I too own a 1984 Aries, mine is the 2.6L Mitsubishi engine with auto transmisiion, which also ran cold, and had carb problems! My car does have a rear window defroster, and after replacing the thermostat with a Stant super stat, the car is able to run warm enough.
The carb is a nightmare, little literature I have found explains anything about it! All the books available are written as if I know where the solenoids, relays or diaphrams are located. With so many different solenoids, relays and diaphrams on this carb, to know which one they are talking about would help!!
None the less, after considerable tinkering, I have been able to adjust the choke and get the engine to idle when cold, and after adding a fuel pressure regulator between the fuel pump and the carb, it has reduced the fuel consumption and leaned out the fuel mixture!!
When all is said and done, I like this car. It now starts, runs and drives just fine. Has never left me stranded, and for the money invested so far, it does it's job.
I once owned one of these chick magnets, and mine was a convertible!!! It was black with grey and black interior... It made all of the Buick Grand Nationals so jealous. Ya right! I went through 4 carbs on this car, a transmission, power steering rack (a Dodge trait, they all suck), 2 batteries, of course the AC never worked (another Dodge trait) and God forbid it began to rain and I needed the top up, it took about an hour for that to go up. Did I forget that stupid talking dash always reminding me of the obvious!!!
I however did buy a 1989 Aries 4 door with fuel injection 7 or 8 years after that one, and it was a good car. Does every 2.2 liter engine have that lovely tapping valve sound? I think that was an added luxury to those engines.
Pretty much all cars from this era have BAD carburetors. They are complicated heaps and are computer controlled even though they are 99% mechanical. Not to mention, they require warm up time. Since you have to have it on low idle in order to put it in gear, it stalls until it is warmed up... With fuel injection, nothing you can do will make it go to low idle unless it knows it is warm enough. My car (A Chevy Citation) has the computer controlled Rochester Varajet (actually it has given me no problems, just annoying to have to warm it up) There is OODLES of information on the Quadrajet, Varajet and Dualjet so I know the operation/design of it inside out. So don't hate a car for a bad carburetor, they were all too common in the 1980s, as common as bad A/C or a falling headliner.
To the person who wrote this review:
The newer 1985 and up cars have an extremely well designed bosh fuel injection system. the carburetor is always going to be defective on any older vehicle.
I have had 4 of these cars 1 - 85, 2 - 87's and 1 - 89.
Everyone has been an awesome car with extremely high relaiability with the exception of the 85.
I would most certainly recommend these cars to anyone for low cost reliable transportation.
When the carb is well tweaked, nothing can stop the 2.2. We had one in the 80's and in winter it got very cold up here in Prairie Canada. If you forgot to plug it in it would start anyways. The Parisienne wouldn't.
My dad owned three of these when I was a kid. I strongly believe that the Aries & Reliants were the worst cars ever made. He bought one new and two used with under 30,000 miles on them and they all got towed to the junkyard come 60,000 as they burnt more oil than gas among other things.
Gas mileage was not very good either. Best case scenario on a trip was maybe 22 or 23. Considering most GM or Ford V8s got the same with ten times the power, that is absolutely abysmal.
Then there is the fact that FM radio and more than one speaker were both an option in these cars. I remember my father's '86 which only came with AM radio and one speaker in the back.
What is even worse is that aside from breaking down on a near daily basis, is how badly underpowered these are. My friend moved to the base of a nearby mountain, and my dad drove me to his house and going up a hill doing about 35mph, the car eventually to a halt and started rolling backwards down the hill while he was giving it gas. I had to walk the rest of the way because the car did not have enough power to make it up a hill. Even other severely underpowered cars have no problem making it up the same hill.
As a counterpoint, my family had a 1984 Plymouth Reliant station wagon, with manual transmission, that was extremely reliable, comfortable, and got good mileage. We were still driving it past 200,000 miles when my dad sold it to his brother, who drove it another five years before he got drunk and cracked it up. We might be driving it yet if not for my Alky Uncle.
I wrote this review 12 years ago! This was a nice little walk down memory lane. Ah to be 17 again...
And you said that before this one, you had an Olds 98 Regency? What a comedown!!!
I can't say I ever had precisely this car, but we used a 1984 Plymouth Caravelle - very similar - and quite a lot of '89-'95 Plymouth Acclaims as taxis in our small town taxi company in the 1990s. It is true that the Caravelle wasn't great, mainly due to the carburetion. However it was far from the worst car we had in service.
The Acclaims by contrast, had the same engine with a longer stroke (2.5 instead of 2.2), and good fuel injection, and those were some of our best long running, hard abuse taking economy taxis. Not in the league of a real taxi - full frame, V8, rear-wheel drive - but still the best of the lightweights.