Opel Corsa Lite 1.3 1997 Consumer Review

A simple reliable little car that got me from A to B for 16 Years

  • Model: Opel Corsa Lite 1.3
  • Year: 1997
  • Mileage: 240 000 Kilometers
  • Motor: 1.3 Petrol
  • Transmission: 5 Speed manual
  • How long did you owned it for: 16 Years
  • Comfort: 7/10
  • Fun to drive 6/10
  • Reliability: 10/10
  • Best Fuel consumption: 6.6l/100km
  • Worst fuel consumption: 8.5l/100km
  • What did you like most about the car: Reliable and Practical
  • What did you like least about the car: No aircon
  • maintenance: Installed a reconditioned motor at 180 000 km, replaced the water pump, CV joints, shocks and normal servicing.
  • Owner: Neil Peverett

Opel got the name right when they called this Corsa “lite”; lite on petrol, lite on brakes, lite on tires, lite on maintenance and even lite on the purchase price. Thanks to the cost effectiveness of this little car I could buy myself a house save up for another car and live a little; this even after the fact that I had to spend R30 000 on a reconditioned motor.

In terms of features this car is rock bottom; no power steering, no aircon, no electric windows, it doesn’t even have a rev counter or cigarette lighter. It only weighs 850 Kilograms so the 1300cc, 8 valve, fuel injected 4 cylinder motor coupled to a close range gearbox is more than adequate to push it around.

I would describe the drive as peppy but with no real passion, road holding is not great which is most evident in high-speed cornering, instead of enjoying the sensation of motoring through a corner you tend to more “hack” through with tires squealing. The motor although very consistent never has a high point or noticeable power band so you never feel the adrenalin of a sudden boost of power.

Comfort is good for a small car; surprisingly big inside, easy to get in and out of thanks too big doors and enough leg and head room even for tall drivers. Three people can fit in the back with a squeez and the rear seat folds down to create a panelvan with plenty loading space. The Lite has good ground clearance allowing it to run smooth on all road surfaces.

It’s not a drivers car but practical and consistent, tends to grow on you and soon becomes an old friend.

Written by: Neil Peverett

Please add comments on your Opel Corsa lite

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2007 Jeep Wrangler 3.8 V6 2dr Consumer Review

What an ikon to own, but unless you doing lots of off-road driving of very little use.

  • Model: Jeep Wrangler 2dr
  • Year: 2007
  • Mileage: 114 000 Kilometers
  • Motor: 3.8 V6 Petrol
  • Transmission: 6 Speed manual
  • How long have you owned it for: 1 Year
  • Comfort: 5/10
  • Fun to drive 4/10
  • Reliability: 10/10
  • Maintenance: Replaced the water pump housing, normal servicing
  • Best fuel consumption: 12 L/100km
  • Worst fuel consumption: 15 L/100km
  • What do you like most about the car: True Ikon
  • What do you like least about the car: Totally impractical and truck-like to drive
  • Owner: Neil Peverett

After always owning hatches I decided it was time for a change. From a young age I always liked the idea of a SWB off roader, a used Wrangler popped up and I grabbed it; a year later I sold it and went back to a hatch.

There was nothing wrong with the Jeep in fact it was in very good condition and I certainly have no complains about reliability or any major technical aspects of the car; I just could not get use to the way it drove; it was terrible on the road every bump became a bounce and it swayed from side to side. Being high off the ground the road handling was also not good, there is very little connection between the driver and chassis which makes a big difference in driving pleasure and fun; the six speed manual gear box is also not great, too industrial and the ratios don’t seem right, you hardly ever use sixth gear. The 3.8 V6 motor was smooth and never skipped a beat, I did expect more torque but the power was sufficient. It’s a tough ride but so is the vehicle.

I also didn’t have the heart to take it off-road so there came a point where I had to decide if this was really for me, spurred on by the fact that it needed new tires which would set me back R18 000 I decided to sell, cut my losses and go with a 2009 BMW 116i which suited my needs better. I enjoyed the Jeep while I had it and it is the kind of car where you think “I should have hung onto to it” then I remember the fact that it only has 2 doors and a cubbyhole for a boot and with a 2 year old baby that doesn’t work so well. The fuel consumption bothered me even though I worked close to home and it wasn’t that bad for what it is, it still somehow bothered me, probably because I had a far smaller lighter cars before.

No regrets owning the Jeep it was my chance to have a car that it absolutely unique; with hard top, soft top and that unmistakable ‘Postman Pat’ type styling. Nothing wrong with a Jeep wrangler, it was just not right for me.

Written by: Neil Peverett

I’d love to hear your comments on the Jeep Wrangler


Alfa Romeo Sud 1.5 Hatch 1984 Consumer Review

Your first car is always a memorable one; if it’s an Alfa you’ll definitely never forget it.

  • Model: Alfa Romeo Sud 1.5 Hatch
  • Year: 1984
  • Mileage: Can’t remember
  • Motor: 1.5 Petrol
  • Transmission: 5 Speed manual
  • How long did you owned it for: 3 Years
  • Comfort: 7/10
  • Fun to drive 8/10
  • Reliability: 7/10
  • Fuel consumption: Can’t remember, but I don’t recall it being too heavy
  • What did you like most about the car: Fun to drive
  • What did you like least about the car: Leaked oil and had a few niggly issues
  • Maintenance: Replaced the water pump, CV joints, Coil, hydraulic clutch seals and distributor cap.
  • Owner: Neil Peverett

What a wonderful little car this was; in 1994 when equivalent Golf 1’s were going for about R8000 I picked up the Alfa for a song –  R3900; Alfa Romeo had pulled out of South Africa and nobody wanted them, I didn’t have much money, so it had to be a Alfa Sud or Renault 5 who also had pulled out, I went with the Alfa and had no regrets.

It was light, well balanced, and loved the corners; powered by a 1500cc flat four boxer motor with overhead cam and a twin barrel carburetor it had more than enough power; when you put your foot down and hit stage 2 of the twin barrel all hell broke loose; it’s that old school noisy grunt of power that made it so much fun.

Old Alfa’s are known to be temperamental and my one definitely had its good and bad days, the brakes would squeak on some days, the heater never worked properly, the dashboard cracked in various places, the fuel gauge could not be trusted, the tail lights filled up with water when it rained, funny noises would occasionally develop, the idling would sometimes be erratic, and if you took a trip to the coast, for sure you would have a ping from the engine for your entire holiday. All those niggly things would drive me mad today, but at the time I didn’t care, I just loved driving it.

Alfa Romeo certainly does know how to build cars with emotion; driver’s cars that come with their own attitude. For me a wonderful first car.

Written by: Neil Peverett

I’d love to hear your comments on Alfa Romeo Sud

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