Daewoo Leganza 1999 Car Reviews | NRMA Motoring & Services

23 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Daewoo Leganza 1999 Car Reviews | NRMA Motoring & Services
Daewoo Leganza

Daewoo Leganza

Car Review

Author: NRMA Motoring Date: 10 June 1999

Faced with some pretty stiff competition in the mid-size four-cylinder market, Daewoo has responded with a range of improvements for its Leganza sedan.

In its latest form, the Leganza gets a stronger performing 2.2 litre DOHC engine (up from 2.0 litres) and a new electronically controlled automatic transmission to replace the fairly rough operating hydraulically controlled unit in the previous model.

The Leganza’s handling has also come in for attention, with alloy wheels now standard (contributing to a reduction of almost 8 kg in unsprung mass), the fitment of high quality V rated tyres and changes to suspension geometry.

Equipment levels have been raised; as well as the alloy wheels and better tyres; the Leganza gains a driver’s airbag and remote central locking (keyless entry).

Standard equipment that carries over from the 2.0 litre model includes airconditioning, an in-dash CD player, power windows and power mirrors, power steering, an alarm and a 60/40 split fold rear seat.

Pricing remains unchanged at $25,000 for the manual and $27,000 for the automatic. Leather seat trim is available for $1,950 and there’s a dual airbag/anti-lock brake package for $1,500.

All Daewoos are covered by the company’s Free Care Maintenance Policy whereby normal scheduled maintenance servicing is free for a period of three years or 100,000 km, whichever comes first. The Policy also covers dealer delivery charges, provides for 24 hour roadside assistance and supplies a courtesy car under certain circumstances.

Other than the alloy wheels and a couple of decals on the front guards, there are no exterior changes this time around. That’s not a bad thing because two years down the track, the Leganza still looks contemporary and neatly styled alongside opposition sedans. I’m even getting used to the grille, which I originally described as tizzy.

Detail finish could still do with improvement and on the test car it was disconcerting to see rust stains under the boot stop rubbers. Some interior trim quality looks cheap and the steering wheel isn’t as comfortable to grip as some.

Interior space is generally better than average, with good front leg and head room and sufficient space in the rear for average size people.

From a personal viewpoint, I didn’t find the front seats to be particularly comfortable or supportive.

Comfort is satisfactory in the two outer rear positions and fair in the centre. The driver sits high, which allows good vision in all directions.

Boot space is generous in the Leganza, with the added facility of a 60/40 split folding rear seat (backrest only).

Daewoo Leganza

On the road, the latest 2.2 litre Leganza introduces some worthwhile improvements in the way it drives. Though maximum power and torque aren’t up by a large amount, they’re both available at lower engine speeds and that means better flexibility and less gear changing.

The electronically-controlled automatic works much better than the old hydraulically-controlled unit, with none of the hunting between third and fourth gears, or premature and jerky downchanges back to second, which we previously experienced.

With less frequent gearchanging, the latest 2.2 litre automatic tested used less fuel on highway running than the previous 2.0 litre automatic tested. Understandably, the 2.2 litre engine used a little more fuel in suburban running.

The changes to tyres, wheels and suspension geometry have made a noticeable improvement to the Leganza’s handling. It was competent before, but now feels sharper and more precise in both its cornering ability and its steering.

However there has been some trade-off in ride comfort. Sharp bumps such as portholes cause harshness that wasn’t evident in the last model.

The Leganza’s four-wheel disc brake system provides effective fade-free braking, but the lack of ABS means you have to monitor pedal effort in emergency stops to avoid locking up the front wheels. The open style alloy wheels allow good heat dissipation but they soil with brake dust rather quickly.


Just as the Japanese did in the early days, Korean car makers are improving their products with every model change. With the Leganza, Daewoo has successfully answered criticisms about the previous model’s performance, automatic operation and handling feel with a range of improvements that put it on a much more equal footing with its opposition.

Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
Daewoo Leganza
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