1994 Vauxhall Corsa LS 1.2 from UK and Ireland


Over-rated and un inspiring


Water is leaking from around the windshield, but I can't locate it.

General Comments:

Not for long journeys.

The first gear is reluctant to be used.

The gearbox must be really worked to get anywhere.

No power steering means the steering is surprisingly heavy.

Poor ride quality and boring ride with 'bubble car' looks puts me off driving it.

Skinny wheels mean one must hold on tight around any corner and beware in even slight winds.

Very economical though.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 29th January, 2003

1994 Vauxhall Corsa LSi 1.4i from UK and Ireland


This is not just a car, it's a member of the family


Water pump replaced at 81000 miles due to corrosion.

Corrosion on drivers side chassis rail currently awaiting repair.

Seat rails repaired under Vauxhall recall.

Sump pan and gasket, handbrake cables and rear brake cylinder replaced at 69000 miles.

This car frequently refuses to accept first gear with the handbrake applied.

General Comments:

The handling on corners could be better, if you haven't got passengers in it can lose grip. The car is sensitive to the wheel alignment being out, good tyres and correctly aligned wheels considerably improve the drive.

The acceleration on this model is adequate, but overtaking on hills takes patience without careful use of gears.

I love the sporty three door body, the newer models and 5-door versions are less appealing.

This has plenty of luggage space and split rear seats, bags of room for those Ruby Wax style shopping trips. It has a lockable glove compartment and handy map shelf. The door panel pockets are however fiddly to clean inside.

The dashboard and controls are well laid out, with the exception of the fog light switch, which is hidden by the steering wheel in most driving positions.

The wheels are set quite wide in the wheel arches - this means the wheel trims are quite easily damaged on high kerbs.

The black/grey bumper areas tend to fade, repaired sections mismatch to original colour. The bumper areas offer good accident protection.

There is plenty of headroom, I frequently carry 6'3" passengers comfortably. The rear seat would be very cramped with three adults. I find the only comfortable driving position is with the seat fully forward in order to reach the pedals.

The pedals are small and close together, difficult to drive for people wearing large boots.

The gears and handbrake are easy to reach and apply.

This car has been very reliable and starts happily even in cold weather. It has only once not started, this was due to the battery requiring replacement.

I would hesitate to recommend Vauxhall dealerships. I have found that I received better value and service elsewhere.

This car, in a three door, metallic paint finish, feels fun, sexy and will take you anywhere you want to go. A lively ride, a lovely car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th October, 2002

1994 Vauxhall Corsa GSi 16v 1.6 16v petrol from UK and Ireland


A dog


6500 miles - timing belt tensioner broke up causing timing belt to jump several teeth and valves to hit pistons. Engine declared a write off and replaced under warranty.

7200 miles - Power steering pump bearings started groaning. Told it was "normal" by dealer. Seized 500 miles later and left me stranded.

8400 miles - ECU light came on and went off a few seconds later.

8500 - 10,000 miles - ECU light came on more and more often. Engine started to "race" of its own accord at idle, and would lose power intermittently when accelerating. ECU deemed faulty by dealer. Two types of ECU fitted to these cars. One type is common, one type is rare. Guess which mine was. ECU ordered from Opel in Germany.

10,400 miles - First service. Also asked for a "peeling" rear spoiler, intermittent refusal to unlock and a non-functioning rear light unit to be looked at.

14,000 miles - After the wrong ECU arriving three times, replacement is finally fitted. Makes no difference - car still races, misfires and stalls, and blinks the ECU light. Dealer openly admits defeat as no codes show on the system. Water is now leaking into the passenger footwell, and there's sometimes a smell of burning after unlocking the car.

18,000 miles - Dealer has the car for a day to look at the ECU problems again. Car comes back much better - still blinks its light occasionally, but now driving OK.

19,000 miles - Stranded after the car locks itself 20 miles from home, with the keys inside it. Girlfriend brings spare key from home, but it still won't unlock. Car towed in by the AA.

20-27,000 miles - fuel pump relay fails on the M40 at 3am. Locks playing up again, boot leaking water, battery starts going flat overnight, drivers seat won't tilt, PAS pump groaning, radio stops working.

31,000 miles - fails its first MOT on anti-roll bar bushes, CO emissions, a power steering pump leak, a split steering rack gaiter and a partially seized brake caliper.

32,000 miles - part-ex the heap for an Escort RS2000 which I've still got and which has never let me down.

General Comments:

Read the above and draw your own conclusions. Quite good fun with nippy performance, but too unreliable and dealers too shocking to even contemplate buying another Vauxhall.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 10th October, 2002

3rd Feb 2005, 06:52

I think you should leave the little corsa alone it was probably just your model I have mine for 8 years it hasn't broken down once.

5th Feb 2005, 14:59

I had a corsa gsi for just over a year when it just had to go due to its so many problems and poor performance!