1991 Vauxhall Nova Reviews - Page 2 of 7

1991 Vauxhall Nova GSi 1.6 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1991
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.6 Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.8 / 10
Distance when acquired85000 miles
Most recent distance90000 miles
Previous carReliant Scimitar

Summary:

A Mini Cooper on steroids

Faults:

Heater fan bearing wore out.

RH headlight silvering 'browned out'.

Water pump replaced when bought as it was leaking - did timing belt and thermostat at same time.

Engine mounts replaced - old ones were getting too soft - however new ones are actually no better! Too much engine wobble.

New brake pads needed.

Replaced fuel pump - one terminal had cracked off.

Oil pressure guage and water temp guage have never worked. The pointer on th oil guage has actually separated from its pivot!

General Comments:

Very nippy & willing.

Definitely not neck snapping acceleration, but if you keep it above 400 rpm it does go well - and sits happily on the motorway at legal speeds.

Goes round corners well and predictable on the limit! Only found out once!

Comfortable for long distances and much quieter than most GTi Golfs I've been in.

Lack of power steering makes parking a bit heavy weather.

Well appointed, comfy seats, well put together.

Don't see many of them around.

Would love to solve the spongy engine mount problem.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th March, 2004

1991 Vauxhall Nova GSi 1.6 8v from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1991
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.6 8v Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired91000 miles
Most recent distance100000 miles
Previous carVauxhall Nova

Summary:

Add a few bits and it can really go!

Faults:

It recently blew a piston ring requiring a rebuild, that was £250 and I did it myself.

The image isn't the best.

General Comments:

I have tuned the engine. Added 272 duration cam, skimmed the head, added an 4-2-1 exhaust manifold and K&N air filter and Sebring exhaust system. (with uprated suspension and astra 16v brakes).

With this lot the car now pulls 0-60 in 7.1 seconds timed at TRAX at silverstone and 1/4 mile in 15.2 at Santa Pod.

This car can also swallow a 2l 16v engine from an Astra or 2l 16v turbo from a Calibra/Cavalier, that's for silly power!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th February, 2004

26th May 2007, 08:27

To the original reviewer, I know this was 2004 but if your reading this what sort of power did you result in with the 272 shaft, manifold, filter ect? Nova's are OK, not a common sight now, nice when you see a tidy one.

1991 Vauxhall Nova SR 1.4 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1991
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.4 Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired73569 miles
Most recent distance78397 miles

Summary:

Boy Racers dream car

Faults:

The Fan started to squeak.

Dashboard lights gone apart from speedometer and rev-counter.

General Comments:

Car is very quick for a 1.4.

Handles well in the snow, but that could be to do with the wide types.

Clutch has lasted very well.

It is styled better then any of the cars competitors in its day and comes standard with a great spoiler.

Mine has a 3.5 inch exhaust and a K&N air filter which really adds power to the car, also having a MOMO steering wheel and gear knob makes the car fell a lot more sporty.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th January, 2004

31st Jan 2004, 10:30

I'm sorry, but I have to disagree with the following statement:

"It is styled better then any of the cars competitors in its day"

Does this take into consideration the rusty rear wheel arches? The Nova was a horrible looking car, even when new! Yet boy racers still buy them, regardless... for what reason? For the same money theres the Renault Clio, Peugeot 106, Citroen AX GT. All of which are more refined cars, don't rust so badly and handle better.

Also, an exhaust and a K&N air filter is unlikely to 'really add power', more so add to the illusion of power through the extra noise.

Verdict: Spend your money on a better car!

1991 Vauxhall Nova SR 1.4 from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1991
First year of ownership2002
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.4 Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired62000 miles
Most recent distance70000 miles

Summary:

Cheapand reliable pocket rocket

Faults:

Automatic choke not opening fully

Radiator hose blew in a traffic jam

Water in the distributor cap after going over a puddle too fast.

General Comments:

This car is seriously quick and handles like it's on rails! No other hot hatch could keep up. 205xs's would fail trying, newer cars would not even stand a chance. Mine could beat nova GTE's and GSI's, but I don't think it had been driven hard before I bought it. I put a magnex exhaust on it which made it sound great, but the police could also hear, especially at high revs! The seats are very comfortable, and fuel economy was good, even when it was being thrashed!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th June, 2003

13th May 2006, 15:42

I agree, the power to weight ratio meant the car was very quick and with its close ratio gearbox it was a real flier. It was still only 73bhp. Not much in it between the GTE/GSI and the SRs. Mine had the best engine which was due to being cared for by me and oil changed every 4000 miles. However, the crummy bodywork put together in Malaga meant the bodywork wouldn't take the English elements. Seriously miss mine.

Average review marks: 7.2 / 10, based on 40 reviews