2002 Chevrolet Prizm 1.8 from North America


This car, so far, has done its job. 2 years and no repairs other than brakes


Nothing has gone wrong with the car so far, as it needs to be repaired for me to keep driving, but the car uses a quart of oil ~500 miles.

General Comments:

Oil burning is an almost universal problem with the 1.8 engine from this year and previous years (same with the Corolla as it turns out). I expect the problem will get worse over time, and according to what I've read, will cause other problems like catalytic converter failure. I got the car for a reasonable price ($5,000), so if I can get another couple years at about 25,000 miles a year, I suppose my money will have been well spent.

I get between 36 and 38 MPG driving ~ 100 miles a day on the 405 freeway. If you're thinking about a purchase, beware; if the owner before you wasn't quick to notice the oil burning problem, and let it run nearly dry a time or two, there could be some serious damage.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th October, 2012

2002 Chevrolet Prizm from North America


Reliable, low mpg, standard sedan


Muffler clamp failed.

Tires wore too quickly.

General Comments:

The 2002 Prizm is last in line for this model.

It's basically, a re-badged Toyota Corrola.

As such it's proven to be very reliable, fuel efficient, and rather more internally roomy than you'd expect for a car of its class. The gauges are simple, it has DRLs and mine has a moonroof. It gets really good gas mileage if you don't drill it on the highway, but even if you do your looking at 27 to 28 mpg. If you drive at or under the limits you get 32 up to even (I've measured it) 35 mpg. It's a touch larger than say the normal subcompact so your not looking at Aveo size here. That gives you a bit of comfort and safety not found in the new "hip" subcompact class.

Trunk space is decent, you can carry five if you want to, though the car sits low to the ground and you WILL notice it if you load up with five and luggage.

Acceleration is good, but if you really need a burst of speed your going to have to go heavy on the pedal. It is a four cylinder after all.

Front air bags for driver and passenger, a VERY reliable engine from Toyota, nice clean lines though not exciting.

If there is a list of "standard sedan" the Prizm is second behind the Corolla.

If you can get one of these, buy it, it'll get you to where you want with comfort, reliability and a small touch of style that's above many 2006 offerings.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 30th September, 2006

29th Oct 2006, 21:23

Chevy adopted the Prizm in 98 when GM discontinued the GEO name. A year or so earlier, GM had dropped the Corsica from it's lineup and started production of the Malibu.

If I had to take a guess as to why they dropped the Prizm, I'd say there were probably a few reasons. First, Chevy didn't need two sedans of roughly the same size. The Prizm was in direct competition with the Malibu and probably affected sales to some extent, even though I'd venture to guess the Malibu outsold it.

With the Matrix/Vibe, they could continue to build a similarly sized vehicle, without being in direct competition. Plus, the Matrix/Vibe offers a nice crossover niche... it's a little bigger than most hatchbacks, but smaller and more fuel efficient than most SUVs.

For what it's worth, I agree... the Prizm was a better car than the Malibu. But, I can understand, to an extent, why GM wouldn't want the best car in their lineup being made by somebody else.

13th Jun 2007, 10:07

Prizm competed with the Cavalier, not the mid-size, 6-cylinder Malibu.

2002 Chevrolet Prizm 1.8L from North America


Great peppy 5 spd and I love it!


The interior ceiling light bulb is not working. That is all.

General Comments:

Excellent car. It is my second one. My wife totaled our prior Geo Prizm in 2002. I have had no problems with this car. I wish GM didn't stop making the car. My 17 year old son loves the car. The mileage is a little over rated at 41 MPG. But who drives at 55 MPH anyway? It still gets 38 MPG. And you can't beat that with gas prices at $2.30 a gallon!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd March, 2006