Most rust prone cars? - Miller
Can I just ask everybody what their nominations would be for cars they have owned in the past that seemed to attract rust? Mine would be by far and away my old Austin Maestro (don't laugh), which went from looking respectable to garden shed like in the space of a year. Looking at the state of all th
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Mark (Brazil)
My 1976 Lancia Beta.

Eventually the engine dropped onto the drive suspended by bits like drive shafts and stuff.
Re: Most rust prone cars? - honest john
Fiestas. The inner front wings disintegrate on the original shape. The area around the fuel tank filler is a rust trap on the second body shape. And these are the cars young kids buy because they can't afford insurance on anything else.
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Andy P
1989 Vauxhall Cavalier SRi saloon. Inside of front wheel arch disitegrated.

Re: Most rust prone cars? - Charles
Minis - I love them but rust is the achilles heel!
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Rebecca
Fiesta 950 (to be fair I didn't look after it all that well and lived on the seafront!)

I know HJ got there first, but did he actually own one?

I think we should be told!
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Matt
Have to agree with the Maestro as worst car for rust

My 1990 model lasted 3 years before the sills rusted through, doors, tops and bottom rusted through, boot rusted through.

4 years and the radiator rusted through.

However the exhaust lasted 8 years before rotting!!! Shortly after that was replaced it went to the garage in the sky.
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Andrew Smith
By no means the worst but...
The first car I owned was a W plate Mk3 escort (first of the fwd ones). Corrosion on the battery box had caused the bulkhead to part company with the battery box allowing water to fill the footwells.
Better still was the fact that the brake mater cylinder was mounted below this so when you pressed the brake pedal the bulkhead flexed instead of the force getting to the brakes.
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Andrew Bairsto
You are all wrong the first Vauxhall victor disovled in water with complete rust through in 8 months and total unrepairable rust in 14 months .Betas with a good welder you could keep going for about 3 years .But that first victor boy was that a rust bucket followed by the three back window velox and cresta.
On the cresta the steering box was fixed to the inner wing and when you were stood still and turned the wheel all that happened was the inner wing flexed and wheels stayed where they were.Good old days
a weird form of oneupmanship. - Mark (Brazil)
>Betas with a good welder you could keep going for about 3 years.

Oh excuse me ! I *am* a good welder, the issue was that metal is required for welding and Betas very quickly don't have any.

Now, with body filler and you can work wonders for a long time. But welding - fwaah !
Re: Most rust prone cars? - David Woollard
In 1981 we bought a 1976 Alfasud from a lovely retired gent. Went really well and opened up a new era in handling. Thought the road noise was rather high though.

Lifted carpets at front to find.......well there was the road! All four floor sections needed substantial repairs to close it up again. After a few more weeks found body members where suspension was attached crumbling like cornflakes.

Sold it on "as was" to some local Italian lads, quite appropriate really.

But think about it, this was a five year old car! You don't expect that sort of rust failure in a ten year old Citroen these days.

Current iffy makes I see these days....early to mid nineties Ford and Renault.

Re: Most rust prone cars? - Mike Wolstencroft
Ever looked inside the bonnet of a Merc E200 W124 series, circa 'L' or 'K' ? Above the inside of the top of the Grille, underneath that famous tin star, is a lovely condensation trap which came free with the face lifting re-design of these latter models - rust like you wouldn't believe. Normal, apparantly...
Re: Most rust prone cars - Fred Vincent
Interesting! - my first car was a Dauphine and rust was about the only problem I did NOT have with it. In fact, it was so easy to push dents out by hand that I doubted it was actually made of metal!

The Ford Corsair gets my vote....
Most rust prone cars - Bob Harris
I would agree with the old Vauxhalls and the Beta but the worst car I have seen was the Renault Dauphine of the early 60s.
Re: Most rust prone cars - honest john
Okay, if we're getting into oldies, then the FIAT 124. I've never witnessed any other car sust so fast. Mk III Cortinas were't too hot either. The front wings went from solid to ventilated in 18 - 24 months. Yes we took in a Mk I Fiesta which had done 20,000 miles in 10 years. The pistons were loose in the bores, the inner wings weren't there, the shockers were in a state of shock and the clutch had lost its bite as well. Don't every put your sons, daughters, nephews or nieces in one of these.

Re: Most rust prone cars - Mark (Brazil)
Fiat 128 3p. (I think it was a 128, it was a coupe anyway).

Front suspension came through the front wing on a hump-back bridge near Bracknell.

Door got stuck, I yanked the handle, it came off.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Dan J
My mother worked at Ford in Essex for many years and I have it from her on very good authority that the MkIII Cortinas were actually DESIGNED to rot within a good few years. Course Ford got it all wrong and that coupled with the crappy build of the cars by the union led lot at Dagenham (Who came out worst out of that one in the end?!) meant you were lucky if you got 5 years out the damn things before holes were appearing left right and centre.

