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Chevrolet/Geo Metro



  • mznmzn Posts: 727
    WOW! I think those photos are going to make a lot of believers out of small car skeptics. I'm glad you and yours are safe and hope the elderly lady fared as well.

  • pat56pat56 Posts: 11
    Yes, the lady was fine. She was driving another GM car, a BIG Buick. I caught her car on the right rear wheel and buckled her axle. Her wheel was sitting at about a 45 degree angle, and the side of her car was caved in, but she was unhurt.


    Pat Peters
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 412
    and to think I just finally got mine fixed...sure glad it wasn't mine, but I'm sure glad you're alright...hey, have new email...and now I have to write another...

    Time to buy another one, eh? Byers Downtown Chevrolet in Columbusohio has a 1999 base Metro, 5-speed, no air, with radio prep, no defroster, no nothing, and they're offering it after rebate and loyalty credit for $7739 plus taxes and red tape!

    Of course adding air, the service manager said he would add the air for $1050. So that's $8789 total which is not too bad, I don't think. The factory price for air is what, $845?

    You might be using Option 1 anyway, so you may already know what you want and how much it costs.
  • My daughter has a 97 metro that has been a problem child from day 1. I am trying to get this thing tradable. The heater fan will only work on the highest setting, and the stereo doesn't work.Is there another fuse box somewhere in this car besides the ones under the hood? I find no labeling for the heater fan, or the radio on those boxes.
  • I had to replace my heater switch because the check ball fell out of the fan switch. This happens when you are too rough with your switch or it gets frozen during the winter. A used heater switch assembly can be bought from the junkyard for about $10-$20. You will need to disassemble your dashboard, remove your radio for a moment, then use a pair of pliers to disconnect the three slide wires coming out of the bottom of the switch assemble. Then disconnect the electrical connectors for the A/C and heater switches. Then put in the other assembly. The old one can be trashed. A new assembly from Chevrolet will cost about $60. Be careful you get the slide wires put back in tight or you won't be able to control the temperature, recirculator, or vent direction sliders. Then reinstall everything else and you're set.

    If this doesn't fix your problem then the resistors inside your blower motor have gone bad. That requires blower motor replacement. It isn't as likely though. The highest speed of the blower motor has no resistors to control electricity to the motor. The lower setting use resistors to reduce the energy level and thus slow the motor from full tilt.

    One of those repo auction cars had a blower that would only run on high, but the fan switch felt loose so I figured that one needed a switch. If you wiggle the switch around, can you get the blower to change speed?

    Metros are no neccessarily lemons. It matters how you take care of it. If you get in and drive around everyday and pay little attention to how the car reacts to you, you will not notice problems until they become big ones. The heater probably stopped working on one setting, then two, then when all she had was high, she complained. Sounds like a lot of people, I would have noticed right away though. I replaced mine as soon as possble after it loosened up and by the time I got it replaced, the check ball had fallen out and I had no fan at all.

    Fuses: the fusebox is right next to the steering column under the dash. There is a fuse for the heater blower motor, I believe 25amps. If the fuse was blown, you would have NO heater at all. There is no heater fuse uner the hood. Underhood fuses are for the radiator and A/C condenser fans, starter, alternator, ABS, etc...

    Any other questions ask away I'm happy to help!
  • The GM radios aren't very good, but the fuse should be next to the steering column under the dash, I think it operates the radio, the cigarette lighter, and something else. I remember because I crossed two wires once and blew the fuse, and I couldn't use my 2-way radio out of the lighter socket until I replaced the fuse.

    If the radio is the factory GM radio and you want to get another, try looking on eBay under Geo and radio and you should find at least a half a dozen factory radios. I got mine on eBay after I pulled the Sony CD player that was in it for only $40 plus shipping. It works great and has a lot of features but I wonder how long it will be good. You could get one without a tape or CD for about $20 on eBay or from a local junkyard.
  • This morning when I started my 3-cylinder 94 metro, I felt something wrong at once: the engine sounds noisier. I went to the back to check the tailpipe, some slightly black smoke was coming out. I got into the car and shift the gear to reverse, and it just killed. IT's the first time something like this happened to me. I waited several seconds, and started the engine again, it was still noisy and engine sounds weak. But after about 10 seconds, it went back to normal, the familiar sound it makes, and I drove to work and back home without any trouble.

