2003 Daihatsu Sirion Rally 2 1.3 Twin cam from UK and Ireland
Underrated and undervalued
Brake pads seem to wear out more frequently than I have been previously used to with other models of car.
However this maybe due to the spirited style of driving that the vehicle encourages.
For a naturally aspirated 1300cc engine the car is extremely quick. 0-60 in 7.8 seconds is reminiscent of the old Charade Gtti.
The engine feels indestructible and screams right up to the red line at about 7500 rpm.
It is neither quiet on the motorway at speed or when accelerating through the gears. However the manic booming nature of the engine makes the car involving and responsive.
Such performance does not come at the expense of economy. Even when pushed it will return around 40 miles per gallon.
Whilst insurance costs are particularly high for such a small car (group 10 insurance) -there are unlikely to be any major repair bills as Daihatsu have a superb reliability record.
The car has unusual styling that allways attracts looks. The alloys are also attention grabbers.
The vehicle is fantastically equiped with everything as standard.
It may be slightly cramped inside and retro looking, but it has been a bargain second hand purchase that has never failed me.
The vehicle is so unique that I have not seen another Rally 2 for over 10 months now. Exclusivity, reliability and performance without breaking the bank.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 22nd April, 2005
I agree to the comments fully, what a great car! I've had mine nearly 3 years now, I never bore of wiping the grin off boy racers at the lights. I too have never had a fault with the car, although the gear box can get a bit notchy. Same 0 to 60 as the latest MR2 can't be bad for a fraction of the price! :)
I've just reached 5 years from new in my Sirion Rally II, and I've loved every mile of it. For me it harks back to the simpler cars of the seventies & eighties, but without their maintenance costs. Sure, these days it would be slated for hard plastics, noisy engine and road roar, but that is what you get from a simple, light body and a peppy engine.
I changed the Continental Eco tyres to some Kuho ones and that reduced the road roar at most speeds, but at the cost of some steering feedback. On the other hand, the Kumhos seem to hang on well in bends and are not prone to slipping in the wet.
Yes the pads do wear, and replacements weren't cheap. My second set came up for renewal at about 47k miles. But they're easy to change yourself, which reduces the bill when the time comes.
I like it so much that I've just bought another Rally II, half the age of the other!