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Cap138 06-30-2008 05:50 PM

Astra roll call!
 
The Astra has been out for almost half a year now and I've notice quite a few new owners on the board recently. So I thought this thread would be a fun way to get to know your fellow Astra owners. Please share with us a little bit about you and your Astra:
[LIST][*]What Astra model do you own/what options?[*]Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?[*]How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?[*]Have you owned other Saturns?[*]Any interesting/funny Astra stories?[*]And a little bit about yourself…[/LIST]

Cap138 06-30-2008 05:51 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
I bought my Astra near the end of March. After three months and nearly 6000 miles I still love every minute of driving it. It’s a black sapphire 5-door XR with 5-speed manual, sunroof, leather, sport package, and advanced audio. So far, I’ve installed the aftermarket Boomerang armrest and a Thule roof rack.

This is my third Saturn as I’ve owned a 2003 Ion3 and a 2000 SL1. I guess I’ve owned every iteration of compact car from Saturn (except for the two early generations of S-Series). I don’t try to be too brand loyal nor am I obsessed with Saturn, but they just keep coming out with a fun, quality, and economical car that’s different and stands out from the rest of the market.

I’ve only seen three other Astras out in the real world. The first time I saw another Astra driver on the road I was so excited that I caught up to him and gave him a wave and a three horn honk. He didn’t respond and then he turned right at the next light, he either didn’t hear me or probably though I was road-raging on him.

As for me, I’m a late-twenties single guy working as a chemical engineer for a small medical device company. I’ve been there since 2003 but am now changing careers and following through with my original dream of being a pharmacist. I’ve just applied for pharmacy school and hope to get accepted for Fall 2009 admissions. In the meantime, life is pretty busy as I’m still working full-time as an engineer and part-time as a pharmacy technician while trying to squeeze the last few prerequisite classes in where I can. One thing I’ve learned is that it’s never too late to change direction in life.

I also just bought a kayak and am eager to start kayaking for the first time. I bought the Thule kayak holder for my roof rack and it works great in transporting it around. I think I’ll try to get out on the local lake this weekend.

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londonxr3 06-30-2008 06:22 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
I bought my Astra in March. I have put about 6000km on it and have loved them all. It's a Saphire Black XR 3 door, with 18's. No modifications as of yet, but they will come by next year I hope. Tint may come soon if you count that as a modification.

I have not owned any Saturns before this, but have driven my moms SC2 before. I come from the Chevy side of GM having owned both a Corsica LT and my other current car, a 1999 Cavalier Z24.

Funny story about the Astra was the day I took it to the local Walmart. I had a lady and her husband wait for me to come back to the car for who knows how long, just to ask me what kind of car it was. And then there are the looks on the street that the car gets when I drive around town. There are only two other Astra owners, one a Silver 5 door and the other a white 5 door so mine is thus far still the only 3 door...that I have seen anyways.

About me, I am going to be 30 this year, depressing I know. I work for Research In Motion (we make the BlackBerry phones that you all know and love). I currently live in Waterloo Ontario, but was born and raised in London Ontario. Ummmm...I have a cat....lol

unkle bik 06-30-2008 06:27 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
Purchased our Xe on 3/08/08.

Test drove it in one of the worst snowstorms Ohio has had in the past 30 years. We figggered if it ran great during that, it was a keeper.:D We now have over 6200 on the clock. I just completed it's second oil change in preperation for a road trip this week. Oil changes are easier than on my L200.

It's great handling & fuel economy can't be beat.:yes:

L200Pilot 06-30-2008 08:24 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
I got mine on January 26th, just a week or two after they hit shelves. It's Arctic White, has Advanced Audio, Premium Trim, 18's, manual transmission, an XM Xpress RC, a Thule ski rack, and a cargo net in the trunk. It's currently got about 22,500 miles on it.

This is personally my fourth Saturn (1996 SL2, 2002 L100SE wrecked right after I got it, and a 2002 L200). Combined with my family, it's number 8.

Dyslexington 06-30-2008 09:02 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
Hello All,

I picked up my Salsa red 5d XR on June 2. I got the performance package, sunroof, heated seats and an automatic. I wanted the 5-speed, but the dealer couldn't find one with the options/color that I wanted. This is my first Saturn. No mods yet, although I have been thinking about a K&N filter.

