The Holden Astra lobs in as the long-awaited replacement for the Holden Cruze hatch, and will have its work cut out for it in the hotly-contested small car segment. We’ve already detailed the basics of the 2017 Astra range’s prices, features and specifications, but here are some details that you may not have already heard.
1. The European motoring media have crowned the new Astra the European Car of the Year, which bodes well for its Australian arrival.
2. Exterior design of the Holden Astra is inspired by the Monza coupe concept, and while it looks a little less resolved in the real world it should still stand out from the crowd.
3. The base model R misses out on standard driver aids such as Automatic Emergency Braking and Lane Keep Assist. They will be available in a $1000 option pack but not till March.
4. No rear air-con vents isn’t much chop in Australian hot weather and more than one USB port would be handy.
5. Right now the latest Astra only comes as a five-door hatchback but you can expect both sedan and a wagon to arrive in 2017. For now the previous generation three-door Astra sells alongside, while the locally-built Cruze is finished.
6. Electric-assist power steering tune was developed by Holden engineers at the Lang Lang proving ground. They also contributed to the Astra’s stability control tune.
7. The six-speed automatic transmission mated to the 1.6-litre engine was introduced to the Astra program at Holden’s insistence. It won’t be available until March.
8 .Astra debuts the Holden Eye forward-facing camera that allows tech such as AEB, Lane Keep Assist, Forward Collision Alert and Forward Distance Indicator to be standard in the RS and RS-V and optional from next March in the R.
9. “Intellilux” adaptive LED headlamps are optional as part of a $3990 pack for the RS-V. There are eight LEDs in each headlight that switch on and off automatically to vary depth and spread of light.