13th Nov 2003, 07:34
I agree with the comment above. My mom owns a 1994 Lumina APV. It has the bulletproof 3800 V6 and 161,000 miles on it. My mom has owned the van since it had 15,000 miles on it. In that time she has had the transmission cooling line go out (due to Minnesota's salt usage, this was replaced under a recall as it corroded away), replaced the starter and three alternators. Of course the passenger door handle does not work from the outside (thank my brothers). That's it. Nothing else has gone wrong with this van. It looks great due to the plastic/fiberglass body and it still has a fair amount of punch. This has been a great automobile.
4th Oct 2004, 19:20
I have a '93 APV Lumina van, 3.1L and I am very happy with it. I bought it used in '95 and never regretted it. Granted, it is now 11 years old, and it is starting to make a lot of rattling noises, but hey, that's expected of an 11 year old vehicle, (and badly kept roads as in the province of Quebec. For you American folks, that's up there north of the border). I still have the orginal exhaust system. I've changed the brakes twice, alternator, and the back hatch with a new lock, (a notoriuos problem with those locks on the hatch). Half of those repairs are routine on any vehicle. The fact that you can live this far north where salt is used constantly on the roads as in Montreal winters, and still have the original 11 year old exhaust system, is unheard of! Why do you think they stopped making the polyethylene bodies, because it was too good. No other manufacturer joined the party, so they pulled the plug on it and said this won't make us money. Lumina APV van owners will hang on to those vans as long as they can.
So if you find one out there, I say go for it!
Sorry to hear that about the first owner up there who had bad luck with his, 'cause I've run into many happy owners of Lumina APV's who also don't want to give up on theirs.
16th Nov 2004, 19:05
I bought a 1994 Lumina minivan used with 73K miles on it. (3.8L V6) I've owned a Nissan Sentra, a Ford Taurus and Dodge minivans. But, this Chevy has been my favorite car. It hasn't been trouble free, however. It now has 133K miles on it and I have had to replace tie rods and tie rod ends, a water pump, and I'm on my 4th alternator. (Always get the lifetime warranty!) I replaced spark plugs, wires, brake pads, rotors and tires as necessary. I repaired a broken passenger door handle, driver's seat bracket, an AC hose and clutch and I had to clean corrosion from the driver's side window switch from rain getting in when I forgot to let the windows fully up. With each repair I'm surprised how easy this car is to work on.
Appearance? The car is 10 years old and still has NO rust or dents thanks to the composite (plastic) body panels.
Performance? I modified the air intake with a 4" ram ducted from the bumper to a custom airbox with a K&N cone filter. My city mileage went from 15.5mpg to 18.5mpg! And, this van has very good acceleration and power.
Comfort? Seats are OK. Leg room in front is good - in back only OK. I replaced the middle seat second row with a custom subwoofer box. It still seats 6 thanks to the modular seating. I upgraded the (already nice) stereo and speakers. A portable TV/VCR unit fits perfectly between the two front seats for the kids on long trips.
Downsides? It's only cheap if you can do your own repairs. Good luck finding parts in the junkyard! (Not many of these cars end up junked.) And, the ride is not as smooth (soft) as, say... my 1990 Dodge Grand Caravan. (3.3L V6) But, I would recommend this car highly.
12th Nov 2005, 18:15
I am thinking of picking up a used 1991 Lumina APV for $800. I'm pretty convinced that once I make the needed repairs (old battery, both front inside AND outside door handles don't work, passenger door striker bolt broke off the door jamb, headliner sagging) that it will be a good van. How do I know this? Because at 307,000 MILES (not km, this is 494,000km) it runs, drives, shifts, turns, stops, and the AC is still cold. The interior is still clean. The body isn't falling apart. My 1991 Aerostar which I paid $1050 for, is rusting, the bumpers are loose and cracking, the interior is falling apart, and I've put $3K into repairs in one year. I'm looking forward to losing my A* and getting an APV. Will post here when I hit 350K or so.
25th Nov 2005, 09:33
I agree w/all of the above except for #1. I have a 1990 Lumina w/over 230K miles and it is the most trustworthy, dependable vehicle I've ever owned. Certainly not w/out it's frustrating series of repairs over the years, but what car doesn't have them? It was my father-in-law's and I jumped at the chance when he said it was for sale, and like the posting above me, it does look nice parked next to a Corvette (s)..63, 75, 77, 78, 93 and 96!!! The Vettes are all for sale, the Lumina is a keeper!!!
6th Dec 2006, 08:08
I would agree with all the comments including number one. I purchased a 1995 Chevy Lumina Van and the wiper motor went out almost immediately. The passenger door handle has to be replaced also and the passenger window has not been opened in over two years because it too went out. Also, the air condition broke the second week of purchase. This van gets me where I need to go, however I would like a little more reliability when it comes to the accessories.
10th Jan 2007, 21:17
I have driven a 91 APV for over a year, my in-laws owned it for 6 years so I know the history. 3.1 motor, throttle body rebuilt, cat converter replaced, rack and pinion replaced, pass. outer door handle 2 times, hatch handle once, windshield has been cracked for almost 7 years and still hasn't leaked. blower motor has gone out twice. Other than routine maintenance, nothing too serious has happened. It is the ugliest thing ever, but it's at 185,000 miles and still kicking on the original motor and trans. The only time it broke down was when I ran it out of gas!
22nd Jan 2007, 03:39
In reply to 13th Nov 2003, 07:34:
Comment from reader in Ontario... The passenger door handle linkage is easy to fix. Remove screws from inside panel. Remove panel. You will see where linkage came apart. Simply put it back in and secure with proper fastener.
3rd Feb 2007, 16:53
I ran across this comment area while searching for door handle replacement parts for my 94 Lumina van, of all the vehicles that I have owned in my life, this is by far the best and my favorite, I have had parts replaced and done minor repairs, and am currently trying to get both front outside door handles fixed, (neither will open from the outside) but all in all I can't complain, I bought this van in 2000 for $5,000 it had 73,000 miles on it. today it has 209,000 and I hope it runs a long time yet, the interior is still in wonderful shape (no tears, worn area's) the exterior is great. Looks sharp sitting next to my neighbors 2006 Dodge Caravan (he has had as many repairs and problems in one year as I have in seven). It still gets good mileage, I have never had anything done to the engine. Personally, I feel this is the best vehicle Chevy ever made. Thank you to the Nov 13 and Jan 2007 tips on fixing the door handles, if anyone cares to give more detailed tips on fixing the handles I would greatly appreciate your e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, I have a wonderful son in law that takes pity on his limited income mother in law and tries to do as many repairs on the van as he can. Thank you.