The funniest thing that has happened, so far, is when I was driving home from work for the first time and couldn't figure out how to turn on the cruise control, so I pulled over to check the manual. While I was stopped one of my co-workers stopped thinking that my new car had died. I had to sheepishly explain that the car was okay.

I'm a 45 year old married father of three. I live in the thumb of Michigan and work as Manufacturing Engineer.

I finally saw another Astra, on the road, this past Sunday. I was so surprised that I didn't even wave.

m100 06-30-2008 09:35 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
What Astra model do you own/what options?
Red 3 door XR 5 speed. No options.

Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?
None so far.

How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?
I think about 200 or so. 2nd week.

Have you owned other Saturns?
Nope. First one.

Any interesting/funny Astra stories?
Not suprisingly I have not seen any advertising for this car. I "discovered" it by chance in an automotive forum on a collegiate website. The discussion involved the state of the US automotive industry in general, and GM in particular. One guy had some connection w GM, and the other guy was a Honda guy (owned the Honda p/u and an Acura NSX). The discussion turned to the Astra, which got me curious about it. Soon I started googling/youtube-ing every Opel/Saturn/Vauxhall/Holden discussion about the Astra. Loved the comparo between the Golf and Renault Megane on Top Gear.

My coworker vacationed with his wife last year in Holland and Germany,renting an Opel Astra while there and said he loved it,even taking it on the Autobahn. I started looking at inventories online, and saw a blue,base model XR 5 speed 3 door. Unfortunately it was nowhere to be found on their lot,so I decided to go with the red one they had (my first red car).

And a little bit about yourself…
Unix system engineer with large multinational insurance/retirement/investment co. Motorsport enthusiast; have raced about 7000 track day miles in my Lotus Elise and Elan at various race tracks in the region. The Astra's now the DD, as I needed functioning A/C for the summer and proper street tires for the rain.:D

burnin8r 06-30-2008 10:37 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
* What Astra model do you own/what options?
5 speed Silver Sand XR5 with Advanced Audio and Dual Panel Sunroof.

* Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?
none at the moment, but I do plan on debadging + lowered suspension. Maybe new wheels when it is time to replace tires =P

* How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?
approaching 5k miles, purchased April 2008

* Have you owned other Saturns?
no, and I don t really plan on it either. I have no real loyalty to the brand per se, nor do I identify with other Saturn owners / drivers. Well, maybe Astra owners =)

* Any interesting/funny Astra stories?
In 3 months I have yet to see another Astra... but I did see a 74 Opel Manta.

* And a little bit about yourself…
I work in the field of software enhancements / bug fixes for a billion dollar publisher of directories. I build computers on the side, and I consider myself a Linux enthusiast.

seankiely 07-01-2008 01:16 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
[QUOTE=Cap138;1273764]
[LIST][*]What Astra model do you own/what options?[*]Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?[*]How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?[*]Have you owned other Saturns?[*]Any interesting/funny Astra stories?[*]And a little bit about yourself…[/LIST][/QUOTE]

*Astra 5 door XR, stock no leather or sunroof.
*not yet.....
*670KMS - owned it a week today....
*2005 Saturn Relay (destroyed it), 2007 Saturn Relay - still kicking.
*I am older (almost 40) and not cool - the young kids love the car....I haven't seen on in my town.
*I am an Investigator for the Federal Gov (Canada), I am married and have 3 kids - 2 in car seats.

*one add on story - really wishing we got the sunroof.

Sean

2drsmansnrf 07-01-2008 06:58 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
[LIST][*]What Astra model do you own/what options?
Silver Sand 3 door XR base model[*]Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?
Dealer installed smoke gray leather seats and sunroof. Self-installed Boomerang armrest.[*]How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?
Since Feb. 10, I've put a little over 6000 miles on it, and have loved every single one! Ok, maybe not so much the miles to the office as the ones away from it. ;)[*]Have you owned other Saturns?
My '97 SC2 gave out just before the Astra arrived on the lots. Borrowed the family's spare '99 SC2. There's also a VUE and ION.[*]Any interesting/funny Astra stories?
The first day I drove my Astra to work, all my work buddies took a break to check it out. Of course, we wanted to look under the hood, but heck if it didn't take the guy assigned to pop the hood forever to find the lever. [*]And a little bit about yourself…
Boring, geeky infosec work drone. Much rather be chauffeuring my dogs to their hospital and nursing home rounds as therapy dogs.[/LIST]

spencerb 07-01-2008 08:04 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
A lot of engineers here! Like Cap, I'm in my late 20s and also a chemical engineer. I make rockets.

