By: IOL Motoring Staff

After skipping two generations the Astra sedan is returning to South Africa in October this year.

Although its upmarket positioning will prevent it from attaining the success of its predecessors, the new four-door will provide a fresh and somewhat elegant alternative to segment stalwarts like the VW Jetta, Toyota Corolla and GM's own Chevrolet Cruze.

The Astra sedan has the same 2685mm wheelbase as the five-door Astra hatchback, but with an overall length of 4658mm it is 239mm longer. This stretch translates into a relatively generous 460-litre boot capacity - 90 litres more than the hatch offers.

The sedan will mirror the five-door hatch in offering three petrol engine choices within a four-model range.

The normally aspirated 85kW/155Nm 1.6-litre Essentia kicks off the line-up and the 103kW/200Nm 1.4 turbo engine fills the middle of the range in both Essentia manual and Essentia automatic guises.

Top of the pile is the 1.6 Turbo Cosmo, boating outputs of 132kW and 266Nm.

Prices will be announced when the sedan is launched locally and it's likely to command a small premium over the five-door, which costs between R234 500 and R303 000.