The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.
Share this review on
Vauxhall Corsas are extremely popular cars. Their sales are only beaten by the Ford Focus.
The car we have is an 8 month old Vauxhall Corsa Design. It has a 35 plate but was sold originally in February 2004. It was used by BSM driving school and has 10,000 miles on the clock. We bought it from Skurrays in Swindon.
Corsas are currently a good buy. Because driving schools thought them good cars to use to teach their students. However, after the dual controls were fitted they quickly realised the clutch begins to stick occasionally. So most driving schools were quick to sell their Corsas on. This problem doesnít occur once the dual controls are removed. So thereís lots of 2nd hand Corsas that arenít that old.
You can use the fact that theyíll have worn brakes, high mileage and the ďwhy would they sell it if itís only 8 months oldĒ factor to your advantage in reducing the price. Fact is though that itís a good car and going to be in great condition because it will have always been driven by a highly qualified driver or under supervision by one.
Our car was priced at 5,995 originally, we managed to get it for 5,000 by trading in our Ford Fiesta and bringing the price down. We also got the usual little extras. Everything is guaranteed (even against wear and tear up to 20,000 miles).
------------------------------------- My Model Ė Appearances -------------------------------------
1st impressions count in this world. This car makes a wonderful first impression. Sheís curved in all the right places. Itís a nice small car but spacious inside. The headlights are fantastic (itís the new version). They almost look like cannons inside the glass cover. If you have a look at a new Corsa youíll see what I mean.
Itís sleek. The bumpers and little stripes on the side are colour coordinated in this version. The aerial is at the back of the car; unobtrusive to the style. Everything comes together brilliantly to make a lovely cute little car.
But then you look inside. Okay, so the dashboard is very plastic. But it still looks nice. Leather steering wheel, grey colour of course. Thinking about it; the inside is quite dull. Itís all fabric lined and grey. Different shades of grey. But I like that, it isnít loud like some interiors are. The plastic dash is to be expected in such a car. Itís not quite at the level of the unforgivable Nissan Micraís (although that could just be my experience) but itís never going to meet the standards of a Bentley either.
The dash has easily reachable buttons and the CD player is situated at a good height.
------------------------------ The Technical Bits ------------------------------
Before we go on to the important ďdriveabilityĒ, lets have a look at what this car offers to the driver and passengers.
Thereís a CD player for a start. Actually, I would have preferred a tape player because I have a device that can hook up any audio equipment (like my MP3) through a tape player. However, I can understand CD players are what everyone wants. Itís in the dash. Buttons on the wheel control it as well as buttons on the dash.
This also has a radio with the ďtraffic warning systemĒ that constantly scans for traffic news on FM radio stations if you want it to. It also displays the radio station youíre listening to (on FM). Basically itís a decent radio that youíd find in most new cars. Thereís 6 program buttons and adjustable bass, treble, fade.
In the car you have 4 speakers. Two at the front and two at the rear. This is great because it means you donít have to turn it up so loud for everyone to hear.
Air conditioning is a fantastic addition to this car. When switched on (with the re-circulating button also depressed) it will cool (or heat) the car in seconds. Electric windows, power steering and remote central locking are also standard. As is ABS (which stops you from skidding, I actually enjoyed skidding around on snowy days!).
The steering wheel (as with most new cars) is height adjustable and so is the driverís chair. Thereís huge amounts of leg room for the passenger (Even when the chair is pushed right forward it had more leg room than our fiesta pushed all the way back!). At the back there are 3 proper inertial seatbelts (one in the middle instead of a crappy lap belt). And you can actually comfortably fit 3 people in the back.
Electric side mirrors make adjusting them very easy from the drivers side. Thereís also a lovely big rear view mirror which adjusts easily.
Both front and back is nicely finished and very comfortable. In all, a very comfy and luxurious ride for the type of car it is!
The one problem I would pick up on this car is the inability to change things easily. The entire dashboard is a single moulded piece of plastic. So it looks very nice, but I can't imagine it'd be too easy to replace the CD player with one that is also a DAB digital radio for instance (which is what I would like to do). All of the audio equipment is designed to fit the car, and the car designed to fit that audio equipment.
I always look for innovation in the things I own. Itís things that arenít technologically
Pictures of Vauxhall Corsa 1.0i
The corsa in all it's glory (not sure on the colour myself)
complicated but are well thought out ideas. The Dyson vacuum cleaner is a prime example of this. You can see the thought that went into it with the little things. This carís got a few bits.
