18th Jan 2011, 23:05

The Optra is, indeed, a re-badged Daewoo, but it runs engines based on GM designs.

Some of the power units are made by GM's Holden offshoot in Australia.

As for Kias being junk, I would watch them if I were you, as they are coming up fast now that they are owned by Hyundai.

19th Jan 2011, 21:52

"Mass produced, unsafe and disposable, as most imported economy cars are."

Not true at all. Your experience with a rebadged Daewoo is unfortunate and valid. However, imported economy cars are actually very good. The Toyota Yaris, Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, and Hyundai Accent are all imported. They are all very good, solid cars. The Kia Rio is greatly improved as well. It's actually the big 3 domestic manufacturers who built disposable crap, if they even bothered with economy cars at all.

7th Feb 2011, 22:08

2004 Chevy Optra LX Sedan.

Head gasket blown at 89,000 km. What a piece of garbage. Thanks GM. I will never invest my hard earned money in a GM product again.

I think I'm turning Japanese... I really think so.

14th Feb 2011, 09:51

Could everyone having these problems please send me your email addresses. I am in the process of contacting a lawyer to see what can be done.

My 04 Optra is at 104000 kms, and have had NOTHING but problems since the very first day of purchase. I have owned it 2 years, and have put just shy of $8000 into it for "repairs" that are never actually repaired.

Your contact information would be greatly appreciated. Let's see what we can do here!

14th Feb 2011, 23:18

Just wondering if I should buy one cheap, what is everyone's opinion?

15th Feb 2011, 20:08

I wouldn't go near an Optra no matter how cheap. Those rebadged Daewoos are nothing but trouble. You may have to spend a little more, but you can do much better than an Optra.

16th Feb 2011, 04:06

You get what you pay for!

27th Feb 2011, 14:31

OK. I have a Chevy Optra 2005 LS and it won't start now. When I do get it started then drive for about an hour, shut it off and go in somewhere and come back, it won't start. It makes a weird sound and when this happens it will start again. Is it my starter?

5th Mar 2011, 18:18

I purchased my 2004 Chev Optra 2 years ago. Just had to replace the harmonic balancer; the car has 104,000 kms. The car made a horrible screeching noise when first started in very cold weather (-20), but would disappear when engine warmed. It would also sometimes "chirp" when stopped at a red light. It took some expensive diagnosing and replacing of various parts to find the problem. Just found an ad for another 04 Optra that also requires the same part. Another defect?

19th Mar 2011, 21:12

Get rid of that car as fast a possible. All I had was problems with my brand new 2004 Optra. I was the only owner, and it was only serviced by GM. At only 62,000km the engine would shutoff while I was driving, and I would have to coast to a stop. Very dangerous on the highway with the big trucks. Of course the warranty had ended, and GM could not figure it out. New computer and 2,800.00 dollars later, the problem was still no found. Finally traded it in for a used Mercedes, and will never buy from GM again.

Lady Driver.

26th Mar 2011, 21:55

I consider myself lucky, I guess, that I found out the solution to the check engine light early on. At the FIRST sign of trouble (or with each oil change), add a bottle of FUEL SYSTEM CLEANER (not just fuel injector cleaner) to your full tank of gas. The problem lies in the system, creating a misfire.

4th May 2011, 12:52

Call Chevy head office warranty and tell them to goodwill it. The more people that do it, the better the chances of this happening. A warranty is the guarantee that if the vehicle will last the warranty period, it should not have any problems throughout the vehicle's life. I have found a forum stating a master mechanic found that Chevy used the wrong head gasket in the Optra, and an aftermarket Felpro gasket fixes this problem. Apparently there is a hole the size of a quarter adjacent to the number 4 cylinder in the stock head gasket.

Check http://www.lemonaidcars.com/ for more info on warranties and what you're entitled to. The dealership won't tell you that the work they did comes with another warranty equivalent to the original warranty. For example, if the car came 60 000 warranty, then the new parts motor etc come with another 60 000 warranty from the day they did the work.

23rd Jun 2011, 16:58

Did replacing the harmonic balancer repair the problem? A good friend of mine bought his daughter one of these cars, and can visibly see it shake...

I'm hoping he didn't get himself into a bad situation; they've had the car less than a year.

2nd Aug 2011, 21:04

Just wondering if anything came of this. My Chev. Optra 2004 model is a hunk of crap! My car shakes so bad my 2 year old son has noticed, telling my sister "Your car doesn't shake like mommy's"!


Please, any info is helpful.

9th Aug 2011, 12:47

My husband owns a 2004 Chev Optra, and yes it has been one thing after another. We had to replace the whole motor one year after the warranty expired. It was replaced with another Optra motor with only 60,000 km, and now the head gasket is going in it. There is definitely something wrong with these cars.

We would be very interested to hear how you have been able to proceed with your lawyer, as we are now in the process of dealing with GM about this.



18th Aug 2011, 10:13

What is your email address?

6th Nov 2011, 17:32

I bought my 2004 Chevy Optra in Summer 2007. It was working fine till 3 months ago. Since then I have had several problems right after each other. It started with flashing engine light and I had to change the head gasket. Then the headlight started turning on and off, and I changed the light switch.

Recently my mechanic told me that the O2 sensor is malfunctioning, that's why the engine light is on. Fuel consumption is 15 lit/100 km, which is insane.

I am frustrated, and have spent more than $2000 in 3 months.

I don't know if it makes sense to keep this car with the hope that this is the last time that I spend for that??!!! :(

7th Nov 2011, 23:32

I am currently experiencing the same problem!!! Sooo frustrating. Have you had any other problems since replacing the head gasket? I am just wondering if the mechanic will order the same head gasket and risk having this expensive problem happening again!

I have had all of the things as you listed. Had the engine light problems, replacing the cam sensor, and now burning through the antifreeze, only to find out that it is the gasket.

Please help with any information!

8th Nov 2011, 13:20

Hi, how can I get in touch with you. I have this problem with my Optra, and I am trying to deal with GM, because this seems to be a design flaw. But all they will say is it is too late for a remedy, you are out of luck. I am preparing to take it to court, and I would like to know if you have any specific information about it being how the car was made?