I got my Astra on 3/5/08, and have about 9,400 miles. No problems except the check engine light.

No real funny stories except when the service writer at my retailer had to make a double take because he thought I brought a Toyota in by mistake.

A coworker has an identical Astra, except his is silver. We both love the car. He's an engineer, too.

ad_astra 07-01-2008 09:49 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
[B] * What Astra model do you own/what options?[/B]
Astra XE, 5 Speed manual, only "option" was a/c. I wanted the alloy wheels too, but none were available....

[B] * Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?[/B]
I got the dealer pin striping (which is admittedly somewhat of a ripoff) but unfortunately, it's actually one of my favorite parts of the car because they have cute little planet saturns at the end of them.

[B] * How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?[/B]
Bought at the end of March, just broke 3000 miles

[B] * Have you owned other Saturns?[/B]
Never. Nor had anyone in my family or extended family. Probably never would have bought one of the old Saturns.

[B] * Any interesting/funny Astra stories?[/B]
I finally made my tires squeal during a turn! All it took was making a sudden, sharp left turn at about 50 mph..... no loss of control though...

[B] * And a little bit about yourself…[/B]
mid 20s, Going into my third year of graduate school for astronomy.

PanVet 07-01-2008 10:41 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
Purchased June 16.
Twilight Blue XE 5 speed with standard features including AC.

No after market features added and no plans to do that other then I might replace the factory wheels and get the windows tinted.

Just put 1000 miles on it.

This is my 2nd Saturn. I leased a 2005 Vue and turned it in for the Astra.

Chirped the tires going from 2nd to 3rd.

Edit to add 5 door model.

craigtnutz 07-01-2008 10:49 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
What Astra model do you own/what options?
XR5 Star Silver - Automatic, Advanced Audio Pkg, Premium Trim Pkg, Sport Handling Pkg

Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?
None yet. I'm thinking about debadging, tinting the rear windows, and adding an aftermarket sunroof.

How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?
Picked mine up on June 18th after waiting 14 weeks for her to be built and shipped. I've put on 700 miles so far; 28.2 mpg on the first tank, 29.5 mpg on the second, and pulling 30.4 so far on the third. This car is a great blend of fuel economy and fun.

Have you owned other Saturns?
My brother and I shared a 1994 SL in high school/college. Then Saturn entered what I would call the dark days where I wouldn't even consider buying one. The styling for the entire brand from 1996 - 2007 didn't appeal to me at all. Now with the introduction of the Sky, Aura, Outook, redesigned Vue, and Astra there isn't a model I wouldn't purchase. In fact, we leased a 2008 OUTLOOK for my wife in April.

Any interesting/funny Astra stories?
None yet. Although my 3 year old son's favorite feature is the "magic key". Whenever he's in the car with me he has to push the silver button to do his magic trick and make the key appear.

I've seen 4 other Astras in the wild although all before I took delivery of mine.

And a little bit about yourself…
I turned 30 this year. I have a wife, a kid, and a dog. I'm an application programmer for the "leaders and best".

I'm from a GM family, so I like to stay loyal to the company, I've owned a 2000 GMC Sonoma, 2001 Olds Alero, 2002 Chevy S-10, 2004 Buick Rendezvous (ugly car, great lease terms), 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix (traded in for the ASTRA), and a 2008 Saturn OUTLOOK. I have to say that after 2 weeks of ownership I don't understand why 4 years ago my GP had a sticker $6,000 higher than my ASTRA. The ASTRA has more safety features, a nicer interior, roomier front seat, equal passenger volume, better gas mileage, more amenities, a far superior DIC/BC, and isn't that far behind in acceleration (0-60 in 10.4 vs 8.7) despite 62 less hp. Where was this car in 2004? I could have saved myself some $$$.

Savorybacon 07-01-2008 11:24 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
I own a 5 door XR 5spd. All the goodies but leather.

So far I have debadged and made an appointment to be tinted 35% front windows 15% in the back. I also I have thule roof rack system coming in a few days for my bike.

I have owned the car for about a month and have put on 500 miles.

I have never owned any other Saturns.

I always am asked if its a new Mazda 3...I have yet to see another Astra of any kind on the road, not even test driven ;)

I am currently 20 years old. I am a full time college student and work full time as an asst custsrv mngr for a Kroger store. In my free time I go biking. I love cars I have owned 4 new cars in my 4 years of driving, it's an expensive hobby. I finally have a sensible car and intend on keeping it that way.

