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Chevrolet/Geo Metro



  • that's:


    And one more thought...when someone asks me for a ride I warn them I drive a Metro. I'm four for five in getting them to stay behind. The one person who rode with me, well, he traded his '88 Camaro V6 for a 1996 Metro sedan. Funny huh? He liked it because he knew he could drive like a maniac in first and second in town, and still get 30mpg. He got lucky and found a 4-cylinder, 5-speed, LSi sedan with power steering, tach, defroster, even power locks. It must have been special ordered new, no dealer buys them like that with a stick.
  • Wow! I've should have seen it. But I was so engrossed in the hatchback, I didn't bother to view the sedan & wagon model. Of course, now I see the resemblance.

    Metro Automatic. A possible solution.
    Does anyone remember years (and years), ago when Plymouth and Dodge imported a couple of subcompacts called the (I think), Dodge Colt and Plymouth Champ. I think the manufacture for those two little cars was Mitsubishi.
    Anyway, it had a shift on the final drive. As I remember, it said: "Power" and "Economy". You could change the gear ratio on the differential.
    It seemed pretty neat. I've wondered if Suzuki/Chevrolet incorporated this in the Metro for the Automatic, I bet during highway driving, you could really improve your mileage quite a bit and cut down on the high rpm.
    Funny this never took off (were there problems?).
    I believe this was back in '79 to the early '80's.
    Doe's anyone remember that?
  • I live just north of Seattle, Washington.
    Just 1 week ago, I was paying $1.29 per gallon for regular at a Chevron truck stop not too far from where I live.
    Yesterday, I filled up at the same place with the same grade of gas (regular) at $1.49!
    I've read in the newspaper it could go higher to $1.75 for regular before it stablizes.
    Glad I bought a Metro!
  • mznmzn Posts: 727
    Thanks, lorbeertlc. Please share your report with us: What do you pay for 1 gallon of gas? See you there!

  • Yep, I paid $1.639 for a tank of regular, still had to spill a little to get $14 in. I think this tank will last awhile because I am not couriering due to a license problem at the moment. Good timing for the BMV to catch up with me...when gas is expensive.

    The 2-speed differential is a good idea, but I think if my transmission ever fails I will simply have a taller final drive installed, maybe 3.23:1 instead of 3.61:1. That ought to give better mileage, although it will be more sluggish in town, then again it is slow now, so why not? I figure they are building an economy car, why not go all the way? The Sprint ER and Sprint Metro and Metro XFi were standard Metros fitted with a 5-speed stick and highway gearing. Makes one wonder if the transmissions are interchangeable between 1989-1994 models and 1995-2000 models. The taller final drive would make a big difference. If I ever trade this car for a standard and I ever need to do work to it, it would be the perfect time to find a good pre-1995 XFi transmission to hook up to it. I know it will fit a 3-cylinder, but probably not the four. The ratios for the 3- and 4-cylinder 1995-up Metros are different so I think the transmissions may be slightly different, too.

    I would like pop-out quarter windows in my Metro, too. They are easy to replace due to vandalism, three screws and you're done, the glass is cheap and plentiful, and it's a way to save $40 for a locksmith by keeping a spare $10 window at home.

    Maybe I ought to buy a 1992-1994 XFi. With air. Now that woiuld be rare!
  • Back in 1991 when I bought my Metro (base, not XFi), I originally wanted to get an XFi for the fuel mileage. I found out a couple of things.
    1) The XFi has lower horsepower. XFi gets 49 HP while the base and the LSi gets 55.
    2) The XFi fuel is leaned out considerably.
    3) Chevrolet GEO strongly discouraged anyone ordering optional air conditioning for the XFi. It wasn't offered in group packages for the XFi.
    Because of the already leaned out fuel to air ratio on that model and the reduced horsepower, GM mechanics said if I ordered A/C for the XFi, it would void the warranty for the engine. In fact, I believe at the time I couldn't get a/c from the factory for the XFi. So I went for the Metro base instead (I lived in southern California and A/C is mandatory!).
    Now get this, the LSi has 3 rings for its pistons while the XFi and Base has 2. I bought a 1991 GM service manual for the '91 Metro and it shows it.
    Go figure on that one.
  • I am neg. for a l997 Geo Metro, 2dr, LSI, Auto, Air, 4 cyl engine. I now have a 1992 Geo Metro stick. After reading comments in town hall about the auto, which I have not driven, I am in doubt if the automatic has enough power? Can someone enlighten me.
  • I had a one of those dodge colts. A 1980 4sp with the power/economy shifter. I don't think i ever notice the difference..... but it looked cool though. I got the car for free.... it was the best piece of crap i ever drove.
  • Recently bought 97 Geo Metro LSI sedan. At speeds of 55+ mph, if we take pressure off of accelerator, we are hearing and feeling a strange ???. Hubby thinks it is a sympathetic vibration off something in engine compartment or just below. Any ideas? We don't see anything loose.
  • I'm not sure it this is it. But when I bought both of my Metro's ('91 & '94), I had an awful vibration and found it to be coming from the standard tires, Goodyear Invicta's.
    When and bought a set of Sear's Michelins (12 inch). They were the best tires I've ever invested.
    I don't know if this is your problem, but if you still have the original tires and they are Goodyear Invicta's, you might consider changing them.
  • Depends on how much power you are expecting.
    My suggestion would be to test drive a new Metro Automatic (it has the same engine).
    It rev's higher at highway speed (only 3 gears), compared to the 5 speed manual, but it does ok (for my standards).
    You'll loose some horsepower but it's not too bad.
    I wish Suzuki would come out with a four speed auto.
  • Man,
    Check this site out!

