I have had this car now for 7 years. It has out lasted all of my friends hondas and toyotas. Unlike most people i have a 5 speed in mine and have never had a problem with power out of the 2.2 4 banger. i have only had to replace the clutch at 165000 miles, and an alternator at 180000 miles. this car still has the same spark plugs that came in it when it was new. only problems now are the power windows with not roll up any more. but what do you expect from a 13 year old car. it still gets 33 mpg hiway and 26 city. great little car wish they still made them.
the car has held up nice other than the paint sracthes easy, i only have 68000 miles on it now and have bought it brand new. in all these years i used synthetic oil, installed a cold air intake. and tires and brakes and a altenator. so i feel real proud of this great purchase
i like how fast it is, and reading some of the reviews on the cars slow,...those are the reviews from people that didnt spend a lil extra to get the z24.
add another cup holder please, and improve the paint.
Bought the car for a 100 bucks 2 yrs ago. It sat in grass for 2 yrs before I bought it so the under-carriage and lower rocker panels are shot. I spent 700 in new brakes, tires, gas tank, wheel bearing, fuel filter and a tune-up and it has ran great since. The 2.2 engine did have a head-gasket leak (weeping coolant outside the block) I added a bottle of hapco head-gasket sealant into the coolant a yr and a 1/2 ago and that fixed it. Gas mileage average is 28mpg's. Overall I'm pleased with my purchase and hear that these engines can go well into the 200k range easy.
Cheap to run and fix.
Better quality of interior materials and better use of galvanized steel for the body.
The Cavalier Coupe with the 2.2 OHV is not fast. With the 3 speed auto it is lacking in acceleration, but it is not unbearably slow, and it has good pickup in 2nd gear. Recently replaced Struts, front steering components, and Goodyear Tripletred tires result in an excellent ride, and handling is excellent. It handles curves at speed with a composed, solid feel. The interior is typical of old GM. Some cheap plastic bits, but a simple, easy layout. Brakes have solid pedal feel, along with rapid stops when needed. Lots of backseat room. Right now the A/C compressor needs replaced, but with 127,000 miles, it has lasted a long time. I run Valvoline Maxlife 5W-30 Synthetic Blend motor oil.
Excellent handling, comfortable seats, smooth ride. Cruise control, when it worked, the A/C was ice cold.
Too late now, but a more durable dash trim panel would be nice. CD Player, 4 speed automatic should have been standard.
I bought my 1997 Cavalier used in 2000 with only 50,000 miles on it. It's been a sturdy, reliable, and fun little car. I've put another 74,000 miles on it driving all over the country. Recently I encountered a freak sleet storm in rural Montana and ended up rolling my car in a ditch. I always said I'd drive that car until it died, and boy did I. The car was totaled, but I was able to walk away from the accident with minor scratches and bruises. Thank you, Cavalier! You did you job well!
Great body styling, great gas mileage, fun to drive, fold-down back seat
Interior fell apart quickly (mostly made of plastic), better placement of cup holders