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Holden Vectra

Holden Vectra (page 2 of 4)

JR, JS and ZC
2.8 from 69 reviews

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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

Worst car ever

I bought my 2006 vectra in 2008, it was okay for the first 6 to 8 months and then the problems started, from there on the coolant compartment would always over heat making the car have no power and feel like the car was going to break down after driving for 40 min.
Just after fixing that the front left suspension broke two weeks later so i sent the car to holden thinking that they could fix it and give it a proper service (l thought at the time that the mechanic i used was dodgy) after two weeks of them fixing my car i got a call from holden saying my engine was gone and l had to get it replaced for the cost of $6000 this car has almost costed me its worth.
It looks good
Too many problems to list ( Unless you like spending money on this type of car, in my opinion don't get it ).

This is almost exactly what's happening to my Holden Vectra 2004 model, the Coolant issue is the worst and just keeps happening throughout the year (but mostly during summer season), I've had mine for over 2 years now, I'm fixing it up and selling it, getting a powerful new Jeep Wrangler instead after that experience.Im about to buy a 2005 model i hope this dosent happen to me

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


Car surgeing

2004 3.2 vectra a great car apart from when it gets low on fuel about a quarter on the fuel gauge the car starts to surge and appears to miss the lower the fuel level the worse it gets even though there is still plenty of fuel left help ,apart from that a good car

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.


Broken down old lemon

I have had nothing but trouble with this car. I was warned before i bought it but didnt listen and am now paying the price.

It overheats regularly and last summer just shuddered to a complete stop.

When i took it to the mechanic, they said that the engine is [censored word removed] and they gave it 6 months to 'live'. its still going but not for much longer
small, and easy to drive



This model of car is a lemon. Don't buy! I give it 1 star for the great airconditioning - because I've needed it to keep my cool with all the issues i've had! 1 Star!
I have the ZC CD 2.2L manual.
Looks good, for it's age, it has all the mod cons too. Airconditioning is really powerfull!
What hasn't gone wrong with this car? It has really turned me off Holden for ever. In the first year - broken clutch pedal, leaking steering rack which was replaced, countless cruise control issues, tail lamps keep blowing. In following years I've had the timing chain tensioner go - rebuild of engine. Gear box fail - new gear box fitted. Leaking oil out of the drive shaft. Problems with power windows. Indicators not always working.. the list goes on. Brake pads and drums worn out before 50K - shockies rattle all the time (probably need replacing) rear right tyre keeps on getting a thump thump noise caused by uneven wear (can't be fixed).. Car battery keeps dying - I've had four batteries in 6 years! Hand break failed many times and have found my car rolled off my drive way into middle of road!!!


Stay away from Vectras or take out a second mortgage to keep it on the road!!!!!! This is by far the worst thing I have ever bought!
I have a 1999 2.2lt CD model. It is a nice care to drive and has a great sized boot for a mid size car.
I bought this car nearly Three years ago. For about the first 10months I had it it was fine. After that it has been nothing but trouble. Just before Christmas the regulator on the ultinator went ...$300 + new battery. Next the timing belt (I was getting it serviced according to the log book which had a timing belt replacement at 120,000km, later found out Holden had change it to 60,000km). I was fortunate I could fix it on the cheep..$800(and one month off the road). The door handle has broken, the windscreen water jet won't spray. the reservoir has craked, the radio comes on at max volume when there is moisture in the air, there is a rocking noise in the engine, it idles (lol) fluctuating from 500-2000rpm and it not charging the battery. I had it at the dealer yesterday ($400) trying to fix the last two problems and after listening to it rev then nearly die every time I stopped on the way home, it is now sitting at the petrol station were I stopped on the way home. Is it too much to ask for a reliable car. I look after it, get it service and regularly check the engine. I just want to get from A to B! Holden have lost me for ever!

I just got ripped for one then didn't I?why did you vote it as excellent???

Vectra's - used by date

Great for the first 10 years until:

2011 Dec: Aircon was regassed
2012 Jan: Lost gas, checked
2012 Jan: Needed new Compresser (not really) regassed
2012 Jan: 3 Days later lost gas
2012 Jan: Needs A/con ball valve replaced inc whole piping
2012 Feb: Car over heats
2012 Feb: Rough idling
2012 Feb: Cracked Radiator hose (join actually) expensive
2012 Feb: Still idles rough, car over heats again, no electric fan cutting in
2012 Mar: Possible cracked Rocker Head causing idling problems due to CO2 emissions into chamber. Too expensive to warrant repairing. Lack of functioning A/con prevents electric fan cutting in due to running off the same system.
2012 Mar: Selling or Wreakers

Will get A/con up and running then make a judgment from there....dicey
Good looks, power, reliability and its a Holden ????
Expensive, Not mechanically friendly

1 comment
I had a js v6 vectra i pay good money thinking i was purchasing a good car this car cost me that much money in mechanical repairs after 3years i sold it for 5000 i lost 15000 on that car i feel holden should never be able to sell a car so many problems i will never buy a holden again ive got a honda civic now and i just love

What a lemon or are they all the same?

