2004 Holden Barina Reviews

2004 Holden Barina SXi 1.4 petrol from Australia and New Zealand

Model year2004
Year of manufacture2004
Most recent year of ownership2012
Engine and transmission 1.4 petrol Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired30000 kilometres
Most recent distance50000 kilometres


Comfy, sporty, reliable, economical, great standard features, and stylish


Intermediate steering shaft uni excessive movement.

General Comments:

Standard equipment level on the SXi is perfectly chosen for the era of the car. Whilst there's no Bluetooth and the CD doesn't play MP3, these technologies were not common at the time. Electric windows, manual mirrors, height-adjustable driver seat, power steering, A/C.

The 6 speaker Blaupunkt stereo is a kicker, requiring no real need to update to an aftermarket solution, and it links well to the additional steering-wheel mounted controls.

Leather steering wheel with airbag, standard mag wheels and low-profile Pirelli P6000 tyres. Matching bumpers and "Ecotec" TwinPort engine. Four-wheel disc brakes and remote central locking as well!

This car has all the modern standard features you'd expect, at a fraction of the cost of a newer version without the same fit level, such as drum brakes on a modern car? Ridiculous.

The elastic nature of the accelerator pedal is frustrating when mated to the manual transmission. Designed to reduce fuel consumption, it artificially reduces throttle control for the sports and/or hypermiling driver.

Power drop when the air conditioning compressor is running effects acceleration significantly, requiring the driver to adjust timing decisions between A/C and non-A/C mode. For example, when crossing traffic at a T intersection with the A/C on, bigger gaps in traffic are needed to compensate for the reduced power.

Fuel economy is good-to-very good. A recent 250K round trip in city, freeway and highway conditions consumed approximately just 13 litres with no passengers and a very light luggage load.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd March, 2012

2004 Holden Barina SXi 1.4 twinport from Australia and New Zealand

Model year2004
Year of manufacture2004
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 1.4 twinport Manual
Reliability marks 5 / 10
Comfort marks 4 / 10
Dealer Service marks 3 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.0 / 10
Distance when acquired25 miles
Most recent distance105000 miles
Previous carHyundai Lantra


This is a good car, spoilt by the manufacturer’s indifference and greed when pricing their parts


The Barina is a UK Corsa badge job.

Bought our December 2004 Barina SXi in February 05. An unwanted prize with 00025 kms on the clock.

Now driven to 105,000 kms on the clock. Completely standard with no add-ons fitted.

A good car to drive. Has consistently returned 6 liters to 100 kms.

Haven’t bothered with services, but do change the oil and filter every 15,000 kms. And check the items specified on the service schedule. This has included a change of plugs with gap checking with one air filter change. Tyres changed at 70,000 kms.

Windscreen wipers stopped and were fixed under warranty. Now due for a new set, which have just been bought on UK eBay.

Bad and poor points:

Engine became noisy about 70,000 kms – timing chain tensioner – this is just a nuisance, as it costs so much to fix. A bit too much road noise from the tyres.

Seats now feel soft and lacking support.

At 102,000 kms, the first and second gears would not select. I am indebted to:-

http://www.corsa-c.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?245430-Common-Mechanical-Problems site and the associated eBay seller who is mentioned.

The local GM garage quoted NZ$383.00 for the GM part – still the plastic variant and $45.00 to fit. The 19.95 pound sterling part from eBay was NZ$81.00 with postage, and the garage pushed its fitting cost up to NZ$95.00. The linkage is a bit stiff – I presume that the mechanic didn’t fully follow the instructions.

GM Holden – completely uninterested, and I am astounded that they should let the fault, obviously well known to them and which does concern safety, remain unfixed. I would not consider another GM car due to this attitude.

General Comments:

Good build with air con, alloys, mudflaps.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 20th March, 2010

25th Mar 2010, 03:47

So you didn't follow the service schedule, something goes wrong and you are surprised that Holden are disinterested in assisting you? Just catch a bus.

2004 Holden Barina SRi 1.8 from Australia and New Zealand

Model year2004
Year of manufacture2004
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 1.8 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired52000 kilometres
Most recent distance54900 kilometres
Previous carFord Laser


Reasonably priced pocket rocket


I bought my SRI from work (A Holden Dealership, I won't name it) about 1 year and 4 months ago, and so far I have had to replace the following.




Grand total plus labour, nearing 4 grand LOL.

I'm just lucky all the above parts were covered by my warranty.

But my speedo used to hit 220kms when I was standing still in the car park, and it was adding kilometers to the clock as if it was traveling at that speed. (still have to contact Holden over this matter) because it added over 1000ks to the clock when it was doing it.

But it's all fixed now touch wood LOL.

General Comments:

The car is a good car once you get around the computer and ECU problems, but I'm sure there are a lot of other manufacturers out there that have similar problems.

The car handles great around corners with minimal understeer, a bit bumpy over pot holes (don't drive over them) and railway tracks, and the front spoiler is very low, so watch out for those concrete blocks in parking spaces.

Punchy 1.8 ltr motor is responsive in almost every gear, and good on fuel provided you don't have a lead foot.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th January, 2009

Average review marks: 7.3 / 10, based on 7 reviews