No Turbo, Convertible, or Wagon Planned for Saturn's Astra Line

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Inside Line recently posted a good first drive report of the upcoming 2008 Saturn Astra. In the article, the Edmunds.com automotive news division revealed some insight into what we can expect from Saturn's new small car in the near future.

While General Motors sells Astras in a variety of body styles and with a multitude of powertrains around the world, North American customers – at least with the current generation of the car – will have limited choices. To the dismay of many SaturnFans.com visitors, Saturn and GM reportedly have no plans to bring the turbocharged version of the current Astra stateside as a performance-tuned Red Line model. "Although the Holden HSV Astra VXR is powered by a turbocharged 240-hp version of the Saturn Astra's engine," wrote the online periodical, "that engine is not U.S. bound." GM vice chairman, Bob Lutz, told the site that it would require "too much emissions work."

In addition, a Astra wagon reportedly won't be offered on this side of the Atlantic due to fears of slow sales. Likewise, the nifty Opel Astra Twin-Top convertible will not make the trip either due to all of the work needed to make the topless compact pass U.S. safety standards. However, a sedan version of the Saturn Astra is said to be in development, and will likely be part of the next-generation Saturn Astra lineup in 2010.

Source: Edmunds.com Inside Line

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