Used Vauxhall Corsa 2014-2019 reliability

Category: Small car

The previous-generation Corsa is good value and offers plenty of space and standard equipment; it doesn't drive as well as its rivals, though.

Vauxhall Corsa rear driving
  • Used Vauxhall Corsa front cornering
  • Used Vauxhall Corsa interior
  • Used Vauxhall Corsa interior
  • Vauxhall Corsa side driving
  • Vauxhall Corsa rear driving
  • Vauxhall Corsa boot
  • Vauxhall Corsa side driving
  • Vauxhall Corsa rear driving
  • Used Vauxhall Corsa front cornering
  • Used Vauxhall Corsa interior
  • Used Vauxhall Corsa interior
  • Vauxhall Corsa side driving
  • Vauxhall Corsa rear driving
  • Vauxhall Corsa boot
  • Vauxhall Corsa side driving
  • Vauxhall Corsa rear driving
Used Vauxhall Corsa 2014-2019 review
Star rating

What should I look for in a used Vauxhall Corsa hatchback?

When viewing a used car, always follow our used car buying checklist.

The Vauxhall Corsa has rather large pillars front and rear, which restrict your view out and can pose some difficulty when parking it – Vauxhall even offered a self-parking feature as part of an option pack – so check for any scrapes or dings to the bumpers or bodywork, as these can be expensive to put right.

Check the alloy wheels if your potential purchase has them. As it is a town car, previous owners may have mounted or brushed up against a kerb or two during their ownership and damaged the surface of wheels.

Also, check the interior for any broken bits of trim, and that the seat fabric hasn’t been damaged by child seats. We have been told by an owner of seat clips breaking, making it hard to release the seatback. It could be an isolated incident, but it is worth checking that the seats fold as they should.

Vauxhall Corsa boot

What are the most common problems with a used Vauxhall Corsa hatchback?

Steering rack may fracture

Due to a problem with the manufacturing process of the steering rack, the steering gear might break under load – ie. when manoeuvring at low speed. This affects cars made between 18 November 2014 and 28 January 2015, so your Vauxhall dealer will be able to check the build date of the steering rack against this to work out if it needs to be replaced.

Loss of stability

The connection between the steering knuckle and the lower control arm may not have been assembled correctly at the factory. If this connection breaks, then you will no longer have full control of the vehicle. This applies to models that were built between 30 June 2014 and 28 September 2015. A Vauxhall dealer should be able to inspect and then rectify any issues for you if your car is one of those affected by this recall.

Loss of steering control

Differing from an earlier recall for steering rack problems, there has also been a problem with the steering knuckles of Corsas produced between 23 June 2015 and 30 July 2015 that haven't been manufactured correctly. In time, these knuckles might fail and cause you to lose control of the direction of the vehicle. The manufacturing date stamp of the relevant parts can be checked by a dealer to confirm if your car needs further work or not.

Curtain airbags may not deploy correctly

The curtain airbags that are designed to protect your head in a side impact might not deploy correctly in a collision. This only applies to examples built between 25 August 2016 and 1 December 2016 and you should be able to find out if your car is affected by this when you speak to a Vauxhall dealer.

Handbrake may disengage

The handbrake may disengage on some vehicles produced between 26 August 2016 and 30 January 2017. Affected vehicles should have the assembly replaced as a precaution and a Vauxhall dealer will be able to tell you if this applies to your car, and if the work has already been carried out.

Bonnet may open at speed

The bonnet of some examples manufactured between 2 February and 29 March 2018 could open while the vehicle is in motion. Speak with your Vauxhall dealer if you think yours is affected since it'll need to be inspected by a technician and have the necessary repairs carried out.

NOx emissions

A number of Corsa and Vauxhall Adam models built between 5 January 2018 and 9 April 2019 could produce higher NOx emissions than is permitted at higher speeds. The examples affected by this will need to have the engine management software updated in order to sort the problem.

Click here for more information. Contact your local Vauxhall dealer if you believe your vehicle is involved in a recall.

Is a used Vauxhall Corsa hatchback reliable?

In our 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey, the Corsa finished in 17th place out of 19 cars in the small cars category with a score of 91.2%. Only the Audi A1 and Seat Ibiza finished below it.

Reliability rating 91.2%

The previous-generation Vauxhall Corsa is fairly dependable, but it lands in the bottom three of what is a high-scoring class. Minor bodywork issues were the most common complaint among the 22% that went wrong, two-thirds being put right in a day or less. Repairs were free in 43% of cases, but 14% cost more than £1500.

Vauxhall as a brand scored poorly, finishing in 30th place out of 32 manufacturers with a score of 86.9%. Only Alfa Romeo and Cupra finished below it.

If you'd like to see the full reliability list, head to the What Car? Reliability Survey pages for more information.

Used Vauxhall Corsa: owners' reliability data

Feedback on Corsa reliability had been mixed, with several owners reporting issues related to the electrical system and engine, leading to occasional breakdowns and repairs. There were specific mentions of faults with the cooling system and battery problems, too.

Regarding dealer service, opinions varied significantly. Some readers praised their local dealerships for responsive and helpful service, particularly in handling minor faults quickly and efficiently. However, others expressed disappointment over the handling of major repairs and warranty claims, pointing out delays and a lack of communication as significant concerns. There was a notable dissatisfaction regarding the cost of out-of-warranty repairs, which some owners found higher than expected.

Overall, while there are positive notes on dealer responsiveness, the mixed reliability and service experiences have negatively impacted owner satisfaction for the Corsa in question.