2003 Vauxhall Corsa Reviews - Page 7 of 8

2003 Vauxhall Corsa SXi 1.2 16v from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.2 16v Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.6 / 10
Distance when acquired4 miles
Most recent distance392 miles
Previous carFord Ka

Summary:

A great little bargain

Faults:

It's too new to say really. Almost nothing has gone wrong apart from one minor problem.

The drivers seat in the last 60 miles has started to 'clunk' whenever you move in it, as if a bolt or something is slightly loose. It feels as if the seat has a about a centimetres worth of play in it through the forwards/backward motion. If it gets any worse, I will get it looked at.

General Comments:

In my own opinion, this is the best all-round model in the current Corsa range. We used to have the old shape 1.6 Sport which was terrific.

Specification is quite high considering it's price tag. Remote central locking, CD Player, leather steering wheel & gear knob, chrome effect plastics and rear head restraints although I am a little disappointed that the third centre headrest has been removed from the Corsa range in recent months. Another little gripe is the fact that unlike the old Corsa, the current models seem to have a lot more plastic on display, such as the door panels and the back of the head restraints. The seats are excellent in terms of comfort and the drivers' side has plenty of adjustment.

Mine is in Aztec Gold, which really does stand out! I am glad I picked this colour too, as it is quite rare and unique to SXi and SRi derivatives. A few relatives don't really like it (saying it looks too 'orange'), but most of them love it and thinks it stands out from the usual Black Sapphires, Flame Reds and Star Silvers.

At the moment, it isn't as quick as I hoped it would be. My previous car was a little Ford Ka, which in terms of performance, I was quite happy with, especially for what it was designed to do. It may be just down the the lack of miles at the moment and it may need further running in, but it feels just about on par with the Ka at the moment! It is a very smooth little unit though, quite quiet and in terms of economy it is impressive so far.

Although I personally feel the interior doesn't look as durable as the old models, it is currently creak free and lasting very well. On the open road, refinement is brilliant.

My local dealer is excellent. I have relatives in Vauxhall UK and our local dealer has always had the same friendly faces and over the years they have got to know us very well. They are always willing to help out and I have no worries about taking it there with any future problems (if there will be any - hopefully not!) and for servicing. I would recommend them to anyone I know and would almost certainly buy from them again. It's also very clean.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th September, 2003

26th Jun 2004, 00:59

Very honest pleased vauxhall got this one right.

2003 Vauxhall Corsa SXi 1.2 16v petrol from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.2 16v petrol Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired171 miles
Most recent distance5925 miles
Previous carVauxhall Corsa

Summary:

The best bargain super-mini you could buy

Faults:

While on my way down to Devon on holiday about a week after I picked it up I noticed my steering was pulling dramaticlly to the left while going over 50mph, so I swapped the tyres over and that was sorted.

As I turned corners my seat would sort of slide across, only a little, but it was annoying. After a few whines and moans to the dealership, whose excuse was well we can't do anything with an intermittent fault, decided to take it for a test drive and then it was found to be the height adjuster which they replaced.

While the above fault was going on my fan fell off when I was on the way to work, this was in the second week. The fault was a nut falling off. Due to the fact that the car had air conditioning it had a reverse thread nut so had to be ordered, so a night without my car.

Since I picked the car up there had been a bit of squeaking at low speeds on the brake pads, but shunning it off as brake dust and the fact they were new. But 2500 miles later I thought I'd better get them checked out. The first time they just cleaned them out and on the way home the squeaking started. So after a brief discussion with the service manager he agreed to a test drive and when we did he suggested new pads, which were replaced under warranty.

General Comments:

The 1.2 engine provided in the Corsa SXI was capable of 75bhp which was zippy enough for the town and superb on the motorway. Having already owned a 1.0 Corsa before I already knew how to handle the car, or so I thought. The extra 18bhp you gain with the extra cylinder and 4 valves was interesting. The car handled much better and could easily get you out of trouble with the right technique. Also the economy was not far off from the 1.0 really, I used to get an average 360-380 miles out of the 44 litre capacity tank, and with the 1.2 that was only reduced to about 330-350 so not too bad a difference. I had it in sapphire black so it looked very sporty and I also had air con added (at a £500 price) but then the free insurance helps. To be honest I drove a Peugeot 206 1.4 of the same power and there was no major difference, although admittedly the 206 could reacher a higher speed, but the mid range power was crap, and the Corsa had it were it was needed. Also compared to the 206 the Corsa is far better built and seems more spacious as well as cheaper and more for your money. The interior was mainly chrome effect round the handbrake lever, gearstick, door handles and CD player and it looked really nice especially with the white dials and chrome effect surrounds. Overall it is an excellent super mini and it isn't hard to see why it is the most popular one and the 2nd best selling car in the country. Fun to drive, powerful enough for the town and motorway, wears well, loves the open road.

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

Review Date: 5th August, 2003

5th Jul 2005, 06:27

I normally drive a 2 litre car, but I had a Corsa SXi 1.2 hire car for a number of days and found a number of good and bad points.

The car is roomy and up to 40mph will keep up with most cars on the road, the main problem I found was that most of my driving is on motorways and A-road and the Corsa was too underpowered for this type of driving.

Above 70mph there was no acceleration and it was necessary to shift down 1 or 2 gears to keep up with the traffic flow, because of this the fuel economy dropped and I was only getting 34mpg on the motorway. I can normally achieve that with a 2.0 because the engine isn't working as hard.

Overall it was a good town car, but I wouldn't buy a 1.2 if doing a lot of motorway driving, a 1.4 may be better for this.

Average review marks: 7.4 / 10, based on 23 reviews