2004 Chevrolet Aveo Base LS? sedan 1.6L? from North America

Summary:

An embarrassing choice for someone who usually does their homework

Faults:

Drive belt was replaced under warranty by a small town Chevy dealer the day after I bought it.

The clock display flickers constantly. As I've also lost a number of bulbs (headlight and turn signal), I suspect a wonky electrical system, or simply systematic 'moderate' build quality.

Crunching noise that gets worse in cold weather, but apparently isn't the front end suspension exploding.

Really random fuel economy. In town, in moderate weather, as low as @ 23 mpg. After two years, occasional highway or mixed driving can get @ 40 mpg or better. Difference seems extreme, and highest is still not as advertised.

Body has several small dents, especially around trunk - suspect from people leaning on it or resting things on the trunk lid.

General Comments:

My last car was elderly and much abused, but continued to be a happy surprise for reliability, build quality and just good passenger car engineering. Plus it looked cool (red wedge, 1989, built 1988, with pop up headlights). I also miss the A/C and non-leaking sunroof.

I do believe that concerns about build quality in this car, and the horrible reputation of the factory installed drive belt letting go before 100 000 km, mean it is a substantially inferior car to my ancient Toyota.

I wasn't in a position to maintain my old car, and thought it would be 'prudent' to get a car that still had warranties on it, as well as supporting people who make cars in North America, and buying locally at a small shop.

It cost me much more to buy this car outright than to rebuild the body on my old car. This 'American' car is apparently designed and built by Daewoo of South Korea, who as far as I can tell, went out of business building construction equipment in an area of the world where economies continue to boom. And the dealer didn't check out the drive belt specifically, as I requested.

The car is not completely awful. I am 5 feet tall and can drive it comfortably. I do find that, as in most American cars, pillars block many sightlines (not so bad in a 2 door, but this is 4). I like the fact that I apparently can't lock the driver's door from the inside while it's open - so way harder to lock keys in. The electric blue would look way better on a classic Camaro, but makes the car easy to find in a parking lot. Easy enough to handle. Seats are more comfortable than some of the old family Fords.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 29th November, 2010

2004 Chevrolet Aveo 1.6 from North America

Summary:

Chevy = Cheaper Heaps EVery Year

Faults:

Having the car only a few weeks, and had to take in for a ticking noise at around 3000 miles, the top half of motor had to be replaced. Not sure exactly why. Dealer said something about seeing scratching marks inside motor. They had the car for 2 weeks. They don't have parts in stock for this car.

Had another issue with the engine still ticking, and overall not sounding right. Dealer said something about having to replace lower half of engine, and had the car for another week.

Ticking noise from the engine from the beginning; not all the time, but it was there. Took it in several times, and they said they could not find a problem. At 8000 miles or so, a bolt that holds alternator snapped off, causing serpentine belt to break and taking out the cylinders and pistons, having to have the engine replaced. Also left me stranded in the middle of no where. Car was in the shop for 3 weeks.

Several problems with the car pulling. Had it in for alignments. And 2 tie rods had to be replaced. Leaving me stranded again. They held the car for a week.

The Aveo had problems with the oil leaking; the dealer said that it was the oil plug that the oil change place uses, and I have to use the ones they have that cost $10.00.

General Comments:

Overall, the car was good on gas and handled well in the snow in Michigan.

But had so many problems that I filed a Lemon Law and won.

There are many other problems that I had with the car, but too many to list; those were the worst ones. The others were minimal compared to the motor.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 7th March, 2010

7th Mar 2010, 10:48

"At 8000 miles or so, a bolt that holds alternator snapped off, causing serpentine belt to break and taking out the cylinders and pistons, having to have the engine replaced."

If your serpentine belt breaks, it's not going to have any effect on your pistons... Did you mean to say the timing belt broke? If the timing belt broke, then that would result in damage to the valves, and pistons if the car has an interference engine, which I believe the Aveo does. However, even if an alternator bolt broke, the alternator isn't driven by the timing belt, so this still wouldn't cause the timing belt to break.

7th Mar 2010, 11:02

The Aveo is really just a Daewoo marketed as a Chevy as a shortcut for them to get into the subcompact market. Why a company such as Chevrolet would choose to stain their name further by selling a cheap Korean car and calling it theirs is beyond me. But don't use the experience with Aveo to turn you off Chevy for good.. their Cobalt and the new Volt are pretty decent small cars.. (especially that Cobalt SS) :)

7th Mar 2010, 11:07

^^Just posted the last comment and had to correct myself real quick, its the Cobalt and CRUZE (which replaced the discontinued Cobalt), the Volt is a super-high MPG (well MPC it would be I guess cuz you charge it, not fill it) electric concept car they will hopefully start mass-producing in the near future..

7th Mar 2010, 16:57

Another example of why GM has hit the skids.

7th Mar 2010, 20:27

It's a Daewoo, not a Chevy.

Your cute title makes no sense.

9th Mar 2010, 18:16

You had an alternator bolt break and it ruined your pistons and cylinders? For one, the alternator really has nothing to do with the pistons. The piston's drive the alternator through the crankshaft pulley and serpentine belt, but if that belt broke, the pistons would continue on unscathed.

And two, the only way the piston's could become damaged is if the timing belt breaks and causes the pistons to hit the intake and exhaust valves. However, even if an alternator bolt breaks, this still will have no effect on the timing belt or pistons.

That being said, Daewoo or not, Chevy Aveo's really are junk. I believe this person's review entirely, just not how they say it happened.