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Vauxhall has to be the least desireable car brand out there.

they have feww redeeming features. Not great to look at, not especially cheap or reliable and not great to drive.

Automotive porridge that you should only consider if you are desperate or if it is almost being given away for free.

(IMO of course)

They did make good cars once, the Carlton/Senator were good old motors but it has been downhill ever since.
 

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Purely from my own limited experience, this is the problem that I have with Vauxhall's:

They remind you that you're in a cheap car. To a fault. They seem to make a point of it.

By which I mean that everything seems to have an element that says to you - this is all you could afford, this is all you're worth. The interior look, the way the doors close, the way the dash looks.

To be fair, most of my experience is of 80's and 90's cars - and all similar manufacturers used to do the same back then. Ford and Vauxhall especially. Then the Focus came along and Ford seemed to have an epiphany and realise that just because it was cheap, didn't mean that it had to rub that in your face.
I feel like Vauxhall picked up on that too following the Ford lead - but have never quite made the leap as far.

This all stems back to 1998, and me test driving an identically priced Astra and Volvo 440 and being absolutely gobsmacked at the difference in quality. But I have friends with Vauxhall's (all Astra's though, now I think about it) which haven't dissuaded me. Some of them (such as the one you are talking about) look alright from outside. But none of them seem to be nice places to be.

This is probably all tosh - as I say, my experience is very limited. I've never seen a Vauxhall which meets the criteria of what I want from a car anyway, so I've never since been interested in test driving one myself. My car choice tends to be extremely limited by my two main criteria of estate and sounds nice.
 

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Here’s the bloke I was saying about from Ford and now Opel, talking about the GTC
From his LinkedIn it looks like he’s back in the U.K. working as a consultant.
 

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I had a nearly new Astra as a courtesy car a couple of years back after the G got sideswiped.

Unremarkable would be the best way to desribe it. Average build quality, boring to drive and not much room in the boot for some reason. Later in the year I got a Focus ST line 1.0 Ecoboom as a courtesy which was a far better car.
 

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At work we have a mixed fleet of Kia Cee'ds, Astras, Seats, Aurises, and a few bits of random French tat. Of that group, the Auris feels very well constructed but is deeply nasty to drive. The Cee'd is quite pleasant to drive apart from a rough diesel engine and a gearknob that rotates on the stick so it's never aligned properly (which only seems to bother me). I've driven the Seats but can't remember a thing about them. Of that group, the Astra is very much the pick. However, if you drive a new Focus it is better in every respect. Looks are subjective, but the interior, steering, handling, engine, and ride are all just a bit better.

The Astra feels largely on a par with the Kia whereas the Focus feels like a premium product.

I can see that if you're leasing 250 cars you'll probably get a better deal on Vauxhalls but to buy one with my own money? Nah, it would have to be significantly cheaper than the competition, or significantly better and it's neither.

It's an unimaginative choice for people who can't be arsed thinking about it. If they liked driving, they'd buy the Focus, if running costs were the thing, they would look at the impressive warranties being offered from the East. Instead they just go "I want a car. I'll buy an Astra, that's a car".
 

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A couple of years back I did a test drive event at work which included a Kia and the equivalent Focus and the difference between them was that the Korean Car seemed impressive when static but not so good moving. It would seem fine itself but just felt built to a cost. Also, on the dual carriageway section, A127, the Focus would get you exceeding the 70 mph without realising but the Kia seemed faster than it was really was !
 

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Well, maybe you should go drive one.

But I'm sure there are far more interesting cars you could be driving, without sacrificing running costs / reliability if that is high up on your list of priorities.

You're keeping the Merc then?
 

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A friend of mine has a GTC, it’s not a bad looking car and as Cue tried to point out they made an effort to make it drive quite well too. It’s also still very practical, huge space in the back.


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That’s because no one has an interest in the GTC period


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No one seemed to pay any attention - most seemed more interested in talking about how sh*t it must be!


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Unsupported bias has a lot more credibility than relevant knowledge now we can’t go to the pub to learn from the world of cliches and B.S.?
 

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Purely from my own limited experience, this is the problem that I have with Vauxhall's:
They remind you that you're in a cheap car. To a fault. They seem to make a point of it.
Quoting you out of context and two days late, I have to say I have never felt that. Have had two Giuliettas during the last year and both have rattling fuse box covers, doors which don't close positively without a shove, and a boot panel which gives when you press the button, to the extent I only use the key. All trivial, but once upon a time I had half a dozen company Vauxhalls in succession, and none of them had any trim rattle and doors always closed with a quality feel.

The interior of the Alfa is stylish, love it. The Vauxhalls were functional. You'd have a toggle for this, a push button for that, and a knob for something else. Not stylish, but actually quite practical as they all felt different and you didn't have to look.

Oh, in the last month there's been a groaning sound from beneath my backside, as though the Alfa's seat is giving. After 120,000 miles my '98 Vectra was good as new inside, and the only groaning backsides were my passengers when I got a move on.
 

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Like Sterzo I had a string of Cavaliers and Vectras as company cars and yes they were functional but all the better for that. The purpose of a company car was to get you reliably from office to site and back again and this they did very well. I preferred them to the Escort I first had and then (for a short period) the Cortina. However I do prefer the Giulietta but then my last Vectra was replaced in 1996 (with a Rover 400) so it is difficult to compare something that by now would be 28 years old with a current model (albeit 9 years old). However while I never looked back each time the company car was changed (every four years) I really do not want to give up the Giulietta (partly because I cannot afford to replace it with another Alfa but that is a different story).
 

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Discussion Starter #35
Very diverse responses, folks - thank you :)
 
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