1989 Pontiac Bonneville LE 3.8 from North America
More reliable than a Volvo
The speedometer and odometer only work about half the time. I don't mind: it's less distracting.
It's been repainted.
Some rust around the edges.
The passenger power window became untracked once. I got a new plastic clip from a GM dealer, and it now sorta works.
I replaced the rusted out radiator (don't use tap water) with a still-new-looking one from a newer similar car in a junkyard.
It leaked some oil from the intake manifold, but stopped since I've used high-mileage oil.
The odometer reads 250,000 km (150,000 miles), but it only rolls half the time.
I've driven this car almost every day, summer and winter, for the last three years. The only thing I've had to change is a battery, radiator, and brake pads.
Parts are cheap and plentiful from the junkyard.
Passengers ride in comfort. It's roomy. It has lots of power AND gets great gas mileage. It's very aerodynamic.
It's 22 years old. The interior still looks like new! The AC blows cold! It handles tight! I'm glad I got this car instead of the Volvos I was considering.
I upgraded the ignition coil pack to one from the next-generation 3800. Ten bucks, two bolts, ten minutes, and now I get more power.
This was my first car and it showed me how reliable cars should be if you maintain them.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 8th May, 2011
8th May 2011, 23:13
Volvos do not have a great repair record. I dislike Swedish cars because they are harder to maintain and less reliable right from the get-go. The Bonneville is a better car, largely because parts are cheaper and they are less complex. Once a Volvo develops a problem, you either need a lot of money saved up to fix it, or prepare to start riding a bus. My mom has a Volvo. It's falling to crap mechanically. The Saab my dad had was high maintenance and unsettling to drive. Money pits they are, and resale value is terrible. Pontiacs don't have the image of sophistication or upscale coolness as a Volvo, but at least it's cheaper to keep one driving.