Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe

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2002 Pontiac Sunfire
List price range
2002 Pontiac Sunfire

Pros

  • Rev-happy twin-cam engine, dealers are rebating these cars like there's no tomorrow.

Cons

  • Lack of refinement, overdone styling, old-tech engineering, sloppy handling, poor crash-test scores, uncomfortable cabin.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

An aging econocoupe that's been left behind by younger competition.

vehicle overview

The Sunfire is available as a coupe or sedan in SE (base) trim, or as a coupe in the uplevel GT series. Base model SEs come with a 2.2-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 115 horsepower. A five-speed manual is standard with a four-speed automatic transmission optional. GT models get a slightly larger 16-valve four-cylinder, good for 150 horsepower. The GT's 2.4-liter twin-cam motor is optional on the SE, and we highly recommend it. Equipped with the bigger engine and the stick shift, a Sunfire is downright speedy when compared to other four-cylinder compacts.

Sunfire SE comes equipped with standard air conditioning, an AM/FM cassette stereo, antilock brakes and 24-hour roadside assistance. GT models add the upgraded 2.4-liter engine, 16-inch performance wheels and tires, a six-speaker CD stereo, leather-wrapped steering wheel and upgraded leather/cloth interior. More options are available, but be warned, adding them to the bottom line quickly raises the Sunfire's price well into the high teens. However, a careful buyer who chooses wisely should be able to score a well-equipped version for around $16,000.

Driving the Sunfire isn't much fun, never mind all the spoilers and spats decorating the exterior. When it is pushed on a twisty road, it tends to exhibit an excessive amount of body roll and tire squeal. The steering is numb, and the rear brakes are of the drum variety rather than discs. We think that at the very least the GT model should offer a more sporting demeanor to back up the car's racy looks and powerful engine.

Inside, there's practical room for four occupants, though they might find it difficult to get comfortable. The dash is composed of surprisingly good pieces of soft-touch material, and all controls are logically located and operate with refreshing simplicity. Still, there's little here to recommend. Even the premium Monsoon audio system has taken heat from our evaluators.

We think the Sunfire has little merit in the crowded compact marketplace. If it's a nice daily driver you want, nearly every other manufacturer offers something more pleasing. If performance is what you're looking for, a revival of "pocket rockets" is underway, and for the same price as a well-equipped Sunfire GT, you can buy something like a Ford SVT Focus or Nissan Sentra SE-R. And if you're simply looking for utility, take a look at Pontiac's ownVibe sport-wagon instead. It features brilliant packaging, handsome styling and Toyota running gear for around $20,000.

2002 Highlights

All models get a tilt steering wheel and an electric trunk release as standard equipment. Three new exterior colors debut, while the three-speed automatic transmission gets dropped from the lineup.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2002 Pontiac Sunfire.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Love this car
Connie,10/14/2015
Bought car new in 2002 because I liked the body style and color. Drove car liked way it handled. Never had problems just regular maintenance. Just had to replace brake hose car has 189,000 miles I put all those miles on it. Has a surface rust spot about size of silver dollar. Always take pride in my cars and take good care of them. Just sorry not able to get a new one. When I have to trade this one in. Already have a buyer waiting.
fine daily driver
budneff67,10/20/2013
i've had this car for 7 years now. the only things i've had to fix that aren't considered regular maintenance are; the wire lead to the A/C compressor (stock one is too short and loses connection, wire extension can be purchased from a dealer for pretty cheap), both window motors, and an ABS connector. other than that, the car has been very reliable. i drive it daily here in the hot texas weather. it's not quite as comfortable as my old Mazda MX-6 but a suitable choice for the 1.5 hr round trip for work every day.
Horrible Car
amye87,10/19/2013
I bought this car almost a year ago and it’s absolutely horrible. The first mistake I made was buying it from Car Hop. They charge double than what it is really worth. Within 4 months I had to put a ton of money into it, the brake pads were bad, tires were bad, it needed ball joints amongst other issues. The reason I went with Car Hop is because they claim to be cheaper (not overall) and they allow you to get liability insurance instead of full coverage. Definitely not worth the price. I do like the look and feel of the car, and everything in terms of air, radio and controls work fine, but the internal problems are far too severe. I would not recommend this car to new buyers or lookers.
The odds and ends just the ends
bob,10/23/2010
fuel pumps go bad, and my chain snapped at 120,000 but other than that lol, my advice change fuel filter every 30k and change your timing at 100k
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Features & Specs

MPG
21 city / 30 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed manual
Gas
115 hp @ 5000 rpm
MPG
22 city / 30 hwy
Seats 5
5-speed manual
Gas
140 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe 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
    Driver1 / 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
    Poor

More about the 2002 Pontiac Sunfire
Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe Overview

The Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe is offered in the following styles: SE 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M), and GT 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M).

What's a good price on a Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupes are available in my area?

Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe Listings and Inventory

Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a prew-owned vehicle from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a used or CPO vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Coupe for sale near you.

Can't find a used 2002 Pontiac Sunfire Sunfire Coupe you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Pontiac Sunfire for sale - 6 great deals out of 6 listings starting at $15,661.

Find a used Pontiac for sale - 3 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $7,984.

Find a used certified pre-owned Pontiac Sunfire for sale - 2 great deals out of 9 listings starting at $17,335.

Find a used certified pre-owned Pontiac for sale - 1 great deals out of 20 listings starting at $18,938.

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Should I lease or buy a 2002 Pontiac Sunfire?

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.

Check out Pontiac lease specials
Check out Pontiac Sunfire lease specials