1 Dec 2005
By CHRIS HARRIS
HOLDEN’S Barina has had many nationalities – Japanese, British, German… and now South Korean.
The TK model of late 2005 replaced the award-winning XC Barina sourced out of Germany via Spain.
If it seemed familiar it’s because the car was sold here from early 2003 to late 2004 as the Daewoo T200 Kalos.
Initially two models were released – a three-door hatchback and a five-door hatchback.
It was powered by 77kW/145Nm 1.6-litre DOHC 16-valve four-cylinder engine that traced its roots back to the 1975 Holden TX Gemini!For the TK Barina it was mated to a four-speed automatic or a five-speed manual gearbox.
A closely related but re-bodied Barina four-door sedan – the first such shape in 21 years of Barina sales in Australia – arrived from February 2006. This car was based on the Daewoo T250 Aveo model, and featured the same engine and gearbox.
But its track at the rear was widened 200mm to compensate for the extra weight and imbalance of the boot.
The TK Barina was a success – simply because it undercut all rivals at its $12,990 recommended retail price – which included dual front airbags, air-conditioning, remote central locking, power steering, power front windows, an immobiliser and MP3/CD audio,But critics were much less impressed with the significant noise, vibration and harshness issues, citing that the TK Barina’s XC predecessor was much the better motorcar.
In August 2008, GM Holden revealed a facelifted version with a comprehensive makeover, affecting all sheetmetal forward of the A-pillar.
Among the changes were a new nose, redesigned tail-lights and rear bumper, as well as the standard addition of side airbags to the dual front units already fitted.
A substantial upgrade of the interior – to bring the three year-old TK Barina hatch in line with the 2006-vintage Barina sedan – was the other big change to the 2009 range.
This involved material and trim alterations, swathing an updated dashboard, new centre console and a refreshed instrumentation panel.
A fresher look for the sedan took the form of a new grille, bumper and set of headlights.
Underneath, Holden introduced a number of suspension modifications to improve the TK Barina’s ride quality, as well as attending to the noise, vibration and harshness issues that plagued the car.
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