1986 Chevrolet Spectrum from North America



General Comments:

Awesome little car, takes corners really tight too :) Only small bad quirk about the automatic is that they are only a 3 speed and a top speed of 140, but a 88 Spectrum 4 speed tranny will fit and give the car a little extra kick. I'm currently doing a Volkswagen Jetta front end conversion to mine, but I'm still proud she's a Spectrum.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st July, 2006

8th Nov 2007, 17:32

Are you JOKING??? Just because a speedometer says the number 140 on it does NOT mean the car is capable of making that kind of speed. If the speedometer said 200, would you be saying it's as fast as a Ferrari?? I bought a brand new 1986 Spectrum as a first car and never managed to get it to go over 100 and wouldn't have wanted to try to either. The thing is a rolling death trap. The only good thing about this car is its fuel economy. Had about a million things break on it and was stranded on a half dozen occasions. Once, my fuel pump literally fell apart on a major interstate bridge and the car dumped gasoline all over the road. I seriously thought about dropping a match on it.

1986 Chevrolet Spectrum from North America


It sucks! Not worth the money!


My car parts are all rusty.

The engine and car itself gets very hot.

Paid $500.00 for the car originally $650.00 (not worth its money)

Leaks transmission fluid and I believe oil too.

Needs to be loaded with lots of coolant.

It pulls back once you stop at a stop sign and take off.

Air Filter is filthy (looks as though oil was spilled all over it.)

Have to turn the heater on when you go down hills because the car gets so hot once you get to the bottom.

Bad wiring. I'm surprised this car runs (it looks like it is held together by strings.)

Tires squeak once you make tight turns (no power steering).

Have to put Heat and transmission fluid in the car constantly. (big puddles under car next day of leaks)

Hard to start in the rain and windy (summer) weather. It's easier to start in the winter by putting a bottle of heat in.

Rusty (bad) muffler.

Cob webs and dead leaves lay on the sides inside the hood.

Fan kicks on when it's not supposed to.

It only goes 65 mph and 70-75 mph going down hills if your lucky.

Engine problems (stalls at stop signs when you let go of the gas pedal (sometimes) )

Gas tank is rusty (good gas mileage though)

General Comments:

This car just isn't good what's so ever. I don't know why I paid $500.00 for it. I didn't even pick it out my parents did because my dad needed a work car and he just passed it on to me. The seats and floors is all teared up. The exterior isn't all that great either. I just need something to get my back and forth to work. I know now since of all these car problems I will never buy a Chevy car and a Ford car again. I've had experience with Ford's it ain't pretty!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 15th April, 2003

29th Sep 2004, 11:39

Come on get serious. We are talking about a $500 car with a lot of miles and probably not maintained or taken care of. I am lobbying that everyone who wants a driver's license must take a basic course in Mechanics. People who know nothing about cars have no business driving them!

15th Nov 2004, 22:14

I agree with the above!!!

16th Oct 2007, 12:26

I agree with both of the above comments, but come on, you have to take care of a car, replace that 10.00 muffler, and 5.00 air filter and get the leaves out of the car. Come on, get off your butt and fix your car.

25th Dec 2007, 23:38

The silliness of this review makes me want to buy one! Doesn't seem so bad for what was paid and how it's been treated.

7th Jan 2009, 12:24

I have a 1986 Chevy Spectrum with 75,000 miles on it, when I first got it I did the following my self and save money this way:

* Detailed the entire car (cleaned it)

* Dropped the fuel tank and cleaned it (only took about 2hrs)

* Changed the oil (any one can do this)

* And spent a few hundred on a fuel pump and oil pressure switch.

* I also got new tires for it.

* All in all, I paid about $1,500.00 for this little car when it was all said and done ($700 for the car, $800 in repairs)

Right now it's running great! And over the summer while everyone else was broke because of gas prices, I was cruising at 37MPG!!!

All in all it's been a great first car and a money saver.

It just needed a little TLC.

And it's starting to pay for it self in gas mileage.

19th Dec 2011, 18:38

Yes, I completely agree. I also paid practically 1500 for my 1986 Chevy Spectrum. I just cleaned it up nice from the inside, painted the car blue, new tires, and changed the distributor, and it's running great.