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Chevy/Geo Metro Real World MPG



  • My 93 Metro 3 dr with 5 speed 3 cylinder gets 50 mpg city and 48 mpg on long trips (we usually do 75-85 mpg when in the interstate) and we usually go up and down over mountain ranges.

    My wife's 2001 (I believe that is the year) 4 door LSI auto 4 cylinder gets as good as 37 mpg and as low as 25 mpg. It really needs an overdrive gear and torque converter lock up to make it really impressive on gas mileage.

    Even at 40 mph it feels and sounds like it needs to change gears. GM is very great about overdrive automatics, but on this GM/Suzuki model, the damn bean counters won out apparently to the detriment of the consumer and the reputation of the automatic equipped car.

    I'm not aware of any automatic for many years previous to it that came without overdrive...In this day and age, it is not excuseable. That is my only gripe about that car.
  • "do not give the ac parts to dealer as they have value and can be sold by them. your compressor probaly needs a 30 dollar clutch to be as good as new. "

    My question is : Do you think is a do it yourself job to install the 30 dollar clutch or the bearing that went bad on my AC?? My AC makes that noice ,I disconected the belt, noise no longe exist but I know I have the bearing problem as it make noise if I conect the bell., or when i spin the wheel that hold the belt in place. If one can do it were can I buy the parts? Any help would be greate. Love this little car. 2001 Chevy Metro LSI 4 door 1.3cc engine. :blush:
  • My '89 Geo Metro LSi used to get right around 60 MPG. After the engine was rebuilt and I only do city driving (no highway), I seem to be averaging just under 40 MPG. My commute though now is about 55 miles per week, so I just fill up once per month. Very convenient and very cost effective.
  • rblumerblume Posts: 3
    Yours probably has the 4-cyl (-10mpg) and the automatic (-10mpg), drive over 60 mph and the mileage drops as well---I have a 5spd manual 3-cyl, with 160,000, and with the pedal buried I get 38mpg, (Ihavent personally got much higher mileage but
    I drive it pretty hard)
  • lindavlindav Posts: 1
    Just one girl's experience: Back in the day, I drove an 89 Chevy Sprint for 11 years, a three cylinder, manual transmission with air conditioning. I regularly got 54 to 56 mpg, down to 48 if I used the AC. Really needed this vehicle at that time, because my daily commute was 122 mi. Sometimes got 400 miles per fill-up.

    Recently had a career change that will soon require me to drive 450 mi. per week. I had never forgotten my Sprint, so I researched both Sprint and its Geo successors as I approached this career change. I decided to locate a Geo Metro 4-cylinder, manual transmission, with air conditioning, between 95 and 97, and began a 5 state hunt for The Car. They are *very* hard to find and, combined with the fact that total cost was an important factor for me, I knew I had to locate one in functional but restorable condition -- couldn't afford the few fully reconditioned ones I was able to find. (These were running between $4500 and $6000.)

    Settled on a 96 2 door hatchback -- good interior, almost zero body rust, good AC, new exhaust system, new tires, good engine and tranny, 102,000 mi. Clearly needed a clutch pack, but gave me 40 MPG in less than optimum condition right off the lot for $1400. My mechanic added an axel and a front brake job to his list of needed repairs, but this was still within my budget.

    One serious piece of bad news almost undid me. Although the car was accident-free, a full inspection revealed the front portion of the frame was seriously rusted in strategic places. I had to decide whether to sell it back to the dealer, make $600 of mechanical repairs and expect the car to last a max of 18 months --- or, double my acquisition cost by adding a frame repair, and try to make the car immortal.

    I did my arithmetic, conservatively, and calculated that if I were able to sell off my lovely 2002 Dodge Stratus for $2000, the gas savings would pay for the Geo Metro *and* its repairs in nine months.

    So, I'm going for "immortal". A thorough restoration now will cut my gasoline cost in half for the foreseeable future. And I happen to *really* enjoy driving this car again. Not everyone would like it. But in return for feeling a little bit like Fred Flintstone behind the wheel, I also feel like I am beating The Establishment (just like the old days) by getting where I want to go in comfort, at half-price.

