Product Type: Lada cars
Newest Review: ... and ran for another 12 months before I traded it in for a 1500GLS. By this time Lada were fitting an eco carb which was I have to admit rub... more
Not as bad as they were made out to be
Author Name: TheMadMotorist
Advantages: Dirt cheap and with a few CHEAP modes can be fun (Often used for entry level rallying)
Disadvantages: NO street cred and you passengers wearing a brown paper bags over there heads is a bit off putting
It was many moons ago I brought my first Lada a 1200 saloon, I'm a motormechanic and have a passion for fast cars so what possessed me to buy a Lada? Simple budget I only had £500 and anything cool in this price range were rusting old sheds and I was fed up with spending all my spare time (and money) fixing them. So standing in the old banger car dealership surrounded by rusting old sheds there was this 2 year old Lada in as new condition so the deal was done. It was 2 years and 30,000 miles later before anything went wrong with it. We were on holiday in North Wales when the headgasket went on the last day and we had 150mile trip home did it get me home? Of course it did I had to stop a number of times to refill it but it happily carried on and after replacing the gasket suffered no ill effects and ran for another 12 months before I traded it in for a 1500GLS. By this time Lada were fitting an eco carb which was I have to admit rubbish. I found a manual for the old Fiat 124 which the Lada is based on and from this I found that although the front suspension and steering looked the same the geometry was totally different so I sent it according to Fiat's settings and this greatly improved the cars handling at anything above 70mph. I then replaced the carb (which is based on a twin choke webber) with one off a 3.0litre Capri (I won't bore you with tec stuff) then an electronic ignition from some Fiat (don't remember what) fitted bosh 4 point plugs and modified the exhaust (home made out of other bits of exhaust). The result was a surprisingly fast car. I only found out how fast when the company I worked for arranged a track day for us, I didn't really want to take the Lada having had to suffer much mickey taking already over it but they insisted they all needed a good laugh so I thought what the hell. Imagine there surprise (and mine) when I found not only could I keep up with many of them, I could pass them to (on the straight that is bends where not its forte). On the straight the my Lada was clocked at 119 (point something) mph and when we had a little drag race, it out accelerated everything up to a Escort XR3 (early non injected model) so by the end of the day it had stopped being the butt of all jokes(everyone it beat was). All things have to come to an end and my children were getting older and couldn't cope with the embarrassment of being seen in a Lada so it got traded for a Peugeot 309 GTi (shed) which was horrible.
Summary: In the right hands much better then they were given credit for.
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