The central locking is one such innovation. If you press the lock button once the car is locked. However, you can still open it from the inside. Press it twice and itís deadlocked. ONLY the radio key can open it. But thatís not all!
When you press the unlock button ONLY the drivers door is opened. That means the boot, petrol cap (yes, the central locking includes the petrol cap!) and passenger door remain locked. So if youíre driving alone itís still secure. Press it twice and everything opensÖ However, thereís even more!
If you donít open a door for 30 seconds after unlocking the car itíll automatically lock itself back up. So when your kid gets a hold of your keys and presses the button or when youíve got the key in your pocket and brush against the kitchen counter at home it wont affect the security of the car! Hang on, one more small locking trick. You can lock the doors or boot with the key itself. So not even the remote will unlock them.
How about another innovation Ė when youíre stopped (say at a junction) the engine all but completely cuts out. You can hear it go almost silent. If you switch on the air conditioning or something electrical youíll hear the engine start to tick over a bit faster to provide the electricity. Iíve never had a car tick over at what seems like such low revs to save on petrol.
The speedometer is another brilliant idea. The lower speeds have larger gaps between the markings. For instance; thereís a large gap between 0 and 10 but between 90 and 100 thereís a very small gap. This takes some getting used to but is a brilliant idea so you know more accurately how fast youíre going at lower speeds (when it counts). Nice of them to put a little red line at ď30Ē as well, nice touch.
However, I think this is as much about deception as insuring you have better accuracy at the bottom of the scale. Because it makes it look like the car is accelerating a lot faster than it is on the lower speeds. The sudden jump of the needle as you pull away kind of gives a false sense of power. I have to remember that as it jumps up so far to 10mph, in my fiesta it wouldnít have even got off the bottom.
The headlights are another innovation. You can adjust how dipped the headlights are. If youíve got a lot of stuff in the back you can end up dazzling people easily. Well thereís a little dial to adjust them. Iím sure that most cars have this (I donít really know many newer cars) but I think itís a great idea.
Boot space is a nice little innovation. Firstly, thereís a lot to begin with. But have you noticed how hatchbacks tend to have a slant to their boot because of the back seats intruding on the boot space? I mean if you wanted to get a large box in there, it would fit at the bottom but not at the top where the space narrows. Well you can tilt the back seats forwards to give you a square boot space! If your passengers donít mind a bit of discomfort of course!
This means you waste less room in the boot with boxes (they can be pushed closer to the back of the boot) and generally gives you more room. Brilliant idea.
Youíve also got the little light in there (I was surprised to find while looking around at cars that some donít have a light in the boot, so I thought it noteworthy of putting it in the innovations on this car).
Buttons on the steering wheel make changing the CD track, volume and radio station a lot easier. I know most cars have this now but it is still a fantastic idea and I actually use it. My dad uses it in his car just to play around really and prove itís thereÖ but it is useful. Plus thereís no annoying ďbeepĒ when you press a button, itís quiet which is nice.
The window wipers also contain a little innovation. Theyíre not the rain sensor ones you can find in the next model up but there are 2 good ideas with this car. Firstly, if you squirt some water on the windows it will automatically wipe for 3 wipes (obviously they worked out this is just enough to clear the screen because it does so perfectly). I think thatís great so you donít have to fiddle around with turning wipers on and off.
Furthermore is the intermittent wiper. In our first car (Peugeot 205 very old car) it was flick it and it wiped once. In our last car you got 1 wipe every 10 or so seconds. But in this car you choose. You flick it to intermittent and then off again and then up again. It will then use whatever time delay you did between the 1st and 2nd wipes until you turn it off again. Great idea so you can set the speed of your wipers!
I can not tell you how much of an innovation electric mirrors are. Being able to set the side mirrors from the drivers side is a great idea. I can lower them for parking into tight spaces or make them higher to see further behind me at the touch of a button. It just makes manoeuvring an easier task!
Electric power steering Iím told helps save petrol and battery power because it only operates when you turn the steering wheel. So itís not constantly using fluid. It also helps with the maintenance because thereís no fluid to replace.
Oh and thereís the lovely noises the car makes if you open the door with the key in the ignition, with the lights on or with anything in the car on. Or the lovely fading light. Just little touches that make it good. The sounds arenít annoying but do draw attention. The way the light fades in and out means you donít get blinded by a sudden flash.
