1997 Chevrolet Lumina LS 3.1 from North America


It's been good to me


Drivers side power window gears went out when it rained.

Sun roof gears went out.

General Comments:

Great ride and handles pretty well. For an 8 year old car I feel it has held up.

Other than the described problems it has been OK. LS has nicer interior and stereo.

I feel the car is slightly underpowered, but the mileage for a car this size is good so I guess that's the trade off.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th September, 2005

7th Jan 2006, 10:28

Just wanted to update. There is only one recall on this model... Just received it and got it fixed. It's called a "power steering gear lower pinion bearing separation."

Takes about two hours at the dealer.

11th Jan 2007, 14:29

2nd update:

Now at 79000+ miles.

Had water pump start to rumble and leak (misting a vapor).

Also had a leaking intake gasket (puddling coolant).

Replaced water pump (+ new thermostat), intake gasket, new plugs/wires, new belt and fixed power window... cost just under $1400 U.S. to fix.

All these problems, from what I've seen (thanks carsurvey.org) are pretty common for this model.

3rd Apr 2011, 08:31

At a little over 102,000 miles now.

Replaced ball joints and front wheel bearings.

Rusting on rear fender between where the plastic bumper meets the rear fender, just under the fuel door. I've seen this on quite a number of Lumina's.

I've owned her for 7 years, so it's time to look for something newer.

1997 Chevrolet Lumina 3.1 SFI V6 from North America


An underestimated machine


Not many things have gone wrong with this car. Just routine work like brakes and oil changes etc.

General Comments:

I love this car. It has everything you need in a car: comfort, reliability, and performance! It cruises very nicely at 80 mph on the highway. You can easily beat some Hondas, Toyotas, and Fords. I highly recommend this car to someone who is looking for a fast, safe, reliable sedan.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th May, 2005

1997 Chevrolet Lumina LS 3.1 litre from North America


Great reliable family car that will last the test of time.


Small oil leak that just started about 6 months ago. Only looses 1 quart every month and a half, so I have not been to get it fixed yet.

Alternator belt (serpentine belt) broke at 140000 km.

Brake lights stopped working at 150000 km. Turned out it was just a bad connection.

Exhaust bracket broke at 130000 km. The exhaust system still held tight and hardly fell due to four other brackets. Have not fixed this yet, but am planning on soon. Exhaust makes no noise to date and still sounds like a new car.

In the morning when it is cold out the car makes quite a bit of noise for the first three or four minutes. I think this is fairly normal with this engine as it has done it since it was new. Others have stated the same thing and had no engine problems what-so-ever.

General Comments:

This is one of the most reliable cars I have ever owned. I do not take very good care of the car, and change the oil every 10000 to 20000 km, and it still runs like the day I got it.

The car has never been under-coated and even in our harsh Canadian winters with tons of salt six months out of the year, the under-carriage is still like new.

The car in general is built very solid and is quiet even when going over very badly damaged roads. There is no vibrations or rattles, and everything feels as tight as the day I bought it. Also, the interior is holding up great as I abuse this car in every way possible. The only thing that broke inside the car was the air conditioning vent as a friend hit it with his knee when the seat was pushed all the way up upon entering.

This car pretty much destroyed a Honda as I got rear-ended at a speed of 70 km per hour. Her front end was pushed back to the dash board and I had only chipped paint! I even ran over a few curbs at fast speed and didn't even ruin the alignment. This car would probably do great in a smash-up derby!

This car is okay on gas in the city and great on the highway when put in over drive. There are better cars on gas but not many with this much power.

Great reliable car with lots of space and power. I never have a problem when passing on the highway.

Looks are a little boring, but the added spoiler makes it look ten times better. Nice tires and rims are a must.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th May, 2005

26th Mar 2009, 07:16

I have bought my 98 Chevrolet Lumina two years ago. My previous car was Mazda Protege. I liked it for small size and fuel economy. But if someone would offer me now to trade my Lumina to newer Mazda, I would never do that. Here is a reason why.

I never had any issues with my Lumina so far. It runs great especially on highway. It is very stable on the road. It is heavier then most of new cars of the same type, but that is what makes it safe. (Consider smashing an apple with the egg. An apple is heavier and that is the reason why it beats the egg.)

Yes, it takes more fuel than modern cars, but I will never trade safety for fuel economy. (With two kids on the board it does not make any sense).

Also, I spoke to quite a few car experts and they told me this car can easily run up to 400,000 km if you take care of it. And that is another reason why I bought this car. Look, if most of the cars this days run up to (average) 200,000 km, this car can run twice as much. What it tells me is that if I keep this car to the end (400,000 km drive life) and for example my neighbor will buy new car with (200,000 km life time) he will need to buy another car before I change mine. For a middle range family it is a good saving.

This car also is very quiet car. It has a big trunk, very durable and not very expensive on parts.

The only thing I do not like about this car is that it gives me static discharge each time when I am getting out of the car. (but I can live with it.)

Overall, it is great safe family car. I love it.

7th Jun 2010, 16:31

The '98 Lumina IS very safe and strong in a wreck. Mine was T-boned BAD, the drivers' side is crushed in to the point where I can't slide the seat back on its' tracks because the pillar is in the way. BUT the dang drivers' door STILL opens and closes! I wasn't hurt in the accident! And the car is STILL totally driveable and doesn't even pull to the left/right! These Lumina sedans are TANKS and I trust my family in one.

We recently bought a '99 with 94k on it, just replaced the intake gasket and expect to get another 100,000 miles out of it even with the piston slap :)