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Holden Vectra JS (1998-2002)

Holden Vectra JS (1998-2002)

2.6 from 44 reviews

Was her best car til it got written off.

powerful lil car. drove all round Australia in it. Loved the car surprisingly it didn't go through as much fuel as I first thought when I heard 2.2l 4cyl but it was great being able to get power when you wanted. Getting another now 2005 cd zc 2.2 manual. Already done 290,000k so what needs to be replaced next anyone know?

Date PurchasedJul 2018

Excellent if you are a mechanic - nice to drive, and to get dirty fixing it.

My particular Veccy came to me rather than be scrapped. It was unloved by the previous few owners.

I replaced the blown engine, transmission, installed ABS, cruise control, the passenger and side airbags, replaced the A/C and got the car on new suspension components. The interior was upgraded to a CD-spec with nice carpets, seats, and the multi display unit.

The car doesn't miss a beat, but it's old. And old cars need PLENTY of maintenance to keep going.

All 2.2L Vectras come with a free feature - head gasket failure - they ALL have it. It's a matter of when, rather than if. My particular machine was showing signs when I got it - some bunny put a can of gasket repair in the cooling system, necessitating a replacement radiator.

For a car that's now considered scrappable, going beyond what P-Platers will drive these days, if you have one, and you are handy - they are excellent to learn the skills about car repair.

Date PurchasedSep 2015

Vectra definitely not A LEMON

Had this 2.6 litre v6 hatch since new in 2002. It has been and still is A GREAT CAR. It has well outlasted my 2004 BMW 3 series which I got rid of due to persistant oil and coolant leaks even though it had done only about 105,000 kms. Only now am I having a few minor issues which is to be expected given the age of the car.

Date PurchasedJul 2002

My first car

It is a 2.2 litre car with 4 cyl engine, 5 doors 4 seats sedan. I am feeling nice to have this car. The car is very smooth to drive. Good mileage and control. Soothing look. Fluent efficient. Economic car. Its security system is really amazing. It is my first car.

Date PurchasedMar 2017

1999 Vectra Station Wagon

Bought this car with 128,000km on the odometer. First problem - timing belt incorrectly fitted. Second problem - speedo tacho working intermittently (apparently a common problem that dealers now about} Third problem - engine switching off at traffic lights - using higher octane fuel did not resolve the problem. Blew a head gasket. Sold after 12 months. Good features but just too much trouble. I will never buy another Opel based Holden.

Date PurchasedNov 2015

Holden Vectra A Study In Maintenance

The Holden Vectra when purchased in July 2016 had 64k on the clock and is 16 years old. A comfortable 'sporty' feel gives a feeling of confidence. A study of reports on this model suggested timing belt and coolant related problems.

The timing belt has to be replaced at 120k or 8 year intervals. In theory, this Vectra had had one timing belt replacement at 8 years, this was not supported by the documented history and I suggest that the reported timing belt and associated coolant problems, are the result of poor maintenance practices.

The replacement of the timing belt invariably includes the coolant water pump, associated tensioner pulleys and the auxiliary drive belt costing $1300. You can have it done by a non dealer at a cheaper price, but at the risk of cutting corners e.g. the water pump and tensioner pulleys are not replaced. Failure to replace these items will ensure an early return, with possible coolant associated engine damage.

Owners must monitor servicings to ensure that work programmed is fulfilled - do not expect the mechanic to know your vehicles maintenance history.

August 7th 2017 Update: 1995 - 2003 JS Holden Vectra - Replacement Parts

The term 'lifetime guarantee' is defined by manufacturers as: as long as it is economical to supply parts.
While the JS Holden Vectra never had a lifetime guarantee, Holden in the main, no longer supply parts (or rather will supply some parts at great cost) for the Vectra.

The 1995-2003 JS Holden was manufactured in the EU (Germany/UK) as the Vauxhall or Opel Vectra B. The EU is the major source of replacement parts. Replacement parts can also be sourced from Repco (Aust) and Asia.

To obtain replacement parts, first obtain the factory part description and part number (and if available cost) from your local Holden dealer.

Next step, check out Repco. If Repco cannot supply, with the part description/part number search the internet under Vauxhall or Opel Vectra B. Note, it is often the case that the Holden and Vauxhall/Opel part numbers do not align, as most internet descriptions include a photo, it pays to be familiar with the part you are seeking.

