2008 Saturn Astra XR 3-Door Road Test (Visit this link)
We were impressed with the Astra, which proved to be a nimble, practical hatchback for urban commuting. Despite its slightly underpowered engine, the Astra rewards drivers who don't mind rowing its slick 5-speed manual. However, this compact hatchback faces stiff competition from the more powerful Mazda3 and VW Rabbit, although the Saturn has the edge in fuel economy. Of course, it is significant that we actually compare the Astra to its Asian and German rivals, as the previous ION wasn't even in the same ballpark. If you can sacrifice some performance in exchange for superior fuel economy, the Astra is worth a look.