If you loved GM’s subcompact Vega, (and who doesn’t?!?!) then you’ll love the badge engineered versions for GM’s other brands. The H-body offerings went up from the basic Vega and they included the luxurious Oldsmobile Starfire, sporty Buick Skyhawk, and the Pontiac Astre — whose purpose was as confounding as the name. Find this 1975 Pontiac Astre SJ Safari Wagon offered for $4,950 in Victor, ID via craigslist.
This Pontiac version of Chevrolet Vega was offered with a Pontiac designed front end and badges for a few bucks more than the basic Vega. The SJ trim featured upgraded nylon upholstery, nicer carpets, rally instruments, a high output 2bb carburetor, and a 4-speed manual gearbox.
The Astre is powered by the same 2.3 liter die cast aluminum block inline-4 with cast inline single overhead cam that pushed out something like 87 horsepower and 122 ft-lbs of torque. The Chevy 2300 isn’t particularly loved by folks today, and the 1977 Astre was available with a version of the Iron Duke inline-4 — a big improvement in durability.
The only thing that would be better than this Astre Safari Wagon is the limited production “Li’l Wide Track” version…if you see one for sale — send it here: email@example.com