1992 Holden Barina MG 1.3 Carby SOHC from Australia and New Zealand


Great potential hot hatch or low cost reliable runabout, with some maintenance


Starter motor: required a new shaft sleeve-bearing.

Small oil leak: needed new plastic cups top of cam belt area.

A new fuel hose at the carby that was splitting.

New wheel bearings after driving on a rutted country dirt road.

Replaced clutch and cambelt at 200,000km for preventative maintenance, but did not need to; looks like they were good to go to 400,000km (thumbs up to Suzuki engineers).

Outer CV joints changed also due to a bit of clicking when turning. And water pump leaked at 200k, replaced with a new one.

Aircon stopped working; not able to fix due to old style gas no longer available and 3,000 PSI system; new systems use 6,000 PSI and less efficient but enviro friendly gas.

General Comments:

Great small car which was detuned from the factory I found. As a former designer and engineer, I have been improving the tune.

Great little 1.3L motor, carby has worked perfectly, gearbox has not worn, still works very good.

The main issue I have had is when I have got mechanics to do work for me like the clutch, bearings, CV specialist people; they have all done something wrong, and I have had to fix or redo their work. On average I have spent AU$300 maintenance per year, throwing in some of my labour, excellent (my Celica was $700/year).

A bit slow when I bought the car (0-100km/h in 10.3 seconds), and handling was a bit slumberland; now with my designer knowledge, amazing handling, and acceleration rapid, ie. about half when I bought it. Fuel consumption now is 6.9l/100km average (originally 8.4 when I bought it). 'That's with almost all standard factory parts folks!'

Facebook: Luke Marzola

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 10th May, 2018

1992 Holden Barina GS 1.3 from Australia and New Zealand


Fantastic reliable, economical hatch


Seatbelt latch on driver side faulty.

Door lock on driver side faulty.

Steering a little light with a tendency to under-steer on hard cornering.

Engine noise a little high due to noisy camshaft.

General Comments:

Very economical about 6lt/100km.

Very reliable.

Gutsy motor for a 1.3lt, quite good acceleration even with 4 adults in the car.

Cabin is reasonable size for a 3 door hatchback..

Sports seats in the front are fantastic for fit and comfort.

Overall a great car for the money paid and would gladly buy another.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th September, 2004

1992 Holden Barina MH 1.3 carburetted petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Needs petrol once every few weeks.

General Comments:

Great little car that runs on the smell of an oily rag, and is great fun to drive in 5 spd form.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 1999

12th May 2001, 01:30

I have an example of the MH Barina that is 9 years old and still runs and looks as good as day one. They are a fantastic run about with very few mechanical repairs required in that time.

10th Jun 2001, 00:33

I am 16 years old and am considering purchasing a Holden Barina 1992 for my first car. I think that they look good and because they only have a 1.3 litre motor they would be cheap to run. How much fuel do they use per 100 kms?

13th Jun 2001, 01:32

I have a 1988 Holden Barina and it costs $10 per 100km. Very cheap and reliable car.

Highly Recommend.

25th Jul 2001, 08:08

I am looking at getting a Holden Barina GSi, what do you think about these cars?

8th Dec 2002, 23:44

I have been meaning to get rid of my MH Barina for years, but it has been faultless mechanically and consumes little fuel. Cost of parts can be high, e.g.: AUD120 for a replacement antenna, so find your local Suzuki wrecker for non-critical replacement parts. Suzuki dealers do a service for less than Holden dealers. My wife's former Barina had a quarter head-on collision with a Falcon taxi - the Falcon suffered greater damage... Fun to drive in five speed form.

14th Jun 2004, 21:36

I own a 1990 HM which I have driven for about a year now. Nothing went wrong with it at all until I got it serviced (which was rather expensive at $900: belts, oil change, etc.) Now the water pump is leaking and the belts are slipping. Probably not the car's fault, but we'll never know. I get about 10km to the litre, which is very good in my opinion. Its performance leaves much to be desired.