1998 Hyundai Excel Sprint 1.5 Twin Cam X3 from Australia and New Zealand


The excel is an excellent buy with years of trouble free service


Tappets very noisy after about 150,000km, but don't cause any other issues.

Crank angle sensor went at about 250,000km.

Clutch replaced at about 270,000km.

Burns about half a litre per month in oil now its got the k's on it.

CV joints starting to click.

Front brake discs warped from racing.

General Comments:

This car although stock standard, has copped an absolute beating for three hundred thousand k's and has never missed a beat. That is until I ran into a car a month ago and wrote it off.

I have

- driven through flooded rivers where the water comes over the bonnet

- driven on rough bush tracks where some 4wd owners hesitate

- driven rally style along dirt roads

- been racing until the brakes overheat and stop working (bit scary)

- done lots of burnouts

- jumped over a few motor bike jumps.

Serviced regularly until 100K then about once every 20 to 40k because I got a bit lazy.

It is all original except for the clutch. It does need new suspension though. All up apart from normal servicing I have only spent about $300 on it since new.

Its great on fuel although road noise is an issue. Great on long distance trips. Build quality is good, but not excellent.

Manual gear shift is a bit sloppy in the shifter itself. Has been described as "like rowing a boat".

Stereo is very easy to make sound awesome with some splits in the front and a sub in the boot.

I highly recommend these cars as they are extremely cheap to buy and run and never break down. I am so happy in fact and surprised by how good they are for the price that I am currently looking for my second Excel now.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th November, 2005

13th Apr 2007, 21:57

Hey, I was just wondering if you knew what the tyre pressure (psi) was for the standard '98 Excel?


24th Jun 2007, 05:04

Great car: few creaks, tappets are tapping at 125,000klm's, paint beginning to fade, gear stick very sloppy, no steering or CV problems. It always starts first time. A great first car; can't go wrong.

1st Mar 2010, 21:39

I have had exactly the same problem for 4+ years. I looked for this problem on the net ages ago and didn't find any solution. The car would clutch start no problem, and pouring cold water around the thermostat seemed to get it to start immediatly (sometimes).

Just now got so fed up with it that I took it to Hyundai to fix. They suggested Crank Angle Sensor.

1st Aug 2011, 23:34

To the person who is having starting problems, but can push start it; it's the solenoid in the alternator.

1998 Hyundai Excel Sprint/Twin Cam 1.5 EFI twin cam from Australia and New Zealand


Nothing more than A to B, reasonably reliable, economic, non-versatile


Aerial came off - Super Cheap Auto "universal" aerials don't fit, so I will have to get it fixed next service.

Spark Plug leads had to be replaced, for some reason these are really expensive $130 - will replace spark plugs as well soon, just in case.

Seat belts randomly pop out, haven't done anything about it, but can't be to safe can it?

Wheel alignment was slightly off when I brought it.

General Comments:

This car is nothing more than a general cruiser to go from A to B, but when called upon (and given a fair boot of rev's) will accelerate reasonably fast.

The car is NOT good for going around corners fast, and I have had the unpleasant experience of spinning the car out. It gets very tail happy, and the wheels don't like to stick to the ground under speed.

At about 140 - 150 the power versus drag factor comes in, and the engine can't push through the wind very well, although will continue to accelerate for a little while longer.

The car gets extremely hot inside if left in the sun, the steering wheel and gear knob are almost untouchable until they cool down. (I don't have tinted windows though)

Car would definitely benfit from power steering, for low speed parking or reversing. Although at speed these arn't a problem.

If you intend to hold the car in gear, and keep the revs up (like hill climbing) then this is not the car, the car chews threw fuel at an astonishing rate, and cannot pull well at all.

Full of passengers and cargo, with the air conditioning on, at 110 k/per hour, you may find yourself having to downshift to fourth or even third (for a small incline) just to maintain speed.

Defiantly not a chick magnet (more of a girls car if anything)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 31st January, 2003

25th Sep 2008, 20:48

Can agree with the car struggling at 150-160km, however it is a small car mostly designed for local driving.

Regardless, any car is going to get hot.

19th Oct 2008, 18:39

The Excel I've got it runs like a dream, and I've got heaps of chicks in it.

1st Jul 2012, 06:11

Why would you be driving at 160km/h anyway? That would be an irresponsible use of any car.