Bought this car new in college in 1991. Have done almost all the maintainance myself, mainly oil, filters and brakes. Always use a good synthetic oil and good filter. KN air filter and always replaced parts with ones that have lifetime warranty's. Have replaced alternator, tensioner, power steering pump, hoses, heater core x 2, radiator, plugs and wires. The thing just keeps running and with 223,000 miles on it, I could see it easily going for another 100,000- 150,000. If you don't care to look great going to work, it will get you there just as good as a new vehicle. Very easy to work on also.
In 1998 I saw a used 1992 Z24 for $10K w/15K miles on it. I figured it would be a deal. I got it at a dealership and an extended warranty with it. The problems started immediately with the heater core going out. When changing the oil antifreeze was present so they changed the head gasket, That didn't work so they replaced the water pump. It started blowing water through the head gasket so they took it apart, told me they determined the head was warped and placed the blame on me. I called the service manager on the carpet for than but got nowhere. The 3.1 V6 is notoriously a pig and underpowered as well as having coolant problems. 3rd gear went out in the auto trans. What a jalopy.
This is a great sporty car with lots of power. I really loved driving it for a long time. Unfortunately, once it started have severe mechanical problems (about 2 years ago) it started going downhill fast.
My car (1992 Z24)has 220000K on it and the engine does not miss a beat. I have recently ran into troubles with the water pump and belt tensioner (while on vacation) but I feel confident saying that the motor will last forever. I really like the look and feel of this car and enjoy leaving my friends behind on the highway (In their 2000-2003 caviliers and sunfires)