1993 Holden Barina 1.3 from Australia and New Zealand


If it hadn't been in a crash, I would have kept it til it died!


A stupid driver error has just written off this great little car.

Apart from standard replacements of oil & tyres, it didn't need any work in the 6 years I had it.

The seats were just beginning to wear at 17 years, and it was probably due a wheel alignment, but these are what I would expect to happen, more a driver problem than a car one.

The back luggage shelf twisted out of shape in the sun in the last couple of years.

General Comments:

It was economical, reliable, easy to park. Great around town, but also on longer trips and up hills.

Totally versatile.

It is also a good workhouse when you fold down the rear seats to cart furniture, or take garden rubbish to the dump.

The Barina is always more valuable to you than the amount you pay for it!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st October, 2010

18th Nov 2010, 17:28

My friend has a Holden Barina that is 3.5 years old. The ECU died and a Brisbane dealer quoted $1700 to replace it. Extremely poor for a 3.5 year old car. Not at all impressed.

11th Jul 2014, 02:33

This is about the Japanese made 1993 Barina, not about the later Spanish made "Opel" Barina.

1993 Holden Barina from Australia and New Zealand


Perfect first car



General Comments:

This car had over 273,000 Kms on it when I got given it as a present. Considering it is only 1 year younger than me, it runs great.

I am currently learning in it and it is perfect. I drove my mother's (much) newer car and freaked out cause of the speed and handling. I just couldn't drive it, and then I got in my Barina and was completely comfortable in it. I've been driving it around big cities - no problem! There isn't a thing wrong with it, and it's almost been everywhere.

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

Review Date: 17th November, 2009

1993 Holden Barina MH 1.3 Carby petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Practical, cheap, well built, great upgrade potential


When I got it the rear window wiper button didn't work, nor did the squirter squirt (still haven't fixed that yet).

Temperature gauge only seems to work about half the time.

Horn didn't work when I got it, but that was fixed with a quick fiddle.

Switch/button on inner door was dodgy (nearly having me leave the headlights on a few times), but that is now fixed.

One of the speakers is about to die, mind you it's the original speaker and is 15 years old.

These are all minor cheap easy electrical problems though, mechanically it is great.

General Comments:

If you want cheap, this car ticks all the boxes. Fuel economy that would give the Toyota Prius a run for it's money. Cheap to insure. Reliable.

But it doesn't disappoint. It still has all you need. Driving it isn't painful, and the suspension keeps you comfortable while still taking corners pretty well.

Performance doesn't seem to be affected by having a full car, which is amazing considering the small engine and weight of the car.

Overall performance is respectable for the fuel economy it gives.

Gearing ratios are spot on.

Interior feels very roomy and spacious for a car that looks tiny in the car parks. Everything is in the perfect spot, no need to fiddle around with seat position for ages.

Very rattly in traffic when stopped with foot on brake, idle speed is probably too low.

Lacking rear speakers, and due to tiny front speakers in awkward place, it's gonna be a pain in the ass to upgrade.

No standard left hand mirror, makes car look unbalanced.

Otherwise, this is a great car, with awesome upgrade potential. Parts are easy to source due to it being the same as Suzuki Swift.

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

Review Date: 31st July, 2009

1993 Holden Barina 1.3 petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Can't pick faults with it, it's too good


I've owned the car for about a month now. It's my first car, and I've been learning on it, and it's great.

The guy who owned it before me was the only owner, and he serviced it every 10,000ks, so it was in real good condition.

As far as I can tell, everything works on the car. Goes to show if you take the right care of your car, any car can be reliable really, but having had 2 previous MF model Barinas in the family, I have seen how reliable they can be.

General Comments:

It's all you need really. Fuel efficiency is great, and due to the good power to weight ratio, it actually takes off surprisingly quick.

Having owned and driven the previous MF model Barina, I can tell that there have been some good changes to ride quality, and handling. There's not as much body roll on this model.

As far as luxury goes, what can you expect from a 15 year old cheap 4 cylinder car? It still feels roomy inside despite it being a matchbox car. Everything is easy to reach, I don't have the model with A/C but I'm not bothered. It still has the original cassette player, which is good enough as it plays radio.

My only problem with the car is that it only has speakers in the front, and not in the back. Other than that, it's an extremely good car and I'd recommend it if you're thinking of buying one.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th October, 2008

26th Oct 2009, 06:56

The engine has no power. Whoever wrote that the engine has potential is wrong.

How much power do you think you can get from an 1300 engine? I'll be honest, try a car with an engine size of 1600 to 2700. Get a Ford laser KF the 1.8l.

The Barina will rev nice in third to about 95 to 100 km/h, but once in fourth the car has no power left to keep powering on nicely. If you go up a hill, be prepared to drop back down a gear.

I have worked on the MH, and found that even removing the pollution controls and changing the air intake and exhaust systems, does very little to make this a beast.

15th Mar 2011, 05:10

To the above comment:

I've driven it up steep hills in fifth gear without losing much speed starting around 80/90 kms, of course it's no race car, but with fuel economy like that, I smile each time I fill it up. It is very reasonably powered for a daily runabout.

30th Aug 2013, 04:42

Who the hell drives 95-100 in 3rd gear? You should be in 5th gear by 80... :/

24th Mar 2015, 01:28

A young boy.