1998 Chrysler Neon GLX 1st gen 2.0L


Total outlay of vehicle and upkeep of £18000 for 18 years. Show me another vehicle to match that?


Nothing. Never broken down. Never not started. Most reliable vehicle I've ever owned. No rust anywhere.

If general maintenance is good then it will stand by you.

The only item that ever requiring replaced, other than general wear due to mileage, was an air con condenser leak, probably due to stone damage.

Have changed the front engine mount twice in that time, but considering the mileage and cost of the item (£30), it's nothing.

For years people knocked this vehicle. Friends' cars have been long gone, broken down, traded in or crushed, yet the Neon motors on. None of them can believe its condition. The car used to only get a wash each MOT, now more often if I'm honest.

Leather seats have bit of wear on the driver's side and slight sag due to mileage.

General Comments:

Fantastic vehicle 2nd I've owned. Build quality OK, components superb.

Downside is the interior has too much plastic, but that's made up for with leather seating and high vehicle spec. equipment as standard GLX (UK model). Many items only now becoming standard equipment on current vehicles and at time of purchase not even optional extra with many other manufactures. Bought a one new when Chrysler came to the UK and it did have a few issues. Head gaskets made of cork that would fail, but changed under warranty for multi layer steel type, and it would eat track rod ends, but these were changed to a cast iron type that fixed the issue. Traded the car in for my second and current model a couple of years later. It's now 18 years old.

Almost 200,000 miles and still the same clutch. Brake discs all round changed at 150,000 miles as at the bottom limits for thickness. Changed brake flexible hoses at same time due to ease of access (preventative maintenance).

Two track control arms and two track rod ends and that's it. Other than general wear maintenance components, tyres, brake pads, oils and filters.

In 18 years ownership, I would guess all in with failed/general wear and services items, this vehicle has cost me £1400 pounds; that's £80 pounds a year. You'd pay that just for high end engine oil and filter for one service these days.

I also own a Mercedes S class and it would be unfair to compare the two as few vehicles could touch the Merc, but it has had many costly issues, and tyres alone just cost me a £1000. That's why it's a weekend driver and my Neon is my daily.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th July, 2016

1998 Chrysler Neon LX 2.0


Under-rated car, but expensive to maintain


The fuel pump has been replaced twice (on warranty) due to being excessively noise.

The brakes pads - which I believe are poor considering it has discs all around - have a short shelf life and Chrysler have failed to cure an annoying squeak despite having 4 attempts at it.

Other than that very few things have gone wrong and I've no real grumbles regarding reliability of the vehicle.

General Comments:

The performance of the Neon - lambasted by many - is pretty decent; it's let down though by the fact that you have to work the gearbox. In my mind the gearing ratio is set up for the American market. Put your foot down at 70 in 5th and you need the length of the M6 before the police will book you for speeding! However drop it to 3rd and your away - thirsty but fun.

In the dry the Neon handles very well, gripping the corners with the stiffer-than-the-US suspension holding the bends quite comfortably. This despite a distinct lack of feedback from the steering well. Get the car in the wet though and, on it's small 14" wheels, it's almost dangerously skittish. I've found that running the car on under-pressured tyres improves handling over the winter months.

The curiously raked lights seem become noticeably duller with only a slight film of grime on them and you'd best pray that the bulb doesn't blow! Despite the handbooks words you can't replace a bulb without removing the whole unit!

The running costs are high with service intervals at just 7,500 miles and Chrysler's ridiculously excessive prices for spares. For example the glass on a front fog light smashed, Chrysler quoted £104 for supply only after VAT; I bought the part from a local Hella (fog light manufacturer) dealer for £35. While talking of fog lights - Chrysler wire the front to work at the same time as the rear off a single switch. Now I don't like blinding people behind me and do like using front-fogs, for improved visibility on country lanes, so a home-bodge was required to install another switch.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 11th January, 2002

13th Jan 2002, 14:47

What the hell is wrong with you. Acceleration at 70 in 5th gear??? Where have you learned to drive, on a farm?? I have owned a Neon for 5 years with no trouble at all, it accelerates very well and I think that it is a very fine car.

5th Jun 2002, 12:38

I agree with the original comment above. Neons are a bag of crap. Poor build, Poor driveability, Poor economy, Poor performance, and crap at everything. Cheap and nasty car; buy a Japanese car instead. My Air Con failed at 35k and it is noisy and slow. Above 90mph, it feels dreadful.

8th Dec 2003, 07:00

I currently own 2 chryslers, a Neon and a Grand Voyager..

I can say with experience that the Neon is a great little car... I would rather be seen driving a Neon that a Escort?? The only reason the?Neon is having such a bad time is because these little boy racers are all under 25 and they are not able to afford the insurance on a Neon... I have lived in Canada for 5 years and I owned Chrysler/Dodge cars/truck and a minivan... NO PROBLEMS..I am selling my Neon ONLY because I got my Grand Voyager.. due to having a lot of kids.. otherwise I would still be keeping it.. I have no problems. with it..

1998 Chrysler Neon LX 2.0i 16v petrol


Automatic gearbox failed after 10,000 miles, powered steering failed after 30,000 miles.

Both covered by warranty!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 1999