Good looking family thing
The car had a tiny dent in the driver's door when new. Fixed by the dealer.
Trunk wouldn't close as easily as one would expect - you had to smash it down really hard. Got better after some time, so we never asked for a repair.
Some plastic rattling... most recent noise - wind blowing through the driver's window (no crash history).
Engine RPM unstable at some rare occasions when in neutral. Jumps between 600-1200 and can make the engine die when accelerating from 0. It's a common SW issue with this model, but as it doesn't happen often, it doesn't really bug us.
We have a wagon. The handling is that of a wagon - it has some pendulum effect, but is otherwise stiff enough.
The suspension seems a little harder than our old Astra G (2000), so first you feel bumps you barely see, until at about 160-170 km/h, you stop feeling anything, which feels like taking off.
It is excellent value for the money, considering all the stuff inside, and the 1.8 L petrol gives enough power for 2 adults with plenty luggage. With 4 adults to carry, I'd consider a 2.0.
I had the "pleasure" to test drive a friend's 1.6 (2007) Focus wagon and was barely able to catch a fully loaded bus! (we were 3 adults with no luggage in the car vs 80 in the bus and I pushed it to 5000 RPM) Stay away from 1.6 engines - they are far too weak for this car - used cars dealers were full them.
When making our decision, we tested other cars:
KIA Ceed - I liked the handling, but due to VVT, it was very noisy at speeds above 110 km/h.
Astra H's interior was something I couldn't look at.
SAAB - tested a 180 HP, which was not impressive enough to convince us to buy 120-125 HP.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 4th December, 2010