Daewoo 1.5i Review from Australia and New Zealand

1995 Daewoo 1.5i Four door hatchback 1.5 unleaded SOHC

Model year1995
Year of manufacture1995
First year of ownership2010
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 1.5 unleaded SOHC Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.0 / 10
Distance when acquired182850 kilometres
Most recent distance183200 kilometres
Previous carHolden Commodore

Summary:

A cheap second hand hatchback that suits our needs, but rides as rough as a buckboard

Faults:

Daewoo 1.5i - 1498cc EFI engine made by Holden.

Gone wrong.

Nothing yet, only had it two weeks. But, rattles and squeaks and the usual brittle Korean plastic components! Much work done to "de-rattle" the entire centre console and dashboard. Now it seems like a different car altogether. Quieter. I suppose with 183,000 something km and 15 years old, no car is going to be perfect. Lucky with this one, especially as it had a new timing belt fitted at 163,000km (interference type motor, if the timing belt snaps/breaks, whammo!, valves through the tops of pistons as minimum damage).

Air-con not working; knew that when I bought the car. Probably needs a new/reconditioned compressor and a re-gas. Strange, all the air-con components are stamped Dayton Ohio USA.

Slight "tappety" noise from valve gear. (hydraulic lifters). Might try a Wynns product to "unstick" this one gummed up hydraulic lifter.

Otherwise, nothing has gone wrong, but it's early days yet.

General Comments:

Rides hard, too hard. Daewoo made a serious mistake with making the suspension/shock absorbers so firm. Australia does not have glass smooth roads.

That aside, being auto and power steering makes puttering from A to B easy, and fuel economy seems to be about 35mpg around town and short trips.

Interior fittings (even when new it seems) were all "ticky tacky plastic", and prone to cracking.

But, despite the 183,000 something km and being 15 years old, it seems fairly sound. Engine is smooth enough and the auto trans seems fine.

The mechanical build quality is "built for strong, not for pretty". In fact the rear suspension would do quite well in a light truck.

Seats too hard, which makes the over firm suspension seem worse.

Paint quality is fairly poor (when looking inside where the paint has never been "weathered").

The electrical bits are a bit "thrown together", but that was/is the nature of Korean built cars.

But, with a Holden built engine and a seemingly good auto trans, the rest of the car is just an occasional "tinkering job".

Daewoo went off the market here in Australia a couple of years ago, and this one (a 1.5i) being the first Daewoo model sold in Australia (1994 and 1995), parts will probably be hard to find. (hope I never need to get any).

At least NGK do make spark plugs for it, and Ryco makes oil filters for it, and brake pads/linings (whenever, we only do about 5,000km per year) should be available.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 25th July, 2010

11th Aug 2010, 06:08

Well I completely agree with some of your points, like suspension & seats. But regarding electricals; you need to change it.

Well I own Daewoo Matiz 2000 model, since ten years, not a single bulb has been fused yet. Music system wires are still good. Basically Daewoo made tough cars in their time.

Being a ten year old car, the car's suspension system is still original, never changed. They are still going good.

Well here are some things I would recommend to you for keeping your Daewoo for longer.

As it is 15 year old car, don't try to mess with electricals. If done, it might cause you much trouble. Check engine light might glow anytime, due to an electrical problem. Don't try to upgrade to a high fidelity music system, it will damage your alternator. Don't try to get hard on the motor.

Just keep your engine with as clean fluids as possible; this will keep your engine much healthier. At the next service, get your engine flushed; this will help your car's engine to get rid of toxic substances stuck inside it. After that, get a full coolant flush.

Basically keep everything fresh in your car, & the rest it will do for you.

Average review marks: 6.0 / 10, based on 1 review