A stolen Astra was recovered undamaged thanks to the system.
The last generation Astra, produced by Opel and branded as Vauxhall in the United Kingdom, was the first model from the company to receive the OnStar technology. It provides customers with a variety of services, including remote vehicle diagnostics, directions, and emergency assistance in the event of a crash. Apparently, it could also help you find your car if it is stolen.
That’s the case with James Watson from Glasgow, Scotland. He went to work with his Astra and parked the car outside his workplace in the central area of the city. Moments before leaving the car, he was forced out by a thief who stole the vehicle. Watson immediately reported to the police, pointing out that the vehicle is equipped with the OnStar system, which means it has a GPS locator.
Shortly after, working directly with the OnStar team, the police found the car at a nearby gas station and apprehended the offender. The system also allowed the operator to remotely deactivate the ignition of the car once the thief turned off the engine. Thankfully, the Astra was recovered undamaged.
“It was a terrible experience, one I wouldn’t wish on anybody else,” owner James Watson commented on the situation. “After the initial shock of what happened subsided, I realized that we could locate the car – and probably the offender – through OnStar. I’m really grateful that the technology was in place to recover the vehicle so quickly, helping me to get back on the road knowing the thief had been caught.”
Currently, OnStar is available for Opel and Vauxhall customers in most of the European Union countries, including Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxemburg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Romania, Bulgaria, and the United Kingdom.
Opel highlights the connectivity systems in the 2016 Astra [video]
Luton – A stolen Vauxhall has been quickly reunited with it owner thanks to Vauxhall OnStar, the personal connectivity and service assistant that includes stolen vehicle assistance.
Having parked up outside his workplace in central Glasgow, James Watson was forced out of his vehicle by a thief, who stole his new Vauxhall Astra. When reporting the incident to the police, Watson pointed out that the vehicle was equipped with Vauxhall OnStar, meaning it had a GPS locator that would help recover the vehicle.
Working directly with the OnStar team, the police found the car at a petrol station four miles away and apprehended the offender. OnStar’s stolen vehicle assistance feature also allowed the operator to remotely deactivate the ignition when the thief turned off the engine, giving the police the opportunity to recover the vehicle undamaged.
“It was a terrible experience, one I wouldn’t wish on anybody else,” said James Watson. “After the initial shock of what happened subsided, I realised that we could locate the car – and probably the offender – through OnStar. I’m really grateful that the technology was in place to recover the vehicle so quickly, helping me to get back on the road knowing the thief had been caught.”
“This was a horrible experience for James and we are sorry to hear that he was a victim of crime,” said Mike Lee, UK Head, OnStar Strategy and Planning. “We are relieved that the technology in the car could assist the police in recovering his car and apprehending this criminal.”
OnStar is available across the Vauxhall range, and includes a number of safety and convenience functions to support drivers. In addition to stolen vehicle assistance, features include automatic crash response, destination download, 4G Wi-Fi hotspot, smartphone connectivity and vehicle diagnostics.
Following the recovery of the vehicle assisted by Vauxhall OnStar, the offender was sentenced to 10 months, 15 days in jail and disqualified from driving for nine months.