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Chevrolet (Geo) Prizm

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Comments

  • cynthia83cynthia83 Posts: 7
    Hi Guys,

    I have a 99 Prizm, had it aince Aug of 99 with very few problems, I have about 11750 miles on it so far and around 10,000 miles I noticed a squeaking noise when I go over dips or bumps, could it be the suspension??? I am taking it to the dealership soon to be looked at, just curious if anyone has any ideas to what it might be you can email me, I would appreciate it, thanks

    Cynthia
    cynthia@dallas.net
  • mr_almr_al Posts: 9
    Hi Cynthia, and to those who have these 99' Prizms. I just drove my first prizm yesterday, it is a rental that I have for a week. I noticed the same things that Cynthia did. Weird Squeaks, I came to Edmunds to review the car and get replies from it. I do admit, I think it is a solid riding car (for a beaten up Hawaiin Rental) and the handling is superb. I would like to get some more feedback on this car, is a 99 or 2000 worth buying? I need another car for the wife. Also, anyone have problems or concerns with buying used from Rental car companies? Thanks~ Al
  • i finally went through 2 arbitration hearings and after proving the problem with my 99 prizms trans i got notice 2day that i won. if i would have known that gm would have given this much trouble to fix the trans in my prizm i would have gotten the toyota corolla instead. it is a shame the car is fun to drive and we did enjoy the car even though the trans didnt work right. but i am relieved the car was finally declared a lemon and gm was ordered to repurchase the vehicle. my advice if you are considering this model of car. get the toyota corolla ,pay the price difference . because chevy dealers gave me the line its not a chevy we are not use to working on them thare tiyoties,LOL. where as a toyota dealer is . just thought i would end my posting i placed a few months ago with the outcome. if you do have to take a car to arbitration , my advice be persistant collect as much evidence keep prompt records and dont give up . after all thats what i did and i finally did win.
  • shizushizu Posts: 4
    I am foreigner, too. I had to buy a car immediately when I moved to Florida from NY and I bought GEO prizm 94, 57k for $6000 last year. One month after the purchase, the engine starter died, after 70k, problem has been ocurring such as accelerate problems, squeeking and clicking sound. I have already spent $1000 for repair. I want to bring the car back to NY in 8 months but I am afraid if it will die on the way.... I should have bought a reliable Japanese car, well I am from Japan...
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    Is Japanese, a Toyota Corolla from the bone. Only difference, that chevy bowtie on the steering wheel and grille. Yep it's a Toyo so don't blame Prizm problems on GM blame it on Toyota trannies and that NUMMI factory. And actually GM doesn't build the prizm NUMMI does, they roll right next to teh Corolla. Funny how when the prizm runs great it's a Toyota but when it goes bad it must be that Chevy bowtie. You guys are funny. Either way enjoy your prizms.
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    malibu99 is correct, the Prizm is basically a Corolla under the hood, with the difference being the exterior/interior material used and the fit & finish.
    That may attribute to the noise sound. I dont recall any Corolla owner complain about squeaking. So if the cause is the material or improper insulation, and yes, it can be blamed to GM since they are responsible for that. In the case of the transmission, Toyota is the one that design and built it and should be the cause of the problem, although the GM dealer should fix it since its sold as a GM. At any case, dealer causing you so much problem for warranty work is simply unacceptable, regardless of the brand.
  • shizushizu Posts: 4
    Thank you malibu99 and lieufei for your information. Please forgive me that I was so stressful about my car problems that I sounded blaming American car brands. I am not a patriotic Japanese businessman but just a young Japanese girl who is ignorant of car mechanism. Now I understand that I should blame Toyota. Actually I didn't mind buying any cars but My American co-workers recommended to buy the pure Japanese breed cars since their Honda, Toyota, Nissan are still in great condition after 13 yeras and now they are saying, ''See we told ya'' so.... Anyway I checked out what exactly caused the squeaking or clicking noise of my car and it was power steering pressure hose leaking and also requires the replacement of right and left axle. By the way, lieufei was talking about warranty and I remember that I was frustrated by the warranty that the dealer made me buy. She said if I pay $900 annual fee for the first year I only have to pay $200/year from the second year. So it was expensive but I bought the warranty. The first year I didn't have problems except the engine starter and the second year it started so many problems as I mentioned and when I went to renew the warranty, the dealer said the Ford changed the policy so I have to pay $900 again!(Of course I didn't.) I feel I am a stupid foreigner...
  • malibu99malibu99 Posts: 305
    yea, trim stuff can be blamed on GM if you wish but Mechanic they are the same car. Quite a little car I must say just too small for my taste :-)Oh shizu no apologies needed I was just generalizing, if your car stresses you out nothing wrong with saying it. :-)Not a stupid foreigner don't beat on yourself it's just a mechanical thing. Good luck!
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    Sorry to hear about your prizm's problem. IMHO, dealer warranty are usually not worth it, unless the car you intend to purchase have a long history of problem. $900/year is ridiculous for a warranty, so next time dont even bother to say anything to the dealer but NO :)

    I'm curious whether the dealer fix the starter for free (assuming its covered under the warranty?). Regarding the clicking noise, I recommend getting a 2nd opinion. Faulty axle may give the clicking noise, as well as power steering leakage. But to have both of them on the same time ??(I already have a bad opinion regarding your dealer) Hmmm, if you could find a reputable mechanics, go ahead and get his opinion regarding the matter.

