1988 Vauxhall Carlton 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland


Never so glad to scrap a car!


Carb no good.

Heater didn't work.

All the windows leaked.

Could only lock/unlock using boot as the door locks fell apart.

Both rear coil springs snapped.

Dash caught fire.

Power steering pump leaked.

General Comments:

A comfy car if it wasn't cold or raining.

Badly built, underpowered & low mpg.

Boring to drive.

Please don't buy one if you enjoy driving, but hate getting oily.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 18th February, 2007

20th Feb 2007, 06:10

Mate you should try to get a late 1993 or 1994 model 2 litre or even better 2.6i with all the toys. An '88 Carlton with a 1.8 isn't exactly the best ones they made... even so, you shouldn't have had so many problems, the Carlton was a fantastically reliable car. Mind you, they're getting very old now and even harder to find.

19th Sep 2007, 11:12

Sounds like the reviewer bought it already as a scrap.

The Carlton is actually a good car.

4th May 2010, 18:57

"Never so glad to scrap a car!" Me too. Mine was a H reg.

1988 Vauxhall Carlton LI 1.8 from UK and Ireland


A luxury drive


Both sill panels replaced (112,000miles)

New speedometer cable fitted (a pig to fit as mentioned on another survey).

New exhaust manifold.

New cam belt fitted (123,500 miles)

After intermittent misfiring at low revs under load, dealer failed to find any fault. Broke down two weeks later in N. Wales and brought home by AA. Dealer took FOUR weeks to find fault and tried umpteen different parts replacements. It turned out to be a loose earth connection on the coil. It cost me nearly £500 to tighten that screw.

Fuel pipe leak from close to engine.

Fit new hand brake return springs. New rear near side cab mount and centre prop mounting. (127,724 miles).

General Comments:

Despite the work that has needed doing on this car, I find it reliable overall and a beautiful car to drive. Handling is positive and the ride is very smooth.

There is room for the world and his dog in the car and all their luggage in the boot.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th November, 2004

1988 Vauxhall Carlton L 1.8i from UK and Ireland


A car fit for a Saudi King


Traction control system doesn't always work, seems to go off when I have friends in the car.

7 Gigawatt Pye stereo again falters when my friends are in the car, it was always louder earlier I tell them! I have had noise complaints from 5 miles away when I am alone!

Car seems reliable as hell, Boeing have contacted me to find out what oil I use to go such distances trouble free!

General Comments:

A real supercar, I didn't think it could be as fast as my 1.1 Fiesta when I bought it, but after doing 137 mph on the way home I realised I had bought a beast!

My 6 inch Tornado speakers and Pine 100 Watt Bass Tube combine to make it the loudest car in the EU! I had to hide the Bass Tube switch in the fog light because the military were looking for the source of the dog deafening noise!

I have raced many a poor soul in their Cosworths and Integrale's, but the Carlton just corners like an F1 car. I only ever lost 1 race and its because I was eating KFC with a group of school girls in the back at the time!

It is the ultimate in Luxury, rear Halfords sun blinds the lot!

The crew in Middlesbrough nicknamed the car "The Legend" after just one 120mph mini roundabout.

The economy was unreal too, I often drove more than 1500 miles in a day, normally refuelling only once. The local garage girl always used to put her phone number on the back of my premier points card too!

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

Review Date: 2nd February, 2003

2nd Feb 2003, 11:12

This is unreal, I have also heard of such a legendary vehicle prowling the streets at night. Could this be the same vehicle?

27th Mar 2003, 17:25

Your hairy chested manlyness can't make a slow car fast.

1st Feb 2005, 14:34

If you think this is funny read the review of the 2002 Ford Puma, this guy is hysterical!