My first car I ever bought was XJN 982X a Mk1 Astra 1300 GL 3dr in mettalic green I bought it for £550 in April 1992. I remember thinking how nice the velor seats were, the sliding sunroof and drivers side adjustable mirror was (you couldnt move the passenger one inside!).
It had a four speed box and seemed to be very noisy in 4th like it wanted to change up. Both of course it couldnt. It allso seemed faster than my friends 1300L which at the time could blow a Mk3 Escort into the weeds It had a habit of blowing the windscreen wiper fuses during storms which was a major pain. I ending up in ditch one during a torrential downpour because of that. Never did sort that electrical problem out.
One day I was filling up in a petrol station in late 1992 and a bloke came up to me who said he was the owner of the car before the guy I bought it off.
I asked him about a few dents to the front valance and damage to the oil sump drain plug and he explained that they were caused when he hit a sand bunker whilst being chased by the Police across a golf course!!!!!
He also show me the gearbox casing which revealed that a 5 speed box was fitted by him but with a 4 speed linakage!!! He never got round to sorting it out!!. It was then he informed me that the engine was in fact a 1600 engine taken from a SR model!
That explained the performance and the gearbox. I then decided to give the car to my cousin as the log book and badges and of course my insurance related to a 1.3!!! Thankfully he blew the engine up 6 months later on the way to Devon and that was that.
Shame, because despite it's chequred past I was quite fond of that car...