Editor's Notebook: 2008 Saturn Astra 3-Door

Read Automobile magazine's David Yochum's comments on driving the 2008 Saturn Astra 3-Door: I've heard all the warnings about the Astra's European interior labels, the weird center door-unlock button, and the extremely weak engine. But you know what? It also comes with its own cachet.

Stepping into the two-door Astra feels like an entirely new GM experience (which it is). Forget Chevy Cobalts and Pontiac/Toyota Vibes, everything you touch is of solid, German build quality. Push and pull the door handle - nothing moves. Press on the center stack - not a sound. I ran this thing through potholes all weekend and not a single peep of a rattle. Yes, the controls can take some getting used to, but I actually appreciated having to learn something different in a car. It keeps you fresh, and gives you a different perspective.

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The Detroit Free Press reports that workers at GM's Lansing Delta Township manufacturing facility in Michigan, where the Saturn Outlook, GMC Acadia, and Buick Enclave are built, could be back to work building new vehicles again as early as Monday next week. Production of the popular large crossover models stopped April 17th when workers went on strike over several unresolved local plant issues.