By on July 23, 2018

2008 Saturn Astra XE in Colorado wrecking yard, LH front view - ©2018 Murilee Martin - The Truth About Cars

Remember the Saturn Astra? A Belgian-built Opel Astra, it was supposed to replace the Ion, but GM had a few distractions around that time and axed the Saturn Astra early in 2009… followed by the Saturn brand itself.

Just two model years, poor sales, weird Euro-Detroit badge-engineering hijinks, and a near-instant disappearance from cultural memory: just what I like best in a Junkyard Find! (Read More…)

By on April 26, 2016

Mark's Saturn Astra, Image: © 2016 Mark Stevenson/The Truth About Cars

Over the weekend and earlier this week, my girlfriend and I negotiated over and agreed to purchase a new car. No, it isn’t that.

(Read More…)

By on March 1, 2016

Ask Bark: Which Beater Should She Bet On?

New-to-TTAC reader Kobe writes:

Hi Bark,

I’ve only begun to read TTAC and your email responses are a great read, so I figured I’d give sending you a question a shot.

Two of my wife’s friends are looking for reliable, used cars. The parameters I’ve been given were $4,000 or less (as she will need to save a little for maintenance repairs I figure), a hatchback (preferably four-door), automatic, front- or all-wheel drive, and decent gas mileage. Her friend has lived around NYC most of her life, so although she has her driving license, she has rarely driven.

Now, I went about scrolling through all the makes and models that are listed on Autotrader and came up with this possible list:

(Read More…)

By on September 27, 2012

Mark writes:

Long time reader, first time commenter here…

I am in the market for a car for my daughter and I have noticed that the market is quite a bit different since the last time I bought a used car (2 years ago). When we bought a car for our oldest, I was looking for a 5/5/5 car — 5 years old, less than 50,000 miles and under $5k. Two years later I had to change that to 5/5/7 (for under $7,000). Now, I am seeing plenty of 8-10 year old Corolla/Civic/Elantra/etc with way north of 100k on the odo for $8,000 and more (private sale — dealers are even higher). This is in the NYC/Long Island area. $4 gas and crushed Clunkers have sure changed the market. My metric is out the window. Which brings me to…. (Read More…)

By on November 12, 2009

Born and bred in Deutschland

The single trim level is what tipped us off, and if we’d looked closer at its spec sheet, we’d have seen that its manufacturing location is listed as “Rüsselsheim, Germany.” Automotive News [sub] reports that Regal will be built in Germany for 15 months before production shifts to Oshawa. Which makes the Regal even more of an odd duck. In addition to being stuck into GM’s bursting lineup of Epsi-II midsize sedans, it’s also losing whatever profit it might have made on the dismal foreign exchange rate and the boat ride over from Europe. Or it will be just plain overpriced. Think of it as the love child between a Saturn Astra and a Pontiac G8. And another sign that some things never change.

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