Date PurchasedJun 2016

A sporty good size reliable V6 Holden

It's a pity that most posts are done when there are negative experiences. I have had my V6 Vectra for around 14 years and it has been reliable. It has been well maintained and only now in the last 18 months started needing replacement parts. Yes they aren't as cheap as Toyota's but parts only usually get replaced once. The driver window mechanism has been replaced, now has new shocks, new brake rotors, new rocket gaskets, spark plugs, coil, injectors and oil leaks fixed. It should now continue on for more than another 100,00kms.. Interior space is excellent, seating 4 adults comfortably and the hatch boot is a fantastic size, there is no other sedan around that gets off the mark as quickly, performs well in slow traffic and on highways nor gives as much space internally!

Date PurchasedApr 2002

2.6 v6 motor

the driving is very good,like the interior of the vehicle is great/ the reliability of this particular vehicle we bought the car last week from endevour hills we were assured by the young lady that every thing is good and should pass a roadworthy.it was raining so we left the windows up till we got home then we tested the windows3 were good drivers side decided to stay down so we had a look at it.the mechanism was twisted needed replacement.then noticed that there was a puddle of oil under the car oil level sensor needs replacing /then after driving a short while the car overheated needs new thermostat but not shore where it is but assumed it would be at the inlet but no i'm told its on the outlet which is impossable to get in to undo and remove fun and games i next decided check the brakes i''ve now had to replace the front brakes as they were metal on metal so i am looking for someone who has a work shop manual for opal engine so i can finish doing this vehicle we tried to get a refund for this car but they would not hear of if these people had looked at these faults i know that becauuse they had left a brake spring off the brake caliper,after this they can put vectras on the scrap heap we will never buy another vectra its a heap very clean mechanicly up the creek our $1500 dollar car has now now gone up to something like $3200.as parts for this car are extreemly dear i stopped driving holden after my HQ but thought i would try again .but after this i will choose another type of car

Badgeholden vectra 2.6 6v opal

Okay When It's Okay

It's a good driver, nice engine but very unreliable.
It's also very tight inside the cabin, but there's a lot of gadgets (which is probably why it's so unreliable).
For the size of the car it's not economical, at about 8L per 100km which is good for a family car but not a car as small and tight as this.
Can't count how much has broken altogether but recently the starter motor died, over heated a few times and stalled plenty.


A really good ride.

Purchased ten year old vectra, well serviced. Engine warning light kept coming on and I was warned but also told to use the good fuel every 4th tank. I used the 98 octaine and the great performance became terrific, the engine light went off, obviously the lower octaine fuel sets off the sensors. For the price its a fun car as long as your prepared to maintain it. My Nissan 260c went around Australia three times and was still a top car until stolen . I'll let you know how they compare in time.

1 comment
It has been six months now. Vinnie the Vectra is doing well and says hello. I am nearing my first service which is timing belt and a power steering pulley. Same as the 260 c which did the power steering pulley after driving through a very deep hole full of water on nullabour. I have only the one real critique in that its hard to park, auto correct takes over if you don't stop/start while manoeuvering, probable,cause of all the fatalities around 2004-5-6 and a bit of a blindspot at rear. Fuel consumption is really good and oil consumption has been just two top ups of 250 ml, anymore and the engine light stays on until the next top up so its really accurate. I feel good driving the Vectra CDjs2

This is lemon

I brought this one my second car...that day rediator hose broken...i call dealer to inform that but they not flaxible.im worry about it....i never ever buy holden again...as soon as i say good bye this car...and move to brand new japanes one.i lost $ 4700+700 (for hose and repair).don't buy astra its same..lemon.im verry unhappy that dealer..


Do not waste your money

Looks good, drives ok only when it's working.
2 radiators, pumps, 2 head gasket kits and every thing else that goes with fixing these problems within 2 years later and I'm broke.
Car sales should not sale them.
Save your time and money do not buy
They should recall this Model and refund the owners


Vectra 1999 model wagon

3heads 3raidiators 1overhead cam head gaskets alternator front brake rotors .all up $11000 in ten years . Holden should have recalled the lot or left them in Europe .sold mine for$150 glad to see it go

Sending me bankrupt!

Bought a 2000 model about 2 years ago for $5000. The guy had an extensive service history on it and I thought 'oh, well he's obviously taken care of the car then' (it was my first time buying a car). But noooo, what it meant was 'this car needs servicing all the time'. Like today when I went to put a new battery in it and have it serviced. Cost me $665 and they told me there was no way in hell I could sell it. I've probably spent well over $1500 on it since I bought it now. Oh and as an added bonus, the entire interior is falling apart (side panel on driver's side has come off, the rear window light is hanging). In its defence, when it runs (which isn't often) it runs really, really well and it's comfortable to drive. And maybe that's why I've kept it for so long, because I hoped it would miraculously cure itself.
Runs well when it actually runs


Wouldnt wish it on my mother in law

Well... the mother in law brought one, she was told not to... but hey, its a holden so it has to be good.... Right?


caught fire once, $1500 to fix the wiring under the dash
Blew a head gasket at low kms
snapped a timing belt, kablammo $$$$ to fix

off to the wreckers!
Was nice to drive, looked ok

Do not buy a VECTRA!