Re the Maestro - the first year's production was actually very good! I had an 83A which was still a tank when it left me (18 months ago, 140k) and you do still see Y and A plate ones about, Ford Escorts and Sierras of the B-G reg range disintegrated as well worryingly fast!
Re: Most rust prone cars - Phil Goodacre
Earlier Minis get my vote. Remember the A panels with the exterior door hinges mounted on them? I'll never forget getting the old screwdriver to a blister of rust on the rear quarter, at the bottom of the panel, just behind the door. A large hole quickly appeared revealing a sponge like material Just like a synthetic car sponge) in the cavity. About a yard of it came out, all dripping wet through. Talk about built to rust. This stuff, I found, was everywhere, probably as a sound deadening material, but just used to act literaly like the sponge that it was soaking up all that lovely condensation.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Cliff Pope
Morris Minor convertible. A friend had one, and we had to climb in over the doors. If you got in first, the body sagged so that the doors wouldn't shut. It eventually fell in half.

Cliff Pope
Re: Most rust prone cars - Stuart B
My vote like others would go for the Vauxhalls from the era when the tanks they dipped the shells in @ Luton were not deep enough, so you got rot pdq in the top half of the wings esp behind the headlights.

Mind you the Lancia Beta would take some beating. I think this is the only model I can remember as being subject of a scandal which hit the general news and a recall?
Re: Most rust prone cars - Bill Doodson
Have to agree with HJ, as soon as I saw the thread, Fiat 124 came to mind. My friends father had one that lasted less than 2 years. I had a Fiat 850 Coupe that I got for the engine, the sills looked ok until some of the filler came out revealing fencing posts in either sill holding it together. The day I picked it up I towed it with my original 850 along the M62 onto the M57, at the big roundabout by Kirby I pulled off a bit quick and the front end of the car came off!!!

Re: Most rust prone cars - Alyn Beattie
AHH the fiat 850. Bought one for £20 off a bloke in the pub on a friday night. Didn't even look at the car. Picked it up on Saturday morning. Could not use front passenger seat, floor rusted through. Rest of body not too bad except for valances.

Wife used it for 7 or 8 months until MOT ran out. Never let us down never refused to start. Only one way to drive it, right foot to the floor use gearbox to control speed.

Broke it for spares got back about £70 Wife most upset, she loved that little car.

Few months later bought another one in much better condition, but never had the fun with it that we had with the first one.

Happy days, no kids, no mortgage, no worries
Re: Most rust prone cars - Rebecca
I heard that Fiat planned to launch the Panda in the UK under the name 'Rustica'....until someone pointed out that might not be a good idea
Re: Most rust prone cars - Mark (Brazil)
> I heard that Fiat planned to launch the Panda in the UK under
> the name 'Rustica'....until someone pointed out that might
> not be a good idea

In South America they sell the Nova amidst much hilarity - that would be spanish for "doesn't go".
Re: Most rust prone cars - Jonathan
The toyota MR2 means (phonetically translated) sh*t in French
Re: Most rust prone cars - J Todd
Of the oldies, most BL/Austin/Rover cars were rust buckets.

Of newish cars (i.e 10 years or less), Ford Orions and Rover 213/216's seem the worst.

I believe Rover and Honda are currently the only major makes that do not galvanise their car bodies. Unless someone knows different!
Re: Most rust prone cars - Tomo
Yes, I remember a Cresta which was a gorgeous looking car (to some tastes) until the rust came up through the front wing in ten months. The owner, who had been swanking a bit, was crestfallen to say the least.

In the case of some of the early Japs the mechanical parts lasted for years but the snag was you were left with them not attached to much!
Re: Most rust prone cars - Michael Thomas
Rover do electro-galvanise all their steel now.

In the bad old 70's, the press plant and assembly plants at Longbridge were separated by a road. The pressed, fresh, ungalvanised steel was loaded unprotected onto the back of a transporter and driven to the assembly plant.

Of course, if it was raining that day ...........

Then of course, the rumours of the paint plant for the SD1 had its extractor fans wired the wrong way is another story.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Peter M
A real oldie - my first car was a 1947 Morris 10 Series E, I believe they were among the first cars to have monocoque undershell, without a chassis. When I got it, in 1959, it was already quite rusty, but after a few months the rear spring shackles poked through the floor between the front and back seats. My local garage welded a patch inside the car. This was repeated with larger and larger patches until the day that they jacked the car up (central jacking point) and the wheels didnt come off the ground, the car just bent upwards in the middle-all the doors popped open, only the prop shaft holding the front and back apart!
I drove it home(2 miles) but scrapped it the next day.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Alvin Booth
Andy Bairsto with his Victor wins this one I think.
I used to go into Vauxhall in the very early 60s and there were hundreds of these standing out in the fields.
In the works there was the body shells standing out in the rain covered in rust before going into the assembly lines.
From new if you jacked one of these up the doors wouldn't align and consequently wouldn't shut. I believe some modification was made afterwards.
No car has since been anything like as bad as the old Victor. I think it almost ruined vauxhall at the time.
This was the period when British marques were disappearing fast, Hillman,Singer,Humber,Sunbeam,Wolsey,Riley and the rest. Also Donald Stokes who had just been made boss of BMC making his famous statement of "anybody buying a foreign car must be of his rocker" or something similar.
Can't remember what happened to Vauxhall perhaps someone can remember.
Re: Most rust prone cars - David Woollard
Alvin & Andy,

When these late 50s Victors were new was a little before I was driving but I know Dad says they were terrible. His company had some and they did really fall apart after a year or so.

