1960 Vauxhall Victor FA 1.5 from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

A great classic!

Faults:

The previous owner had hardly driven the car in 30 years, so the usual suspects caused problems (renewed clutch servo and all brakes).

Other than that, a new generator.

General Comments:

These car's were "pure Americana", according to the publications of the day. Actually, they were so British. Light steering, first-time starting motor, and a light, well-chosen, 3 speed column shift, and a biggish boot were the best things.

Mine wallowed on corners, but you got used to it. In straight line travel it was great, and you can see so much.

The seats are great, but the glove-box is deep... As for the notion that you will somehow injure yourself on the dog-leg entry; I didn't do it once.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th March, 2013

1974 Vauxhall Victor Estate 1.8 from UK and Ireland

Summary:

Best car I ever had; I want another

Faults:

I loved this car and it never let me down. I looked after it, and would still have it, had a car not ran over the top of it.

Weak points was the top void bushes on rear axle, but that was a 70's problem. Fitted solid Cortina ones and it never came back again.

General Comments:

For a big car, it handled very well. Best mod I ever made was Spax shock absorbers. It handled like a dream after them. Dropped in a VX490 2300 engine and it could rocket then. Not a problem for the brakes, as they were fantastic; my modern ABS car can't stop as well as my old Victor could. It stood on it nose and hardly ever locked up a wheel, but it did need up rated pads to stop the brake fade; if you really toasted the car, you could get the back brakes to collapse inside the drum, as they went soft as they got red hot.

Loved the huge seats; you could just laze about in them. In the estate model you can move the front seats forward, and they could fold backwards to edge of rear seat. Like a big built in bed.

I now have a VX2300GLS in my garage. Oh how I wish they made the shells as it's a bit rusty. Would love to have another to drive about again.

So if anyone has a good shell, please find me and let me buy it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th August, 2007

15th Aug 2007, 19:13

Hi!

Try eBay or one of the Victor Owners' Clubs as the odd car does come up every now and then - past salvation owing to mechanical issues, but with a reasonably good shell.

I do agree with your comments on the FE series Victor, though. Very under-rated cars that never sold in great numbers and not too many left around now.

1970 Vauxhall Victor 2000 SL 2.0 Gasoline OHC from Sweden

Summary:

Good car for the money

Faults:

Valve Cover Gasket seems to disintegrate within 2 years, changed it immediately after I bought the car and have had to change it again recently.

Complete steering box failure (probably a result of previous owner misaligning and over-tightening it to the front cross-member.

General Comments:

Fairy quick and economical.

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

Review Date: 14th September, 2006

13th Apr 2008, 19:20

The FD still looks good as a design today. What a pity they never went as well as they looked in original factory spec.

1973 Vauxhall Victor Transcontinental ES 1.8 from UK and Ireland

Summary:

A 70's Cruiser

Faults:

My Father had a Victor FE, bought new in August 1973 - Just in time for the new M reg! The car was a special edition "Transcontinental ES" model and replaced an old mark 2 Cortina.

The Transcontinental ES package added a vinyl roof, cloth seats (unusual in 73), head restraints and, wait for it - Hazard warning flashers!

The car was surprisingly roomy and comfortable, providing Granada sized accommodation for the price of a mid range Cortina. However, a wallowy ride spoiled things and regularly induced sickness in rear seat passengers.

For a 1.8 the car was slow! The engine was strangled by poor breathing and gave only about 70 bhp. In a big car like the Victor it had its work cut out and it drank fuel as a result. The fuel crisis hit just as Dad took delivery and it cost him a fortune to run it!

For a mid 70's car I suppose it was reasonably reliable, but by the time he sold it in October 1979 rust had taken hold in the sills and front wings and those cloth seats were thread bare. Imagine writing that about a 6 year old car today!

General Comments:

A car of its time.

A Triumph of style over substance!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 2006

30th Jul 2006, 19:47

I agree - they weren't built to last. My dad owned a '73 vx490, a lovely pokey car, but it was falling to bits by the time it was only 8 years old.

10th Jan 2007, 17:55

Actually, the FE series Victor and its derivatives (VX4/90, Ventora) was no more or less succeptible to rust than its mass market rivals.

How many Consul/Granadas, BLMC 1800/2200/Princesses, Hunter/Sceptres, Chrysler 160/180/2Ls, Fiat 132s, Renault 16s, Peugeot 504s and such do you still see these days?

Considering that the FE sold in far fewer numbers than most of its rivals (it was a marketing failure), the proportion that survive today bear testimony to just how well they have lasted.