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Chevrolet/Geo Metro

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  • ckpickupckpickup Posts: 15
    I've had my 2000 1.3L Swift Automatic for about 4 days now. This is the first I've owned so I can't compare it to the manual but I must say that it's peppier than I was expecting for such a small engine. I'm still in break-in so I can't really judge it's limits and mileage but it does appear that there is an immediate penalty to be had in gas economy if the revs are pushed.
    For me this car's primary function is to commute 100Km to work in downtown Toronto so I only get a chance to drive at highway speed early in the morning. I did not get the manual transmission because of the relentless stop-and-go rush hour traffic I drive in. My last commuter was a manual and it drove me nuts. It was also the transmission that finally made the ultimate sacrifice causing me to replace the vehicle.
    As I said, I have never driven a stick version of the Swift so it's hard for me to compare, but I can say that the automatic and this motor setup is actually better than I was expecting in performace and the economy is in line as long as I don't get carried away with my right foot.
  • ckpickupckpickup Posts: 15
    I filled up this morning after burning off my first tank of gas in the new Swift Automatic.
    I got 8 L/100 Km or 35 MPG of about 50/50 city/Hwy driving. Highway speed (100 km/hr or 63MPH) 50 kilometers to work in the morning and 50 kilometers stop-and-go home.
    I am suitably impressed. After it's broken in it should improve a little more too.
  • ckpickupckpickup Posts: 15
    Has anybody installed an aftermarket cruise control on a 99/00 Swift/Metro/Firefly?
    Looking for experiences, best unit, tips etc...
  • Guys:

    It took me about a week to read ALL the responses and the complaints and basically all there is to know about Chevrolet's Metro, AND I THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR INPUT!

    A little bit about myself. I have been a faithful owner of a Chevrolet S-10 for over 10 years (pick up truck). Ran it to the ground, 250,000 miles on the 2.5 engine (4-cyl). I just bought a Metro (March 2000) and I just love the car (I wish I had this experience 10 years ago). Every little thing that the little pecker has to offer just makes it what it is supposed to be. A great economical car! Here are some just to name a few:

    Turning radius, I can make U turns where only my truck dreamed of. (I love this one especially because I tend to miss everywhere I go). Which efficiently puts me where I want to go. With my truck, I had to probably drive (to the next stop light ie more gas) wait (idle) more gas.... Get the picture???? Can you say inefficiencies?

    Gas Consumption, it speaks for itself. The way I look at it is that I spend less money just idling on the same relative comfort level (position and temperature), than an SUV. LMAO!!!! And people drive those things to work on a daily basis. LOL!!! And lol and wonder why they are broke!!! OH my, I think I just pissed my pants....heheh.

    Versatility, I can park that thing anywhere I want, literarily. The other day I went to party in a condo somewhere in Ft. Lauderdale, all relatively close spaces were taken, except for the one I had to share with a dumpster. Oh yes, we both fit in! and not only that, it was the only spot that was "gated" LOL. (No trash pick up at night there so it was safe enough from being towed). My truck? Nah! had to walk the mile and a half. Try that with an SUV....

    Insurance, BY LAW (In Florida) We have to carry (as vehicle owners) Personal Injury Protection and Property Damage, each covering a minimum $10,000 worth of damages. If you do not have that, YOU ARE BREAKING THE LAW!!! Anyway, the point is, should I, have an accident, and the other person is not breaking the law (is insured), I am pretty damn sure that the market value of the vehicle will still remain inside that 10,000 threshold making it easier for the insurance company to cut a check so I can go buy another Metro.

    Power, to me, it has lots of it! It is a lot quicker than the county bus! Cheaper ride than the bus too. SERIOUS! So if you know anyone that rides the bus on a daily basis, laugh at them as much as if it was someone driving an SUV. Figures don't lie but liars do figure!!!

    Utility, today I put a couch in it. No kidding! It was part of a 3 part sectional, cushions too. My dive gear fits well. When I go diving, I do not worry about the Metro being stolen. When people steal stuff, they want an outrageous return on their investment, something that will not happen should they choose to steal a Metro, given the alternatives. (Perhaps an SUV???) heheh....

