1996 Dodge Neon from North America


A comfortable money sucking hunk of junk


Left outer tie rod end blew twice, first time resulted in an accident.

Tires wear out often.

Air conditioner blows out heat.

Instrument panel only works when it wants to.

Turn signals burns out often.

Check engine light goes on and off for no reason.

Brakes tend to squeal for the first few kilometers while driving.

Water leaks into the trunk.

General Comments:

This car is comfortable. There is lots of interior space.

The cup holders are located below the ash tray and air controls, making it difficult to fit cups and even more difficult to remove them without spilling my drink.

Plenty of trunk space.

The overall quality and performance is disappointing.

Because of this car I have very close relationship with my mechanic.

Many of the required repairs have had mysterious causes despite 2nd and 3rd estimates by different mechanics.

I have put so much money in repairs into this car that soon I will have almost bought it twice!

I would not recomend a Dodge Neon, nor will purchase another as my second car.

When I exit the car the door release handle sometimes sticks so when I shut the door it bounces open again.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 12th November, 2004

1996 Dodge Neon from North America


The Monet of Cars: Pretty and Smooth, but a big mess when you get it


Gasket cover went out and leaked, causing me to also replace the spark plugs and wires at 95,000 miles.

Water pump, timer belt, and valve covers broke at 102,000 miles.

Paint is peeling at certain spots.

General Comments:

As a poor college student, I was happy that this car was in my price range. It test drove smoothly and looked just as smooth. However, I had it 2 months and the gasket covers leaked, causing me to have to replace the spark plugs and wires. It drove very well until one day, it broke down on the side of the road. The cause was a busted water pump, which leaked onto the timer chain. The broken timer chain broke the valve covers. Now, it's almost time for school and I may not be able to go back because the car is out if commission. Luckily, I have a warranty, and it's only costing me $100 to fix.

However, I've only had this car for six months and have taken good care of it. It scares me to think of what will happen when the warranty runs out in February.

On the plus side, it's awesome on gas and comfortable to drive. I'm hoping the problems end soon.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 14th August, 2004

15th Aug 2004, 06:58

Neons don't have a timing chain. They have a timing belt. A water pump that's let go normally should not damage the timing belt, as the belt is covered from the outside.

2nd Feb 2005, 09:56

This is my first year in college and I am going to get a Dodge Neon from a dealership. The only problem is, he said he just got the car in stock and can't really tell me what wrong with it (of course its used). It's a 96, and the miles are 108,000. now I don't know a lot about cars, but I know the less miles, the better. All I've been reading is about the gasket. When I test drive and take the car to a mechanic, I will be sure to tell him about the Gasket and the Timing Belt or chain. Whatever.

31st Mar 2005, 01:34

I bought my 96 neon in October 2003, had 87,000km and 2 previous owners. I had just had my car (Honda) stolen so needed a cheap car fast, ideally low km's and good gas mileage. I've been very pleased as it was only $4200 and I think it's been fairly good so far.

Problems I have had:

- very squeaky brakes, had them checked and was told they were fine, but pads orig. installed were very cheap, finally had them replaced this past Dec., and the squeaking has returned!

- oil leak had it diagnosed rear main seal, was told not serious and to wait it out, as very expensive to fix. Heard these cars are notorious for oil leaks. So far OK, replacing oil on long drives at times.

- replacing timing belt tomorrow at 103,000 km's as well as the water pump as was recom. by the mechanic.

So far so good.

16th Apr 2005, 19:14

When you get new brakes, no matter how old or new the car is, they are known to squeak or squeal at times. It is normal for that to happen, because they are being "worn in." As my mother works in an auto body shop, she has told me time and time again that the reason brakes make noise is because they're working, especially when they're new. You can tell when they aren't working - something just doesn't feel right. As for the timing belt and etc., it is normal to get them replaced after 100,000 miles in almost any car. It's not just Neons, it's many other cars as well. I have owned a few cars, and this has happened with all of them. It's just not my luck, everyone takes the chance with buying a car that's rolling over.