I find it comical how similar everyone's story's are. I have to laugh because this car has been a nightmare. The electronic issue is just ridiculous, no one should have to wait ten minutes to start their car because the car thinks someone's trying to steal it. I have only owned the car for a little over a yr & put nearly $3K into it. Fuel pump, gasket, water pump, coolant leak, brakes, catilitic convertor, spark plugs... you name it I've fixed it. I refuse to fix the electronic cylander or put new tires on it. Don't ever buy this car. I wouldn't even sell it to someone. I'm junking it.
The electronic system should be completely different so the car doesn't think it's being stolen.
I bought this car about a year ago, in that time I have replaced tires, brakes, fuel pump, blinker switch, battery, oil pump switch, intake manifold, gasket, water pump, and currently the head gasket is also leaking. The car continues to have an electrical problem, sometimes the windows will power up or down, sometimes not, only half of the lights work, and the car has a continous intermittant starting problem that cannot be fixed, I never know if I'll be sitting for an hour or two waiting for this car to start. currently the car is broken down, I've decided not to fix the head gasket and as someone who loves american cars I'll be looking to buy a japanese car for my next one.
when the car starts and runs without problems
Have everything actually work the way its supposed to.
I got this car for my 16th birthday with about 40k on it. Immediately, we had to replace the computer in it, as well as the ignition switch. Then the brakes went out. Then I had a leak in my engine coolant (too expensive to repair at the time- $800++, and still unfixed). Then the catalytic converter. Then the fuel pump. Then the brakes again. Then the theft system shorted out. Then the ignition switch again. Now, the computer is acting up again... I have to reset the computer each time before I start it. It only has 96k on it now. We have spent at least $5k in repairs on this car. Probably more. My dad just bought a new Malibu, and it seems nice though. Time will tell. I won't buy 1.
Automatic lights & windows. car stereo stays on until the driver opens the door.
Overall this has been a great car for me, driven cross country numerous times (Florida to Wisconsin/Wisconsin-Florida) at least 10 round-trips. Traveling for job (1500 miles/week). In it's later years, some more maintenance issues, but with a little prevention, and well cared for it can go. In the 5 years I've owned it, have put $1500 into the car for repairs outside of general maintenance.
Trunk size, comfort for long road trips, common engine, parts readily assessable if a repair is needed
Trunk has plenty of space, but the opening to get in/out of trunk could be better designed, split fold down seats (but I believe that is an option on some cars), I have two cup holders...not sure what others are talking about and I have the lower end option car