The Cavalier is a little like that senior co-worker that never gives up; even though it's getting old, tired and long over due for retirement, it finds a way to hang on for a bit longer despite its advanced age and still manages to do the best job it possibly can.
There's a limit to what one can achieve with a 25 year old platform and these limits have been reached in 1982; the steering feels overly light and is highly imprecise at high speeds. Body roll is overly present and the car becomes almost uncontrollable the second you go above the speed limit. In every day driving these limitations are barely noticeable, but were a major source of disappointment.
The 2.2L OHV valve engine is as old as time itself and it's ancient push rod design make it seem as if this car was designed by a cave man. Despite it's average 114 horses, this engine seems like it was stolen from a tractor; its loud, rough and simply out dated. Once again in normal city driving its limitations aren't as obvious. On the bright side of things these engines are built like tanks and are a breeze to service.
On the bright side of things the car is a looker and is very well equipped for it's price range; ABS, Traction Control and remote keyless entry for a price of 7500$. The Cavalier's fit and finish is and has always been it's weakest point; the interior plastics are GARBAGE and seem like they recycled from the 1980's. The exterior panels fit poorly with one another and the interior is filled with mysterious noises. Overall it serves it's purpose as an economy car, but if you can spare a bit more change, check out the Cobalt or Kia Spectra 5; you'll get more bang for your buck.
19th Jan 2011, 19:18
Love it, love it, love it. Not too many repairs needed. Very little money spent on gas. Nice looking.