Zastava 128. A car that will surprise you over and over again
Driver seat was really destroyed even though I bought this car from one very small woman. I really don't know how she did that.
Besides that nothing important broke. It has only required those parts generally required at each specified service interval.
To be clear I'm writing about the Zastava 128.
A really ugly car in my opinion at that time; now I'm in love with its retro look. I never thought that I would buy one and then, one day after a whole day of searching for a car, my friend forced me to go and see one. It was an old (if I can recall correct 1978) Italian Zastava 128. Actually made in Zastava, but had something like 70% of Italian parts (engine for example).
Only because I really had to have a car the next day I bought it. Also I bought it very cheap (approx 300 euros) so I didn't care much and I thought it would serve until I bought another car.
How wrong I was. Very hard to explain how surprised I was with this car. Even though the car was manufactured in 1978, I had literally no problems with it. For a whole year I drove it and because I bought it cheaply, thinking to change it very soon, I invested 0 euros in engine oil and other parts. Also I treated this car very badly, and I don't believe that any other car would stand this torture without breaking.
So after one year of driving, two minor crashes and approx 40000 km, the car was a real wreck. My biggest mistake was that I decided not to fix it. The 1.3 Italian engine was the best thing this car had. Very responsive, and people were surprised at how fast this car could go. Starting from 0 to 100 was fast too, so I had no problem leaving everybody behind me (of course I'm not speaking of BMW or any other sports car).
So I decided to buy again Zastava 128 and until now I changed 3 of them. Actually I'm driving right now my third Zastava 128. Until now I have over 150.000 Km behind me with those cars and not even once have I had a problem on the road.
This car is not too comfortable, acoustic isolation is not the best, the car looks like brick. But from another side, the car is very reliable. I usually forget to change the engine oil so every 20 to 30.000 km I change the engine oil. Also, because now I have 1.1 engine model I feel that I need just a little bit more engine power. Because of that I'm driving this car almost always at high RPM.
Gasoline consumption is not that high. If you have regular service intervals then the car will spend around 8 liters in the city and 6 on the open road for 100 km.
Having in mind the really low price of this car, I think that this car has best price/quality ratio. Last car I bought for 400 euros and it's almost 2 years that I'm driving it. Until now with this car I have approx 60.000 kilometers behind me and maintenance costs are almost nonexistent. Also I have to say that parts for this car are very cheap. Usually maximum 20 euros for everything, and a new engine is around 100 - 150 Euros (if anybody managed to break it, I didn't ;o).
If you want to have a car that will drive from point A to point B over and over again without investing in it, buy it.
If you want to show off, go and search for another car. The Zastava 128 has his own cute look that I love now, but at the first sight it's a very ugly car.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 14th February, 2004