1973 Vauxhall Viva Base 1.3 petrol from UK and Ireland
Mechanically crude and poorly built
Replacement cylinder block after 500 miles from new.
Front wheel bearing collapsed.
Brakes grabbing and pulling.
Found that a dent had been repaired prior to delivery.
I bought this car new and I had oil contaminating the cooling water after 200 miles (2 days ownership). The dealer diagnosed a blown cylinder head gasket (!) and I was without the car for a day. After collecting the car, the problem was still there - back to the dealer. This time they said that the cylinder block was faulty and oil was being pumped into the cooling water. This after about 500 miles!Another few days without the car.
Someone pointed out to me that a dent had been repaired on the wing. The dealer denied all knowledge.
A few months later, the front n/s wheel bearing collapsed whilst driving on the motorway. The recovery company dented the bonnet hitching it up.
The car was slow and boring to drive.
I sold the car after 6 months of ownership totally disillusioned with British 'conventional' cars and went back to my third German NSU.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 10th September, 2005
10th Sep 2005, 14:28
If you'd kept it longer you would have also found they rust like fury too.
17th Sep 2005, 02:59
Actually, the Viva resists rust better than some of its contemporaries (and I am not referring to Fiats and other Italians).
As for boring to drive - if the original comments are anything to go by, life with his/hers was anything, but, in the wrong sense of the word.
9th May 2006, 16:36
I have a Viva and I'm just 23 years old, I've had a similar problem to yours, but they are certainly not boring to drive!
12th Jan 2007, 04:30
A Viva was my first car back in 1983 when I first passed my test. I had never thought about buying A Viva nor did the car appeal to me, but one came up cheap at £180
I didn't intend to keep the car for more than 6 months, but 3 years later I still owned it. It was totally reliable, different and unfashionable!!! compared to everyone else who owned 1600E's and Escorts. Everything about the car is simple to work on and yes, it's not exactly a luxury car, but we are talking about Vauxhall in the 1970s - hence why they rust
I only sold it in the end as I wanted a change - the guy I sold it to had many continued years use from it.
Even now I look back fondly on my time with my Viva and if could get a Firenze in decent condition, would happily own another - Viva's are affordable, usable classics now.