1991 Vauxhall Cavalier SRi 2.0 8v petrol from UK and Ireland


Quick, economical, fun, and it just works!


Fuel pump relay at 100,000 miles.

Clutch at 135,000 miles.

Radiator at 160,000 miles.

Front wheel bearings at 170,000 miles.

Front outer CV joints at 195,000 miles.

Shocks all round and track rod ends at 200,000 miles.

General Comments:

Without a doubt the most reliable and best built car I have ever owned. It continues to clock up the miles with ease, and despite 205,000 miles without ever having been apart, the engine is sweet, smooth, powerful and doesn't burn oil. I service the car myself at the recommended 9,000 mile intervals, but also carry out an oil change mid-way between these points.

It's old, but it doesn't get mollycoddled. I drive it hard and regularly visit friends in Germany where it will still make an indicated 140 mph on the derestricted autobahns. Allowing for speedo inaccuracy, this is still a genuine 126 which is not bad for a 200,000 miler. If anything the engine feels freer and gutsier now than ever before.

The bodywork is holding up well too and is still rot free. Waxoyl treatment around the rear arches and sills seems to have paid dividends, and the paintwork still polishes up almost as new. I always said I'd get rid of the car when it started to become unreliable or tatty, but it shows no signs of either. Fuel consumption varies depending on driving - 28 mpg driven hard around town to 43 mpg on a steady run. Not bad for a car that will still outperform most current 2.0 family hatches made today.

The other bonus is when parts need changing, they are dirt cheap. The clutch for instance was £140 fitted by a local independent garage, and has done 70,000 miles without problems. The radiator was £80 supplied (easy job), wheel bearings £100 fitted, CV joints £60 a side supplied (easy job), the shocks and track rod ends £200 and sharpened the car up almost as new. What other car can be kept running sweetly for 200,000 miles for just £600, outside of normal servicing? My old Peugeot 405 SRi cost twice that in three years and 45,000! And the only failure that caused a breakdown was the pump relay. One breakdown only in all these miles!

Come on Vauxhall, why don't you build 'em like this any more?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th April, 2003

1991 Vauxhall Cavalier GL 1.6 from UK and Ireland


Just a great car!


The only thing wrong with the car is the steering is very heavy, the power steering pump isn't working correctly, and it has minor corrosion on the front near side wing.

General Comments:

This car has done 210,000 miles! The engine is immaculate for the age and amount of miles it has covered. I bought the car for £150, The electric mirrors and windows still work. For a car of this age the interior is like brand new. It must've been very well looked after.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd April, 2003

1991 Vauxhall Cavalier L 1.6 carb. from UK and Ireland


Cheap, reliable, comfortable, what more do you need?


Head gasket @ 100,000 £250.

Wheel bearings @ 103,000 £100.

Clutch cable snapped @ 105,000 £50.

General Comments:

Very cheap to run. easy 37+ mpg, cheap parts, you can service it yourself, change brake pads etc.

A lot more comfortable then Nova's/Saxo's etc.

Poor stereo.

Under steers badly in the wet.

Very easy/relaxing to drive, if a bit dull.

A little under powered at times.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd April, 2003

4th Apr 2003, 01:47

I have just got one of these and I can agree about the under steer in the wet! Lots of interior space and comfortable all round.. great reliability..it's a bit of a work horse.

1991 Vauxhall Cavalier L 1.6 from UK and Ireland


No matter what your age or sex this is a must as a first car


It has a tendency not to start first time, everytime.

The parcel shelf rattles.

The bonnet release lever has come away from it's mounting, meaning that you have to hold one part with one hand and pull the lever. This can be painful.

General Comments:

A good car overall.

I'm 18 so I can't expect something wonderful because of insurance premiums, I'm paying £1200 third party fire and theft whereas a friend (who's the same age) is paying the same on his 1.3 Escort Eclipse (third party fire and theft also).

It may not be as fast as most other 1.6 engines, but it has more 'street credit' than any Nova or Fiesta or any Ford for that matter!

The interior is well presented. There are many spaces within the dash board to store all your little items. The front cockpit is extremely spacious, many of my passengers have often commented on the amount of room.

Parts are cheap and labour is easy. Recently my wing mirror was either stolen or knocked off, so I went to a local scrap yard where I had a choice to buy a brand new manual mirror for £25 or a second hand one for £15. After buying the second hand mirror I fitted it with only a screwdriver in under 5 minutes.

I think when I have about 3 or 4 years no claims discount I will probably buy a Vectra because of it's 'Cavalier roots'.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th July, 2002