83.1mpg and CO2 emissions of 89g/km.

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