Re: Most rust prone cars - Marc
1982 Fiat 126 "Comfort". Front wings, sills, wheelarches, floor, door bottoms and even the wheel centres rotted out
Re: Most rust prone cars - Mark (Brazil)
Alvin Booth wrote:
> Andy Bairsto with his Victor wins this one I think.

I demand a recount. How can his Victor beat my Beta, especially when I raised with a Fiat ?
Re: Most rust prone cars - David Woollard
Thing is Mark the Victor was a rotbox with no redeeming features.

At least the Lancia Beta had that little rechargeable torch under the facia as standard, and Dad's had elegant lime green upholstery!!

Very advanced car for the mid 70s.

Re: Most rust prone cars - Mark (Brazil)
One of mine (yes, I had more than one) had this thing which I can only assume was some type of cruise control.

Essentially it was a dasboard button, looking like a manual choke, which pulled a cable connected to the accelerator. As you pulled it out, it pulled the accelerator down and at the chosen point you could twist and lock the position.

Absolutely $&$@#%* lethal ! Since the only way you could then slow down was to twist the switch the other way, at which point it would release the accelerator pedal.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Richard Hall
Triumph Herald / Vitesse - the separate chassis design introduced more mud and water traps than you would believe possible.

Worryingly, I have owned an awful lot of the cars listed above - Alfasud (floor fell out), Lancia Beta Coupe (ditto), Morris Minor (drivers side door dropped to the ground one day when I opened it), Mini (taught me how to Mig weld). I almost bought a Vauxhall Victor FC101 once but thought better of it. Can I add Vauxhall Astra Mk2 to the list, if only because of the worst designed rear wheelarches ever. If you wanted to design a wheelarch to rot out in five or six years, you would probably come up with a similar design to the one that GM used.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Ian Aspinall
Vauxhall cunningly built the same rear wheelarch design into Novas and Cavaliers too, to such an extent that I've actually seen "sound rear arches" mentioned as a selling point in second-hand ads for these cars.

A few people have nominated Fiats so far, but no-one's mentioned the 127. I had one of these as my first car. Took the driver's door trim off one day to find out why the window winder didn't work; it was because the crossmember inside the door had completely dissolved and the winder mechanism which should have been bolted to it was in a heap of bits at the bottom of the door. This was also the only car I've owned that had rust in the roof panel - the tailgate hinges were on the verge of tearing their way out of it.
Re: Most rust prone cars - mike harvey
Richard, tell us what you are buying next so we can avoid it!!
Re: Most rust prone cars? - ladas are cool
all ladas, and my sisters fiat 127 (and all other fiats)
lada - ladas are cool
am i the only person saying ladas rust. if so thats amazing.
Re: lada - Martin
Yep, they get a lada lada rust ;-)
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Bob Jeffery
The mention of Ladas reminded me. Does anyone remember the grotty Moskvitch vehicles which appeared briefly around the early 70's (I think). I saw some seriously rusty examples before they rapidly disappeared.
Sorry to live in the past but another candidate I would vote for would be the old Austin Metropolitan.
Re: Most rust prone cars? - peter
This will put the cat amongst .......

Volvo 240 Estate C Reg owned from new, never damaged until written off earlier this year (but that is another story...). Everything else was very good.

At about 8yrs the several of spots of spot welding at the bottom of A pillar to Sill was rusted right thro the sill. Put a 3cm x 4cm insert patch in it. at least there was plenty of good metal around it.

At 12 years MoT failure (by a very surprised MoT Tester) who found problem 'by accident', and I had never found it despite Pit and regular inspections. The lateral internal cross member to floor joint (rear) underneath the back of the Front seats had rotted out completely for about 35cm. Inspection showed that water had been getting under the carpet and polythene layer and just lying in this area. The carpets had never been obviously damp. from underneath the underseal was absolutely perfect and about 3mm thick!
This took a few nights work with the Mig and creative use of grinder, metal and hammer. It all stayed together following the write off, (it was a big one!)
Re: Most rust prone cars? - Ian Cook
The rustiest car I ever owned has to be a Marina. At 4 years old it had 11 body panels with rust holes - more than 11 rust holes in total. A total disgrace to the British motor industry.

The rustiest car I know of? Well it would be the Mark One Vauxhall Victor (which, in my opinion, was the architect of the term "rust" in a car) or the Lancia Beta. I don't know of any other cars where the only effective solution was to "throw it away".
Re: Most rust prone cars? - mike harvey
When I braked sharply after reversing in my Hillman Imp, it broke across the whole width of the floor in line with the A post, and opened up a 3" gap. Back leg fell off an R5 too.
Re: Most rust prone cars - Richard Hall

I recently bought an Audi Coupe. It has a galvanised bodyshell......
Re: Most rust prone cars - Mike Harvey
Thats my theory out of the window then! Nice car.

Value my car