Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Bob the builder
Absolutely no reason to part with my trusty 6 yr old Carina (81k trouble free miles) apart from vanity but I saw a supersite advert at the weekend with lots of Omegas at knock-down prices. I've read lots about them over the years. Two questions for you in the know : (a) IF I go for one, which engine represents best value and (b) will it give me relatively trouble-free cheap motoring a la Carina ?
My requirements are plenty of room (family of five), ability to tow trailers all over Europe, good Motorway runner and I like lots of bells & whistles on.
Any advice appreciated
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - SpamCan61 {P}
If I was buying a nearly new Omega these days I think the best value for money is a 2.2 CD or CDX : reasonable toy level and the 2.2 engine doesn't have the troubled history of the older ecotecs - a local supersite is selling nearly new ones for under 10 grand : 50% depreciation in 6 months!.

Whether this has enough wellie for trailer towing I have no direct experience; obviously the 6 cylinder jobbies are better in this respect; but at least the 4 cylinder models have less expensive bits of engine to go wrong. FWIW I've had a '96 V6 for over 3 years & 40,000 miles; only unexpected bill was a leaky cam cover.

Lots of bells and whistles is fine; but bear in mind that the more you have; the more likely one of them is going to go wrong.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Bob the builder
Thanks for that Spamcan
BTW does "CD" and "CDX" mean diesel ? This is not as dopey a question as it may seem as my current carina is a "CDX" but is petrol !
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Dynamic Dave
BTW does "CD" and "CDX" mean diesel ?

No, it's just the trim level name. The CDX will have a few more toys than the CD will.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Sooty Tailpipes
I would try and find a new shape one with the BMW 2.5TD and an autobox (they go beautifully together) After the facelift, the BMW unit was replaced with a later BMW unit which is much better Y25DT as opposed to U25DT or X25DT of ealier models, you can tell the difference easily by the plastic inlet manifold. These will be rare as it was soon dropped due to the expense (BMW were demanding) and Vx used their own 4 cylinder diesel, but early ones of these are a bit ropey by all accounts.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Daz
Please don't do what I did and buy a 2.0 16V ecotec. Lovely car but never again I am buying one with a 2.0 ecotec.

From what I gather 2.5V6 are supposed to be the biz.

If u can afford the extra go for a CD/CDX.

BTW where is the site selling new Omega's for 10K?
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Bob the builder
Thanks all so far.
The Omegas were on offer at Trade-Sales and I think they had some new ones between £10-14K and some "nearly new" at £9999
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Jase
My friend has a 2000V Elite. It is silver with black leather and has every toy you can possibly think of (e.g. heated rear seats, dual zone climate control blah blah). It is fantastically comfortable, the 3.0 engine is powerful and makes a lovely sound and this car cost him £9k in January. (over 70% depreciation in 3 yrs).

I think that Elite's are the true bargain of the Omega range.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - SpamCan61 {P}

The specific Omegas I saw for under 10K were at autolink Southampton ; but most car supermarkets have some around the 10K mark from time to time. I've just bought a second Omega for my daily commute, 2.0 16V Ecotec ;-/ 3,000 miles so far & no hassle...we shall see what happens long term. Still at 1800 quid it's cost me roughly 50p per mile so far!

Jase : I agree the Elite has the best toys for the money; it's just they can be eye-wateringly expensive when they go wrong. Agreed an awful lot of car for 9K.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - smokie
I have an MV6 and I love it. I'm aware of the possible expense though. However with any "executive" car, nothing is going to be's the trade-off for getting so much car for your money.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - PST
I've had my Jan 2001 3.0 Elite for just over a year now and have come to the conclusion it's got to go. I bought it for many of the reasons stated above - lots of car for the money, big depreciation from new, good motorway cruiser etc.

But the combination of things going wrong and poor quality dealers is frightening me come Jan 2004 when the warranty runs out.

I won't go into all the details here (I've already asked the questions in other threads) but the drop to 40K from 80K miles for timing belt changes is a concern - that makes it an extra £300 to £400 per year for me. The other clincher is a vibration at motorway speeds that I've never been able to cure despite balancing (on and off car), bush renewal, driveshaft check, tracking - and something that some other owners that I've spoken to have experienced too.

And handling! I've had rear wheel drive before but I've never known a car to be so skittish round bends in the wet - and believe me when I say I'm not one of those that likes to hang the tail out for a laugh - it would just be nice to go round a roundabout at the same speed as a 1.0 Corsa!

So with a cost approaching £1500 for repairs in a year's ownership, hours spent at friendly but thoroughly incompetent dealers and the fear of what's to come it's got to go. I'll take a hit of about £5K in depreciation too....I knew that would happen but originally intended to keep it for 3 years.

Anyway, after all that negativeness I know that there are a lot of people here happy with their Omegas and perhaps mine's just a bit of a lemon.

Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Bob the builder
PST - and everyone else - thanks for that. HJ's C by C breakdown seems to indicate they're ok. Perhaps you've just been unlucky ? But wow, £1500 maintenance bills per annum is certainly making me think again. Cheers
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - PST

Sorry - reread my post and it does sound very negative. Let me put it into context...

