1989 Dodge Spirit LE 2.5L base from North America


Comfortable, economical, and reliable


Power steering rack blew a seal at 55K miles.

I had the water pump, which was just starting to "weep," replaced at 45K miles, in conjunction with preventive maintenance replacement of the timing belt.

Brake calipers and slave cylinders had to be rebuilt at 50K miles.

General Comments:

Had it not been severely damaged in a collision, I would still be driving it. The car consistently drew favorable comments from friends, coworkers, and family members. I replaced it with a 4-cylinder 2003 Stratus SXT, which offers more power and somewhat crisper handling, but which lacks the Spirit's full instrumentation and full opening of the rear windows.

I selected the Spirit partly to accommodate the two six-footers in my 4-man carpool, and partly because I already owned a 1988 Aries K wagon (which is still running strong for my in-laws) and liked the idea of having two cars with virtually identical power trains.

Routine maintenance was always a pleasure, with everything in plain view and readily accessible.

The base 4-cylinder engine provided barely adequate performance, but compensated in fuel economy and reliability.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th April, 2003

1989 Dodge Spirit ES 3.0 from North America


Versatile, family-oriented, but just a little sporty


I have had absolutely no problems with this car.

General Comments:

I would recommend a Dodge Spirit to anyone looking for a good, reliable car. My sister also owned an '89 Spirit ES and it too was very dependable and a pleasure to drive.

Operating costs are very cheap for this car. It has a trip computer in the dash to calculate fuel economy. Even though the car is a V6 engine and has 160,000 miles on it, I get an average of 35mpg on a long trip.

There are a lot of nice convenience features. The rear seats fold down. There are cup-holders in the back.

Although a little narrow, due to the fact that this is a smaller sedan, the rear seat has a lot of leg room. Even tall passengers are comfortable on long drives.

All Spirit ES models have the same grey interior. It is quite tasteful and the seats are comfortable. Although it is now 14 years old, the interior still looks as though it is hardly broke in and the seats are very supportive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd March, 2003

21st Feb 2005, 15:27

I love my 1989 Dodge Spirit ES. I bought it from a auction, and I am more prouder today (about the car) than I was the day I bought. I am currently replacing the engine and couldn't imagine having any other car other than my Dodge. I was hoping to get another one (only in the 1990 model). For the price, and service, I recommend it for other people that need a good (and attractive) car. Daniel Atkins (Temple Hills, MD)

1989 Dodge Spirit LE 2.5 EFI from North America


Very fast and nimble


Cracked head at 210,000 miles.

Clutch went out at 190,000 miles.

Brakes replaced at 160,000 miles.

General Comments:

Having the 5 speed makes this car very fast, i have raced and won against Honda's, Mazda's, and many other cars and have done well.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 2003

1989 Dodge Spirit ES 2.2 turbo from North America


A great car to own


Engine began knocking, connecting rod pin is loose, 180000.

General Comments:

Of all cars owned by my family, my father talks best of this car.

Very impressive family car, sleeper sports car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th April, 2002

15th Nov 2002, 16:55

The 89 spirit es with the turbo 4 cylinder - that was not a 2.2, it was the later version of the turbo I setup which used the long stroke 2.5L version of the 2.2, the 2.5 turbo I replaced the 2.2 version in 89. The turbo II, III and IV (VNT) only came on the 2.2 block.

7th Sep 2004, 00:10

I think it is a comfortable four door. It has the power of a sports car and the interior of a luxury car. Mine has 155,657 miles on it, and it still runs as good as the day I bought it.

13th Mar 2005, 17:28

I bought my Spirit ES new in 1989 and just traded it for an Intrepid last year. I replaced the transmission on it at 226,000 miles and replaced the water pump at 298,000. Other than that, there were some minor repairs that I would have expected to do on any car. My car had the 3.3l V6 and was still going strong at 335,000 when I traded it - and still got $500 for it. My father drove a 1988 Grand Caravan with the same motor - traded it with 285,000 miles.

Very reliable car! I've heard horror stories about the Intrepid, but mine has shown no signs of trouble.