    Go see the limited edition "SKY" model (blue).
    Check out all the equipment it comes with.
    It's got power everything!
    Sure makes you feel empty on the one's shipped to the U.S.
  • pat56pat56 Posts: 11

    When I had my '99 LSi without a radio, I priced a factory replacement AM/FM/Cass, which matched the original equipment. It was $50.00 at a local flea market. I don't know if they have any more, but I'd be glad to look this weekend, if you still need one. It was at the Big Top flea market in Tampa, Florida, by the way. :-)

    Pat (The MetroGnome)
    Tampa, FL
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 412
    flea markets, junkyards, eBay, garage sales, all good places to find items below wholesale, especially the owner's manuals, shop manuals, stereo equipment, even wheels and tires.

    I'm moving to Dallas Monday, won't be here to check in until I start an ISP account, probably with Flashnet. The Metro is not coming with me the first trip, I'll be back to get it in a couple of weeks. Anyone who wants to buy it, just email me, $2500 takes it, read back on the posts here to see what I have and whether or not you want it.

    Hey Pat, let us know when you find another Metro, what you get and all, and whether or not the insurance gave you a hard time because it was a Metro. Are they really going to fix that? We've seen the pictures...that is definitely not a roadworthy car now!
  • redgeoredgeo Posts: 1
    I own a 1996 Geo Metro - I have had many problems with it, wondering if any of my story sounds familiar to any other owners. Purchased new, less than 16,000 miles, replaced engine (under warranty). For the past three years, I have to have the air conditioning recharged, and the "O" ring replaced. The front end was out of line from factory and had to replace the front tires twice before dealer found problem, pump on windshield wipers went out. Has 23,000 miles is out of warranty, runs good, get good gas mileage, but it is always in need of repair. I don't drive it but about 1,500 miles a year. Dealer keeps telling me these cars have bad repair records, wish they would have told me that in "96 when I purchased it!
  • Wow!
    That does sound like you've got problem(s).
    What size engine do you have? The 3 or 4 cylinders.
    I have a 1991 Metro with 3 cylinders and it has close to 130,000 miles (I'm the original owner).
    Only had 1 valve replaced since I bought it new.
    Other than that, just oil/filter and 1 timing belt (at 80,000 miles).
    Some mechanics have told me the 1.0 liter 3 cylinder engine does have some problems. That is why Suzuki (er, GM, yea- that's it, GM), offered the 1.3 liter 4 cylinder in some models beginning in 1995. At least that's what I was told.
    Other than that- sounds like you've got a case to invoke the use of the "Lemon Law" (if your state supports it and it's not too late).
  • inuvikinuvik OregonPosts: 134
    I have a 1990 Metro with just over 165,000 on the engine. The motor is originally out of a 1989 Metro that I had bought with 95,000 abusive miles on it. Everything but the drivetrain was falling apart. I drove the 1989 until it racked up about 135,000 miles. By then everything but the motor and tranny was ready to drop off of the car.
    I then purchased a 1990 Metro with a good body but bad motor for $250.00 last June. I transplanted the good motor and tranny out of the 1989 into the 1990 and have driven it on my daily commute of 122 miles every day since.
    I have done absolutely no work to this 3 cylinder motor since I got it except a tune up and oil changes. Just wanted to tell a "good" Metro experience.
  • pat56pat56 Posts: 11

    Yeah, State Farm totalled my '99 LSi. Despite the photos, the damage was relatively minor. My visual inspection indicated this damage:

    1) Front bumper assembly, nose, hood, both front fenders

    2) Radiator and fan assembly

    3) Right side motor mount (engine pushed back slighly on right side)

    There were no fluids leaking from the vehicle, except coolant. Front suspension and both front wheels still appeared to be in alignment and operational. I was told the only reason it was totalled was that the parts come from Japan (Suzuki), and were quite expensive.

    C'est la vie. I'm driving around in my Bright Blue Metallic 2000 Metro LSi Coupe (Hatchback) now, that State Farm (the other party's insurance company) bought for me.



    The MetroGnome
    Tampa, Florida
  • karid3karid3 Posts: 1
    i have a 97 geo metro i am thinking about selling if anyone is interested.
    the car is great and amazing on gas but i have been waiting 3 years to get a vw cabrio.
    only had the geo for a little over a year due to an accident with my old geo prism.
    i still have a note on the geo so i would be asking around 6,100. email me if any interest:
    51,000 miles
    cd player
    car starter
    great shape
  • Hello. I was going to buy a Civic.....but started looking at Metros after my uncle bought one. Can anyone give me a ballpark figure on a 1998 automatic one with 26k on it. The advertised price is 7,000. What is this car really worth?