    Anyone happens to know what just happened? Do I need to go have my car checked? Any advice will be appreciated.
  • My younger brother is considering getting a metro for about $1000 to $1500. We've checked around and found that most metro's are right around 100K for that price range. He's just looking for something that he can drive for about a year or two and put about 40K miles on. We've checked with a mechanic and this particular friend of ours has told us that we should steer clear of any Geo Metro that has more than 100K miles on it. He says that he regularly replaces these engines as they often fail right around 100K. I've looked through most of the posts here and the group as a whole does not seem to share these sentiments. Could anyone out there offer an opinion as to the reliability of these cars after 100K? Or maybe suggest another vehicle that we might want to look at that is in that $1000 to $1500 price range?

    I appreciate any replies.
  • I also have a 3 cylinder 1994 metro. Last year I had the "PCA"??? chip go out. The engine would run very rough and if I tried to accelerate the engine would die. I took it to a local repair shop and they did a tune up. Needless to say it had no effect. I asked if they had a diagnostic connection to hook up this engine and they responded that only the dealer has that. The final outcome was that the dealer had to express the part in from Boston and it cost about $400 dollars to fix. Hope this helps

    P.S. I have also replaced the fan control switch, two sets of tires and still love the little car. 85,000 miles and counting
  • It really depends on how the car was treated. Drop by your library and pick up a book on how to buy used cars and in it will be a checklist or some tips on how to pick a good one. 3-cylinder Metros can become weak if abused, and most are abused. Try looking into purchasing one from an auction where you can get a 4-cylinder/automatic model. Mine is bulletproof, a 1995 model with 110K, drives fine. The 3-cylinder is easy to thrash and most people do and it isn't right, but it happens. An automatic will probably be more reliable in the long run, no clutch to replace. Or I'll sell you my 1995 for $2500.
  • Probably got a bit of bad gas. If it is cold where you are, then maybe the computer was having trouble coping with the temperature. It's a good idea to let it warm up and let the idle slow before putting it in gear. My 4-cylinder 1995 Metro takes about 6 minutes to warm up fully at idle on a very cold morning.

    If you have never replaced your oxygen sensor, do that. Most people never replace them, and they should be replaced every 80-100K at a minimum. The Metro's sensor is expensive (many oxygens sensors are), I have heard it is $115 from NAPA. I simply found one in a junkyard Metro with 28K. I paid $10 for it and have had no problems. Most cars for about thirty seconds will put out a bit of gray smoke when icy cold.

    Make sure your coolant is full and planty green, too, we don't want you to get a cracked engine block.

    One more thing you might try is checking any "check engine codes". I forget how to do this on a Metro, I know how on most GMs and most Chryslers. The Metro might not be GM enough, since Suzuki makes it, to have that computer connector under the dash. If it has one, just put one end of a paper clip in the upper right hand corner hole and the other end in the hole just to its left. It might be two other holes, but there's no reason to spend $10 on a "code reader" just to connect that. Turn your key on and count the number of times your "check engine" light flashes. They are two-digit codes. I forget what they mean, but I can look them up. That will tell you if your oxygen sensor is bad, or whatever else is wrong.

    I'm betting on the sensor, especially if you're near or past 80K.
  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    My dad had a Chevy Sprint (same as the Metro), 3 cylinder 5 speed, that he sold with 168,000 miles and it was still running fine.

    IF (and that's a big if) it was maintained well, with regular oil changes, there's no reason a Metro can't get to well over 100K.

  • If the rest of the car is in good shape, and the motor is shot, that three-cylinder engine is so easy to replace, and so cheap to buy used, that it won't be a concern. The concerns should lie in brakes, suspension, rust, previous body damage, what works and what doesn't, and transmission/clutch. The motor is less important since it is only one piece. When you're shopping for a $1500 car, a $500 otherwise perfect car that needs an engine might be your best bet.
  • Greatest car I ever had till it rusted out on me. The car had 130,000 miles with the only repairs 2 clutches (60,000 each) breaks (92,000) and an muffler. Regular oil changes every 5000 miles and around 50 mpg. But like I said the rust was bad after 6 years and the frame in the front was about to go. Traded it in and still go $500 for it. Just made a big mistake and bought a Ford Focus instead of another Metro. Oh well I learned my lesson.
  • I have done my research and decided that if you want a 4-cylinder Metro you must buy the Suzuki Swift. This has nothing to do with quality. The cars are the same. The Suzuki comes in two trim levels...GA and GL. The GA has everything the Metro LSi has for less money. It also adds the following options as standard: radio prep, tachometer, catapult seat, engine oil cooler, rear defroster, and rear wiper. The GL adds air conditioning and a Clarion cassette deck for $1000. Automatic transmission is a $650 option on either model. But the base price is dirt cheap...$9099 for the GA and $10099 for the GL. $400 of freight, too. I am not sure of rebates, but the Metro gets $1250 on any 2000 model right now. All in all, a Swift GL is about $10,499, cheaper than a Metro LSi at $12,125 when they both have the same equipment and before any rebates. But you can't get the three-cylinder on the Swift nor can you get a four-door sedan.

