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Opel Astra Sports Tourer put to the test: Lifestyle station wagon with a new name

Hans-Dieter Seufert
Opel Astra Sports Tourer tested
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A n this point you have the right to find a condemnation of the Opel terminology. However, we do not agree with the - meanwhile rather dreary - grumbling about the fact that the station wagon is now calling itself Sports Tourer and no longer Caravan. We are excited that he calls himself Astra, but he could be called Omega.

And this is how it works: In Generation J, it has grown by 18 centimeters, and the Opel Astra Sports Tourer, which is positioned as a compact car by Opel, extends to 4,698 millimeters that is difficult to understand. This undercuts the Omega A Caravan from 1987 - with its bulky longitudinal engine, rear-wheel drive layout and a load volume of 540 to 1,850 liters, for many still the epitome of the large Opel station wagon - by just 32 millimeters and thus less than the width of a matchbox.

Rather modest amount of space in the Opel Astra Sports Tourer

So with the Opel Astra Sports Tourer there is quite a lot of cars in the parking lot. But what the Sports Tourer does with the increase in length compared to its predecessor, the angular Astra H Caravan, is not impressive. He wasted the centimeters in the stem. The space in the Opel Astra Sports Tourer is modest for such a large car. Pilot and Co. have as much space as in the 1,010 euro cheaper sedan. So it is enough, whereby the wide, flat A-pillar limits the feeling of space. Otherwise it fits with the ergonomics in the cockpit. From the comfortably deeply integrated seating position, however, the driver has to deal with the complicated operation. The mass of small buttons in the Opel Astra Sports Tourer looks panameric-important; Always finding the right ones, however, demands too much concentration even after getting used to it.

In the rear, the passengers in the Opel Astra Sports Tourer are no less cramped than in the tightly cut predecessor. In addition, short rear doors with small opening angles make it difficult to get into the rear seat bench that is too low. In contrast to the limousine, adults no longer lack headroom on it, but the knee room remains modest and the height adjustment range of the headrests is too small> The Opel Astra Sports Tourer sacrifices 40 liters of luggage space to its elegance. But the well-designed luggage compartment can be easily loaded via the low edge of the trunk. TheHandling bulky goods is also made easier by clever details such as the spring-loaded rear seat back. Unlocked from the trunk, she throws herself on the bench. There is usually no need for more clatter, because the loading area of ​​the Opel Astra Sports Tourer is almost level even if the seat cushions are not additionally set up.

Opel also provides hobby hauliers with sturdy lashing eyes, optionally there is a dividing net, holding points that can be moved on side rails or something that the price list of the Opel Astra Sports Tourer calls 'pocket-like side net'. What you have to imagine this remains in the dark, as Opel withheld this extra from the test car. Otherwise little is missing in the Sport version, the comfortable ergonomic seats are also part of the standard equipment of the Opel Astra Sports Tourer, such as air conditioning, CD radio and the load compartment blind that can be raised at the touch of a finger. Only the excellent adaptive bixenon light (1,250 euros) should still be included.

Agile driving behavior

In any case, more urgent than the adaptive damper adjustment. Because almost all the extras at Opel Flex are called things, it is called Flex Ride in the Opel Astra Sports Tourer, and varies for 980 euros in damper hardness, accelerator pedal and power steering characteristics in three modes. The suspension comfort, which is already high in normal mode, remains free from wobbling after pressing the 'Tour' button and becomes even more supple. 'Sport', on the other hand, is one of those things that you try out in life (those big sitting balls for the office, for example) only to find that life doesn't get nicer just because it is less comfortable.

With its safe, agile driving behavior, the tourer doesn't need a sports show anyway.
The high-feedback steering guides it precisely around bends. In Wolfsburg, they may consider the multi-link rear axle a blessing for the world - or at least the compact class. In the rear of the Opel Astra Sports Tourer, the twist beam ensemble, enriched by the often mentioned Watt linkage, shows that a good set-up is particularly important.

Opel Astra Sports Tourer 1,500 euros cheaper than Golf Variant

The 20 hp more Opel Astra Sports Tourer undercuts this by well, adjusted for equipment 1,500 euros. Another advantage of thebest Opel Astra, the Sports Tourer - a big car from which one would have expected even bigger things.

Where is the 18 centimeter increase in length?

With an exterior length of 4,698 millimeters, the Opel Astra Sports Tourer is 183 millimeters higher than its predecessor. To find out what he was doing with the growth, auto motor und sport measured the distance from the front end of the body to the hip point of both cars. This is determined by the seating position of the measuring dummy Twiggi: In the lowest position, the driver's seat is positioned so that Twiggi's foot is on the accelerator pedal. The Opel Astra Sports Tourer has 2,315 millimeters between its metal hip bone and the bow, and the Astra H Caravan 2,130 - exactly 185 millimeters less.

So the entire increase in length is in the front end, none of which benefits the passengers or the luggage compartment of the Opel Astra Sports Tourer. Not only in terms of trunk volume (minus 40 liters), but also in terms of the wheelbase, the new station wagon offers even less than the old one. With the Astra H Caravan, Opel stretched the wheelbase by 89 to 2,703 millimeters compared to the sedan - 18 more than the new Opel Astra Sports Tourer has.


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