I had one as a courtesy car for 6 weeks and have to agree with your criticism of the dynamics.
You know a car really handles badly when people who wouldn't normally notice anything about a car beyond its colour, get out of it muttering that "the steering feels broken" and "it doesn't go around corners very well, does it?". These comments came from my mum who has never driven a car hard in her life, and borrowed the Nubira to go to the supermarket.
Quick car though in 2.0 form. Will see off a 1.8T Passat or 2.0 Mondeo without any problem, and even sounds half decent. Just make sure the road has nothing resembling a bend in it before you exceed about 40 mph though. Merely recalling the handling when writing this is making my flesh creep!
I must just disagree with all the above people. I bought a very sad 2000 model Nubira a few months ago, and with a bit of fixing up (due to the last owners not looking after the car) it has turned out to be a gem.
I have no idea what the story is with the steering???
Maybe Nubira in South Africa are better built? I know that with GM looking after my car, I need not worry about a thing!
I must disagree with the above comments... or maybe add an additional insight. From my own experience, it should the the lousy tires that are at fault rather than the steering. Try changing to a better after-market tyres, especially one that I s meant for wet roads and you will see the difference. I have taken 90 degree corners at 50km/hr perfectly.
When my parents told me their friend wanted to sell us a car, I didn't take it seriously, I didn't have the money to buy it, but when she drove it over, I fell to my knees and begged my parents to help me purchase it. She was pretty, she was silver and cost only $10000. Pretty good since she had only done 18000k and was 2 years old.
For the first three years of ownership, she ran like a charm. But then all hell broke loose. The air con packed it in ($1200). Then all of the electronic windows gave up, followed closely by the fan belt ($1000). Her steering went feral, darting from one side to the other, bushings ($400) needed to be replaced, which of course led to 3 month old tyres being prematurely worn ($500).
If I had known she would be this much trouble, I wouldn't have begged for her. I appreciate the relatively nice few years of having a reliable car, but after that, well... I wouldn't recommend her to anyone.