    Green car, emissions (over the useful life of the car) will be tons less than an SUV (probably will last longer than the SUV). I like to keep the air I breathe as clean as I can, maybe you should do the same, keep your keys off the ignition if you drive an SUV. Quit smoking too. ;-)

    Surface area, due to the size of the vehicle I did not have an accident; I had a brush with a Honda backing up from a parking lot. We were both backing up on to a road which ran east-west and we were both targeting the eastbound lane, I backed in to the west-bound one (my front to the east and obviously no incoming traffic) and as I was doing that, she was doing the same maneuver on her side of the road (the legal way), but in her so doing it, she had some of her big honda accord butt in the westbound lane (where I was), I looked in the rear view mirror and I could see her Honda's butt clearly. She did not see me and when I saw her it was way too late to react. Thank God nothing happened, had it been my truck I would have had the side of my truck bed hit by her, also due to the speed that she accomplished her maneuver, it would have been quite extensive damage.

    Oh my, I can keep on talking about this car for as long as I own it! I truly believe that it will most definitely pay for itself in the long term, can an SUV say that? I don't think so. Anyway, for those of you who have some mechanical inclination, I have a few questions.

    First, can I use the cheapest oil filter I can find (I found a Lee Filter) they are 1.99 and I am afraid that those will void the warranty if I use them, any input on that?

    Second, What about CV joints, I know that Hondas and cars like those wear out after a while, will I need to worry about those on my Metro? So far I have not seen anyone talking about them yet....

    Has anyone done a timing belt change on a Metro and if so how long did it take you the first time (hours). Also do you know if there is a Chilton's or any such manual on the Metro 2000. BTW I have the 1.0 ltr and stick shift w a/c.

    Thank you all for putting up with my stories and my stuff, I hope you enjoy my car as much as I have ;-)

    Ricky
    One Metro Fan :-)
  • lorbeertlclorbeertlc Posts: 38
    Hey there,
    I too bought a brand new 2000 Metro in March. This will be my 3rd Metro (I had a '91 Metro bought brand new and traded it in for the 2000, and a '94 Metro, I bought it used and traded it in for a new car for my wife- a 2000 Chevy Tracker 4-door [aka: Suzuki Vitara]).
    The one I have is an LSi Automatic hatchback, 1.3 liter engine, w/anti-lock brakes, CD/AM/FM Stereo, A/C,... well it has every option that was available for that car. The color is bright blue. I had a sunroof installed and an alarm system.
    A lot of people thought I was crazy in getting all that stuff. I however, keep my cars for many years. Since Chevy announced they will no longer carry the Metro for retail after 2000, I decided to go all out. This is a collectors edition car.
    Now to try and answer your questions:
    1) Oil Filter
    As long as your oil filter say's it will fit your car (and since 2000 is so new, it probably won't be listed yet. Look for the '99 Metro. The only difference between a '99 and a '00 model was two colors were added. Mechanically everything is the same), it should be under warranty. I've been told best bet is to change your oil & filter every 3,000 miles.
    2) CV Joints
    I haven't had any problems with CV Joints in any of my Metros. The '91 had over 130,000 miles on it (the clutch never was touched either). Of course, how you drive will say a lot too.
    3) Timing belt
    I know you can now drive up to 100,000 miles on the new Metro's before changing a timing belt. Personally, I wouldn't touch it with a 10' pole since the darn thing has a computer hooked up to the engine (and electrical system). I'd be afraid that if anything was out of kilter, the "Check Engine" light would come on.
    Couple of suggestions. Watch your tires. Those goodyear invicta were horrible on my Metro. After awhile the rear tires "feathered" on the treads and it started to sound like I had truck or snow tires (noise). The best tires I've found are the Michelin Symmetry P175/70R13. If you can afford it, put a new set of 4 on your Metro. It makes a world of difference!
    Also, there is available (it's expensive, but it is a nice feature), an inside rear latch release lever and striker plate. If you get it, order a 1995-97 rear latch too. The reason is the '98 to present models have an additional feature on the latch. It's a safety catch. It won't work with the release lever very well. If you get the earlier model latch, it'll work!
    Welcome to the Club! Enjoy your new Metro!
    Tom
  • lorbeertlclorbeertlc Posts: 38
    A comment on the A/T for the 1.3L
    I haven't had a bit of trouble with it. It has plenty of power (and I do mean plenty!).
    It won't burn the rubber on your tires, but it will move. The biggest drawback is it could use a 4th gear for highway crusing. That would really help on mileage and cut back engine noise.
    While the other Metro I had was a stick (and 1.0L engine), it got upper 40's on the mpg scale.
    This 1.3L auto gets a solid 34 mpg around town. I know Suzuki could have done better, but that's something I'm willing to trade.
    Tom
  • Tom:

    I appreciate your feedback on the latch. The other day I had a "load" that I could've taken care of without shutting the engine down if I had that latch. Thanks.

