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The good old Daewoo Matiz. My very kind mother and me have the fortune of part owning this magnificent specimen of a car. It truly is the modernised version of the classic mini, economical, compact and not too bad to look at. I have only got a T registered model, so I am not quite up to date. However from my experience this car is as sound as a pound.
It comes with a 0.8 litre engine, really tiny, but because of its size and minimal weight it is plenty of power to do the essentials. I have clocked it at 86 m.p.h, (although if you are a police man better make that 70), so it really isn’t all that bad. The Matiz is very much a city car; it is very good at nipping around the place. But don’t try and take the advice of the new advert people really don’t appreciate you parking it where you like.
My Matiz S.E came with dual airbags, tape stereo and power steering as standard. But if you are being economical, this really is everything that you could possibly need. Talking of economical you will love its petrol consumption and insurance group. The insurance group (1 or 2) makes it ideal for the new driver such as myself, very small amount of money to pay compared to other common cars such as Vauxhall Nova’s and the good old Fiesta. The Matiz’s fuel consumption is wonderfully diminutive. Because of its small engine size, supposed lack of power and no doubt lots of technical factors of which I am not intelligent to know of the Matiz can do about 35-45 miles to the gallon (depending on how you drive it).
Because the Matiz aesthetically looks like a tortus, other road users often treat you as such. However this is a deadly misconception especially when someone like me is at the wheel. This car accelerates excellently up until about 50 m.p.h, this baby can move. It gives me such a feeling of self-fulfilment watching the hapless Golf or Astra, having to concede defeat after attempting to out drag this concealed speed machine. So beware drivers this car and its spec may seem a little poxy, but it sure as hell packs a killer punch.
The main concern of being a part owner of a Daewoo is the company’s current problems. If I am not mistaken they are currently or at least very close to liquidation. Whether or not problems will arise in the future, when attempting to get new parts etc. is a mystery. Hopefully the company can stay afloat and survive, but if they do go under you have got to wonder what may happen about depreciation of price.
Anyway less of the doom and gloom and lets look at the features you can add to your Daewoo. With my model you are able to upgrade in order to include air conditioning, CD stereo and rear wing. However with the new improved Matiz the CD player and alloys along with all the old clutter come as standard. Another new innovation, which I would love to have, is the parking gizmo that comes with the car. When you’re as bad at parking and reversing, as I am this would really come in handy, especially when you are in a really close proximity space where there is no room for error. Normally when I see spaces like that I would rather drive around for hours rather than attempting to reverse into it, but worry no more with the aid of strange beeps you can work out how close you are to ruining that unspoilt no claims bonus.
The Daewoo Matiz aesthetically a shrunken mpv, it is a little un nerving at first, I have to admit I hated it, but when you fall under its majestic spell you will love like a child. My mother often calls it ‘cute’ because of the smiling face effect on the front, this somewhat ruins my illusions that this is a lean, mean driving machine, but when you look at it as hard as this is for me to say you can actually see where she is coming from. I receive a manure load of abuse for the somewhat odd combination of me 6” 1’ with pretty solid build in what is one of the tiniest cars around. It is an odd combination and it does cause problems, such as having to drive practically on the back seat. But through the discomfort comes a sense of well being, it drives well enough and is easy to control, so who cares about a little bit of cramp here and there.
It does have its drawbacks though. The service that Daewoo provide is often a little below par, they are slow and quite expensive. They seem incapable of fitting in with your needs as the owner. Another problem we have suffered is with the windscreen wiper fluid. It has broken twice now meaning unnecessary time spent without the car, and it also meant having to take it to the unhelpful Daewoo garage. When I say that Daewoo garages are not very good I actually in all fairness have little evidence to support this; my only experiences came at the same Waterlooville garage, so I cannot say that this definitely counts for all garages.
In short this a fantastic nippy and more importantly economical car. You will be amazed at just how cheap it is too keep on the road. The reliability and road handling is exceptional. Its only problems are a few minor parts being easily malfunctioned and my local garages work ethics. With all this in mind I whole-heartedly recommend the Daewoo Matiz to anyone looking for a cheap and efficient car to run. An investment you will not regret.
very good review, and i love my matiz, yes it is very cheap to run, such a small engine but quite anippy thing though. Hoping to get the new chevy matiz m3x soon.
AndreaG 24.12.2003 19:28
I've owned my Matiz for just over two years. I generally agree with your comments, but I have to say she isn't the greatest car in the world when it comes to acceleration, I have found this to be a problem when joining motorways. Though a great little town car, it can really struggle up steep hills, to the point where I now plan my roots to avoid them. I still love the car for the fact it is so economical to run, fits nicely into small spaces and the cheap road tax bracket.
wilsam00 26.07.2003 18:30
You have commented on every aspect of this car. But having recently driven a Daewoo Matiz i cannot agree with you on many aspects. The acceleration was awful the road handling not bad reliability very good. I may publish my hire car experiance shortly. Many thanks for a enjoyable read. Sam Williams
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