1972 Vauxhall Viva HC 4 door Deluxe 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Loads of character


Not an awful lot has gone wring with the car, just general wear and tear.

I had the brakes and clutch replaced soon after I got her.

There is a tear in the driver's seat.

The rear driver's side door is bubbling up around the wheel arch, but in the three years that I have had her, it hasn't gotten any worse.

General Comments:

This is the second Viva that I have owned, and I like it.

It has to be one of the most comfortable cars that I have driven. The suspension is very smooth and forgiving.

It is also probably one of the most economical I have had returning about 48 miles to the gallon at an average speed of 80 miles an hour. For a vehicle with the aerodynamics of a house-brick, I don't think that's too bad.

I can't really fault it overall.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th November, 2003

1972 Vauxhall Viva Firenza 1.3 petrol from UK and Ireland


An unreliable wreck - but it's got attitude!


Too many things to explain fully.

I had fitted a 1256cc Chevette engine to replace the original 1159cc Viva engine.

The AC Delco distributor was forever playing up, and the internals rattling about resulting in unwanted advance and retard of the ignition timing.

The starter motor kept wearing out, so I cut new grooves between the commutator segments - resulting in getting much more wear from the original starter.

The fuel line and/or fuel tank ALWAYS blocked and the car broke down. I removed the tank and line for cleaning on several occasions, but it never solved the problem.

An overflow bottle previously fitted to the radiator exploded on the motorway, and the temperature went off the gauge.

The pushrods stuck through the tin rockers, and a couple weeks later a piston cracked.

The car always suffered from severe suspension and steering problems, simply because the parts were all so old and worn.

Rust was becoming an increasing problem, especially in the sills and wings.

The gearbox and rear axle always whined, and jumped out of gear with a loud crunch if you tried to accelerate to hard in reverse.

It had a fuel leak from somewhere which I never got around to fixing. Resulting in economy as poor as 12mpg.

General Comments:

Although it broke down 'frequently' (it once broke down ten times in one day), I loved the car to bits, and always felt inclined to fix it.

It was slow, but the engine (until the end) was mechanically tough. It seemed to be the ancillaries which let it down.

The car was comfortable, and quite a smooth ride, which you would expect from a rear wheel drive.

Being the coupe model (in black) it looks great, and is a real head turner, but the interior is a bit spartan, with the bold 60's/70's styling.

I still have it in my drive, awaiting a complete rebuild.

I have since owned a Triumph Acclaim for one year, which has been totally reliable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th May, 2002