1999 Chevrolet Metro LSi 1.0 liter gasoline from North America
Cute as a button, with fantastic MPG
Small leak in the head gasket a couple of years ago; replaced.
New clutch & brake discs replaced after 200,000.
Stated as doing 41/49 MPG, but never could achieve that UNTIL recently; started using 87-octane gas that is about 10 cents higher/gallon here in Iowa. Now we regularly achieve over 40 MPG, even in the summer with A/C. Love it!
At about 150,000, we noticed when slowing for a red light, we couldn't shift from 2nd to 1st any more. Have to come to a complete stop to get going again. A real pain, but we've learned to live with it, because no one will replace a part in a transmission. They only replace the whole thing. Too pricey for the inconvenience (for now, anyway... we'll see.)
After many years, A/C coolant started leaking out during winter, and some dearheart told us to simply run the A/C once or twice a month in the winter to keep everything lubed. Haven't needed coolant for years now.
The main thing we're having trouble with, with this wonderful vehicle, is finding new tires! No one makes 13", anymore. (We've found some in old warehouses and have a stockpile now.)
We do stick to a rigid maintenance schedule. After we put 100,000 on it, Hubby started changing the oil every 2000 miles with the cheapest filter. Every 80,000, he puts in all new hoses, belts, temp gauge, water pump, etc. And we always keep new tires on the front. We run skins on the back if not traveling. Hubby can whip that spare on and back on the road in 15 minutes flat. (When traveling, we switch out good tires for the back.)
There is plenty of room, you non-believers. I am 5' 7", Hubby 5' 10" (over 200#), and my baby brother 6' 4" (305#) commute 60 miles round trip 3X/week for years. Bro says it's like working out at the gym getting in/out of the Metro doing deep knee bends. We three have taken trips for 2 weeks together in it, also. I'm always relegated to the back seat that isn't comfortable, but doable with pillows and a blanket. Never knew we could do it until we tried it.
We bought our Metro brand new, so it has been babied and cherished. It has never been in a dealer's garage. Hubby or our mechanic neighbor have always been able to fix it.
It was our first new car ever. I figured we'd have it 10 years and something new would come along that easily gets over 100 MPG, so we could invest in another. Was I naive. We only paid $7,500 brand new, but ended up adding A/C for $850 more. Well worth it.
I'm actually a Ford person, but this Metro was so darn inexpensive at the time, we're considering buying another Chevy down the line (if Ford doesn't get it together). I'm looking at that Chevy Eco that can go 100 miles on an electric charge before the the gas engine kicks in. Brilliant!
We don't have any cracks or blemishes on the plastic inside the car yet. He regularly puts Armour All on it. I've kept sheepskin covers on all 3 seats, so the fabric is brand new. I've always kept huge heavy-duty rubber mats that hold a gallon in the front with rugs under those, so the carpet looks new, also.
He likes to sand off any little bit of rust, then paint. He finally had to put a little Bondo under the driver's door, under the car last month. I can see what's happening. Same thing that happened to our Ford Escort diesel: engine kept going for almost 400,000 miles, but the frame simply rusted away. That's probably what will happen with our little Metro. (Bro-in-law made the diesel engine into an electric generator for the house, and it's still working.)
We have a couple of old Chevy Sprints in the back forty that have no rust. I wonder if the Metro motor would fit in one of those?
When all 7 nieces and nephew were little, they used to argue who would get the "tuna can". (Of course, now that they're all grown up, they wouldn't take it if we paid them.) I have bright-pink-sheepskin covers on the seats now, and drivers see it better. The car is white, and drivers tend not to see small cars, anyway. (For that matter, motorcycles and cyclists, too.)
It's a 2-door hatchback, so getting the kiddos in & out of the car seats in the back was a huge pain. I'm considering a 4-dr hatchback next. Also, since it was our first new car, we didn't realize how much more expensive 2 door insurance was than 4-door! We paid $50/month! Horrible. Now we pay $128/6-month that includes the break-down coverage $7/month. I've more than paid for that insurance all the times I've accidentally locked myself out, and jumps when I've left the overhead light on. We ran out of gas once, so the insurance was nice then, also. We haven't used the free tow yet, but I'm sure down the line that's coming.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 14th July, 2012