    I'm no mechanic, but I pay attention when my mechanic and my body man explain things, and I get under the hood or under the lift with them. I think I made a decision that will satisfy me, though it might not be for everyone.

    Hope this might help some others in their decision-making.

  • Hi, I recently purchased a '91 Geo-Metro, 3 cylinder 5 speed. I just had a new muffler, tailpipe and o2 sensor put into it, plus I had the compression checked (it was good), the oil changed and a general tune-up. It runs just great, but there is a problem. I am only getting around 30, 31 mpg. This is all highway driving. What could the problem be? Shouldn't I be getting around 40+mpg? I live in North Dakota, and drive it to work and back which is 68 miles round trip. Straight highway all the way. Oh, and by the way, I know this is gonna sound really dumb (I am a woman), but how many gallons does my tank hold? :confuse: ">
  • rblumerblume Posts: 3
    if you have a repoir with your mechanic you might ask him to advance the timing for you, I had to advance mine as far as it would go to get decent acceleration/mileage, but if you get pinging under acceleration they would have to back it off for you, also keep it under 70mph,,, I only get about 8gallons in mine but I have to bury the gauge before I fill it---hope this helps
  • I had to sell my 94 Geo Metro recently after owning it for about 12 years. I consistently got 33 MPG all around, both city and highway. I often got 43 MPG on the highway. I haven't found another American car that has this good gas mileage since. U.S. automakers need to start making more fuel efficient cars like this one, or more medium-sized hybrids.

    I miss my Geo already, but I had to get a new car because it was beginning to die and I couldn't risk being stranded out in the desert with it.
  • hello everybody... when turn A/C on ... the RPM going down to much. anybody know where is the problem and how to fix it.
    thank you
  • I didn't realize that they made this car with AC because the engine is so small. It seems to be drawing a lot of power that is affecting the engine. That's all I can say.
  • luckinsluckins Posts: 63
    Awww, too bad I didn't know about you a few weeks ago. I had a 1994 Metro that had a few problems, but had been a very good car. I traded it in and heard it was sold and is probably in Baja by now from what the dealer says. Maybe you'll see it in the Baja races in the future all tricked out. :D

    A couple of years ago, someone left a note on my car offering to buy it, but I thought it was a joke and ignored it. Now, after reading a lot of reviews on this car, I realize that the offer could have been serious.
  • PFFlyer@EdmundsPFFlyer@Edmunds Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,808
    The forums cannot be used to buy and sell vehicles, or any other items for that matter. So I've removed the posts about buying and selling Metros.


    Moderator - Hatchbacks & Hybrid Vehicles

  • luckinsluckins Posts: 63
    Sorry about that!

  • PFFlyer@EdmundsPFFlyer@Edmunds Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 5,808
    Not a biggie, just need a friendly reminder now and then! ;)


