Vauxhall Astra: Bluetooth test

  • We get to grips with our Vauxhall's bluetooth system
  • Astra's version works quite well compared to others
  • How will it fare against Skoda and Fiat equivalents?

One of the things most new cars come with these days is a way to connect to your mobile phone so you don't have to hold it.

Some systems are significantly better and more user-friendly than others. The system our Editor, Kieren Puffett, has in his Skoda Superb is simply brilliant.

It not only lets you make and receive calls but it actually takes over your sim card via Bluetooth, meaning you couldn’t use your phone if you wanted to. Better still, not only will it display them, but it’ll read out text messages so you don’t even have to look at a screen. It’s yet another Skoda feature that’s incredibly well-conceived.

At the other end of the scale is Fiat’s Blue&Me system, which quite frankly is a total mystery to use and I'm not the only one to have had problems. The baffling control system and counter-intuitive instructions really don’t make life easy.

With these two kits at either end of the scale, my Astra sits somewhere inbetween. It doesn’t have the overall functionality of an advanced system like the Skoda’s, but it's not baffling to work and will do exactly what you need it too.

Once you’ve paired the system to your phone using a code (which your car tells you, then you enter onto your handset), it will pair automatically whenever your Bluetooth is enabled and the car is on. You can navigate through your previous incoming and outgoing calls and even scroll through the phonebook, meaning you’ve got pretty much everything you need. So, while it's hardly groundbreaking, I'm more than happy with the tech fitted to my car.

Current mileage: 5,019

Average mpg: 33.5