Thereís also a knob for changing the brightness of the internal lights (like behind the radio) to dim them or brighten them. Nice touch, canít see it being much use though.
Height adjusting chairs also help with the comfort factor. Again, not too much use but a nice addition to the car.
Thereís lots of little innovations going on under the boot as well. But theyíre all pretty standard practices for new cars (ABS and things like that). All she needs is a top up of windscreen wash and the oil occasionally and everythingís set.
----------------------- The Drive -----------------------
Ok, now hereís what youíve been waiting for. The most important thing about a car is the drive. Well it drives quite well for a 1.0l model of a small hatchback car.
They do these in 1.2 and 1.4 versions. To be honest Iíd rather have gone up on the engine size than had the little extras. But this is a shared car and it was a 2nd hand car so choice was limited on my part (though I was the one to do all the test drives and make most the choices).
But she handles brilliantly on the road. Going around corners is smooth and the turning circle quite small compared to our old car. I mean I can almost do a U turn instead of a 3 point turn on the road!
Itís a very responsive car at the lower speeds but I think the power steering eases off as you get faster so little twitches donít make too much difference when going down the motorway. For me it seems to be perhaps a little over responsive sometimes. But in general Iíd say sheís got the steering right.
As for a smooth ride itís pretty good. Then again, I think itís me. Because my dadís driven it out our street (over some rather nicely positioned speed bumps) and it was quite bumpy. But when I drive over the same bumps at the same speed I donít seem to get such a harsh reaction from the car. I would of course put it down to the extra weight when dadís in the car!
But the suspension is quite good. Itís not the most comfortable ride around but itís certainly not rough. Lovely comfy seats insure that your passengers are happy when youíre town driving. Over some country roads you get a few bumps but the suspension manages to smooth most of them out alright.
Driving position is perfect and so adjustable that if it isnít perfect, you can make it perfect. I feel comfortable, in control and just relaxed without it making me sleepy or anything like that. The seat goes RIGHT back. I mean, you could fit any sized man in that drivers seat! I wouldnít be too happy being the passenger behind him though!
The sound of the engine seems like itís heavily damped so you only hear the lower pitched sounds. I must admit that the first question I asked Jim (the wonderful salesman who was with me on the test-drive) was ďIs this a diesel?Ē but it isnít loud enough to be a diesel, itís just the deep sound of the engine.
In my opinion it has a nice growl to it. You canít hear it from within the car too much (which kind of makes it difficult to drive when you canít Ďhearí when you need a gear change, you rely more on the rev meter in front of you while youíre getting used to the car) but it is a nice sound.
As for the sounds of the roads. As with all cars it seems to get louder as you drive faster. Down the motorway it isnít quite as quiet and luxurious as my Dadís Dawoo Tacuma (MPV) but it is a hell of a lot better than our old ford fiesta. So good but not brilliant sound insulation and damping. Thanks to the 4 speakers (and their positions in the car), you can still hear the radio over it nicely though.
Acceleration seems to be good in 1st and 2nd gear. But once you get to about 20 (time for 3rd gear) the rate of acceleration seems to slow a bit. Getting the car to 30 or 40 is pretty quick but to 50, 60 and 70 isnít quite as fast. I feel I have to give it more revs in 2nd and 3rd to approach 50 (and then change at 45 from either 3rd to 4th to go to the higher speeds or straight into 5th to stick with 50). This is with 3 passengers and no luggage to speak of.
So this car is much more of a town car than a long journey car. But it still manages 80 or 90 (having mum in the car with me, I havenít been able to push it higher to test out how fast it can really go) comfortably on flat roads but getting up there takes some time. So itís still a nice car to cruise in as well.
Going up steep gradients is where this car falls down a little. I was coming up a hill and I hit it at 80mph, by the time I was at the top (it was the A419 heading back from Cirencester towards Swindon for anyone who knows what Iím talking about) the car had dropped to 50 and my foot was firmly on the ground. Ok, so it was a steep hill and quite a long way up it but thatís still a huge decline in speed considering I was putting my foot to the floor!
But she struggles up all the hills a little bit. I suppose I just have to get used to the car before I learn how hard I can push it and in what gears up hills.