    On the tire issue, I kind of noticed that the Metro is getting bouncier on the ride, I ruled it out as the shocks. I'll keep you posted. So far I will not replace the tires just for a better ride I will wear this ones out first. With my kind of driving, quite possibly within a year (30,000 miles life expectancy). PS I did not know I had 13" wheels. I kinda take that as a bonus! LOL.

    On the filter issue, I think you misunderstood me. All I wanted to know is if the "cheap" filter can void the manufacturer's warranty if I use it. Further research on this one has concluded that it "protects" new vehicle warranties. I'll keep you posted on what "protects" is defined as. But the construction and looks are the same, it is literarily the same filter I am just wondering of what is inside, the actual filter media, Is it the same as the more expensive counterparts? This just makes me want to buy two of them and rip them open to see... hmmmm that just occurred to me. I have no doubts that the cheap filter will fit.

    Anyways, I thank you again for your input. Sincerely;

    Ricky
    One Metro Fan ;-)
  • ckpickupckpickup Posts: 15
    Just a comment on using cheap oil and oil filters. My 2000 Swift is about 10 days old now and it replaced a 4 Cyl 2.2L NAPSZ I4 1983 Datsun 720 Pickup that I bought new and ran into the ground. I didn't use premium oil filters but good quality filters like Frams and Castrol GTX oil every 5,000 Miles from the day I got it till about a week before it died. When I died, it was the second manual transmission that seized up in it, but the motor was still running like new. It had 255,000 Km or 153,000 Miles on it when it was towed away to the scrap yard (the cost of repairing the transmission was more than the truck was worth).
    I've read stories of courier drivers having up to 500,000 miles on a Metro and I really think if these cars are capable of that kind of durability the difference in cost of a quality oil and oil filter will pay off in the long run if you are planning to keep the car for that long.
    Personally, I plan to start using synthetic oil after the break-in and if the warrenty will allow it. Since I managed to drag 17 years out of one vehicle that had no track record of durability, then with some care and attention, I should be able to make this one last at least as long.

    One note on CV joints, all CV joints wear out eventually, the same as the old Universal joints in a rear drive vehicle with a drive shaft. How you drive will make all the difference in the world as to how long that joint will last. CV joints will fail more quickly if you gun the engine a lot while in gear especially if the wheels are turned.
    The biggest thing to look out for that will kill a CV joint in a heartbeat is contamination. Keep an eye on the CV Joint boots. If they split or crack open and road grime gets in there, it will grind away at the joint and cause it to fail. Changing a cracked boot is a lot cheaper than replacing the shaft assembly as long as you catch it quick enough.

    BTW, the second tank in my Swift Automatic was all highway for the holiday long weekend and managed 40 MPG or 7 L/100Km. The car just turned 1000Km/600Miles.
    I agree that a 4 speed for highway cruising would be the cherry on top for this car and I would imagine that the mileage would rocket if we could drop the engine speed by a couple of thousand RPM at cruising speed. I plan on adding a cruise control in the next couple of weeks, hope that helps a little as well.
    My Swift is black and I had the windows tinted on Friday, it looks awesome now. Sunroof next pay week.
  • inuvikinuvik Posts: 131
    Post some pic's when you get done. I'm sure that everyone here would like to see.
  • ckpickupckpickup Posts: 15
    Sure I can do pictures. Since these come really plain, I'm trying to decide whether I should put some custom graphics on it as well. It kind of looks sharp on it's own...hmmmm.
    Once I have the sunroof put in I'll get some pics on a web site and let you know.
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 408
    I would have loved to take your Datsun pickup, I am sure I can find a good 5-speed transmission for it in Dallas/Fort Worth. Oh well. The Cavalier goes up for sale in a week, now that the gead gasket is fixed and it runs halfway properly (still misfires a bit at highway speed), I should be able to get $3500-$4000 being a 1994 model and all with cold air. That will be more than enough to get another Metro. Well, those of you here with Metros for sale, 1995-up, whatever I get for that Cavalier is what I will have to spend. I must have cold air, a tachometer, and a stick. That will rule out the rentals and get me a good one. There is only one color I'm not interested in and that is California Gold, and I can't afford a 1998 anyway.

