Used 2001 Plymouth Neon Sedan

2001 Plymouth Neon
List price range
2001 Plymouth Neon

Pros

  • Large interior, competent handling, attractive interior and exterior styling.

Cons

  • Noisy engine, archaic three-speed automatic transmission, lack of feature content.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

While fun to drive, the Neon lacks the polish and refinement found in other cars in the economy car segment.

vehicle overview

DaimlerChrysler is billing the current-generation Neon as "quiet, sophisticated and still a lot of fun." Fun seems to be the catchword for the Neon. It's used repeatedly by the manufacturer including, "fun-to-drive handling and steering" and "fun-to-drive attributes." Its maker obviously wants people to know that while the Neon has grown up, it hasn't grown old.

While a fun factor still exists when piloting the Plymouth Neon, the "quiet, sophisticated" aspects are nowhere to be found. The standard 132-horsepower 2.0-liter inline four received refinements to the air induction and intake manifold systems last year to provide torque over a broader rpm range while simultaneously quelling engine noise, but the powerplant still makes too much racket at high rpms.

A word of advice: make sure you stick with the standard equipment five-speed manual transmission. Plymouth has the cojones to charge $600 for its lame-oid and out-of-date three-speed automatic while the cheaper Hyundai Elantra and Daewoo Nubira utilize four-speed autos. Whatever.

With a refined suspension that offers plenty of wheel travel, the Neon's ride is smooth, and it's further enhanced with premium shock absorbers and rear sway bars. The power rack-and-pinion steering and precisely tuned suspension also contribute to the Neon's cruising quality while making it an absolute blast when canyon carving. Stopping power comes from a front disc/rear drum combo, but buyers may want to opt for four-wheel discs with ABS and traction control.

We genuinely like the Neon's exterior features that include jewel-like headlamps, a sleek roofline, and large tail lamps. Utilizing a long wheelbase and wide track, the Neon also offers exceptional interior room and a stable ride.

Plymouth's version of the Neon comes in two models. Base Neons are simply called "Sedan" while upscale models benefit from "LX" badging. Standard items like a radio/cassette combo and four Big Gulp-sized cupholders are much appreciated, yet overall feature content is still lacking. You don't even get power rear windows, a tachometer, or cruise control as standard equipment on the "upscale" LX model. New options for 2001, including side-impact airbags and leather seats, have somewhat expanded the Neon's feature list. You can also get a sunroof as part of the Sun and Sound or Value/Fun option packages. We give Plymouth credit for creating an attractive cabin that appears very upscale and for offering a standard 132-horsepower engine, even in the base Neon.

Unfortunately, competitors like the Ford Focus, Mazda Protege and Nissan Sentra offer more bang for the buck in terms of both refinement and content while still providing enthusiasts with a fun-to-drive car. We bid a fond adieu to Plymouth.

2001 Highlights

Side-impact airbags and leather seats are now available in Plymouth's economy car. A center shoulder belt for the rear seat and an internal emergency trunk release further improve this Plymouth's safety consciousness. Both a Sun and Sound or a Value/Fun option group is available this year, each of which includes a sunroof. New interior and exterior options for the Neon pump some life in this fading brand, but if you've got a hankering for the Plymouth nameplate, act fast; as of 2002 Plymouth will be closing shop and subsuming its identity to the gods of DaimlerChrysler.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2001 Plymouth Neon.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

A little about my car and a comment on another post.
patrickl79,08/22/2012
I purchased my 2001 used from a private seller. It had 120,000 miles and I only paid $500 for it. It was non - running the problem turned out to be bad battery terminals a easy fix for about $4. I love my car, its quick and sporty, handles well and seems to be well built and very reliable requiring only standard maintenance, something that most people simple forget or dont care to do. My only complaint is I wish the center console was bigger.
2001 Plymouth Neon A LOT OF LITTLE CAR
jamesrizzuti,10/26/2013
The little Plymouth Neon is fun to drive, feels very solid on the road, and in general has a well designed interior. For a compact car, it has remarkable interior room for 4 adults, and the back seats fold down to allow more truck originated space. It's probably the best little car I've ever driven.
dodge makes fun happen
Gralun Poole,05/13/2002
i bought this car as a daily driver and have since turned it in to a street machine i can easily beat cars that cost more and the have a higher hp rateing. it is a fun car and plan to own the new srt-4 also.
Good Car
Brown,01/14/2009
I bought my 01 Neon a year and a half ago or so and I have loved it. My Neon was really basic, no power windows or other options but it was really reliable. I only replaced the battery and the tires on it so maintenance was low. I bought used but had regular service and it treated me well. A/C and heat worked perfectly. 2.0 liter gave it extra kick for a 4 cyl. Inside room was quite large for the size of the car, back seat spacious for compact car. I wrecked it and have to buy a new car but would get another Neon anytime.
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Features & Specs

MPG
24 city / 30 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed manual
Gas
132 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 2001 Plymouth Neon Sedan 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
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    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
    Acceptable

More about the 2001 Plymouth Neon
Used 2001 Plymouth Neon Sedan Overview

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Find a used Plymouth Neon for sale - 11 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $19,841.

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Find a used certified pre-owned Plymouth for sale - 12 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $9,112.

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Should I lease or buy a 2001 Plymouth Neon?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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