The clutch is not as forgiving as our old Fiesta was. Itís quite difficult to get used to it but itís still difficult to stall the car. You just have some very jerky changes sometimes if you forget to respect the gentle nature of this car. After 4 days of driving Iím gradually getting used to it. So she takes a little getting used to, but makes for fairly easy gear changes once you do.
The gear stick is really easy to use. Changes are fluid, quick and easy to find. Even when double shifting the stick seems to find itís own way into gear. But itís just pointed at the right angle and each gear just in the right place so you donít accidentally go from 4th to 3rd instead of 5th, but you also donít have to pull it miles to get into 5th.
The handbrake though is positioned a little too far back. Even my taller dad says so. It just doesnít quite have the ergonomic feel as the rest of the car. However, after a while you donít notice that youíre reaching back. The seatbelts are more annoying! Theyíre positioned very far back! You can barely reach them.
Foot brakes only needed a soft touch to work. Perhaps I would have preferred a little more travel with the pedal and more of a graduated braking system. Itís almost like ďonĒ and ďoffĒ with ďonĒ throwing your passengers out the front window. But once you learn, you manage to get used to touching it more softly.
The car is fairly easy to get used to. Took me about a day before I was having smooth braking, gear changes and acceleration. This is only the 3rd car Iíve EVER driven with the first two being ford fiestas.
Itís also very nice to drive. I want to go out and drive it now in fact!
As for controls; theyíre easy for me to remember and access while driving. Pretty much standard I assume because our old fiesta had most the same things in the same place. 1 stick dedicated to window wipers, 1 to indicators and main beam lights. Thereís a dial for lights and the rest is all on the dashboard (fog lights, things like that).
This car is a lovely little nipper. I would suggest going for the 1.2 version for that little extra power (because this one just lacks a tiny bit). Sheís got a bit of character, looks great and drives well most the time.
The extras are fantastic and innovations well worth the extra money youíll pay for the ďdesignĒ model over the standard model. Brand new this will set you back around £10,000 (at least thatís what Iíve been told but I think thatís a little high myself, please correct me!) but buy one used and itís well worth your money!
Iíve fallen in love again. This car may lack a bit of bite on the higher speeds and hills but sheís lovely to be in, drive and I donít mind being seen in her either. Yeah, itís a bit of a girly car, but itís a damn good car, so there!
I donít know too much about cars, whatís standard on modern ones nowadays etc. (Iím no Jeremy Clarkson (thank God)) but I hope I have been of some assistance in helping you get an idea about this one! It gets 5 stars from me!
The picture ciao have used is of the standard Corsa with old style headlights. I've included some of our car to show you the model we have, enjoy!
Thanks For Reading,
------------------------------------------- Things you might like to know -------------------------------------------
Firstly, the middle seatbelt wont work if the back seats are pushed into the forward position. This is not a fault and is very commonly mistaken as one. It's something to do with safety. You shouldn't have someone seated in the middle if the back seats are pushed to the forward position (God knows why).
Secondly, the re-circulating air button wont go in if you have the dial set to de-mister (so the air blows towards the front windsheild). Again, I don't know why this is but it isn't a fault of the car.
I endevour to give the most detailed review possible. Therefore, I'll be posting updates here of all the problems we have with the car every time we find a fault.
First on the list are two minor faults. The first minor fault was with the window. Somhow it had been knocked out of alignment (I am told) and it wouldn't go up properly on the passenger side.
This arises from pressure as it tries to move up and isn't in the correct place (it was only slightly out). Of course the windows are designed to go back down if they feel too much pressure (such as a childs fingers in the window) so that's exactly what the window did. Electric windows have this problem and it can prove a serious security problem if the window wont go up at all. But ours would, you just had to nudge it bit by bit.
Secondly the drivers side indicator light came off (the one on the wing). Somehow it'd snapped off (probably while under the previous owner) and hadn't been re-attched right. So after we went on a long journey down some fast roads, it decided to kind of pop out and dangle off. I temporarily attached it with bluetac.
The vauxhall garage we got it from booked us in and fixed both faults free of charge. They replaced the indicator completely (because the clip had snapped) and re-positioned the window.
Please refer to the vehicle list for all suitable vehicles and any technical restrictions ... more
in menu item "product details"!Brand new, ready-to-fit, first class quality product including a 2 year warranty!Price including VAT!BRAND NEW, no replacement costs, you donīt have to send back your old part.