    My second question is: has anyone bought a car from Enterprise? They have Metros with low miles and I was wondering if anyone has bought one and if they were happy. Further, I would like to know what a fair price for one of those would be. Any help is appreciated.
  • mznmzn Posts: 727
    Have you checked the pricing, pgee900282? On the home page, click on Used Cars, then on the maker, then on the year, and finally on the model. It has information on how to assess for mileage and amenities.

    See how that compares to your price and please, let us know how everything works out for you.

  • gm1994gm1994 Posts: 3
    I own a Geo Metro '94 with auto trans. I know the auto trans is a 3-speed one. But is it normal that it runs at 4000+ rpm when going at 65mph? what's your experience?

  • gm1994gm1994 Posts: 3
    The only problem my Metro had was that occasionally when I start the car, the auto transmission refuses to gear up (stays on one even if I pump it up to 5000rpm). This usually goes away after several minutes.

    This started within warranty, but the dealer was no help -- they could not find anything wrong (and since the symptom goes away after a while, the dealer would claim it "fixed" by "misc. adjustments" or similar BS).

    A friend suggested that I might have a loose connection somewhere (which self-corrects once
    the temp under the hood goes up). And he was on the money. All I had to do when this happens again was to massage all the connectors I can see, and the problem goes away, at least for several days. (And this only happens in summer time anyway.)

    I wish I know which wires are the trouble makers so I can fix them for good. But I could not find a book about it (maybe Metro is not main stream enough). If anyone is more knowledgeable on this, please help me out. Thanks!

    I suspected the ground wires since the sheet metal body are the most likely culprit that expands and contracts in different seasons/temps. But they look fine and after all they are just metal to metal ...
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    My friend is buying a car for his 73 year old mother for around-town jaunts. I was wondering if a 4-door Metro would be good for her? Must be 4-door because she needs power steering. Any thoughts would be great. Thanks in advance! :)
  • inuvikinuvik OregonPosts: 134
    I think your final drive ration in the Metro is around 4.30. With no overdrive and small tires you will really spool up some RPM's. That is why the 5 speed manual is a double overdrive. Both 4th and 5th gears are overdrive. At around 60 MPH you are probably turning about 3500 or so. That is the primary reason the automatics gets such lousy fuel mileage compared to the sticks.
  • Hey everyone. Thanks for the great information again. Carlady, yes I looked at the used car prices on Edmunds and they were really helpful. However, it may just be the area where I live but the Edmunds prices seemed really high compared to what people are asking. I saw a 99 Metro with 19k for 6k and a few 98s for around 5k. I may just a bit too suspicious because Edmunds says that those cars are really worth much more. Maybe they are dirty and junky. I was just fishing for more insight. Thanks
  • mznmzn Posts: 727
    I'm glad I could help, pgee900282. When it comes to used cars, there is definitely regional pricing. Sometimes the best way to get a fix on local prices is to study the used car ads in a city near you and see what the "going rate" is. If you find a car much more or much less expensive, ask a lot of questions!

  • Hi, (Gene)
    In response to you question, "Is it normal that (the Metro automatic), runs @ 4,000+ RPM when going at 65 MPH?"
    Yes. It is normal.
    I had an automatic Metro (1994), and am awaiting for a new 2000 Metro Hatchback automatic that I've ordered (should arrive next week).
    The axle ratio for the new Metro's with the automatic is 3.61 (that's right out of the factory specs). Unfortunately, I don't know if that's any different from the 1994's (when autos were with the 3 cylinder engine). Now you can't get them unless you opt for the 4 cylinder LSi.
    Yes, that little engine whines when you get moving. There is a reason for this.
    It's a 3 speed on a 3 cylinder engine. Since horsepower is already being lost in an automatic, the gears are going to be "lower than average" to keep it from being a complete "gutless wonder". You've also lost 2 gears (from the manual trans.), so with only 3, you've got to increase the spread on what gears will operate at what speeds.
    Since I've owned both manual and auto (I've had two at the same time), I've had the experience to try both. Sure the manual gets better gas mileage, but the auto has better gears for power!
    I've had it climb up hills, pass trucks, and merge on freeways with the auto and was impressed!
    Now, it's by far no head turner, but for a 3 banger w/auto it wasn't too bad. What it REALLY needs is an overdrive 4th gear for highway driving (engaged by pressing a button on the select shift).
    I've thought that Suzuki would offer something along those lines- but alas!
    Just one other thing... on the new Metro's, there is a cut-off in the fuel injectors when the RPM gets to 6,000 (red line), or above. I guess it would be pretty hard to over-rev the engine (unless you're going downhill).
  • taetae01taetae01 Posts: 1
    Does anyone know of somewhere were they have cheap geo's? If so let me know.

  • Hey guys. I just called a rental car company and they offered me a 97 Lsi with 20k for $5,500? The kbb on this car is like 6,800. I was just wondering if anyone thinks that this is a good deal. A new one is not that much with the cash back but I was looking to save a few. This place has a no haggle arrangement. In my area these cars sell for around six to six and a half. Any opinions are welcome.
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