At 30km's gear box/trans packed it in (under Warranty), beware of the Repco extended warranty (small print), and thay are not very nice to deal with. At 60km's gear box/trans packed it in again, my mechanic fixed it this time which cost me big bucks but at least I have no problems now. My car is now on 159,000km.
Last week I had to replace the fuel pump $490.00 (parts & labour).
What other problems have I had:
The front tyres would wear out on the inside even after they were fully adjusted by the tyre specialists. My mechanic had to fit some special parts so the tyre specialists good adjust my wheels properly (car design fault), all good after that.
The internal aerial (radio) in the cars roof area has worked loose and rattles around all the time (design fault). .
The exhaust and muffler system are very ridget, always having it fixed and replaced (design fault). .
The door handles (knob) keep falling off (design fault).
The car over heats very easily mostly in peak hour traffic when driving very slow or stopped at traffic lights in summer.
Solid. It has taken a few bumps over the years and has held up well. I think the tow bar helps when being rear ended.
The car and the warranty.

i have a 1997 holden vectra 175000 kms head gasket blown not sure if its worth the money to fix!!!Had the same problem with the head gasket - any idea the cost?our head gasket just blew on 2000 Vectra quoted $2600. Calling in the scrap dealers to take it away. The car is a bottomless money pit.


The 3.2 CDXi is an impressive performer, the British police used the same car as a highway pursuit car, so it fair flys when you want it to. Its not overly thirsty either but depends on how you push it. It looks good and will age well, parts are the weak link but try some british suppliers it can be cheaper to get them sent here if your not in a big hurry. Vital you keep up with servicing as this is a technically complicated car in parts. Most who have problems can trace them back to lack of servicing and TLC. Avoid the autos, go for a manual for more urge and better fuel econ. and they are far less troublsome. If it aint got full history, walk away, theres plenty around. Enjoy.
CDXi is supremely well equipped and has a solid build quality, seats are sporty but comfy for most shapes, plenty of luggage space, compliant ride on the sporty side.
most parts are dealer only, and aint cheap, big drama if you dont like the stereo, if you take it out you loose your steering wheel controls.


Oh Vectra, what a contradiction you are! I had mine from new (1997 2L manual sedan). Great car for the first 50,000km or so. My ownership of it sadly ended today 13 years later when I watched it disappear on the back of a tow truck....destination the wreckers. Motor blew up last week and no way was I forking out $1000s for a second hand one, now knowing the problems Vectras have with their motors. The "Dog and Lemon Guide" gives these a rating of: AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE. I now tend to agree. Stylish looks, solid build quality and good handling are useless if you can't even drive the thing.
Stylish, solid, great fuel economy, excellent manual/clutch, great sound system.
EXPENSIVE TO FIX ANYTHING ON THESE!! Unreliable, red paint faded badly despite always being garaged and well cared for.


Too many faults.Holden u blew it.Wilsons holden poor to deal with-servicing.Had car in 3 times to fix oil leak-still leaking.Promised me loan car-didn't get.Charged me when they said it would be (NO CHARGE) Will try gateway holden for electrical problem next week.The service department told me they've never seen this electrical problem before but are wiling to have a look for me.Suprise -it might be a sensor.Loss of power whilst driving keeps me in suspense.Have replaced sensors in past not because fault with engine but because the sensor itself was faulty.Turning on car the stereo kicks in on full volume at times and can't adjust.Take foot off acclerator at speed and car shudders when put foot back down.Been problematic since new.Headlights randomly dim themselves.
A/C good.1999 Olympic gl.Bought for looks and 2.2L engine.Liked amount of room for family.
Loss of power/stalling.Faulty volume dial on stereo and cd ejector faulty.Fuel smell in car dealer couldn't smell or fix.Sill happens.Door seals broke fixed under warranty.Headlights flickering.All dials in dash losing power intermittently and engine light on.Sometimes every 5-10seconds. Hard to know your speed and fuel level.Non dealer mechanic unable to fix.Constant oil leaks-fixed but not fixed.The ongoing repair $.

I hate this car :(

When I first bought this car i loved it, it was soo much better than my older car, such a smooth ride, and with all the mod cons I thought it was great! Then things started to break... and kept on breaking!! I have spent SO much money on this car, every time I repair something, something else breaks! And every part is so expensive, because the car is originally made by Opel so parts arn't readily available in australia.
i have replaced/repaired almost every single part on this car and things just keep on breaking. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone!!
Smooth ride, electric windows/mirrors, air conditioning
expensive parts, always breaking, constantly repairing parts, made overseas.

1 comment
Totally agree! It costed me a fortune, big lemon !

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Questions & Answers

Hi, my son has 2005 Holden Vectra hatch. Recently he lost all interior heating, fan, air conditioning- the works. Checked fuses and all okay. Also as he was looking at fuses and afterwards he has lost power steering. Any suggestions please.
No answers

Hi I have a 05 3.2 v6 Vectra c and I’m currently changing the thermostat on this which is located under the air intake plenum. I’m stuck on ideas to get the housing water pipe free from the thermostat. Some people say it’s a push fit or screw fit I do not know. I don’t want to break the pipe as it looks fragile.
No answers

Why would my Holden Vectra be making clunking noises when going down in gears
No answers


Vectra JRVectra JSVectra ZC
Release dateJan 1997Jan 1998Jan 2003
Discontinuation dateDec 1998Dec 2002Dec 2005

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