Written on: 01/06/2012 by ianwas (2 reviews written)
I've owned my Matiz for about eight years, originally bought it as a second car but it became my main car. Bought second hand off ebay with around 25k miles on the clock and on a 52 plate.
At this time (June 2012) has over 96k on the clock and still going well! This car has so far been totally reliable, i.e. NO break downs ever! Touch wood of course with this sort of mileage.
Plus points for me at least are/have been...
2. Good mpg - averages over 40mpg around towns, 'A' road driving, to and from work - the usual stop/start journeys. Motorway driving will average nearer 50+mpg travelling at a true 70 mph - i.e. Not the speedometer 70mph which does read 5mph Fast! So driving at an indicated 75mph is really 70mph (found this out by using my sat nav). Drive at 60mph to 70mph and expect close on 60mpg.
3. Speedometer reads up to 5mph More than the true speed - so great for speed camera's etc. as never going much over the limit if at all!
4. Great for parking just about any where, as the narrowness of this car means it'll get in gaps that even average size cars won't.
5. Tyres are cheap.
6. Parts are plentiful and mostly decent prices (new parts). I've read here that some people have paid lot's for parts but my guess is that they've had parts fitted at expensive garages and that's not cheap due to labour and v.a.t. charges - for any car. Also, they've probably paid 'garage' prices for parts when it's a lot cheaper finding and buying the parts your self!
Example - I just fitted a nearside front lower control arm, these are Not sided for these cars btw (as the ball joint was worn badly) and the actual part cost less than £29. Fitting was less than £40 at a local MOT/service centre. I had replaced the opposite side 'arm' two years ago myself for free but wet weather stopped me replacing this time myself.
7. Parts are also plentiful and cheap from breakers yards too.
8. Will carry what ever you can squeeze inside it as the seats fold more or less flat and you can use the passenger side front floor well to add length for long items/timber etc.
9. Replaced the rear section exhaust at a good price - bought new off ebay too and fitted it myself (as I have some steel ramps).
10. Quite lively acceleration from a standing start to up to 30+. I know because it often accelerates away from much bigger engined cars in town/traffic :-).
11. I've put over 40,000 miles on this car driving 500 mile round trips over the last 5 years on Motorways! Town car eh?
12. Skinny tyres a good in the snow, I've passed loads of bigger cars that have simply got stuck - or perhaps it's was just other rubbish drivers?
13. I put the fist set of new spark plugs in about a year ago! Cheaper too as you only need three :-).
14. You can get a CD Manual off ebay - cheap!
Minus Points - Mostly wear and tare issues. Well, at this age and mileage what would you expect.
1. New front exhaust a few years back cost over £200 because the catalytic converter is included - but that's what we all have to pay for those things and some are a LOT more expensive.
2. Narrow inside (obvious as it's a narrow car - see parking bonus above) so it can be cosy but it will seat 5 and has 5 seat belts so as to do that.
3. The engine management light comes on eventually (it's a sensor thingy) and I used to pay my local garage £5 to 'put the light out' but eventually it comes back on. My daughter's Matiz did the same too and so I stopped paying £5 almost two years ago because it doesn't matter about the light - it's just a sensor fault and in any case it passes MOT's with the light on!
4. Fairly noisy engine, squeak's and rattles from various areas but it has done a Lot of miles for a 790cc engined, so called town car.
5. Skinny tyres a rubbish in the wet for cornering, so just slow down!
6. Suspension is a bit, err, basic. Hard over bumps but bouncy/body roll too! Can be fun/interesting!
Must Do's With These Cars.
I change the engine oil and filter at least once per year, It uses a bit of oil these days so I regularly top it up which helps the oil life a bit. I always spray underneath the bonnet, door hinges, locks etc with WD40 or equivalent. Keep tyre pressures around 30psi.
I had the timing belt renewed at 60k, which I think is the recomended mileage. Not that cheap (for a small car but are these belts cheap?) Definitely worth doing considering the mileage it's gone on to do :-).
Not a perfect car but certainly a decent, cheap, little car that is Very Underrated. Just a pity that Chevrolet own Daewoo as now newer second hand prices are quite high.
If you've had a 'bad'n' it's probably been properly abused and neglected. Mine has dents and scrapes etc. but look after the engine with oil changes, that's my best advice. Probably for Any car.