SaturnRaycer 07-01-2008 11:51 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
[QUOTE=Cap138;1273764]The Astra has been out for almost half a year now and I've notice quite a few new owners on the board recently. So I thought this thread would be a fun way to get to know your fellow Astra owners. Please share with us a little bit about you and your Astra:
[LIST][*]What Astra model do you own/what options?[*]Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?[*]How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?[*]Have you owned other Saturns?[*]Any interesting/funny Astra stories?[*]And a little bit about yourself…[/LIST][/QUOTE]

[LIST][*]What Astra model do you own/what options?
XR 5dr Black Sapphire. Sport package and heated seats[*]Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?
=Performance alignment[*]How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?
=Bought it April 2, 2008. 5400 miles[*]Have you owned other Saturns?
=This is #6. 98 SL2, 99 SC2, 2001 L200, 2002 L200, 2007 Aura (ended lease for the Astra)[*]Any interesting/funny Astra stories?
=Kappa owners (Sky/Solstice) know more about the Astra and notice more than other Saturn owners. Sometimes confused for Mazda 3s[*]And a little bit about yourself…
=55, two married adult children and two grand children. Workin my @$$ off.[/LIST]

RicksVue 07-01-2008 11:58 AM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
[QUOTE=Cap138;1273764][LIST][*]What Astra model do you own/what options?[*]Any aftermarket add-ons or modifications?[*]How long have you owned/how many miles or km so far?[*]Have you owned other Saturns?[*]Any interesting/funny Astra stories?[*]And a little bit about yourself…[/LIST][/QUOTE]

It's actually the wife's Astra. But:

1. Silver Sand XR3 auto.
2. XM radio via FM modulator with direct output to the antenna.
3. Less than 2000 miles so far.
4. Lots. I'm driving a 2007 Green Line Vue. Daughter has a 1994 SC2.
5. Being stopped on the road and being asked what kind of car it is :-)
6. The real owner is a college professor (in Information Technology). Me, I'm just a tech nerd geeky type.

Sirraven 07-01-2008 12:50 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
Delivery: Jan 21, 2008 (6700 miles currently)
5 dr XR: Twilight Blue
-Manual
-Sport Handling Pkg
-Adv. Audio Pkg
-Dual Panel Sunroof

Aftermarket
-Window Tints (32% front side, 13% back side/hatch)
-Trailer Hitch/Bike rack
-Only time before more come

First Saturn Owned, Second car owned (first 1989 Mercury Tracer)

23, graduated Mich Tech in 2007, now full time Mechanical Engineer


Also Cap kayaking is a lot of fun. I think the first time that I went is when I was probably 8 or younger, I know I went canoing before I was 1. So is it a sea or whitewater boat?

wrw98177 07-01-2008 01:09 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
Purchased my Star Silver XE on April 16. Options are auto tranny and heated seats. Vehicle also has pinstripes from the dealer (Saturn of Lynnwood).

Mileage is sitting at about 2,700 and my MPG from my last tank (mostly street commute in hilly Seattle area) was 27.

Only mod is a K&N air filter -- got it cheap from amazon.com.

Car is a great daily driver. Only downsides are the cruise control (never could figure out how to operate it on a 300-mile cross-state trip in May) and the upholstery -- a magnet for lint and hair.

Have yet to see another Astra on the road.

Previously owned a 2004 Ion3. Drove it for three years with no problems, except for the infamous front sway bar bushings.

dborcher 07-01-2008 02:35 PM

Re: Astra roll call!
 
2008 5 door, blue, premium interior, sports handling, sunroof, 5 speed

No modifications yet. As this is my first new car I plan on keeping it stock for a while especially since its under factory warranty. I tend to keep cars for a long time so hopefully sometime down the road I will do some modifications to the engine to get some more power out of it. (turbo or supercharger)

Bought it May 28th 2200 miles so far.

My previous car was a 1994 SC1. I swapped out the weak single cam engine for a twin cam. I put just about every bolt on performance part I could on it. Intake, exhaust, header, big bore throttle body, lowering springs, KYB struts, Upgraded motor mounts, lightweight flywheel, rear disc brake conversion, and 17'' racing rims.

When I first got car everyone I told about it had no idea what it was and had never heard of it. I haven't seen another astra on the road, but I know at least one other person on this board is from Gainesville, FL


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