    Now for the other headache. No Suzuki dealer in Ohio carries Swifts in stock. They are special order only. That means they are less likely to deal down to invoice, but if you explain to them it is a thirty-minute deal, and you're willing to prepay, then they will order your Swift. I think the engine oil cooler, tachometer, and standard wiper and defroster are worth the hassle.
  • gouldngouldn Posts: 223
    Out in California, the Suzuki dealers are selling the 4 door Esteem (I know not a Swift, but a good car also). We bought one 2 1/2 years ago, and have not a ounce of trouble (we were looking at the swift, but they didn't have any on the lot).

    They are stilling new 1999 1.6 litre models with AT/AC/PS,Casette Stereo for $9995. Not a bad way to go either.
  • I am purchasing a 1997 Geo Metro LSI Sedan tomorrow for $3600. It has ac and automatic. No other thrills. Anyone have any history on this particular year and model?
  • that sounds like what 1997 sedans are selling for locally at the wholesale auction. $3000-$3500. I am pretty sure you're getting a four-cylinder automatic and that to me has been a bulletproof powertrain. Read back through the posts in this topic to learn more about my car and the others. pat56 had his Metro for a little'll want to see what happened with his car!

    I hope you get the car, the Metro is a great car and is enough car for me, there really is little short of towing or stump pulling that this car can't do.

    Some problems these cars have are mostly due to abuse. If you are rough with the controls, they will break. If you don't do scheduled maintenance, they will break. If you never keep it clean, it will start looking bad. Take care of your Metro, and it will take care of you. That goes for any car except Ford Windstar minivans. Ask Sir Fezo about that one.
  • That is the same answer I get from Suzuki. Few Suzuki dealers stock the Swift, and fewer are willing to negotiate on them because they are such low-profit vehicles.

    The Esteem is basically a big Swift. It is the four-door sedan and wagon that is not available in the Swift line. It also has either a 1.6 or 1.8 liter engine and gets about the same mileage. Personally, I prefer the two-door hatchback because the doors are larger and that allows me to load larger cargo and people in the side door. I treat my Metro like a microvan, took the extra seats out, I use it for courier work and it does that very well.
  • Hi,
    I have two questions. First the biggie. I've heard that the 2000 model year for the Chevy Metro will be it's last. Go to the following site:

    Also, it is in:

    Scroll down to 2001 and "click". See Chevrolet Metro.

    I've heard Suzuki is discontinuing it's Swift and with that follows the Pontiac Canadian Firefly too.

    Suzuki only says, "American Suzuki Motor Corporation does not have information regarding future product line." Hmmmm,... if they did, would they tell anyways?

    It's been 5 years since the last body change on the Swift/Metro (1995). Before that, another 5 years (1989-1994). Could we be due for a new replacement?

    Enter the Suzuki Baleno!

    Although this car has been introduced in Japan a few years ago, maybe this will replace the aging Swift/Metro?

    Does anyone have any information on this? Inquiring minds want to know!

    2nd Question:

    I just bought a 2000 Metro LSi Hatchback. I've had a 1991 Metro hatchback and a 1994 Metro hatchback. Looks like GM is getting skimpy on their options. What every happened to the remote rear hatch release? It's not even offered as an option for the 2000 model! From what I understand, it was discontinued in the 1995 model year and is only available on the sedan.
    So I was going to take the remote rear hatch release cable assembly and striker plate (it has the release linkage), from my 1991 and transfer it to the 2000 Metro. But on a closer look, the 2000 Metro's latch system is turned around. The release used to be on the right side (from 1989 - 1994), and now it's on the left side (1995? - 2000). I understand a remote rear hatch release is available in Japan, but when inquiring Suzuki, they said I'd have to go through Chevrolet (??). Maybe I need to contact CAMI?
    Any suggestions?
    Tom Lorbeer
  • Here's a bit of info on the fate of our favorite mini-car, from Canadian industry sources. The current (3rd generation) version will remain in production into 2001, but only in the Suzuki Swift version and only, it seems, for fleet sales. If you like the current Metro (or Firefly, in Canada), you'd better get a 2000.
  • Tom, you just repeated every complaint I've had with Suzuki, Chevrolet, and the Metro's lack of equipment it used to have. The Swift is basically unavailable even though it is the better car, the Metro has everything optional and some things not available, and neither company has plans to tell anything. If they drop the car, then there will be two minicompacts. Echo and Accent. Daewoo is bankrupt and goes up for auction soon. I wouldn't expect to see them selling more cars here anytime soon. Suzuki ought to release the Alto here. But the power (63hp) restrictions on Kei cars make them unsuitable for US highway usage.

