1986 Holden Berlina Reviews

1986 Holden Berlina 3 litre RB30e straight six from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1986
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 3 litre RB30e straight six Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired138000 kilometres
Most recent distance189000 kilometres

Summary:

Extremely reliable car

Faults:

Needed a new power steering pump and rack.

General Comments:

Great engine, smooth, quiet and reasonably for its age.

VL was a great looking car.

Very reliable, power steering rack has been the only major fault, only cos $430 to fix.

Never loses any oil, even under hard driving.

Standard Holden suspension is terrible, way too soft! Will be replaced soon.

Auto transmission really dulls performance, soon i'll be getting an auto to manual conversion done and probably extractors and a 2.25 inch exhaust fitted.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th June, 2003

1986 Holden Berlina VL 3.0 naturally aspirated from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1986
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 3.0 naturally aspirated Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.6 / 10
Distance when acquired197561 kilometres
Most recent distance208500 kilometres
Previous carToyota Corolla

Summary:

Fast, comfortable, capable long distance traveler

Faults:

Starter motor brushes wore out at 200,000 km, left hand steering arm end also wore out.

General Comments:

A very reliable car so far (bar the starter motor). Handles admirably, wins nearly every traffic light grand prix. Brilliant over long distances, it'll go all day at 130 km/h effortlessly in great comfort. I've only had it at 160 km/h so far, without really trying at all and it felt basically the same at that speed as what it does at 100 km/h. Very quiet, fuel pump sounds like a draining bath when the tank is getting low - handy warning sign as well as producing some surprised facial expressions from passengers who are unfamiliar with it. Overall, a very accomplished car indeed.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th March, 2003

1986 Holden Berlina VL Nissan RB30E Straight-Six from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1986
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission Nissan RB30E Straight-Six Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.3 / 10
Distance when acquired158642 kilometres
Most recent distance169769 kilometres
Previous carHolden Berlina

Summary:

The ULTIMATE 'P' platers car

Faults:

I found it necessary to change the factory Auto to the 5-speed manual, something that improved performance greatly, the car then told me I had to lower it 75mm from the ground and give it a full body kit followed by a freshening of paint...

General Comments:

Well balance car, that lacks the handling capabilities of it's Nissan R31 Skyline counterpart.

I'm a bloody big fella and in the front there is plenty of space for me to stretch and cruise, however there is ample space in the back.

Affordable performance, with easy and quick modifications, I'm 18 and I am on my 6th VL, I love them and still have all of my babies...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th November, 2002

21st Apr 2004, 02:33

Hey man what are the performance mods that you use on the VL? Or if anyone else has any please let me know.

20th Jan 2005, 04:58

I have a 11 sec VL turbo and mods on the beast are

*Rebuilt and bored out engine (4.5 litre)

*Twin rb30 turbos with stomps Hyperflow intercooler

*3 1/2 inch performance exhaust to a 5 inch dumper

*Full group A body kit

*VY SS mags

*Pioneer sound with 2 15" subs.

1986 Holden Berlina VK 1/5 3.3 from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1986
First year of ownership1992
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 3.3 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired60000 kilometres
Most recent distance220000 kilometres
Previous carSubaru Leone

Summary:

They don't make cars like this anymore!

Faults:

Screechy Power Steering.

Cracking roof paint.

Rust around boot door (Station Wagon)

Cracked rear window surrounds.

Tinny factory radio.

Gremlins in the electrics, the car had a tendency to lock and unlock itself while you were driving. Sometimes it would turn itself off as well.

General Comments:

You forget you're driving a Station Wagon. Despite the bigger dimensions, it was surprisingly quick and nimble, with an excellent turning circle and responsive engine.

Before buying the car, the dealer allowed us to take it for a weekend test drive. We added approximately 1000kms to it that weekend, and signed the Hire Purchase papers on the Monday morning.

The things that struck us about this car was it's quickness. We found we could match some of the V8's on the open road.

It was economical. $40 petrol would do a 365km trip with spare to go.

It was quiet. Sometimes you'd think you stalled, with embarrassing consequences!

After 8 or so years we eventually blew the clutch and engine. As the body was still in very good shape with no serious rust, we decided to modify it instead of financing another car.

After saving we bought a reconditioned 72 Statesman 308.

This engine had history. It was recovered by Police from an HQ that was used in the Coromandel as a get-away car for local boat thieves! The crims had thoughtfully kept the engine reconditioned and it was in very good condition. Yes, we bought it off the original owner, who had replaced his stolen Statesman with an HSV.

Next stop was a Celica 5spd, and finally after a year of searching for parts and finding the money, the engine was transplanted, certified and warranted.

Within a month of having it back, we blew the gearbox and had to replace it with a reconditioned iron cast 5spd Celica. Much, much better.

Since then we've had it professionally lowered with new King springs and shocks all round, replaced the suspension & bushes, repainted the roof, added some spots & HRT stickers, installed a Mongoose, sat it on SS mags and given it personalised plates.

We've still got a long way to go - VL rear axle, re-bore & recondition the engine, body repaint the original Holden Silver Pearl lustre, find and install a T5 shifter and power steering unit, replace or repair interior and carpets, stereo system and other small cosmetic luxuries.

I got married in this car in 1992 and plan to do it again once it's finished. I absolutely adore this car and wouldn't trade it for anything.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th November, 2002

Average review marks: 8.3 / 10, based on 4 reviews