10th Apr 2006, 16:58

Oh, we know what we're talking about. Neons have always been poorly designed and built cars. Low residuals don't deter people from buying them because they're so cheap to begin with. I'd never buy one.

10th Apr 2006, 17:12

Even the Neon replacement the Dodge Caliber is crap.

Just read the auto reviews.

And it speaks volumes of Dodge's concern for their customers. The base Caliber has an air conditioned glovebox and fold out rear speakers (for tailgate parties) as standard, but NOT ABS. Better to look good than avoid an accident I guess.

Then there are the mediocre engines. No wonder it placed 6th out of 7 contenders in a Car and Driver shootout.

11th Apr 2006, 12:25

Re: Dodge Caliber

Come on, doesn't 148 horsepower make your blood boil?

That AC glovebox seems like just another option that will be used by 5% of owners. Have we learned nothing from the Pontiac Aztek?!? (But you can fit a stove in it!Perfect for fall weekends spent purchasing appliances!)

11th Apr 2006, 15:23

Honestly the 148 hp is in line with its competition. Trouble is, the Caliber is grossly overweight and that eliminates any possible "fun" from the engine.

25th Jul 2006, 13:31

I own a 1995 dodge neon, and I must tell you I have never had the problems that I have read about today, But then again I bring my vehicle in for regular services. As a proud American I can honestly say I would defiantly buy another American car...1995 neon 146k a still runs great.

26th Jul 2006, 20:20

"I had one of my spark plugs blow completely and because of that happening so many times it stripped the coils and ruined my engine."

This statement makes absolutely no sense. I'm sure they believe this is what happened, but having a "blown spark plug" and a "stripped coil" is like having a bad muffler bearing or defective radiator clutch. It's nonsense, and if somebody told them this is why their car needed repair, they were being ripped off.

Regarding the Caliber, I like the look of it a lot more than its contemporaries like the Pontiac Vibe or Ford Focus, and particularly like the 26 mpg city/30 mpg highway rating. Even though the drink cooler in the glove box is kind of gimmicky, I could envision it being something you'd use more often than you thought you would. I would be interested enough to at least test drive one.

27th Jul 2006, 22:56

Come on, car and driver magazines are so biased towards Japanese imports. Sure the Fit is a cool car, and so is the Micra, but really, they don't do long term testing (200K) on cars. And really, that's the part that counts to me and a lot of others. Maybe you guys have a trick for these cars, but seriously, every import I've owned doesn't hold up nearly as well as my American cars. The imports are cooler looking and are more fun, but when it comes to durability, 4 Fords in the household (1 of them at 330K miles and the other at 230K) original drivetrain, American wins hands down.

Sorry, but I hate most import cars. Especially the Civic. I've had three, and I'm never going back. 3 of my last 4 cars have been American, and I'm sticking to them. (Ford, Ford, Dodge)

Anyway about Dodge now, I'd never actually want to drive a Caliber because I think it's dang ugly, but the Neon I'm considering purchasing in a couple years. I especially like the first generation because of the gas mileage, reliability (SOHC with 5 spd), and the fact that it's got guts for being a small car. 138 hp is a lot for a stock compact. I think Dodge got the Neon right. There are still a lot of them on the road today.

28th Jul 2006, 21:29

To the guy above amen. We tried our hands with the imports and they either died young (less than 150,000) or went to 200,000 but with a TON OF MONEY being spent in them to keep them up. Right now we are trying to sell our last Import, but no one will buy it. So we're just getting rid of it.

Now then, onto the Neon. We have 2 of them. Both at 1995, and one is a Dodge Neon Sport auto, and the other is a Plymouth Neon Highline 5-spd. They have been great - both have way over 200,000 and have held up great.

The Plymouth has over 235,xxx miles on it and is still going strong, and it's not even burning oil yet.

The Sport has 205,xxx and is still going strong.

Neons just need be maintained.

We are sticking with our American Dodges and we will never go back to those craports...

19th Mar 2007, 14:47

I had a 2000 Neon LE, and I drove it for 30k kilometers and except two end tie rods replaced plus the rear brake shoes no other problems. I sold it at 92k just because my wife (the main driver) wanted an upgraded version so I bought an 2000 Neon LX. with 82k on it. Now, after three years and 73k put on it, still running strong. The only 'major' fault was the transmission cooler (replaced by myself - spent 250 CAD) and the same two tie rods plus two stabiliser bar bushings (200 CAD labour included plus 100 CAD wheels alignment at Midas). My point is that for the money spent for it, it was one of the best investments. I replaced the break shoes for both cars because in the first moments of driving in humid conditions, they were squealing. But even now, it can 'smoke' any stock japanese equivalent (and of course is looking better). I will keep it for more years too come. It worth it.

19th Mar 2007, 14:58

To the guy with the stripped plug.

Go to a hardware store and buy a helicoil kit.

Follow the directions.

If that does not work consider tapping the hole for a larger diameter plug that has the same power rating, talk to the people at your hardware store. find a plug that has a larger diameter on the thread side and get a tap to match. as long as the distance from the tip of the plug to the end of the threads is the same you should be OK.

Keep on driving.

19th Mar 2007, 15:37

"2000 plymouth neon. stripped spark plug... what to do now."

Have a machine shop drill out the stripped threads and install a Heli-coil for the spark plug to seat into. Aluminum heads of all models are notorious for having stripped spark plugs threads. Never remove or install spark plugs on an aluminum head when the engine is still warm. Tighten only to the recommended torque given in a shop manual, never overtighten.

20th Mar 2007, 08:01

It's sad to hear about peoples misfortunes like this, but I'm quite sure that this car was not properly maintained. When the spark plug pops like this it's because of incompetence of the previous owner either over tightening or aligning it wrong. The threads does not just loosens like that.

Regarding the failing tops, and the other problems you've had it sounds like your car dealer is not up to standard. This comes from a man that's run a Neon for more than 142,000 miles with practically no problems. I've done all my own maintenance and these cars are extremely well built, I really can't point out a single design flaw in it's construction. It's still very rattle free and tight, even if it's more than a decade old.

9th Oct 2009, 12:54

You stripped the spark plug huh. Sounds to me like someone don't know how to line things up.

9th Oct 2009, 16:13

Mine is now about 15 years old. It has 83,000 miles. It squeaks, rattles and shakes. I've replaced nearly every part it has. Heck, even my frame has begun to sag slightly under its own weight. Dodge FAILED at beating the imports with this one. And BADLY.