1989 Vauxhall Astra Reviews - Page 3 of 5

1989 Vauxhall Astra GTE 16v 2.0 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 2.0 Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired124000 miles
Most recent distance136000 miles
Previous carVauxhall Nova

Summary:

Cheap, fast, reliable car

Faults:

Rear brake piston seal burst, giving a soggy pedal: serviced all brakes including discs + pads + shoes for £120.

Aftermarket immobiliser gave trouble.

The bodywork is in poor condition.

General Comments:

Bought the car:

- Chipped.

- High lift cam.

- Suspension kit - 60mm.

- Etc etc

£1100.

I drive 100+ miles every day, and this car has (in the year I owned it) *never* let me down!

32+ miles/gallon, 0-60 7.5 seconds.

Very cheap fast motoring - recommend it to anyone.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th June, 2001

1989 Vauxhall Astra SRi 5 Door 1.8 injection (18SE) from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership1997
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.8 injection (18SE) Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 3 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired102000 miles
Most recent distance115000 miles
Previous carVauxhall Carlton

Summary:

Cheapo thrust - more edge for less wedge!

Faults:

The alternator went just after purchase and was replaced under warranty. THAT alternator then failed in February 1999.

Exhaust has just rotted completely and had to be replaced, but it was a bit scruffy when I bought the car in '97 so I'm quite pleased.

Head gasket has just started weeping oil so I am in the process of replacing it myself at the moment.

General Comments:

I have driven other SRi's and this one seems very quick indeed when compared - I've had it up to an indicated 137 mph. On a private road, of course.

This one is fitted with the optional F16/5C close ratio 'box so it is very quick through the gears.

It's a non power steered model so it is a bit heavy around town, but is immeasurably better on the twisties than other power assisted Astras I have owned.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th May, 2001

1989 Vauxhall Astra GTE 16v 2.0 DOHC 16v from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 2.0 DOHC 16v Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 3 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired99000 miles
Most recent distance120000 miles
Previous carVauxhall Cavalier 1.6L

Summary:

You will not lose to anything less than a Cosworth

Faults:

Fuel lines corroded at 120,000.

Replaced rear wheel arches and sills because of rust, a common problem.

Front wings rust easily too, at the join of the bumper and wings.

General Comments:

Health warning: this is a 140mph car, drive at your own risk.

A combination of slippery shape and what is regarded as one of the best normally aspirated engines in road and competition use makes this car something to believed. At the time of launch this car was the class leader, up against the Escort RS Turbo and Golf GTi, and it put both cars to shame in out and out performance. The car boasts factory figures of 137mph top speed, 0-60 in 7.6 seconds and a combined mpg of 32.

The recaro interior wears well, and this model sports a leather steering wheel and gear knob with extras that would put most brand new cars to shame like ABS, power steering, electric sunroof, electric windows, cat converter on late models, electric heated wing mirrors.

To top this lot off is a stonking 2 litre engine with a Cosworth designed cylinder head and state of the art learning electronic control unit.

Just one let down is the handling - high sided 14 inch tyres and suspension designed for competition use makes this car a handful if you push it to the limit. The suspension was just uprated an 8 valve setup with extra rear antiroll bars and lowered springs. If you get cocky this is a one way hedge ticket.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th April, 2001

26th Dec 2009, 05:50

The 16V also had different wheel camber and toe settings for those on the rear of the car.

26th Dec 2009, 10:38

It's hardly that fast by modern standards, as most current hot hatches will crack 60 in just over 6 seconds and top 150!

But not bad for when it was released.

4th Jan 2010, 04:09

It's a sad indictment of modern cars that it takes the current equivalent of this car 87 bhp more to shave 7/10 of a second off the 0-60 times of its 20 year old ancestor (using What Car figures for both).

I'm not saying the old GTE wouldn't be spanked by any modern equivalent, but it set a performance marker that still hasn't been truly smashed even 20 years on. Hit and passed, but not smashed.

1989 Vauxhall Astra GTE 2.0i 16v petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 2.0i 16v petrol Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired65000 miles
Most recent distance65150 miles
Previous carFord Fiesta XR2

Summary:

An absolute must have one type car

Faults:

Annoying surging when cold and idling.

Kangaroo petrol at 2500 RPM. in all gears at medium throttle setting.

General Comments:

Fantastic acceleration, really powerful.

Nice neutral handling.

Extremely comfortable seating and supportive.

Great power-steering, nice feel to it.

Spotless build quality, very well manufactured.

Excellent ergonomics, everything laid out, just where you need it, can't fault it.

Looks a fairly innocent car at first glance to the uninitiated or uneducated to Vauxhall 2.0i 16v technology, but when you hit the gas,... well... time actually goes backwards!!

Can be a little thirsty if driven hard, but you can't have everything can you? I think it's acceptable given the performance factor.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th January, 2001

Average review marks: 7.7 / 10, based on 26 reviews