First of all I do nearly 40K miles per year and although it's mostly motorway it's obvious that I'm going to have to get things changed a bit more frequently.

Despite my problems it is a nice car - loads of passenger space, huge boot. And it's got a great sounding engine with a fair bit of poke in a straight line.

I got mine for £14K for an 18 month old 18K mile car - nothing else really compared at the time.

It's the experience at the dealers that has been most problematic - it just seems they have a complete reliance on swapping things out rather than trying to understand the problem and fix - mind you, they did do my timing belt kit under warranty. But VX dealers are not an issue if you can find a good independent once the warranty period is over.

And as they are no longer made I think there are some fantastic deals around at the well as Trade Sales try Nidd Vale Motors - up North somewhere but knocking them out very cheap and also DK Car Sales near Newbury - specialise in Omegas and have their stock list on the web - - generally cheaper than Network Q.


Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Aprilia
Omega is one of the least liked and most troublesome cars in the Which? car buying guide survey. Whether you take note of that or not depends on you views of Which?, I guess. I've always found them to be pretty accurate.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - smokie
Haven't had mine serviced for nearly 30k miles now and it still runs sweet as a nut. The oil is changed every 5 - 8k (Mobil 1), had Green Stuff brake pads 20k ago (about £70 the set plus fitting) together with brake fluid change.

It had an awful habit of tramlining when I first got it (just over 20k miles). Took it to the Vaux dealer, without any testing etc they swapped a front bearing - expensive, and no change to problem. That was the last time I used a Vaux dealer. The all round tyre change solved the problem.

30k miles ago had my little man do the cambelt and a "minor" service - £230 I think.

I can't think of any other problems I've had, certainly no significant ones (touch wood etc). So mine has cost me nowhere near £1500 pa servicing.

Oh yes, the lazy front n/s leccy window - it's a bit of a well known problem apparently - got the part from a breakers for about £30 and fitted myself. And of course the tiny bulbs behind the dash which seems to come up once in a while here too.

I reckon I've lost a few bob in depreciation over the 2 1/2 years of ownership, but no as much as the original owner! And with only c70k on it, I'm expecting it to last me a few more years yet. (The funny thing is, there is NOTHING else I fancy more out there...not realistically priced anyway...)
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Bob the builder
Thanks Smokie
But which engine / trim is yours also how old is it. What would you recommend I go for ? (I'm thinking v. nearly new / or new)
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - lordwoody
"I reckon I've lost a few bob in depreciation over the 2 1/2 years of ownership, but no as much as the original owner!"
Bob, this will be you that he's referring to if you buy new/nearly new.
I was at Colchester auction a couple of months back and was amazed how cheaply 2 or 3 year old Omegas were going for. Buy new and you're chucking away many thousands of pounds purely for the cachet of having a new car. Buy 3 years old and let someone else take the big depreciation hit- think what you can do with the thousands you save!
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - SpamCan61 {P}
Not sure if you can still buy a really new Omega or not now; after all it has been superceded (sort of) by the Signum (I think I've seen two on the roads to date).
There's also a similar thread :'comments on Omega' over on the newsgroup at the moment; so I'd take a look over there.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - MB
I just don't get this thing with Omegas. You only have to look back through the archives to see what an unreliable car they are. They are cheap to buy because they appear to keep going wrong. They maybe great to drive, big etc in between trips to the dealer - but who need's the hassle. Surely life's too short to buy an Omega?
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Mark (RLBS)
Mine has now done 135,000 miles. We've had it for around the last 40,000 of those miles, I think.

In that time;

Brake light switch came unplugged immobilising the car
1 Puncture
Rear exhaust box

Other than that, runs well, comfortable, reliable, always starts and until recently covered +/- 1000 miles per week, although its down to about 500 per week now.

Great car and totally reliable. (touch wood).
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Sooty Tailpipes
I can't agree with you MB, I was looking at E classes and BMW 5 series and had about £6k to spend. The BMWs and Mercs were basic and very high mileage, and not terribly reliable according to HJ's column and various online forums.

Someone suggested an Omega, and I turned my nose up at first. 18 months ago, I ended up buying a 1998 Elite with the BMW diesel engine. The car is fully loaded with sat nav, xenon lights, dual zone climate, electric blind, leather, heated seats all round, memory elec. seats and mirrors, 10 speaker Bose hifi etc...etc.... it cost me £6000 ( a fraction of the original £28k it had cost 4.5 years before)

I have had no problems *touch wood* apart from a BMW waterpump failure - see other thread and head gasket as a result) other than that just normal service/wear items as it has now done 150k miles. The engine and transmission and all of the special equipment works fine.. *touch wood*

I have found the Omega a very satisfying and relatively frugal ownership experience compared to the Mazda 626 I had before.

I think as long as you service it meticulously it is reliable, but the dealers are a bit ropey, so most people probably don't.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - scotty
I've had my 2.5 CDX for a year now. It's a 1999 bought for £7K with 25K on the clock with a manual gearbox (I prefer that to auto).

I've covered 17K miles in it.

