25th Nov 2010, 16:06


I purchased a 2004 Optra, second hand, pretty cheap, and I ended up spending more than expected on it to safety it. It had a lot of klms, but the body was good shape. Spent more than I was expected, but had no choice as I bought it as is.

Within a few weeks, it started with this sudden jerking when driving from a stopped position. This is still happening, and it happened 5x's in a row. The car behind me started to beep his horn non stop at me. Luckily I was almost home, and now after reading these posts, I am selling it fast.

9th Dec 2010, 12:39

I've owned my 04 Chevy Optra for one year now. I bought it with 98000 kms, it now has 108000.

The only problem I've encountered was my relay switch went to make my daytime running lights work.

It is a great little car to get around in. Maybe do your regular maintenance folks!

12th Dec 2010, 05:51

I'm sorry to all the owners of the Optra who spent insane amounts to fix your cars... buy your own head gasket parts, and fix it yourself for under $200 Canadian.

To those who say the coolant is disappearing... have you checked your oil?? Because that is where it is going.

And finally to those who say that you are never buying another car from GM again... check the VIN number.. if the first digit is 'K', the car is built in Korea. If the first digit is '1', the car is built in the United States. Do not boycott GM because of this 'mistake of a car', just boycott the car.

19th Dec 2010, 18:28

I have a 2004 Chev Optra.

- ENGINE light staying on? Simple fix for some; for some reason the gas tank cap won't always click in properly, if air gets into the gas tank, the engine light will turn on. Once you have ensured the cap is on properly, it still might take 5 car trips (turning on and off) for the system to reset.

- Engine jerking? Mine has down it twice where it feels like it slips into a lower gear too quick, but not enough of a pain to take in yet.

- Recent problem, battery died, seemed like a sensor was staying on, changed the battery. Now the same thing, I turn my car off and take the key out, but all my sensor lights stay on.

Most recent problem, the key is in my hand and car is still running|!!! Obviously there is something in the ignition or the tumbler that won't allow my car to shut off, which results in draining my battery.

For now, if my car doesn't shut off, I go to turn it on to the on not start button, and that shuts it off, or I press the brake, leave it in Drive, then shut off, the slide in park to be able to remove the key, then that only in most of the time fixes the problem with the car running. Then I play with the switch on and off, and that usually shuts off the dashboard lights. If that doesn't work, I disconnect the battery.

Has anyone else experienced this? I'm trying to hold tight on taking it in until the New Year, as I have Xmas presents to finish buying..

4th Jan 2011, 17:44

Wow I wish we had googled this car before we bought it. The check engine light keeps going off and on. Have had the E.G.R. coil cover gasket replaced. Is still leaking coolant to the point the engine is overheating. To think that this was a problem that GM knew about, and has never made it publicly known; shame on you GM!!!

8th Jan 2011, 15:01

I bought an Optra 2004 in Aug. Haven't had any problems with it, except since winter I have had this clunk in my rear end when I put it in reverse or first gear. Any ideas what would be causing this?

Bonny, Ont.

10th Jan 2011, 07:14

My gas cap was broken from using a full serve gas station and I am having a hard time finding the replacement part number. Does anyone know this number and if so can you please share it? I would like to see if this is my issue before I take it in to be looked at.

12th Jan 2011, 20:55

I have been mostly pleased with my car. Until NOW.

However, years ago, I had to replace both rear calipers -- as the brakes were locking and would not release -- that did not please me -- I went through 2 sets of brakes until they finally diagnosed it correctly.

Now, at 145,000 km, looks like I need a new head gasket. I thought I smelled antifreeze - took it in to my mechanic - he couldn't find any leaks.

The following week -- I was having starting issues -- I took it in again. They put it on the computer - and couldn't diagnose the problem -- so we changed the spark plugs, oil change, and a few other minor repairs.

I picked up the car yesterday -- today -- I have burnt through my antifreeze -- looks like I need to get rid of the car or face a HUGE repair bill. I'm calling GM to complain. Too many people have had the same issue for this not to be a fault in the car!! If you are considering purchasing a used Optra -- I would say NO. And I have loved my car to this point.

17th Jan 2011, 09:05

We bought our car second hand, and have nothing but problems with it. We have had it in the garage too many times now, with too many problems to list, but we did have the head gasket replaced. Thankfully, at the time it was covered under warranty.

More recently, our engine blew out. I cannot say for sure yet what the reasoning is, it only happened a few days ago, but it is very frustrating, especially hearing that other people were having the exact same trouble as us. We had regular maintenance done with the car, and I don't think it is worth it to repair the car, because we have had so many problems with it, other than the engine, that it's probably better to leave it as it is.

I just can't believe GM would sell a car with so many issues. Had I known there would be so many issues, I would have bought something else. Looks like I am sticking with a Honda or Toyota from now on. I will not be spending thousands of dollars on something I don't trust ever again.

I wish there was something more I could do though, we still owe on this car unfortunately.

Anyone looking to buy one of these vehicles, for goodness sakes, please take our advice and don't do it!

18th Jan 2011, 02:17

Stop blaming GM for the problems, this a rebranded Daewoo.

Very low quality brand...

It's too bad GM can't put one of their own engines into these cars. It gives them a bad reputation, Korean cars are awful. Hyundai is improving, but Kia and Daewoo are pretty much the worst junk on the market. Mass produced, unsafe and disposable, as most imported economy cars are.