I absolutely LOVED this car. And was pleasantly surprised by it.
Drove it from early 2000 through Oct. 2006. It was a dealer's car, then my mom's, then mine. Guess it helps with any car knowing the service history from day 1.
Things I liked:
It looks like a "granny" sedan to some degree, but the models with the V6, 3.1L had some awesome power.
Acceleration & speed maintenance were unexpected, but outstanding. Ease of handling -- both steering and with the automatic transmission -- were excellent.
After this car, I bought a 4cyl. Cavalier and it felt so incredibly strange to have to put the gas pedal almost to the floor to get it to go. This after the Corsica, where subtle control of the gas pedal allowed for smooth shifts to higher speeds.
I felt incredibly comfortable in this car. I don't care for the big rage over bucket seats, so mine -- which seemed almost a hybrid between old-school bench seats and the newer bucket -- suited me fine. I'm tall, but actually tend to drive a bit bent-legged. In other words, I fit perfectly into the front.
Didn't sit in the back enough to judge that well, but never had complaints from occasional passengers.
Doing music at night & on weekends, I always had plenty of room in the back & trunk for my gear.
Loved taking long trips with this vehicle. The power, comfort, and reliability was unmatched in anything I had up to that point.
Case in point, once took a trip out to Western Pa with a bunch of friends. One had a brand new VW they were going to use, but it kept ending up in the shop, so my old ~150K (at the time) reliable Corsica went in its stead.
Overall, an unassuming car. But don't let it fool you. I drive hard, commute, put a lot of miles on (both highway and city driving); and the car could take a beating.
Then, when it would have issues, I could still temporarily tweak it until I could get it into the shop (and I'm NOT a mechanic, just an informed driver). In other words, even at high miles, it never left me more than just temporarily stranded.
I loved my '95 that I had for 5 years so much, I just did something completely crazy.
Timing belt broke & snapped a rod on my 2003 Cavalier. Due to the miles on the Cavy, I decided to look around.
Planned on a newer car, but also -- always keeping my options open -- looked to see if there were any Corsicas around. Despite being last produced in 1996.
Is it crazy to buy a '96 in 2010?
Well, if you find a low mileage, well-kept one for sale -- as I did -- I highly, highly recommend it.
All the Corsicas need is a little bit of attention and TLC, and they'll last quite a long time.