For several years, Opel Astra it is the “different” Segment C compact, for those who don’t want (or can’t) choose the usual VW Golf, Peugeot 308, FIAT Tipo and the like. After having always been the conservative choice and a bit of a background, for the sixth generation Opel changes everything. In 2021, the Opel Astra is captivating, original, with great character, and with a cutting-edge technological offer both under the hood and in terms of entertainment and safety. Are we therefore facing the real anti-Golf? Let’s find out together, seeing all the details of the new Opel Astra.
The change of course: from the classic conservative GMs to the first Astra by Stellantis
The Opel Astra was one of the most popular cars among the compact midsize, the so-called Segment C, in the late 90s and early 00s. The merit was above all of a competitive price, combined with a good standard equipment, a lot of space and comfort on board and the park and reliable engines. Over the years, the various series of Astra (especially the beloved Station Wagon version, super spacious) they’ve lost more and more appeal. After a 30-year career, the model launched in 1991 to replace the Kadett recalls with nostalgia the glories of the past.
General Motors management, which had lasted since 1931, was by now focused on the production of reliable but never truly innovative vehicles, neither from a mechanical nor an aesthetic point of view. The sales of Astra and the entire brand, in fact, collapsed in the early 1910s, enough to force General Motors to sell its stronghold in the European market to the French of the PSA Group in 2017. In 2021, then, Opel is officially merged into the Stellantis maxi-group, with PSA and together with the FCA group.
The change of course was immediately very big: the two new models Crossland X and Grandland X, based on Peugeot and Citroen models, achieved great success, as well as the new Corsa launched in 2019. The Astra project, on the other hand, had just started, with a market debut at the end of 2015. Thus, the comfortable, peaceful and traditional German compact was, together with the Insignia, the only bulwark of ex-General Motors production. Today, however, the Insignia is left alone with the launch of the new, unpublished Opel Astra in 2021.
The aesthetics of the Opel Astra 2021: from the Opel Vizor a personal and original car develops: what a change!
And the route change it is very evident from the first glances. The current Astra in retirement is by no means an ugly car: it is elegant, discreet and well-designed. However, it lacks originality and a bit of personality, embodying the role of a “pragmatic and robust German compact” all too well. This is a line that has paid a lot in the past, but in 2021, the Opel Astra needs more, a change. And here comes the revolution with the new, distorted Astra.
If you had stayed away from the latest vicissitudes of the House of Lightning, you would have a hard time believing that the Astra is really an Opel. From every angle, in fact, the new Opel Astra is personal, original and unconventional of the brand. The front is in fact dominated by the new grille in glossy black horizontally running, the Opel Vizor. This grille mentions several Opel from the past, including the legendary Manta of the 1970s, and was launched by the first new Opel, the Mokka.
This mask emphasizes the length of the car, of 1.86 meters, and hides various technologies. Inside the Vizor, in fact, there are sensors for autonomous driving, totally drowned under the mask, and the IntelliLux headlights, the flagship of Opel. Introduced by previous GM management, these headlights were the first adaptive LED matrix headlights found on a generalist car. Today the system has been further enhanced: there are 84 diodes for each headlight and they are extremely smooth and thin, hiding perfectly with the lines of the car. Always under the Vizor we also find the IntelliVision system camera.
The hood that’s a lot long, and the front gaze of the car is frowning, ready to spring forward: a ‘aggression never seen on an Astra before. Laterally the lines follow the new style of the House, Bold and Pure, or rather Bold and Pure. The elongated bonnet, the curved wheel arches and the contrasting black two-tone roof give it a nice dose of badness to the new Astra, which, however, thanks to the step really wide (2.68 m) it is also quite welcoming. The rear fin at the rear C-pillar is somewhat reminiscent of DS products, but is pleasant and personal. The car is 15 mm lower than before, increasing the feeling of sportiness to the eye.
Behind, however, the new Opel Astra 2021 is decideddifferent mind from all the Opel that preceded it, and refers to the new and already appreciated Mocha. The vertical and very slim taillights give it character, as well as the very inclined rear window. A full-width Astra lettering then appears on the tailgate, and the wheel arches are very muscular and pronounced. Here, looking at it from three quarters, you can clearly see the kinship with the new Peugeot 308, which we will discuss in detail shortly. In any case, the surprise looking at the new Opel Astra from the outside is a lot. Today, the compact of Rüsselsheim is original, personal, recognizable, aggressive. Thanks to this new look now the Astra has become a car that divides: either you love it or you hate it. E butter? What do you think of her look? Let us know below in the comments.
