As I said it is an automatic and Dodge made a programming error in the Neon's automatic transmission so that's about the only problem. I bought MJ this year with 83K miles (now 90k) when I bought the car I had no experience in the mechanics and if I had I wouldn't have bought THAT Neon BUT I am glad I did. If you like paying people to fix your car, do not
buy a Neon. If you can fix things on your own get it. MJ has been through a LOT (off road, 3 or 4 wrecks, and a half country trip) but she keeps going, I did pay quite a bit to fix her up but a lot was the previous owner (the wrecks were limited to suspension damage and a cracked rim) since the complete fix I haven't spent a dime.
I didn't get to put this in the small review part, these cars ARE sturdy, my Neon has saved my life multiple times due to me being immature and tearing it around town, not to mention the times I've had to swerve to avoid things (handling). The saftey rating may be low but its been hit by one car and held up amazingly, scuffed paint, while her metal bumper was dented and she stalled. I have put performance parts into her since so gas mileage isn't really a factor to me, she now gets about 20 mpg. If you have one get a transmission rebuild from stronger parts, not stock. I haven't yet but will have to soon because Dodge made a programming error in the Neons.
*= GET PERFORMANCE QUALITY, *transmission, *engine mounts (all three located on passenger side, upper, middle, and lower) *transmission mounts (two under battery) Since Dodge no longer makes these I wrote this for people who own or plan on owning, fix these parts and get performance engine mount inserts, the rubber on the engine mounts goes quickly and CAUSES most transmission problems these people complain about. These cars are sensitive and the engine must
placed EXACTLY how it was designed, I only wish someone had told me these things, do this and I am almost 100% it will last for years (unless you race or drive erratically)