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Old 11-03-2009, 12:26 PM   #1
spencerb
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2008 Astra XR
Default Trade the Astra for a VUE?

I'm in a car dilema!

Here's the story. I love my Astra, but I've had a few problems with it. The A/C had to be replaced. I recently took it in for the leaky gas cap issue and was told I needed a new oxygen sensor. Sensor was stuck, and it turned into a $2,000 repair (all under warranty of course). Now the engine light is back on, so I have to take it in again. I'm 1,200 miles shy of the bumper-to-bumper warranty ending, but the latest problems are all covered under the 100K warranty.

So my wife suggests I get rid of the car. I don't like having to drive 2 hours to get it serviced, and I don't want something that will keep causing me problems.

They have a 2006 VUE Redline on the lot, and it looks really nice. I'm thinking of trading the Astra for it.

Pros:
Much better sound system (it has advanced audio and a real aux-in for my XM).
I LOVE the Honda powertrain - I had it in my former 04 VUE.
More room for a baby seat.
Can tow a trailer (even though Saturn says you can't on the RL, you can in reality), which means I don't have to keep my parents' old truck.
Other features such as sunroof.
Possibly lower maintenance and repair costs, and it would probably be easier to find places to service it.

Cons:
Not as good gas mileage.
I'd miss my Astra and how fun and cool it is.
No heated seats.

The VUE has about 33K miles; my Astra has 35K. It doesn't have any warranty left (I don't think), but I don't expect any major issues. Another thing we are considering is that my wife's Element is terrible for a baby seat - it's very hard to get in and out. She is thinking that if I get the VUE, she'd get a small economical car (the Saturn lot also has a Mazda3 she likes, so maybe we can get a discount for buying two cars at once). That way the VUE would be good for traveling with the baby. Before all this we have been considering trading her Element for something more baby-friendly.

I know it's a personal decision, but does anyone have any suggestions or opinions? I don't want to regret getting rid of the Astra, even though I know I'll like the VUE.

...
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2013 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited

Past Saturns: 97 SL2, 01 SC2, 04 VUE, 08 Astra, 02 L200.

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Old 11-03-2009, 01:08 PM   #2
metalmanjwp
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Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

I have the 2005 Vue with the V6 and it gets very good mileage in the city-20mpg and 26+ on highway. Has a 250HP engine with 43,000 Mi. No major problems other than the ignition lock has been changed 2x. Disk brakes just set me back $169. I like the better view from a SUV and you can haul an 8' ladder in it with back seats down.

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Old 11-03-2009, 02:22 PM   #3
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2004 VUE Red Line
Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

Drive the Redline first. It's not going to drive like a normal Vue, it's significantly harsher and sportier, despite how limited the changes sound on paper. And the power is going to be night and day from an Astra. Quite frankly, if you were happy with your Astra, I'd say you probably won't like the Honda V6. The Honda V6 is tame until about 3000rpm, at which point it starts to get torquey and angry. Then once VTEC kicks in, it's like a totally different engine.

I guess it depends on how much they're asking for the RL. I love my RL, and for the money I couldn't imagine me driving any other SUV or car really. Around here, an SUV brings considerable safety and peace of mind. But it takes a certain kind of person to love the Vue RL, and if you're not that sort of person the stiff ride combined with somewhat difficult to drive nature of the engine can make you hate the vehicle.

Go drive it, only then can you really tell if you'll like it.

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Old 11-03-2009, 03:31 PM   #4
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1997 SL2
Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

I'd personally trade in the Astra for the VUE:

1) VUEs are roomier and bigger than an Astra
and 2) At least it'll (hopefully) get you off the SES horror story train

I swear sometimes that light likes to cause headaches and eat money...

However you will be dealing with the Honda drivetrain (personally I'm not fond of Honda, but it wasn't a problem for you, so...)

also, wait.. I thought G.M. warranties were 5yr/100k?

...
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Old 11-03-2009, 03:40 PM   #5
spencerb
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2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

I really liked the Honda V6 in my 2004 VUE. I love the way it drove. I've never driven a RL, so I'll just have to see how different the suspension makes the ride. I usually got 23mpg, and I would get up to 28 on the highway. It actually gets as good or better than our 4-cylinder Element.

