You would be amazed at the difference a few choice repairs and modifications can make. The first thing on the list was the in-car entertainment.
Back in 2000, when Smudge was shiny and new, you may well have been able to buy cassettes from the local music store, but in 2014, this just wasn’t going to cut it.
Luckily, I’d got a spare head unit knocking about from a previous car. Compared to the old analogue unit, this was the Starship Enterprise. Dual USB, Bluetooth, CD and radio, it was fitted in just 20 mins transformed the Astra into a mobile office-come-disco. Music streamed from i-devices, calls via Bluetooth in complete safety and comfort and radio to alert of any impending traffic. Bliss
Although seven of the Astra’s eight speakers are more than up to a full on assault from Martin Garrix, one was less keen. Annoyingly, this was the rear driver’s side, the one closest to me. No matter, a quick stop at the local scrappy had a replacement sourced for a fiver and fitted in just an hour.
Whilst I was there, a few other choice parts were sourced, including new centre caps (a pet hate), new front grill and a pair of tinted rear lights from the sporty coupe version to add a more premium, modern look.
The rears complimented the new ‘Angel Eye’ fronts I’d saved from a previous car and, with some super bright bulbs, the Astra was looking far more respectable than previous.
The headlights made a massive difference a few weeks later. After the clocks had gone back, 80% of my daily commute was down unlit country lanes. Visibility has improved ten-fold, with oncoming cars giving the now angry-Astra a little more respect on the road.
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