1996 Chevrolet Lumina APV 3.4 V6 from North America


Ole reliable dustbuster


Window regulator driver's side.

Window guides both sides.

Evap canister line clogged.

AC leak.

Rear shocks went out.

General Comments:

Had twins in 2002 and needed something with a bit more seating for a 2nd vehicle. Picked up this 1996 Lumina minivan for 1500 from a used car lot; was not expecting much, but the low mileage sold me on it. This van had comfortable seating and pretty decent pickup when you punch the gas. Fuel mileage was about as expected for a V6 (about 20 in town and mid 20s on freeway). The viewing angle out of the enormous windshield took some getting used to, but you grow accustomed to it.

Living in the Midwest, most every other van I looked at was rusted to bits, but the plastic spaceframe design of the Lumina had none, and it was nice not to have to see rust for such a low price. The sliding door was decent, but being on one side only made for loading car seats being kind of a pain overall. This van never failed to start, even in the -30 degree weather we get up here in Wisconsin.

When I bought it, the front brakes pulsated, but that was fixed on the cheap with new rotors and pads. The only thing that was definitely of poor design that I could find was the front door window guides (plastic clips that held glass to the track) wore down and allowed the glass to fall out. I replaced these with slightly thicker ones and the issue was fixed after that.

Overall this vehicle served us well and never had any major problems in the 200,000 miles it gave us. The AC leaked out around 150k and I rarely used it so never bothered getting it fixed. I replaced the rear shocks at around 200k (wore out and the rear end bounced over bumps). The headliner started sagging, but I just sprayed some 3M adhesive spray and pushed it back up. I would still be driving this beast today had my wife not slid into a curb with it this past winter and done considerable damage to the front suspension. RIP GM's dustbuster 8.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th January, 2016

10th Jan 2016, 04:31

This is a great review! Thanks so much for posting it.

All the best, Steven Lang.

1996 Chevrolet Lumina V6 from North America


Older now of course - but if you find one in good condition, it can be a great first car


Normal upkeep mostly. The original transmission lasted until about 2011, and then we had it replaced. The car already had over 200K miles on it at that time. It has overall been a reliable car, though the brakes have always been on the slow side, and we've had consistent troubles with the neutral safety switch and the coolant sensor, both of which we have replaced several times. We've driven it across the country multiple times, spent time in tropical and snowy regions, and the Lumina handled all terrain and surfaces like a champ.

Unfortunately, my Lumina is at the end of its life. It was doing great and we took it to a new mechanic for an oil change (we will do that to test people out before going to them when we need something larger). Our old mechanic was fantastic and treated our car like it was his own. But we moved and needed a new one. This guy sabotaged my car - we found proof - and I had three major system failures the week they did the oil change. Turns out they put a hole in the transmission pan with a screwdriver and a number of other things so we'd have to spend money there fixing all of this. Screw that!

I will miss my loyal little Lumina.

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

Review Date: 9th September, 2015

1996 Chevrolet Lumina Sedan 6 cylinder from North America


Very reliable, comfortable, low maintenance


Non-start with no electric.

General Comments:

This was easily my lowest maintenance vehicle. I had it for 15 years and pumped relatively little money into it. It was comfortable as well as reliable.

Even with the 6 cylinder, very low on power though. No problem getting up hills, but you wouldn't want to pull out into fast moving, heavy traffic without a significant space cushion.

It did develop a slow oil leak somewhere after 100,000 miles, so I had to keep an eye on that. Around the same time, if you were in stop and go traffic on a hot day, the temperature gauge would make you nervous - it would almost be pinned.

In the end it would randomly fail to start. Might have been something electrical, as turning the key resulted in no response, not even the gauge lights, but again at that point the car had a lot of miles on it.

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

Review Date: 16th March, 2015