Opel Astra 2022: First Drive Test & Details

We’re a little early, but we already had the opportunity to do our first test drive with the new Opel Astra 2022. One thing is certain: the first Astra from the post-GM era will not be a Peugeot or Fiat offshoot, but a real Rüsselsheimer. Because the Opel home is not only developed but also built.

The new Opel Astra is so one hundred percent ready 2022 not yet, but the heavily camouflaged pre-series models that we are allowed to move around Rüsselsheim in a first test drive already largely correspond to the series status. The structured development process provides for test drives in regular succession to evaluate the status of things.

And that has to be 100 percent correct because the Astra is not just any Opel, but one of the most important and most sought-after models in the repertoire. When asked whether it is still possible to change things on the new Opel Astra 2022, Head of Driving Dynamics Andreas Holl replies that something is still possible here and there, for example with the programming of the electric steering assistance.

The situation is different, however, with hardware, for which expensive and complex production tools usually have to be developed. which of course happened a long time ago. Because the new Astra will be presented in autumn, orders can be made from October, and the coveted compact will be available from dealers in January 2022.

First Drive

The new Opel Astra 2022 ready for the first test drive is already special in that it was no longer developed under GM direction for the first time, but is now based on version 3 of the EMP2 platform. This technical basis originally comes from PSA (Peugeot / Citroen) and is used within the Stellantis Group e.g. B. not only serves as a basis for a Peugeot 308 but also for one or the other Fiat in the future.

When asked about this, the lead development engineer Rainer Bachen assures that the Astra is a real Rüsselsheimer with clearly recognizable Opel DNA, not only because it is manufactured here, but because it was developed by the Opel employees. We can’t see much of the new shape of the Astra due to the extreme camouflage, However, some detailed images that have already been published show a strong resemblance to the Vizor front of the Opel Mokka, which stands for the new Opel brand face.

Opel Astra 2022

There are no pictures of the interior yet, but it is certainly characterized by a very clean and straightforward design, also characterized by the so-called pure panel cockpit, which consists of screens arranged flush next to each other. In the nobler version, these are even made of glass and look very high quality.

But even the basic version is impressive. Unlike other manufacturers – e.g. from the VW Group – the new Opel Astra 2022 also has clearly defined keypads, for example under the middle touchscreen.

Opel Astra 2022 Dimensions

With a length of 4,374 mm, the tried and tested five-door, new Opel Astra 2022 has only grown by four millimeters, but with a wheelbase that has grown by 13 mm (2675 mm). And at 1860 mm, the compact Opel is now 51 mm wider than the still current Astra. The rear-seat passengers: inside have no reason to complain due to the spaciousness of the space, and behind them, the Opel is well equipped for everyday use with a luggage volume that has grown to 422 liters and a variably adjustable load compartment floor.

At the front, the: driver: feels better integrated into the car than before, which is due to the lower seating position. But although the H point, which marks the pelvic position of the driver, is now 12 mm lower than before, the new Astra can be seen from the front through the laminated and thus insulating windshield and also from the side. We undertake the first test drive with the well-known 1.2-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine with turbocharging, which generates 130 hp and whose six gears are shifted by hand (optionally also with an eight-speed automatic).

Opel Astra 2022

The well-insulated three-cylinder hangs spontaneously on the gas, very different from the much more sluggish, also 130 hp GM turbo three-cylinder of the still current model that we have with us for comparison purposes. The harmonious spring-damper coordination leaves a very mature impression, even on bumpy asphalt. The new Opel Astra 2022, which is always delivered with tires with optimized rolling resistance, remains easily controllable on the 17-inch models installed here and can be steered precisely and smoothly through the curves. The good roll-off and suspension noise insulation already make a very adult impression.

Opel Astra 2022 Engine

Switch to the new Opel Astra 2022 plug-in hybrid with a system output of 180 hp, similar to the Opel Grandland (optionally in the Astra also with 225 hp): The combination of a 1.6-liter turbo gasoline engine and eight-speed -Automatically integrated e-machine, which is supplied by an externally rechargeable 12.4 kWh battery, leaves a harmonious and powerful impression. In addition to the pleasant power development, the drive is characterized by a quiet and cultivated run.

However, the heavier and more tightly tuned plug-in hybrid on its 18-inch tires do not roll as comfortably as the three-cylinder petrol engine that was previously driven. The steering feel is also a bit more synthetic. This also applies to the pedal feel of the brake, which cannot be optimally dosed, for example, when approaching a red traffic light to a standstill. But these are just small things that may still be able to be remedied before the start of series production. Overall, the new Opel Astra 2022 leaves an all-around successful, harmonious, and mature impression on the first test drive.

Elenor Kling

A tech lover and generally a car enthusiast who likes to do a lot of research and share knowledge.

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