1980 Vauxhall Chevette GL 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Jaw droppin looks, tonnes of character, rear wheel drive fun


Anti roll bar drop links at 16100 (15 euro on eBay).

Head gasket (my fault) at 17000.

General Comments:

Everyone looks.

Everyone loves it, from grannies to young lads that don't know what it is.

The car was sluggish with uncomfortable seats.

So I put in uprated suspension, Recaro seats, 2.4 engine from a Frontera, 5 speed box from a Manta, Manta 1.6 rear axle, HS wheels, Kadett GTE clocks, Kadett GTE engine mounts, Racetech gauges, polybushed quickrack, Manta steering wheel, and loads and loads more stuff.

Some rust on the passenger's wing, so gotta repair that.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd December, 2011

4th Dec 2011, 05:51

So a 30 year old Chevette with rusty wings has jaw-dropping looks? LOL.

9th Nov 2012, 18:22

Car owner again.

The Chevette has been great; nearly 27000 on the clock now. I look forward to every drive.

And yes to it is ^^^^^^^

1980 Vauxhall Chevette GL 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Fantastic simple fun, and a joy to use


My Chevette has been in the family from new, and has lived outside all its life, but has not covered any more than 900 miles a year, so here is a run down of things I have had to do.

Six years old, some welding needed doing under front passenger wheel arch, and the following year, the same under the driver's side.

After 6 or seven years, the seats were becoming sun bleached.

At 10 years, the bottom of front wings was starting to bubble a little, and around the front valance etc; got worse as time went on, but note that there were no mechanical problems at all.

General Comments:

In 2006 I stripped the car, and rebuilt the bodywork and gave it a respray. I love this little car; it handles well and is fun to drive.

The seats have seen better days, but padded seat covers have improved things.

The heater is a little sparse.

All round vision knocks spots off modern cars, and the turning circle would give a London taxi a run for its money.

Mechanically it's very simple and brilliant to work on. The only improvement I have made in the last thirty years is converting her to electronic ignition; other than that, I have kept her as standard.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th June, 2011

14th Jun 2011, 23:27

My good God that is less than a thousand miles a year!

How did you pull that off? Have you worked from home or walked to work the last 30 years?

Great review by the way.

16th Jun 2011, 04:15

Had one of these when I was a student in the 90s. Not the best car in the world for luxuries or comfort, but absolutely bombproof and quite nippy as well. Bought mine for a pint down the pub one evening!

19th Jul 2011, 13:34

"She" would be fun to drive I'm sure until "she" smacks into a modern car and you and your Chevette get annihilated.

And before you say you always drive carefully and slowly, there's always the other guy, or gal.

The reason it's so easy to see out of is because there'll be virtually no structural strength compared to a modern car.

22nd Jul 2011, 05:08

If you worry about things like that in life, you will never do anything. There's more to a car than how well it does in an accident LOL.

22nd Jul 2011, 10:45

The vast majority of the buying public disagree with you, otherwise cars wouldn't be as safe as they are now. I remember working for Vauxhall when the Sintra MPV failed its euro ncap test miserably; it was withdrawn from sale as no-one would buy one. Rover did the same with the 100/Metro.

8th Sep 2011, 14:52

Totally agree with you, just as well I can see the other idiot early LOL.

1980 Vauxhall Chevette L 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Awesome little runabout. If they still made them I would definitely get one


Gearbox layshaft bearings went at 78000 miles, replaced clutch at the same time.

Radiator burst at 85000 miles.

Front inner wings badly corroded, welding repairs effected and the wings replaced to tidy up the cosmetic appearance of the car at 115000 miles.

Replaced both front seats to match as the driver seatframe broke with age. (134000 miles)

Finally at 163546 miles the car was due for an MOT, and on jacking up the O/S/R wheel, the jacking point collapsed damaging the sill and door. The car was scrapped, although the engine and gearbox were used in a 1982 saloon for another 20000 miles.

General Comments:

This was my first car, and everyone who traveled in it said it was great.

Excellent fuel economy approx 35 mpg.

Good insurance costs group 2 I think.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th September, 2008