A seriously underestimated car
Rotten exhaust system.
Hood of fuse box fell off.
I am positively surprised by this inconspicuous-looking car. I got it when I was looking for an affordable family car, that is a bit on the sporty side and my Concerto fits the bill admirably. It's more roomy than it looks at first sight, having a trunk that will rarely be too small to store your normal luggage.
On the driving side I love its handling. It hugs the road like it runs on rails and you get an excellent feedback. The steering is direct and responsive and lets you have a lot of fun on curvy roads. On the downside however, is the weak engine. I own the 90 hp motor, which should be sufficient to meet my requirements. It's not a Porsche, after all. But when it comes to going uphill, or to drive on the motorway, its performance is downright embarrassing. I guess, there's been some serious misjudgment in the transmission department and I'm sure - given the otherwise high competence of Honda engineers - you won't find this fault in later models.
In terms of looks my car scores much better than other Concertos around. The trapezium-shaped cabin does look dull, but minor modifications like decorative stripes, a small spoiler at the rear or darkened window panes do make a major difference at the Concerto. Also, I absolutely love the paint. Although it's ten years old and I don't have a garage it's still shiny and the colour looks damn good.
A minor weakness is that the windows tend to get foggy as moisture leaks in, but I suppose that has to do with the car's age.
As a summary I can say the Concerto is really a bargain, if you look for a spacious and sporty car - unless you want a serious performer, in that case go rather for a Focus, or a 306 XS.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 21st May, 2004