    A friend on another list/board is having trouble with his airbag light. He wants to install a Grant steering wheel anywy, but he wonders how he can disable the airbag to do so. Is this legal, is it possible to do, and can it be done by him or does a Chevy tech have to disable it for him? I know about the medical/height reasons, but this is for an aftermarket part. I don't think he ought to remove it since the car is so small, but he insists. Any ideas?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    The Chevy tech will not disable the air bag unless he has a special paper from a Government agency (can't remember which one though) due to safety reasons. Secondly, he wouldn't be able to sell the car after the air bag was disabled.
  • Hey I was just browsing the hatchback topic list and came across this forum. I had always considered the Metro a simple means of transportation and wouldnt have thought it had real fans! But I'm pleasantly surprised! I really admire the fact that you guys got the least pretentious car possible. It definately "serves a purpose" as someone said. Just good basic transportation. I'm a more spirited driver, however, so I like to make my drives more pleasurable, even if that means worse gas mileage. (I drive a 2000 Ford Focus ZX3)
  • leeorangeleeorange Posts: 1
    I have a '92 Geo Metro 2 dr hatch with 1.0 liter
    and 5 speed. With 88K. I bought it at 49K and paid more because it was a towed vehicle (behind
    a motorhome) and the owner (who died) just put a
    grand into it. I am in outside sales and this is
    a great one-person car and fits lots of stuff. I
    need not mention the gas mileage.
    I am concerned about the cost of parts. My clutch
    went on the interstate the other day, had it fixed
    by the closest Goodyear (had no choice), with the
    bill about $700, excluding tow and tax. I was
    dumfounded! A week later I brought it to a Chevy
    dealer, showed them my receipt. They thought it
    was in line with what they would charge, that
    Suzuki parts are, for some reason, wildly expensive ($900 for its tiny radiator, $600 for an
    alternator).
    I have always kept my cars well into the 100k's,
    but I am concerned about this bit of news. Plus
    I live in Florida on a barrier island, where the
    salt air mixes with sheet metal.
    Any thoughts, experiences?
  • jakey58jakey58 Posts: 1
    Wow I am in need of a new car purchase , not because my current 92 Geo is dead. I am going to give it to my son! He needs a car. It has 182k miles. @ 80k it needed new breaks. @ 100k new water pump. @ 170k a new clutch. and because I almost drowned it in a large flood puddle this winter @ 179k the engine has two warped vaulves so my fix it guy rebuilt the top end and reconditioned the bottem end ??? And its still just be bop n down the road. I paied a little over 6k brand new off the show room floor 8yrs ago. Its the best little car Iv'e every owned. I started looking into other makes and modles for this new purchase, and ran across this page. My mind is now made up. When I buy it will be an other metro. I have had the repairs done by a fix it guy capable of the work for hundreds less then the cheve repair folks. I was extremely disappointed with chevi repair in our area so I looked for out side help. Chevi repairs will cost you hundreds more . I was quoted 300.00 from chevi for the replacemnet of the egr vaule ha ha cause the would need to use some special tool to do the job, my fix it guy had it done in 30 minuets for 30.00 big difference Ive never taken my metro back to Chevi since. Its running great, I joke with my son that by the time he get's it it might only be four wheels and an engine but it's free!!!
  • ckpickupckpickup Posts: 15
    It's already too late to purchase a new 2000 Chevy Metro. GM has discontinued the Metro as of June 1st. You should still be able to get the same vehicle with a Suzuki Swift badge until the end of this year. My dealer wasn't sure if there would be a 2001 or whether it would be replaced with a different vehicle for next year, so if you have your heart set on getting one of these machines, you better hurry.
  • pbroekerspbroekers Posts: 11
    Took the Geo to the fourth mechanic who is stumped by the problem, so am giving up and living with the situation. (Sympathetic-type noise and vibration coming through accelerator pedal only. Happens when going 60+mph and let off pedal even slightly. No noise when accelerating. Seems to have no affect on performance.)

    Am going to sell the car car anyway because we need a van for all the kids. Want to get $4000 for this 97 4-door sedan automatic with around 52,000 miles.

    Have enjoyed chatting with all on board. See ya.
  • ashes3ashes3 Posts: 1
    I'm considering buying a 93 Geo Metro LSi hatchback. I have a question to all the Geo Metro owners out there - how many miles does a Geo Metro last ? This one has 80k on it.
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 408
    hey pbroekers, email me, I'd like to try and buy your Metro, doesn't seem like a major problem. I could trade you my 1994 Cavalier and $1000 or so, then you could drive the Cavalier or sell it. Where are you?
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 408
    I got 110K-plus out of my 1995 LSi hatchback with automatic. Have the car checked by a mechanic for compression and general abuse. If the car has been cared for it will last. Yugos can go 150K-plus if cared for, and Accords can break at 30K if abused.
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