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Old 09-13-2019, 10:18 AM   #1
marcmag is on a distinguished road
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Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Chicago
Posts: 64

2008 Astra XR
Default With sadness

At 135,000 miles and facing a round of work from the third (or 4th?) time spending hours sanding and defogging the headlights to the much more expensive clutch, brakes and summer tires, I've traded my Opel-badged black two-door Astra XR to a dealer here in Chicagoland. They weren't sure they were going to reinstall the Saturn grille, Saturn wheel centers and XR badge, but they have them. The LED conversion for the fogs are also still with the car.

There appears to be no North American market for new premium two-door hatches, with Volvo C30's as long in the tooth as my Astra and two-door GTI's last imported in 2015. So, I've thrown in the towel and have gone with a four-door hatch. With GM and Ford doing away with most cars and nothing that really interested be from the other makes (Veloster, briefly) I figured I need to act now to get something with no or low mileage.

The Astra was traded for a 2018 Chevy Cruze Premier with the RS package, also black. It has more equipment than the 2019 version (but for the LED tail lights) and was 10k down from the original MSRP with 8900 miles. People less knowledgeable say it looks a lot like the Astra and the similarity in the hatch area was also noted in Car and Driver's review of the Cruze when it was released.

Like the Astra, it looks faster than it really is, but handles pretty well and has all the newer safety and infotainment features baked in.

This forum has helped me to customize the Astra and improve its performance (VXR snorkel and airbox mod). It has been a fun 10 years for a car bought as new that I will certainly miss even more than my '72 Vega GT, my '88 Isuzu Impluse or both of my Mitsubishi Eclipses. The Opel badging was a source of endless amusement.

The 16" alloy wheels for the Astra's winter tires won't fit the lug pattern on the Cruze, so please message me if there is intertest in those rims. There are plenty of 16" Cruze wheels in salvage and I'll pick up a set and move the tires.

Thanks to all.
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