GM does have 5yr/100K warranties starting with the 2007 model year, so this VUE doesn't have it. My Astra does, and my latest issues are covered under it. But I'm afraid everthing else may be expensive to fix on that car.

I'm not too particular on the "feel" of the way a car drives. I wasn't even going to test drive the Astra before I bought it, but my salesman kinda insisted (I ordered it before they had any Astras).

They are asking $15,900 for the 2006 RL VUE with 33K miles. That price is really high - they tend to ask too much for their used cars. I'll see how far down they come. There's no way I'm paying that much for it.

...
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Past Saturns: 97 SL2, 01 SC2, 04 VUE, 08 Astra, 02 L200.

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Old 11-03-2009, 04:19 PM   #6
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2004 VUE Red Line
Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerb View Post
I really liked the Honda V6 in my 2004 VUE. I love the way it drove. I've never driven a RL, so I'll just have to see how different the suspension makes the ride. I usually got 23mpg, and I would get up to 28 on the highway. It actually gets as good or better than our 4-cylinder Element.

GM does have 5yr/100K warranties starting with the 2007 model year, so this VUE doesn't have it. My Astra does, and my latest issues are covered under it. But I'm afraid everthing else may be expensive to fix on that car.

I'm not too particular on the "feel" of the way a car drives. I wasn't even going to test drive the Astra before I bought it, but my salesman kinda insisted (I ordered it before they had any Astras).

They are asking $15,900 for the 2006 RL VUE with 33K miles. That price is really high - they tend to ask too much for their used cars. I'll see how far down they come. There's no way I'm paying that much for it.
Is it AWD or 2wd? Moonroof? That's actually not that bad of a price for it, especially if its got AWD or the roof. I paid 15k for my '04 with everything but heated seats with like 60k on it. Keep in mind, that was nearly a 30k car when new, and isn't really that old. I wouldn't expect them to take much more off of it than about a grand at most.

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Old 11-03-2009, 04:49 PM   #7
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2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

It's FWD and has the sunroof and advanced audio. Were side airbags standard in 06? I'm not sure it has them. I don't think there were any other options for the RL.

I checked price guides, and trade-in is around $12,500, private party $14,500, and retail around $16,000. So they are on line with the retail price, but the price guides only state that as the asking price and assume there will be negotiations.

Of course, with a trade-in involved in the deal, what matters is the bottom line. They can fudge the numbers around however they want. A +$3,000 difference would be ok.

...
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Past Saturns: 97 SL2, 01 SC2, 04 VUE, 08 Astra, 02 L200.

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Old 11-04-2009, 08:00 AM   #8
Bwolf
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Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

After market heated seats for about $500?

I'm now driving the 2005 Vue Redline my wife drove for several years. It handles so much like the 2000 SL2 I drove for so many years that I must remind myself that the VUE has a different turning radius, etc.

I like the powertrain and handling.

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Old 11-10-2009, 11:19 AM   #9
wei_
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Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

I'd be interested to see how well GM mechanics handle the Honda powertrain.

As for the heated seats, you can install them yourself for under $200. Some pics of the switches at http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f96/h...09/index2.html.

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Old 11-10-2009, 11:39 AM   #10
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2008 Astra XR
Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

I ended up deciding to keep the Astra for the time being (assuming they can fix it - going back in the shop today). The VUE they had on the lot was in terrible condition - covered in rust (it was bought at auction from up north). I found another VUE on the internet, but we weren't able to make a deal on a trade.

I like the Astra, and as long as it doesn't keep needing repairs, I'll be fine with it.

...
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2013 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited

Past Saturns: 97 SL2, 01 SC2, 04 VUE, 08 Astra, 02 L200.

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Old 11-10-2009, 01:39 PM   #11
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Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

One word

VUE

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Old 11-12-2009, 08:26 PM   #12
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Default Re: Trade the Astra for a VUE?

Quote:
Originally Posted by spencerb View Post
I ended up deciding to keep the Astra for the time being (assuming they can fix it - going back in the shop today). The VUE they had on the lot was in terrible condition - covered in rust (it was bought at auction from up north). I found another VUE on the internet, but we weren't able to make a deal on a trade.

I like the Astra, and as long as it doesn't keep needing repairs, I'll be fine with it.

I was going to ask as to what you decided. If the VUE was in better shape it would have been a no-brainer to make the trade.


...
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