Used 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo

1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
List price range

Pros

  • Sporty, good value

Cons

  • Warmed-over Lumina styling, front-wheel drive saps some driving fun

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

Essentially a Lumina coupe, the Monte Carlo is one more marketing trick from the folks who brought us the Genuine Chevrolet' ad campaign, and resurrected the Impala SS and Malibu. All fine and dandy, if the new product is able to live up to the legend, like the Impala SS has been able to. We think that Chevrolet should have made more of a styling statement with this car before slapping the Monte Carlo nameplate on it.

Sure, the twin-cam, 3.4-liter V6 under the hood is satisfying. Yes, this Monte Carlo handles better than its Lumina Z34 predecessor. But it's still a Lumina coupe, and Chevy stylists did not even try to disguise that fact. It looks nothing like flared-fendered Monte Carlos of yore, which can be either a good or bad thing, but styling is what sold so many Montes in the '70s and '80s. This one, while negligibly attractive, has no distinct personality of its own.

It works well on the track, though. Ford has been whuppin' the Chevy boys in NASCAR with the slick Thunderbird for years, but this new Lumin...er, Monte Carlo, has kept the blue oval boys at bay for two years now.

New to the Monte Carlo for 1997 is a smoother-shifting electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission for the Z34. The optional sunroof that never materialized in 1996 has made the options roster for 1997. Two new colors, Dark Jade Green Metallic and Deep Purple Metallic, debut, as do daytime running lights. The tethered fuel cap is easier to use, and a 16mm rear stabilizer bar has been added. Front and rear glass is Solar-Ray tinted, and a new oil life monitor has been added to tell driver's when the oil is ready to be changed.

The 1997 Monte Carlo is better than any Monte before it, but is saddled with vanilla styling that renders it nearly invisible on the road. The Thunderbird is into its ninth model year in current guise, but its classy looks and excellent interior design keep it in the hunt. However, check into a Dodge Avenger ES or Chrysler Sebring LXi before buying anything in the personal coupe class, despite their less inspiring straight-line acceleration.

Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo.

1997 Monte Carlo LS
1997_, 1/15/2014
Our monte carlo was purchased brand new in January of 97. 250,000 miles and 4 family members later, all that its needed is a head gasket, an alternator, and regular mantinence. It's a great car for long trips, in town, and as a highschool car.
Comfortable, Roomy, Reliable, Safe
maxp, 12/20/2009
Not a car that is going to burn up a race track, but acceleration and road holding is fine for everyday situations. The roomy interior, smooth and quiet V6 engine, supple ride quality, and light steering make the Monte a very comfortable car that is a nice place to spend time in. Great for long freeway trips and relaxed cruising. Fuel economy is good on the freeway for a car this large (~27 MPG) but not impressive in the city (less than 20). 3.1 and 3.8 liter engines have good reliability, but avoid the 1995-1997 Z34 models as their 3.4 liter is expensive to fix. I've driven a lot of cars, and the interior design and controls are among the simplest and easiest to use of any car I've been in.
It's Ok
Randaaall!!!, 7/24/2010
I purchased mine 3 yrs ago. It's been an ok car, but has had it's share of problems. First of all, the 2 middle injectors gave ma A LOT of grief in the beginning. The computer NEVER reads the EGR valve correctly, which keeps the service engine light on continuously. Injector replacements are not cheap, and i have replaced the egr valve and installed the recommended screen over the port. I still cannot figure out how to get the drum off the rear brakes, and have tried multiple times. I am now starting to have multiple electrical problems, and don't think the car is worth fixing at this point. I love the room in the car, and like the style of it a lot. The gas mileage in my opinion isn't good.
Good for young drivers
ericnelson, 8/17/2010
I got this car about a year ago with 155K on it. It now has 166K and is still running pretty strong. It always starts right up, I haven't had to do anything to it except the regular oil change. However its very slow for being a "sporty" 2-door. Also there is one cup holder for five seats and it breaks easily so i don't even use it anymore. Overall i would give this car a 5 out of 10.
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Features & Specs

MPG
15 city / 24 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
215 hp @ 5200 rpm
MPG
18 city / 26 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
160 hp @ 5200 rpm
See all Used 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    0

More about the 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
Used 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Overview

The Used 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo is offered in the following submodels: . Available styles include LS 2dr Coupe, and Z34 2dr Coupe.

What's a good price on a Used 1997 Chevrolet Monte Carlo?

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