    Checked out the site for the Baleno. Lose the will be denoted the Baloney car. But an Esteem hatchback would be a great idea...and the 1.3 liter versions of it confirm an old suspicion of mine. The 1.3 liter engine in the Metro MUST be interchangable with the 1.6 liter engine in the Esteem. That means when this 1.3 in my 1995 LSi goes south (maybe around 200K) I can use the Esteem's powertrain and computer.

    Two...if you get information on how to contact engineers at CAMI I'd like to speak with them.

    Three...notice how your car revs so high at highway speeds...the automatic's final drive is a whopping 3.61:1. You would think in an economy car they could either give a lower ratio or a fourth gear or maybe even a lockup converter?
  • Their site says the Metro might be replaced with an Opel Corsa. I have seen these in Gran Turismo 2 and I like them, but I would be happier with a Suzuki engineered product. I like my Metro, I wish I could have a 2000 Swift, and the Balerno better have a tach, a remote hatch release, a wiper and defroster, and the same comfortable seats I am used to.
  • Read through the specs, the 1.3L engine and the 5-speed stick are the same as in the Swift. The automatic is too, gear ratios and all. The 1.6L engine is a stick only engine and is the same motor I think, as in the 1.6L Esteems. Now almost all Esteems are 1.8L, but 1.6L is still in CA I think. The weight is the same, the other specs are the same, too. I think it is a Swift with the Esteem's front end.
  • it has power steering standard on all models...something you can only get on Metro sedans here...

    and power windows, locks and mirrors...standard...sounds like the equipment levels of Daewoo...

    it has the tachometer, and airbag models get a tilt wheel, Civics have tilt wheels...

    back door/boot lid opener sounds like a remote hatch release to me...

    also has the wiper and defroster (demister) standard...

    Sounds like Suzuki made a great small car, 1.3 and 1.6 engines are fine, it has room, it has features, and it has the little things that make it worth having...wonder what it would take to get this car here? I'm writing Suzuki in the morning...
  • Alan,
    Wouldn't you know Suzuki kept the GOOD stuff at home! (ha,ha)
    All those wonderful options... gee guys, don't cha want to share it with the USofA?
    Guess not.

    As for the "dog"-a-matic, it does rev, but it seems like power-to-weight ratio (gears and rear end), are matched. Yet, it does buzz on the freeways. Gas mileage suffers. I've been waiting for Suzuki to come out with a 4-speed auto (and waiting, and waiting).

    The Baleno has been out since '95. If GM decides to have CAMI build it here (Canada), you can bet the name will change.

    I'm not 100% sure GM will let the Metro go. It does have the CAFE standard to deal with. Also, gas prices are on the rise again. Maybe a model change (??)
    I think one sure sign of worry is when the options GM (Chevrolet), use to offer have been dropped.
    I didn't care for the model change over in '95.
    Why,? Cause you can't open up the back side windows! AAuugghhh! They're sealed! At least they gave us 13" wheels.
    What about the split rear seat? Gone!
    Scotchguard? Gone!
    Those "packaged" options that would save you money (ie: a/c, radio/tape player, rear deck packages) Gone!
    And my favorite, the rear hatch cable release? Gone!
    Suzuki dropped the sporty Swift (GT?), I bought the fog light accessory from them and mounted it to my 1991 Geo Metro (even the switch mounted on the dash) Gone!
    For 2000, the only difference from the 1999 is 2 new colors!
    We did get airbags (ok, so it became law), a 4 cylinder engine (we needed that), but why, why, why, take away the rear hatchback release lever?? That just didn't make sense! Not even offering it as an option.
    Well, they DO offer it in Japan! Suzuki kept the "good" stuff for home. If I could find a point of contact over there, they could ship it to me! Hummm.......
    I asked Suzuki of America (Brea, California).
    Their response was, "You'll have to direct your questions to Chevrolet..."
    Give me a break!
    Oh, well- if the 2000 model is indeed the last one, I'll have a classic.
    The Suzuki Swift, GM (Chevrolet Metro, Pontiac Firefly), reminds me of the original VW Beetle.
    A "peoples car" that is inexpensive and can take you from point "A" to point "B". I haven't read one article from an auto magazine that praised the little car (but back in the '50s neither did the VW!). It's small, noisey, get's great gas mileage (sound familiar?).
    Maybe history will change all that.
  • Just to clear up what may be a misunderstanding here....The Suzuki Baleno is the same car as the Esteem. It's available in hatchback, sedan and wagon versions in Japan and some other markets, but (with the Esteem badge) only in wagon and sedan versions in North America. The same car is (or was) known as the "Cultus Crescent" in Japan (another ringer from the market that gives cars names like the "Bongo Friendee" and "Homy Elgrande"). There are at least 5 different engines for this car, in different markets: 4 gasoline and one (Peugeot-designed) diesel. The 1.6 litre is alive and well, at least in Canada -- it's in the sedan. The wagon comes in a 4WD version in Japan and as I recall some European markets, too (Iceland, for example).

