1997 Geo Metro LSi 1.3 four cylinder from North America


The car has proven to be quite solid and a good value


The air conditioning/heating system in the car has been a minor annoyance. While it has not yet quit entirely, it appears that a contact in the switch is going bad, because I have to jiggle the switch to make the blower come on.

The only other money I have spent on the car has been regular maintenance--tires, exhaust, brakes, etc. I think the rotors may be on the weak side, because mine always seem to be a little warped (pulsing is felt in the brake pedal).

General Comments:

My previous car was a modified 1977 Chevy Camaro that was powered by a 350 horsepower V8. The Metro quite a change, but I have not regretted purchasing the car. It has been incredibly reliable--I have been stranded only once in three years of ownership, and it was my own fault. The battery was going bad and I ignored the problem until it was too late.

The car is not powerful, but the four cylinder model makes sufficient power to merge with traffic safely (I suspect that the smaller three cylinder engine would not make adequate power to safely merge in interstate traffic).

The cabin is almost entirely windows (mine is a hatchback model), and there is no discernable blind spot.

The Metro handles surprisingly well, and it's roadholding ability in winter driving conditions has pleasantly surprised me.

Creature comforts are lacking, although what do you expect in a Metro? There are no power locks, windows, or power steering. My only complaint here is that the seats are not comfortable for longer drives. I wouldn't recommend planning to take it on a five hour trip; I did this once and could barely walk when I arrived at my destination.

With a tailwind the car once gave me 40mpg on the highway, although I seem to average between 33 and 37 miles per gallon on the highway and 29-33 in town.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th August, 2002

19th Feb 2004, 00:53

I'm glad someone finally mentioned the visibility from the cockpit. Having no blind spots is a big deal in a car this size.

Although the automatics don't get near the gas mileage, they tend to wear better than the manuals on the four cylinder engine.

The a/c malfunction is probably a loose connection. I think it takes all of four screws to take the switch out of the panel and check the lead wires.

And since your warranty is definitely expired by now, you can do it yourself. Don't worry, though. Nothing is hard to get to in these cars (with the exception of the water pump and the constant velocity joints).

11th Jul 2005, 21:42

As written in another review or two, apparently that ac blower switch is THE most common replacement that GM has had to consistently offer for the GEO. Just thought you'd like to know.

1997 Geo Metro 1.0 from North America


Excluding the A.C. it is a great car


At about 3000 miles the A.C. quit.

At about 10,000 miles the A.C. quit.

At about 15,000 miles the fuel pump went out.

At 29,800 miles the A.C. quit.

General Comments:

Just to let out my frustration I have to let you know what General Motors has done to me. I bought a new Geo Metro in November of 1997. In the spring of 1998 I turned on the air conditioner and didn't like the performance. I called the chevy garage to see about changing the freon from r134 to r12 they told me that I should not be able to tell the difference. I took it in to La Riche Chevy Cadillac in Findlay to have it checked out. They told me the Freon was low and refilled it (under warranty). The next summer again bad air conditioning. This time I took it to McDaniel Chevy here in Marion. Answer was it's just low and it was refilled and I was on my way again (under warranty). In 2000 the same thing. Last week I took it to McDainel motors again and this times the warranty is up and the extended warranty takes over what a joke, but that's another story. Well since the warranty is over this time they take the time to install dye to the air conditioner to find the leak. Guess what? They find the leak and it will cost $438.00 to fix. (Extended warranty does not cover it)

My guess for the rip-off is this.

The freon cost about $10.00 per pound (r134)

The cost of the dye is about $7.00

My car holds 1.3 pounds of Freon.

When I do the math I get this answer.

1998 Car is under warranty just spend the $13.00 and send it down the road and don't try to find the leak.

1999 Car is under warranty just spend the $13.00 and send it down the road and don't try to find the leak.

2002 Car is not under warranty spend the $7.00 to find the leak and charge the guy $438.00 to fix something we should have fixed twice before, but did not want to spend the $7.00 for fear of what we might find and have to fix. If you own a chevy beware of the warranty.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 30th June, 2002

17th Sep 2002, 16:03

Steve I just wanted to say I had the exact same problem with my 1997 geo, but the only thing they could never find the falt. It is not working at all now.

20th Jul 2004, 18:02

I have a 96 Metro 4 cylinder. I have had the problem as you have had and the dealer did the dye the second time I presented the car under warranty. No leak was obvious. The fact remained that I needed to recharge the system every season. I do it myself for about 4 Dollars. I suspect the leak is in the coil in the dash. and the leak is small enough that the dye molecules don't pass out, but the freon molecules, which are smaller do pass. Small inconvenience in the long run. They are great inexpensive transports. a friend has one with over 200,000 miles and he loves it. Mine is over 9 years old and has 39,000 miles and I am not complaining. I just bought an 04 Mustang convertible, and I still drive the metro more. What can I say... I am am weird!

11th Oct 2005, 13:16

Try using a newer product on the market to replace the r134a with.

Do a goggle search of Duracool. It is a neat product and they have several flavours to use to weed out minor problems when switching a system over.

They have products that can fix minor leaks.

This stuff they sell is DIY so if you lose refrigerant, you can top up with duracool at a much lower price and as a bonus it cools much better than r134a.

1st Oct 2009, 20:01

Ah come on guys..

With what you paid for these things you certainly did get your money's worth.

I have 5 of em.

Used to own POS Ford Taurus and Windstar of the same vintage.

Believe me you don't know half the problems these Fords cause.

Even when they are fixed, they don't stay that way for long.

I don't like getting less than 60 to 80 K out of my vehicles, but the Metro/Swift/Firefly all got upwards near 250k mileage without any real major repairs and stay fixed once repaired for a long time.

I'll take that any day over a Ford.