I don't usually write reviews on anything but this car brought me so many tears. In 2 years I spent over $3500 on the car. When I fixed one thing another broke. Water pump, engine, belts you name it, it went wrong. I got so sick of going to mechanics giving me a look of pity and them saying vectras were lemons and to get rid of it ASAP as I was a uni student I couldn't afford to. Every time I got in the car to drive I was afraid it wouldn't start. WORST CAR don't buy one.
The vectra has made me really appreciate my new car after experiencing the pitfalls of a vectra
EVERYTHING mechanical

If I could give it 0 I would!

I have a 1999 JSII 2.2l wagon, and this year alone it has cost me over $3000 in repairs, the cup holders are useless and parts and repairs are ridiculously expensive. Bottom line- DONT GET A VECTRA, just dont, its a bad idea. Get something that lasts or at least is reasonable to fix.
Not as wide as a Commodore, has good fuel economy
My mechanic drives it more than I do


Great Car

We have a 2002 2.6 V6 manual Hatchback and it is a great car. Good power, great handling and comfortable to drive. We also run it on the recommended Premium petrol which is more expensive then the cheaper fuels but you get a lot more K's out of it. You can run it on normal unleaded (doesn't run as smooth) but definetily would not run it on any fuel with ethanol in it.
Handling, comfort, power.
Replacement parts can be expensive but you can buy them yourself from UK/Germany very cheap.

Transmission5 speed manual
1 comment
I have the same model, 2002 2.6 V6 manual Hatchback, and it is great. Surprisingly good performance with plenty of power on tap. There is loads of space in the boot which takes a pram, shopping, and all my babies stuff with room to spare. Runs beautifully for a decade old car, possibly because I maintain it regularly.

Not good

Sour as a lemon, lots of problems with my 2002 vectra
overheating since change the head gasket leaking steering hoses, front wheel bearing has been replaced
common in vectras etc, there is a book called the worlds worst cars with the vauxhall vectra on page 128 need I say more!
Shape style


How to clear blocked windscreen washers.

Use a orcon multipurpose transfer manual pump which cost about $20.00 from "Autopro shop" & pump out container into a bucket,then refill with clean water & disconnect pump from small hose & with a "Air compressor" use the air gun nozzle to pressure the container via the small hose which is still in the container to really stir up & then pump it out again doing this process a few times untill clear.
Solved the problem & had windscreen washers working again.


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Questions & Answers

2000 is vecta cut in and out at 4500 rpm . you can change up a gear with plenty of power until you hit 4500 rpm starts cut in and out. Any ideas?
1 answer
The fault here is simple - you have a DTC set on the ECU. Have you checked your check engine light? Do you have a check-engine light on? The magic number - 4500. It's a set safe-mode setting in the ECU. If you haven't pulled DTCs on it, go to Supercheap Auto, and have the DTCs pulled using their scan-tool. Their tool *MUST* support the KWP-2000 standard - some stores have really cheap readers that don't support this... Then reset them and go again. The things that can put an ECU into the limp mode are Airflow meter, crank angle sensor, anti-knock sensor, and the transmission fault-input line (for automatics).

The right side indicators randomly stop flashing when indicating right. Indicating left is all okay. Any idea on what’s wrong?
1 answer
The indicator system is operated by the timing unit and three relays. Try swapping the two yellow relays in the electrical module and seeing if the problem follows. I did this, and it did. Grabbed a spare relay and replaced it. All works well now.

hi have 2001 vectra 2.2 ,have put new fuel pump and filter, will be driving and just cuts out, sometimes will restart other times have to wait, any help?
1 answer
Check with a scan tool first. Check for fuel pressure and flow - have you changed the fuel filter? It should be changed every 50 or 60 thousand K's - but Many I see haven't been changed since the car was built in Germany/England/Australia. That's a LONG time ago now... The simplest things can cause the engine to stop - bad relays, bad ignition switches, no crank angle signal, poor MAF, dead ignition pack (that's a likely target) and a host of other things. Scan tools are your friend........

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