1995 Chevrolet Corsica 3.1L 6 cylinder from North America


Excellent, especially if well-taken care of


Most things were general maintenance: tires, windshield wipers, alignment adjustments, brake pads, muffler once.

~175,000 miles the bearings went on the front wheels and had to be replaced.

About 185,000 miles, I lost control of the power steering suddenly while making a left turn one day. Took some muscle, but was able to steer the rest of the way home. One mechanic shop tried to tell me it was the steering rack, but two others recommended replacing the steering pump with a rebuilt one. Solved the problem right away.

Somewhere around 200K, the cooling system started to be this vehicle's Achille's Heel.

Over the next year or so, I replaced (or had replaced by a shop) the upper & lower hoses, the radiator (2X -- but this was my own fault as the first one was a cheap mail order thing), water pump.

But as I gradually replaced the parts that kept developing leaks, things still ran OK. Just had to watch the heat gauge whenever sitting in traffic.

~210K, I blew an intake gasket. Found this out because I kept losing coolant, but could not detect an external leak for the life of me. Worried, because it meant I most likely had an internal leak between systems.

Paid the ~$800 for it because I just loved that car.

Fortunately, I inadvertently hadn't done much damage to the engine, because I started putting straight water instead of coolant/water mix into the reservoir due to the high cost of coolant. Turns out the lesser corrosivity of the water probably spared my engine quite a bit!

A year later, gasket blew again. I was at 215K and other things were going wrong, too. Some just maintenance, some more hefty. The combo of the ever-failing cooling system and other issues on a high-mileage car made me decide to finally move on.

General Comments:

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.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th December, 2010

1995 Chevrolet Corsica Base 3.1L SFI V6 from North America


Great car, especially if found in a great deal


I bought the car with a misfire, later diagnosed to be a fuel injector on the #4 cylinder. Bought the parts (fuel injector, O-rings, and intake plenum gasket) for about 100 bucks and replaced at 40,500 miles.

Car ran hot (between the middle line and the third line on a typical cruise, and in traffic it would near the red zone, but if I revved the engine the temp would go down) I later diagnosed as a bad thermostat. Replace thermostat with a 10* cooler rating that cost 10 bucks. I also bought it with this condition. Fixed it at about 41,500 miles.

Car had bad brakes to begin with, rotors so warped that the right front of the car shook when braking from high speeds. I replaced pads and rotors for 75 bucks.

Car also had worn front tires from lack of rotation, so I replaced all four tires with new 50,000 mile rated ones for 300 bucks.

Car had a loud popping noise from right side of the vehicle. This was at first diagnosed as a bad strut, but later re-diagnosed as a bad sway bar end link on the right side. So I bought the link for 5 bucks and replaced it myself. Also was bought with this condition. Fixed at about 41,750 miles.

Car sat for about ten years in Idaho collecting dust and rust. The condition of the paint is still perfect however the underside of the car is rusted, mainly the exhaust, so the exhaust is a bit louder than it should be. Will replace that when I get the time to and the money as I can't do that one myself. Again bought the car like this.

I also bought the car after a T-boned collision with someone who had no insurance. My friend offered to sell it to me when my transmission went on my old car. I later found the parts to fix everything used, same color and condition as the rest of the car, for 150 bucks (thanks to a ton of searching.) Fixed at 44,000 miles. No frame damage was found upon inspection.

General Comments:

OK, first I would like to point out everything that was wrong with it was already wrong at time of purchasing. I am 18 and bought this car from my 17 year old friend who did not take good care of it at all. So I knew it would need some work to get it back in good condition.

So after purchasing the car for a measly 350 bucks, I was actually able to afford to fix everything within the first 3,000 miles or so. And since I did that the car has had no problems.

I know how to take care of a car, upon purchase I replaced (not including the above) all six spark plugs with 100,000 mile plugs, all six spark plug wires, the serpentine belt and belt tensioner and changed the oil with full synthetic motor oil at 41,000 miles. Currently at 47,690, I am about to do my second oil change (I love synthetic for the longer service life)

So after fixing everything that is wrong I got one hell of a deal. Total spent on the car is roughly 1,000 bucks. For a car with a V6 and only 40,000 (confirmed) miles at the time, with working A/C and everything else works too... I got lucky.

Love the car and am glad I was able to replace my Nissan Stanza with this awesome car.

I plan to keep this car for years to come. I will never buy a car from a dealership, they are a rip off. You find better deals searching on your own and doing a little TLC yourself.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st January, 2010

1st Jan 2010, 21:26

You are going to be a very rich man. Congrats on your near-new ride!

2nd Jan 2010, 04:20

All that work you put into that car was totally worth it. You have a vehicle that'll take 300,000 on the original powertrain if properly serviced. I've owned several 3.1 MPFI Chevy's including a Lumina and Celebrity, and can attest to the durability and reliability at high mileage.

2nd Jan 2010, 10:07

If buying old beaters for a few hundred bucks makes you a "very rich man"-- I should be a friggin millionaire by now.

10th Jul 2010, 02:22

I'm looking at replacing my dear old '95 Corsica with *another* '95 Corsica!

She died gallantly (totaled in a crash) at 171,061 miles, 140,000 of which I put on her over 13 years of ownership, and while she'd required a few hundred dollars in repairs over the years, I've never owned a better car -- I fully expected to go well over 200,000 with her.

And buying inexpensive cars and investing the money wisely, rather than shoveling it into car payments, WILL make one a rich man!

10th Jul 2010, 22:36

You are richer finding a low mile used car vs payments, high depreciation and higher insurance. Bank the savings on interest and loans.