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Filed under: Car Buying, Garage, Hatchbacks, GM, Saturn, Driving

Click above for high-res gallery of the 2008 Saturn Astra

Enthusiasts here in the States have long wondered why they couldn't buy Ford and GM small cars from Europe, and at least part of the answer has been that Americans don't want to pay big bucks for premium small cars. Spiking gasoline prices have quelled that argument, and fuel economy is now towards the top of shoppers' lists when looking for a new car or truck.

While Ford is still more than a year away from bringing over the Euro Focus and Fiesta, GM has made the cross-Atlantic jump by importing the Opel Astra to our shores. The Astra is a hot-selling hatch in Europe with high-end amenities and very good fuel economy, and the model is shipping to the U.S. differentiated from its Euro twin by some Saturn logos and little else. We were itching to get our hands on an Astra to see if it were as good as advertised, and our tester came equipped with everything Saturn could throw at the vehicle. Hit the jump to see how the 2009 Saturn Astra fared in the Autoblog Garage.

Gallery: 2008 Saturn Astra XR - Autoblog Garage

All photos Copyright (C)2008 Chris Shunk / Weblogs, Inc. Continue reading In the Autoblog Garage: 2008 Saturn Astra XR

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