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The Artful Bodger 7 - Matiz Malady

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

The DriveWrite Archives Topics:  Daewoo Matiz

The Artful Bodger 7 - Matiz Malady

Stan Potter
January 19, 2014

Daewoo Matiz Daewoo Matiz
Stan Potter writes: My poor little Matiz is not very well. It suffered from a total loss of drive just before Christmas. I was driving along and suddenly, nothing - no drive in forward or reverse, engine running fine, no strange noises, just total cessation of motive power. Brushing off the dust I got out my trusty AA card to summon assistance. No mobile phone. Luckily enough I had rolled to a stop about 50 yards from one of the only phone boxes in the area that was still working and made the call.

The bright yellow van appeared within 20 minutes. I had already mounted the towing eye so the AA guy said, ‘I guess you need a tow home’, which was fortunately only about five miles. He got me to sign a chit to say I was happy to be on a solid tow and knew what to do. The guy was very helpful and helped me to push the car onto my drive.

I thought I had a gearbox problem, so I got the car on axle stands and proceeded to remove the, I thought, offending object. I have got arthritic knees so getting up and underneath the car to accomplish this is not fun. Eventually the gearbox lay on the floor and I found the gearbox was not the problem. The clutch centre had become totally detached from the ring of friction material. Had this been a mega-powerful fire breather I could have understood, but 796cc and 51bhp - no way. But there it was.

I removed the complete clutch and took it back to the company who supplied it. They said, ‘dreadfully sorry we will have a new one for you tomorrow’. When it arrived as promised I set about replacing everything I had removed. I eventually got everything back together at about midday Christmas Day as on Boxing Day we were due to go away and my wife would need the Matiz on her return. This episode has made me think that it is about time the Little Daewoo was retired. There are lots of things going wrong with it. Some minor; some that to most would be terminal.

In the last two years I have replaced: wheel bearings, gearbox, clutch, heater matrix, gear linkage and fuel pump and filter. The Heater matrix was the biggest job. I purchased a new component from Poland on the internet. To get to the faulty item involved removing the complete dashboard and most of the interior at the front of the car. The vehicle to replace the Matiz will be totally different.

My Alter Ego (The Blue & White Van Man) drives a 3500kg van on regular trips to France. We make about five trips a year, and the rest of the time the van sits in the front garden pretending to be a shed. If I can find a van which I can use locally and will provide for our French trips, I will be able to eliminate the road tax and insurance on one vehicle. In these times of tight finances this seems like a good idea. As Anno Domini progresses I still enjoy tinkering with cars and anything with an engine. But I want to do these things when I want to, rather than when I, by necessity, have to.

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