    The relationship between the Baleno/Esteem/Cultus and the Metro/Swift is also interesting. In North America, we have the "third generation" Swift (aka Metro). The B/E/C is a derivative of that design, and a lot of the parts are identical. So the person who spoke about putting a 1.6 B/E/C engine into a Swift may be perfectly correct. In Japan, meanwhile, the Swift is what we would recognize as the second generation Metro.

    All very complicated.

    On another point, I certainly agree that Suzuki and GM do a terrible job promoting the Swift/Metro. I own an Esteem (a Baleno or a Cultus, if you prefer), and whenever I visit the dealer I look affectionately at the Swift. Some imaginative marketing could have done a lot for that car.
  • Hi everyone,
    I have enjoyed reading all the posting about the metro. I am a new metro owner, 98 Lsi coupe. I bought the car used w/11k miles, auto & air for $5800.00, this is slightly below whsl I believe?? I am very happy with it so far, I drive about 60 miles RT/day all freeway. At first the high revs at 65 mph was annoying but now I'm getting used to it. This seem like the perfect commuter car (my first car was a '63 vw) and drives/handles well. I'm encouraged to hear that with regular maintenance I should expect many years of service. Does anyone have a line on aftermarket AM/FM/CASS for the metro, I would like one as close to factory as possible. The dealer wanted $350 for one!!! Also looking for a rear shelf (grey interior), again dealer = $240.
    I am sad to hear that GM plans to drop the metro, how will this affect replacement/repair parts? I do plan to keep this car and hope it doesn't become another Ugo. Looking forward to reading your replys.

  • you need to read back on all the posts in the topic...all kinds of good stuff...go to eBay and search for Geo radio. You'll see the factory-type AM-FM cassettes. GM charges $495 new from the factory, $350 or so for a new one from the parts shop, but on eBay they sell for $25 to $75. I got mine from a guy in Indiana for $40 plus shipping. It is the all electronic one with auto inject/eject, gobs of features, and it fits perfectly. If you can't find one, your local newer-car scrapyard can get you one for about $75-$100. The 2000 Metro has a no-credit option called radio prep where you get your antenna and four cheap tinny speakers for free. Don't forget to change your speakers. I'm saving up for a set of Sony xPlods right now. The 6.5"S size is available from Crutchfield now.

    Glad you chose well, and you can row he slushbox manually and hold first to about 40mph, second to about 65mph, and you can keep up with larger cars. Otherwise I think it shifts too early. In town I hold first to 15mph, second to 25-30mph, to keep it smooth. You'll notice Honda automatics last forever and they don't shift early.
  • I found CAMI's website. It is a link from Suzuki Japan's website

    It's a nice site, and they offer a feedback form which I filled out completely. That is a great facility, reminds me of when I worked at the Honda Civic plant in East Liberty, Ohio.

    It seems to me Suzuki would be smart to transfer left-hand-drive Esteem production (including hatchbacks, please!) to CAMI, then produce all right-hand drive models in Japan and elsewhere. Most LHD models stay here anyway.

    The 1.3 liter hatchbackss have a choice of 5-speeds and 3-speed automatics. 1.6 liter hatchbacks have the same choices. Only the Australian-spec hatchbacks and all sedans and wagons have four-speed automatics from what I see.

    Makes me think the 1.8L/4SA combo from an Esteem will fit my Metro. I'll have to pull out the tape measure and figure it out. If not I wonder if I can just swap whole front clips. Means I have to wreck mine...and then find a shop willing to cut and paste.

    Too bad the hatchback isn't available in Canada...I would move there to get it. I might move to Australia, those 1.8 GTi's look like fun!
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