    Out of curiosity, what other problem you have with the Prizm?
  • like the line says gm has no excuse , if you cannot service what u sell than u have no right to sell the product. like i say i was very patient with them i gave them more chances than the lemon laws allowed and the thing they constanatly stated was " there isnt anything wrong with this car thats normal". i have had toyota products before and rarely had a problem with them but when something was wrong they took care of it and didnt piss and moan.after all cars are machines built by humans and they do have failures but when they will not back it thats when its junk. so from my experience i say pay the extra grand and get toyotas corolla thats under toyotas warranty and serviced at a toyota dealer because the definitely have a better idea of what it takes to repair the.
  • shizushizu Posts: 4
    Thanks everyone for your advice. Other problems? The metallic part by the front tire is detaching and makes annoying noise. When it is raining I get wet because the leakage through the drivers door. It was fixed already but I couldn't accelerate and ran so slowly that I was hunked by the cars behind me. At the intersection the car shook so much with scary noise like the engine was almost stopping.(I turned off the radio and AC but it didn't make difference.)
    Well my $900 warranty made me pay $100 to change the engine starter which died after 1 month of the purchase. They said they covered the rest...
    It has nothing to do with the mechanism but I got flat tire when I was driving after 2weeks of the purchase. It smelled burning for one day and it got flat just before getting into a highway. Firestone worker said it worned out and seemed very old ones. Oh, then 2 months later I couldn't open the trunk at all so I got the key fixed.These are minor problems but I was frustrated saying,'What's next?' So I think I just have a bad luck with the car. And today I purchased a brand new Mitsubishi Galant. I went to Mitsubishi dealer because they are offering 1.9 % interest rate for 60 months.(I was rejected because I don't have a credit history so I got 3.9% which was not too bad and got my corporate discount) I traded in my Prizm. Now I don't have to worry about repair cost or mileage anymore. But you know what? I prefer Prizm's design to any other cars. It was hard for me to say good bye to my Prizm. I feel as if it would still be in my parking lot tomorrow morning....
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    Sounds to me like you bought a bad USED car -- and God only knows what was done to it by the previous owner, even though it appears to have only 600 miles on it (dishonest car dealers sometimes turn back the odometer too). In any case, Toyota transmissions are very stout, and you should never have had any problems with it. The shaking and leaking of which you speak makes me think it was probably in a really bad accident, then poorly repaired. You should check to see if the car had a salvage title, which would indicate that the insurance company "totalled" it then sold it to a broker who "fixed" it and resold it. Anything you can find out about the car's history will help you figure out why all these things are happening. But my personal advice would be to get rid of the car and buy another. Prizms and Corollas are great cars -- don't let your experiences with an abused car sour you on them.
  • capmediacapmedia Posts: 1
    I purchased a new 1999 Prizm last June. Within 7k miles, three of four tires had broken steel belts. Dealer wouldn't help. Found Firestone dealer who said warranty was invalid because tires had not been rotated at 5k miles. Since then, I've put a total of 10 tires on this car. Finally, Goodyear dealer says rear end is seriously out of alignment, causing tires to wear, but there is no provision for alignment. Shivs must be installed. Chevy dealer (and owners manual) say alignment shouldn't be necessary, but dealer aligns car anyway. Now front end vibrates. Bad hub bearing perhaps? Also, weather stripping wore out on two of four doors and airbag module has been replaced twice. Anyone else have these problems? Car has 36k miles now.
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    Once again, I'd check to see if the car was damaged -- maybe driven off the carrier too hard, or abused by another customer driving it over a curb or something. This ain't normal, believe me. If it was just tire wear, I'd say it was the crappy OEM tires (I always have to replace mine within 15,000 miles), but it sounds like you have a mechanical problem unrelated to the design itself. I had a 98 Corolla and have a 2000 now, and never had any such problems. haven't heard of anyone else having this problem either.

    Good luck!
  • kwm03160kwm03160 Posts: 1
    My 2000 Prizm (bought new, April 2000) also has a squeak. My squeak appears to be coming from the left-hand side of the dashboard. I am fairly confident that my squeak is not coming from the suspension. I also have a rattle coming from my turn signal stalk. Of course, 2 Chevrolet dealers I have tried won't even look at it without charging me. I have a 3-speed automatic, and get 32 in mixed city/highway driving (28/32). Other than that, it's a great car!
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    the dashboard squeak is a common complaint. I think the dash assembly itself is a problem -- it needs to be more secure.

    With a 3spd auto, your mileage is right on the money. I have a 4spd auto and get a consistent 31-32 mpg, due largely to the wider, softer tires (205/16ZR45s). Before I added the new rims and tires I got 35 mpg in mixed driving here in LA.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    from a 900 mile trip in my 99 Prizm.

    first long trip / needed to break it in.

    5 speed - mpg results 36.2 mpg at speeds mostly 75-80 mph and a 70/30 hwy/city split. In 90-95 degree weather no less.

    Nothing to gripe about except lack of cruise control-damn my right foot and toe hurts.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    and I have said this b4.

    The stock tires suck.

    I can not express how much they suck.

    I am gonna be calling the tire rack soon to get some real tires. Dennis, what size are the TRD alum. wheel and tire upgrades?
  • denniswadedenniswade Posts: 362
    205/16ZR45s (just like mine, only Nittos). However, based on input from my buds at c*three racing, try Sumitomos or Kumhos -- cheaper and much better handling. They hate Nittos. I'm switching over to Sumos myself this weekend -- probably 40s, though.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    I know your a CA guy?

    I have the incredible joy here in MN of looking forward to snow in the winter. The stock tires are unsafe in winter. Are the tires you're reffering to at least all-season?
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