Vauxhall Opel Astra F
|1991 to 1998|
India: Halol (OIPL)
Italy: Grugliasco (Bertone)
South Africa: Port Elizabeth (Delta Motor)
United Kingdom: Ellesmere Port (Vauxhall Ellesmere Port)
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||3 and 5-door hatchback
4-door sedan / saloon
5-door wagon / estate
3-door sedan delivery (panel van)
|Wheelbase||2,517 mm (99.1 in)|
|Length||Hatch: 4,050 mm (159.4 in)
Sedan: 4,239 mm (166.9 in)
Wagon: 4,278 mm (168.4 in)
Convertible: 4,239 mm (166.9 in)
|Width||1,696 mm (66.8 in)|
|Height||1,410 mm (55.5 in)|
The Opel Astra F debuted in September 1991. With the Kadett E's successor, Opel adopted the Astra nameplate, which was already used by Vauxhall for the Kadett D and E (see Vauxhall Astra). It was offered as a three- or five-door hatchback, a saloon (sedan), and an estate (wagon) known as the Caravan and available with five doors only, bringing Opel's run of three-door wagons to an end at long last. A cabriolet was also offered, designed and built by Bertone in Italy. While the Astra F finished production in Germany in 1998, Polish-built Astras remained on offer in Central and Eastern Europe, as well as Turkey, with the name Astra Classic from 1998 to 2002.
The Opel Astra F consisted of two main revisions and was revised in 1995, with the launch of Opel's new Ecotec engine.
Aside from the South Africa-only 200t S, the lead model was the GSi – a 2.0 L I4 16V petrol injected model with 151 hp (110 kW), available as a three-door only. It also featured sports bodykit and widened front seats in the interior. However, this was substituted in 1995 and was renamed as SPORT, although only a limited number were produced and the bodykit was removed also and it could be selected with the lower-powered, but more modern 'Ecotec' version, the X20XEV (136 hp, 100 kW) parallel with the C20XE. In Europe from 1994 all Astra models were offered with the 2.0 L 16V Ecotec X20XEV parallel with the 2.0 L 8V (C20NE) engine, but the three-door and station wagon models could be selected with the 151 hp (110 kW) C20XE engine. Some Astra models had an 1.6 L engine with 83 hp.
Later 2.0 16V GSi specs
|Drivetrain||Front wheel drive|
|Top Speed||129 mph|
|0-60 mph||8.5 secs|
|Torque||188 Nm, 138 ft-lb|
|CO2 Emissions||206 g/km|
|Miles Per Tank||366 miles|
After the Astra F was replaced by the new generation Astra G in 1998, the so-called "REDTOP" C20XE engine was also taken out of production.
The model was also launched in South Africa in 1991, where it was produced under licence by Delta. The "Kadett" name was retained for the hatchback Astras until 1999. The sedan and station wagon models were offered under the Astra name. The Kadett and Astra in South Africa won the title of 'Car of the Year' in two consecutive years (1994 and 1995) even though they were versions of the same car. South African nomenclature was denoted in centilitres, so the Astra and Kadett ranges featured 140, 160i, 180i and 200i models. The South African Astra included a variant with a 2.0 L turbocharged engine called the Opel Kadett 200t S. The 200t S was a specific name where Delta Motor Corporation wanted to show the specialty of the type, which could beat the BMW M3 in a quarter mile in that time. The engine (C20LET) in the Opel Astra 200t S was sourced from the Opel Calibra and Opel Vectra A 4x4 2.0 16V turbo, four-wheel drive found in European markets, but local engineers converted the six-speed, four-wheel-drive drivetrain (Getrag F28) to front-wheel drive only and as such it was unique to South Africa.
The Opel Astra also became available in Australasia badged as a Holden, first in New Zealand in 1995, and then Australia in 1996. The first models were imported from the UK, but later models were imported from Belgium. The Holden Astra name had previously been used on rebadged Nissan Pulsar models from 1984 to 1989.
Opel Astra's first generation was exported to Brazil from December 1994 as the Chevrolet Astra, possible because of a lowering of import tariffs. General Motors do Brasil sent the 2.0-liter, 115 bhp engines to the United Kingdom whence the completed cars took their way to Brazil. In February 1996 the Brazilian government again changed the import tariff, from 20 to 70% - making the car prohibitively expensive and leading to its cancellation after just over a year on the market. Instead, the locally built Kadett was updated. The second generation Astra was manufactured in Brazil. It is interesting to note the First Generation Astra has a Vauxhall-like front grille instead of an Opel-based grille.
Beginning in March 1995, the Astra sedan was assembled in Indonesia where it was marketed as the "Opel Optima". The name had to be changed since PT Astra was Toyota's long operating local partner in Indonesia. In India the Opel Astra was assembled from 1996 to 2002 for the local market.