Vauxhall Astra is Europe’s Car of the Year 0

Astra-nomical victory for Vauxhall.

58 European automotive journalists bestowed the title of European Car of the Year to the newly built, British-made Vauxhall Astra.

photo credit: telegraph.co.uk

photo credit: telegraph.co.uk

2016’s car of the year was announced at the Palexpo Exhibition Centre in Geneva, on the eve of the annual Geneva Motor Show’s opening press day, and the Opel-Vauxhall Astra family sedan managed to beat out rivals such as the BMW 7 Series luxury limo and the Jaguar XE. The Astra received a total of 309 points compared with 294 for the Volvo XC90 and 202 for the Mazda MX-5. The Astra, now in its seventh generation, is produced at the Vauxhall Ellesmere Port factory in Cheshire, and has become something of a great white hope (or any of the other many colours it is available in) for Opel-Vauxhall.

The company has previously made claims that they will see a return to profit in 2016, after what has been a tumultuous time for the carmakers. They have lost a reported 18 billion dollars since 1999. The hopes pinned to cars such as the Astra are not unfounded, however. Opel-Vauxhall have been pushing innovations and advancements in many of their models, and the new generation Astra benefits from these steps greatly. It comes equipped with the personal connectivity service OnStar, which we have previously written about, that allows users to turn the vehicle into a wifi hotspot as well as a constant connection to a communication headquarters and GPS services. The Astra also offers gasoline and diesel engines ranging from 99 hp to 197 hp, is a new 1.4-litre, 143 hp direct injection four-cylinder motor. Not only is the car technologically advanced, but it’s had a bit of a facelift too. The car was made lighter and significantly more spacious on the inside. Changes clearly approved by European motor journalists.

Vauxhall’s chairman and managing director, Rory Harvey speaking about the win said: “To be named European Car of the Year by judges throughout Europe is a testament to the hard work that has gone into the Astra. This is the new model’s first full year of sales, and it has already been well-received.