Inside it looks quite different: many screens, modern and minimal lines and an Astra that surprises!
The surprise effect is not over yet, because it is time to get on board and get to know the completely revolutionized interior of the Opel Astra. In fact, in 2021 the German sedan says goodbye forever to the massive dashboard, full of buttons and functions that have distinguished it for over 15 years. Today, getting into the new Opel Astra means discovering a truly modern interior in step with the times.The new Astra says goodbye to the analog instrument cluster.
In its place we find as soon as you get on board the Pure Panel, a single panel that includes the fully digital instrument panel and the infotainment system. The two screens are identical in quality and size, 10 inches, but in addition to the presence of the touch screen on the central one, the two screens deal with decidedly different tasks. In the center, the screen sports the operating system of the latest Peugeot products (with an obvious customization by Opel), and should be very intuitive and easy to use. Also nice is the fact that the Pure Panel is not flat, but rather in correspondence with the “jump” between the instrument panel and the touch fold, to allow the driver to have the infotainment system facing towards him. A real pragmatic, “German-style” touch.
This approach is also seen in the presence of the left air vent inside the panel, and more. Although all the functions are integrated into the central screen and therefore can be selected with the touch or voice, there is no shortage of physical hot keys for the most useful and used functions. Turn on the audio system and adjust the volume with a wheel, for example, or manage the temperature and speed of the climate fan. Small precautions that are convenient in everyday life. Another cure for everyday functionality is the anti-reflection treatment for the Pure Panel. In fact, being without eyelid, exposed to sunlight and reflections on the windshield, Opel have thought of a special matte finish. In this way, visibility in direct sunlight is ensured, and reflections in the windshield should also be minimized.
Therefore, one can only please clean and minimal dashboard, with a clean and very important central tunnel. Here, in fact, Opel technicians have entered more spacious storage compartments, as Astra customers complained about a lack of deep compartments. Here we also find the little one selector for automatic gearbox and the one for driving mode. Both are beautiful and minimal, but they are both all too similar to Peugeot: a little more customization wouldn’t have hurt. The space on board promises to be excellent, with a trunk that comes to 422 liters, a nice increase compared to the previous 370. Finally, in addition to a good level for the legs thanks to the elongated step we also find the AGR certified ergonomic seats (the independent German body for postural medicine).
Opel Astra, in 2021 is among the most technological compact: latest generation ADAS and many innovations
If there is one thing that the Opel Astra has always hidden beneath its peaceful and quiet lines it is a full of technology from a higher category. And despite the fact that for 2021 the Opel Astra has rediscovered itself as aggressive and personal, this propensity for technology has absolutely not changed. In fact, this new generation is also full of technology that takes the level of medium-sized compact cars to a step higher.
The real highlight of the new Astra are the Intelli systems, which have always been part of the DNA of this model. In addition to the already beloved system IntelliLux of LED Matrix headlights, today further improved as previously mentioned, there is no lack of the system IntelliVision. This system, mentioned when talking about the front camera, offers the driver the possibility of having one 360 ° view of the car’s surroundings on the on-board screen thanks to 5 video cameras scattered throughout the car. A function that is not unprecedented, but which in Opel promises to be achieved better than any rival in this segment. But the real innovation of the Opel Astra is the system IntelliDrive, making its debut on Astra. This system is a real one driving assistant at the forefront of the midsize segment.
the 5 cameras (one front, one on the windshield, two on the sides and one on the rear) of the IntelliVision are also fundamental here: these, together with ultrasonic sensors and radar positioned also (and not only) under the Vizor pthey allow to have a very advanced driving assistance system. In addition to the classic Adaptive Cruise Control, automatic braking and lane keeping, in fact, the IntelliDrive system is able toadapt the speed according to the curve that you are approaching, and also to make gods semi-automatic lane changes. Finally, there are other more conventional systems such as the head-up display, the rear system …