Apart from initial problems with the climate control and few blown dash bulbs (all fixed under warranty), the only problem I've had has been a engine bay rubber hose replacement which was less than five quid to sort out.

Of course I've had a couple services, a cam belt change and a set of tyres so I've spent a few bob on maintenance - but that's to expected on any car.

All the equipment works and I've no real complaints.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - smokie
Sorry for the delay - mine is an MV6 (3.0), 98 R Reg, bought at auction at just about 3 years old with 20something k on the clock. Now up to 70k.

Not quite as plush as the Elite, but a sportier set up (and manual, which I wanted for a change).

It guzzles a bit - overall average (driven fast but not especially hard) is somewhere near 26 mpg.

I probably forgot to mention exhaust and tyres in my rundown, but these are "consumables" (albeit on the expensive side!) as far as I am concerned.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Chad.R

I've got a '95 3.0 Elite auto, which I bought (aquired would be a more appropriate term given the circumstances) with FVxSH (invoices, receipts, old MOTs the lot)and 90K on the clock for £2K. I've had the car for just over 18 months and 16K miles in which it has been 100% reliable and never left me stranded. Though I have spent just under £1.5K getting (major and minor) niggles sorted out and some proactive maintenance in addition to the usual wear and tear items and normal "oil" services.
In no particular order they are**; Cambelt, tensioners and water pump changed, all 4 shocks replaced, new front wishbone arms tie rods and idler arm fitted, both camcovers and gaskets replaced, new HT leads and plugs fitted, new 3-way heater valve fitted, autobox oil changed, 4 new tyres fitted plus full alignment and tracking, new front brake discs and pads fitted, brake fluid changed, coolant changed (I thinks thats all!)
I've never taken it to a Vx dealer and have no intention to do so either - all servicing has been carried out either by DK car sales in Thatcham or garages recommended in the GGG on this site.

It seems like a lot to do and spend and I suppose it is ... some of these items were probably non-essential but I like to keep my cars in as best a mechanical condition as reasonably possible and now that I have completed the mechanical "overhaul" there are no other major items due for renewal for another 40K or so.

In my mind the Omega reminds me of that Ronseal ad - "it does what it's says on the can", maybe not quite as stylishly as some German counterparts but well nonetheless.

All in all, I'm very happy with the car, it's a big, powerful and comfy car that handles reasonbly well, very good on M'way journeys and still manages to return around 30mpg on long trips; plenty of space, pace and grace for £3.5K.

As mentioned initially, I aquired the car not in the most normal of circumstances....if I was in the market for a "large barge", I'd probably go for a Nissan QX 3.0V6 for around the same money.


** All issues/items very well discussed and documented on this site.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - SpamCan61 {P}
At the end of the day I think an Omega is a gamble; some are complete money pits; some are peaches. Maybe the peach / lemon ratio is not as good as a BMW or MB; but at least you are gambling with a lot less money (for a given age / toy level) in the first place!
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Sooty Tailpipes
Also worth considering, but often overlooked, might be the top of the range Peugeot a 6 series.

An S reg 605 is about £4-5k
An X reg new shape 607 is £9k
I have heard it's one of the fastest depreciating vehicles there is!
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - No Do$h
An X reg new shape 607 is £9k
I have heard it's one of the fastest depreciating vehicles there

One word, three numbers.

Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Bob the builder
Thanks all ! Very thought-provoking. Being a tight-fisted Northerner, and also having three expensive kids, it would grieve me to have to spend large amounts of money (and time) on expensive cars when things go wrong. My Carina has cost me just about nothing in the last 6 yrs. So reliability I suppose is my No. 1 requirement. Then, space and toys ! I suppose, given my fantastic Toyota experience, I should either keep what I've got (there's nowt wrong with it) or get another one ! Thanks again .
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Phil G
I agree, Alfa 166 is what you want for this money. Stunningly underrated and chronic depreciation makes these a winner after someone else has taken the depreciation hit.

Why you would buy a Peugeot 607 instead I cannot fathom. Why anyone would buy one at all (other than French officials) is also a mystery.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Jase
Perhaps you could consider a Camry? A big cheap Toyota would seem to fit your requirements for space and reliability.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - peterb
You took the words out of my mouth, Jase.

The Camry is well built, reliable, refined and well-equipped. However, there are not that many about and in my experience 2nd hand prices at Toyota main dealers (for all models) are on the high side.

Or there's the Nissan QX/Maxima - similar attributes to the Toyota but even less image.
Omega - good bet ? and which one ? - Vin {P}

For a guide to running/servicing costs, see:

I've been in a relationship with an Omega for nearly three years now. We've had our bad times, but overall, we've had a beautiful relationship. I really can't imagine a better partner, and to be frank, I can't see what might split us up in the end. I think we could easily end up celebrating our 200,000 mile anniversary together. If/when we finally split up, I will be looking for a similar relationship with an updated model.

Three other people now drive Omegas after witnessing my deep felt love and they are all happily wedded to theirs. One of my friends is in a (deeply unnatural) foursome with him, his wife and their two Omegas.

If you get a good one, you're in for a life of bliss. If you get a bad one (and some on this forum have) it'll be misery before you're even down the aisle.

Hope this helps.


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