    Moderator - Hatchbacks & Hybrid Vehicles

  • jon53jon53 Posts: 1
    Does anyone know of a way to add an over drive gear to a metro automatic 3 speed transmisson?
    Thank you.
  • suz13suz13 Posts: 10
    My transmission mechanic disconnected the neutral safety switch on my 97 Geo automatic because it was not functioning right. He claimed there is no rush to replace it because I could "drive it like a stick without the clutch" and that I would probably see better gas milage out of it. Well...great ! Whats not to like about a clutchless stick? I have had no obvious problems. But I feel the car does not like going over 50mph unless very slowly worked up to it. Almost as if it's climbing it's own Bell Curve in those upper highway speeds. Unless I'm accelerating up a long slow highway upgrade, then my little Geo seems to eat up the challenge leaves everything but sports cars in the dust ! There is nothin obviously wrong. I just feel like the car would like a better way to get into the 4th gear which I don't got ! So this leads me to wonder if there is really a 4th gear that it would be beneficial to actualy shift the car into with my hand on the shift ! ? It seems no one can answer my question, but only offer unsubstantiated warnings of it "not being good for my transmission". Well it hasn't done any apparent harm as of yet. I just wanna understand my Geo as best I can so that I can fix things before they break so it can give me years of good gas milage a safe drive. Performance ? Performance to me - is getting me to work cheaply and safely. . . for a very long time. I bought it 2 yrs ago off a used car lot cause it was cute, small, and basic, and that was before the gas crunch. Family & friends laughed at me and called it a lawn mower. Then gas went up ! Now when they pull up to the pump with cars that get less than 30 MPG and complain . . I remind them how they ridiculed me. And after finding Edmunds Web Site I've learned alot about the Geo Metro and feel lucky to own one.
  • plzionplzion Posts: 7
    My Co-Workers' hubby is a Transmission Shop owner. He said, no you can not put in an overdrive gear. He said if you want to do that, you can either swap it with a Manual gearbox (which he really didn't want to do), or better yet, buy a metro w/a gearbox. My wife's 2000 LSI auto sedan is a great little car, aside from lack of overdrive...It's been getting a little over 30mpg city miles this summer. I have a 93 Metro 5 speed, that recently has been "only" getting upper 40's city driving, so we tend to use it more than the auto Metro. I also posted previously on this forum in the #20's if I recall. They are very good little cars...Grateful to have them.
  • suz13suz13 Posts: 10
    Thank you for responding & confirming what I suspected. Many Geo's can get over 40mpg ! At first I thought some of these people were stretching it in the tale department, but I sometimes get almost 39mpg with my "automatic" 4cylinder. Unfortunately I drove my Geo a bit too hard and now it has 1 worn "wrist pin" on 1 of the pistons but my mechanic said I should stay under 65MPH on the highway & keep the AC off. I can do that. It is using more oil than before the wrist pin went bad. I think part of the reason it went bad was because I let the oil get a little too low a time or two. I think running the engine hot deformed the wrist shape. My mechanic (a trainy specialist) said my Geo could last a few days or a few years - so....treat it nice & easy & keep the fluids topped off always! I told him how much I love the car & have an idea of buying another this year to use my current for part scavenging. He thought that was a good idea being that I love the car so much. I'd prefer to switch to a manual transmission but think maybe I should choose an automatic as close to the model I already have so that I can be sure to get the most out of scavenging parts.
  • plzionplzion Posts: 7
    I have learned that even 1/2 quart low on the dipstick (not the 1 quart marked on the stick) makes an important difference on how well the engine lubricates. You go 1 quart low, and the Metro will develop new noises in the engine, and even end up quickly developing a bad habit of burning a lot of oil. I had a low mileage used engine (6 mo/6000 miles warranty) put in by a company in Layton, UT about 4 years ago, called Japanese Engine Exchange. They cost more now that many Metros are being pulled out of people's back yards, and putting in another engine.

    Don't go more than 4000 miles between oil changes, or you will also, find your engine burning oil.

    My engine does not burn any oil between oil changes, after 65000 of my miles.

    I listen to the engine when I start & I allow it to idle up to 60 seconds before I drive off (I do have to go up a steep grade). I can literally hear the change when the upper parts of the motor start to really lubricate properly. The sound is subtle, but it is there once you notice it. I really believe that this has made a huge difference for the motor.

    I never fail to do this if has been more than 2 hours since I drove it (when the temperatures are mild).

    I paid $1200 for the 3 cylinder engine, including installation. I recently heard that the cost has gone up several hundred since then, but everything has gone up with that gasoline cost increasing.

    Until last year, my Manual 3 cylinder Always got 50+ mpg; city/hwy.

    Mine now needs a new engine computer, sort of; Meaning that the portion that acts like a computers RAM (basically instant memory used for start up) no longer works, so the computer has to take about 20 seconds to (quoting my mechanic" "remember how to make the engine run most efficiently, again".

    Because the Automatic has no overdrive to reduce the engine speed, the Manual stick shift feels like the engine will last a lot longer. I also prefer to drive the Manual on trips as it wears on your body a lot less, than with the high revving auto tranny. Hope this helps. :)
  • seaman59seaman59 Posts: 2
    Can bad motor mounts cause the car to sound like a loud truck?: :confuse:Also can bad motor cause bad mpg?
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