Now while I have been on holiday (I still am on holiday) I was talking about xenon bulbs with a friend and about how I wanted to get a spare set to save me paying about £130 - £150 (to vauxhall) per bulb for the Xenon AFL's in my VXR. He asked me what type they were, unfortunately I asked around and no one seemed to know not even Opel or Vauxhall (how typical the EPC says 12V 35W, umm okay real useful!). Anyway I told my mate I was struggling and today he forwarded me a shed load of information about Xenon bulbs as well as a pair of bulbs for my VXR.
The xenon bulbs in the Astra's mk5 with AFL are D2S 85122. Turns out there is quite a variation in the bulbs offered. Only two makes are highly regarded and the rest are best avoided as there is too mkuch variation in performance. These two makes are Philips and Osram, the oem ones (Osram or in some case Philips) are rated at 4100K (although the claim 4300K they are not as I looked at the manufacturer specs for them). Both the philips and osram bulbs (bought direct from a philips or osram stockist) are rated as higher ie. at least 4500k and in one models case 5000k. Why does this matter well both Philips and osram produce a brighter more natural light than the oem bulbs, and in both cases when I say brighter it is very noticable. Now before someone says they should be matched to the oem bulbs well, they are, it turns out that even the oem bulbs have a variation (4100k to 4250k) and the system is designed to handle 5000k comfortably.
Needless to say I have a set of the 5000k bulbs and will be swapping them over when I get back from my holiday, and using my originals as spares. I might just post up some pics (time permiting) to show you what I mean by a variation.