I bought my cavy when it had around 135,000 miles on it. It's just now gotten to 218,000 after five years of owning it, and it's been exceptionally reliable. The only part to go bad on it was the fuel pump, I have not had to buy any other parts for it. Other than the standard oil change and brake service, new tires, and normal maintenance, I haven't had to put any money in to it. And I used to abuse the crap out of it when I was younger. Well worth the investment. I notice a lot of people posting about having all sorts of problems with theirs, but it's the absolute opposite for me. It's not the sportiest car, but it is reliable.
Purchased in 2/2013 with a mere 38K on it.
Had been garaged constantly and rarely driven in inclement weather.
Basically, it was nearly mint.
All in all, the car feels extremely cheap.
It does not feel or drive like a 2003 of any type, it feels much older.
It is a true budget mobile that offers no thrills or extras -- it's a wonder these ever sold at all up against the competitively priced Civic or Corolla.
My wife drives it as an errand runner -- and she runs a lot of errands.
It has so far proven it's dependability.
Even though it feels like I could karate chop most of the interior, I think I could drive it at least part way across the US without issue.
The remarkable way that something that feels like it could fall apart in your hands holds together so firmly.
Our car has had none of the problems this model year is famous for (faulty instrument cluster, fuel pump failure, temperature control failure) *knock on wood*.
Keep in mind we have the base model whose features like crank windows and manual mirrors leave little room for a "wow" factor.
It's dependable and likely on the inexpensive side to repair.
We have 2 toddlers we tote around.
For some reason when their carseats are strapped in, they will without fail fall sideways in the back seat.
This does not happen in my car or the car this one replaced.
Is it the quality of the seatbelts or the layout of the backseat in general?
When switching from regular vent to defrost, the dial has very obvious resistance.
I have heard a lot of complaints of snapped cables inside because of aggressive switching.
You have to be conscious and extremely easy on this control.
I bought my car in 2004 with 24k miles for about $8500. When purchased, my car would get 30-32 miles per gallon highway and 28-30 mpg town. I have had my car for 7 years and now have 165k miles racked up. On average, I get 29.5-31 mpg highway and 28 mpg town.
Over the years I have replaced a few things:
Ignition switch x3 (warranty)
Fuel pump x1 (around 90k miles)
Brakes x2 (one set front and back with rotors- have lifetime warranty on parts)
Tires (set of 4) x2
Fan motor (very inexpensive through private mechanic) and belt x1
0verall, very few inexpensive mechanic bills. I am starting to burn oil, but the car exhaust does not stink.
Little maintenance cost.
Low price if car
Faithful, reliable, and zippy.
Still looks good.
Is not comfortable for long rides/drives. Arms get tired and butt goes numb in the seats. Suggest real bucket seats.
Got this car Feb 06 traded it in May 09' with 68k.
My first car.
Drivetrain in this car could not be beat strong engine good transmission(auto). Performance, handling was exceptional. Excellent mpg 35mpg hwy.
Problem is everything else in this car was going.
The A/C had problems with derbis that would rattle in the vents, alternator was going, battery was going, suspension was horrible.
So many rattles actually got rubber sheets cut and siliconed it in various places to stop the rattles. Interior space every bump I hit my head on the ceiling (i'm 6'3).
Interior materials were below avg but this an economy car.
Cupholders in a bad location.
All in all good first car.
Performance, mpg, drivetrain reliability.
A lot of components needed repairs, placement of cupholders interfered with ac controls and radio not to mention tiny to fit any real bottles or cups in.
Rear windows don't go all the way down (remedied this by removing the stop blocks within the doors then they went all the way down.)
I just sold my 03 Cavalier, it had 125,000 miles. I owned it for 18 months. I had problems with it leaking oil and had to replace the rear main seal, also recently the a/c unit went out in it which caused me to sell. but other than that it was reliable, always started and never left me on the side of the road.
cheap price, fuel economy was excellent.
interior design was the biggest flaw with this car, you would have to move any drink you had in the cupholders to change anything on the climate contol system.