I had a 2004 Combo, which I purchased from my son. Unfortunately he didn't treat the car very well and I spent a bomb on maintenance. I used the car for a while with my business, and found the design and space was just perfect for what I wanted, having downsized from a Econovan (Yes these need maintenance too!).
I ended up finding more issues with the car than I wanted to spend money on, all due to my son's heavy foot, lack of timely maintenance and the repairer I was using not doing their job properly, not because of poor build quality.
I finally decided to trade the Combo in, I looked around at the VW Caddy and the Fiats, and found their prices to be outrageous. For a while I even considered going with a Hyundai hatch back, however they didn't have the space I wanted, and since I personally really liked the Combo so much, I traded the 2004 Combo it in on a 2012 model!
I've read the posts and I've got to say, generally vehicles behave how they are treated; over loading any vehicle will cause issues, and over revving because of a lack of power will cause issues.
While I'm not saying this was the reason for the faults people have posted, it needs to be placed into perspective.
People who used the Combo because it was their work car and have posted here, would not treat a work car the same way they would drive the own car, guaranteed!
While Combo's are not perfect, they are an ideal size for what they are meant to do. In response to the engine mount post, you can buy all three engine mounts on eBay for $260 or Autopro for $360. The cost of parts is dependent on where you look and if you go genuine or not.
As to power, these are NOT 270 kilowatt V8s, they are 66 kilowatt 4 cylinders, which is fine for puttering around town on the smell of an oily rag! Very cheap to run.
I believe the expectations written here are bit extreme, given how many Combos are running around without problems. So these while valid complaints could be the exception, they not the rule. This post is from someone that actually likes the Combo!
You can buy new one on eBay with a steel rod, for replacement of the gear linkage.
I have a fleet of Combos. Those driven by my older employees are running fine, and have normal issues due for the km they have done. Meanwhile the other ones, driven by racing car drivers, have had more issues like overheating, broken cam belt etc.
I also have Mercedes Sprinter vans; well I can tell you now they are worse again, and use special tools to fix and are so expensive on parts. There are cheaper eBay service parts for Mercedes, but they are inferior and you'll have to do the job again. I find all modern cars are rubbish these days; too many electrical faults.
P.s. Those that break gearbox linkages are heavy fisted; buy a Mack truck. Combo vans are fine for what they are built for. Maintenance, small couriers, flowers!
That is so true. Exactly the same issues with a Holden Combo 2003 here!
I've got a 2003 Combo made in Spain and tried to look after it, regular service and such. It does not carry heavy loads, but ever since I've got it it has been nothing but trouble. Gear linkage, gear pulley, the stuck thermostat and consequently the expensive repair because it's stuck behind the water pump. This was replaced and the timing belt had to be replaced again after only 1 year because of the darn thermostat. The radiator was replaced, the muffler mended, the wheel bearings buggered and replaced, the cam shaft; every year I've spent 2000+ on the darn thing.
After the last repair (thermostat) it went for 1/2 day and crumpled in a heap and sounded like stuff was rolling around on the inside. It's at the workshop now and will be traded as soon as I get it back. Good riddance if I can find someone to buy it.
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