1997 Nissan Primera GT 2.0 petrol from UK and Ireland


Performance, equipment and anonymity


Annoyingly squeaky wipers.

A few minor interior rattles.

General Comments:

Bought privately in Jan 2001, a 97P reg Primera GT for little more than £5000 with low miles and full history. Plenty of performance and equipment for a bargain price!

I've only driven 4000 miles in this car, but I hope there will be many more.

Superb road-holding, responsive steering and lots of power above 3700rpm.

On the downside the seats look more supportive than they are, and the ride is harsh over poor surfaces. The payoff for that great handling!

Fuel economy is good at around 35mpg, but be prepared for group 14 insurance and pricey dealer servicing.

All in all this has to be the finest handling car in its class and with air conditioning, 8 speaker stereo, 6 CD-changer, electric sunroof and mirrors, 1/2 leather trim and trip computer, you get lots of toys for the money.

It may look like a rep-mobile, but it will embarass plenty of far sexier cars!

With Nissan's reputation for reliability I'm hoping to enjoy this car for a long time to come!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th April, 2001

1997 Nissan Primera SLX 1.6 from Turkey


Modest and driver friendly


Nothing very important - the battery failed to work, however, after 3.5 years of service and needed to be replaced.

When the air-con runs at first, it causes a smell for a few minutes.

General Comments:

Even though it has bland looks in the interior, it's roomy and comfortable - even on long journeys.

Engine performance is adequate for a family car, but a 1.8 would have been better.

It handles well on road and is also quite economical.

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

Review Date: 29th January, 2001

1997 Nissan Primera SRi 2.0i 16v from UK and Ireland


A vastly underrated drivers car


The only thing that has gone wrong with the car is that the battery developed a leak which in turn corroded the battery terminals.

General Comments:

A truly excellent drivers car! It is a much better drive than my Mondeo was.

There are only a couple of things that I dislike about this car:

1) The gearchange isn't quite as good as other cars I've driven (especially the Mondeo), and reverse gear on my car doesn't always engage first time.

2) The radio-cassette player that came with the car was pretty awful. The first thing I did was to install an aftermarket CD player.

However, the list of things I like is thankfully much bigger than the list of don't likes:

1) The handling is extremely good. You can throw the car into corners going far too fast, and it still doesn't understeer. The suspension isn't excessively hard though, and still absorbs most of the bumps and potholes all too common on British roads.

2) It is reliable, and hopefully being Japanese, will stay that way.

3) The engine is fairly powerful, and has a bucketload of torque around 3500-4500rpm. Overtaking is a breeze, although I would have liked a little more low end (2000-3000rpm) power.

4) Quick enough to beat all those townies with their XR3i's, Nova SR's etc.

5) The build quality of the car is also higher than your usual Ford or Vauxhall - everything is well put together with no rattles whatsoever.

All in all, I'd have no quibbles about owning another Primera or about recommending one to friends or family.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd December, 2000

1997 Nissan Primera SE 2.0 petrol from UK and Ireland


Absolute heap of junk !


- Severe rattling from the dashboard - Nissan dealer could not fix it with 3 visits, fixed by myself.

- Fuel system recall by Nissan.

- Faulty alternator.

- Noisy steering on full lock.

- Shattered 5th gear cog, gearbox rebuild.

- Problems with the handbrake releasing.

- Driver's seat mountings are loose.

- Air conditioning smells 'like urine' when turned off.

- Severe knocking noise from the front suspension, happens every 15,000 miles after links replaced at £250 a time. This is not acceptable unlike what Nissan say.

General Comments:

A potentially good car has been let down by poor quality parts and workmanship - my series one that was made in Japan was perfect but the British cannot make a decent car these days, where the newer ones are built..

The suspension problems and dealer failure to notice a loud cracking sound. Even suggested that the dealer technician gets a hearind aid! (Dealer was Evans-Halshaw of Reading - avoid this dealer!) It is obviously a design flaw which shows that Nissan didn't test their prototypes properly.

Buy German !!!

If you're spending this sort of money, buy a Passat or an A4 - I'm going to!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 7th December, 2000

26th Jan 2001, 17:30

I agree with what you say. Nissans that are made now in England are nowhere near as good as the old Nissans and Datsuns made in Japan. England just doesn't seem able to make a decent car.

2nd Feb 2001, 11:04

Absolutely, I used love Datsuns and Nissans but I bought a 1999 Primera and it's piece of junk. I rather drive a 1978 Datsun Laurel.