1994 Pontiac Grand Am SE 3.1L V6 from North America

Summary:

Reliable college car with a great look

Faults:

Replaced alternator at 41,000m.

General Comments:

I love my car. I bought this car in 2002 with just over 37K miles on it. It has great pickup for a small coupe with little torque. My Grand AM is very reliable, and I get a lot of compliments. 15" alloy American Racing rims (not gaudy!, and 60 series Goodyear tires really helped the car look sporty, and made the tires sit further out--the factory spoked wheel covers make the 94 look like my grandma should be driving it. One this I would like to do is add a sunroof. The paint is still glossy, even though I do not garage the car.

Really my only complaint would have to be that EVERYTHING in the cabin rattles!

I have put just over 20,000 miles on my Grand AM since 2002, and I hope to have this car until I graduate college.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th August, 2004

27th Jan 2005, 08:58

I have a 1994 Grand Am also and it's funny because if I were to write a review about mine, it would say the same as yours, glossy paint (not garage, mine is black), Goodyear sporty tires, rims (not wheel covers), and I've had no problems with it. My only complaint would be that EVERYTHING in the cabin rattles, just like you said, but the radio blocks that out most of the time. Some days the rattles are so light, I can't hear them, then some days it sounds like the dash is going to rattle right off the car. Oh well, I love my car anyway. As long as I have a radio.

1994 Pontiac Grand Am GT 180 BHP HO Quad 4 from North America

Summary:

Nice performance coup for a little too much money

Faults:

Steering Rack assembly replaced. This put the car in the shop for 2 days and cost $350. From research done on early 90's Grand Ams, it seems that this is a very common problem driving in cold climates (mine went out in January in PA).

Both driver side and passenger side windows have fallen off track. I have remedied this once and within six months they were off again so I've decided not to bother with them.

Electrical problems have resulted in the driver's side parking and turn signal lights to stop functioning as well as the turn signal light in the dash to remain lit.

Was recently involved in a hit and run accident that resulted in the need to replace my rear bumper and exhaust from the catalytic converter back. Although the piping was cheap, each muffler was $180. Total cost to repair the exhaust was over $400 with the cheapest parts available.

All of the seat adjustment controls for the driver and passenger seats no longer work.

Gear shift linkage broke at 128K miles, which is apparently common on 5 speeds. Total cost of repair was $400.

General Comments:

The 2.3L HO (High Output) Quad4 pumps out 180 HP which helps give the GT better than average acceleration for its class. The automatic comes with a standard Quad4 at approx 140 HP and feels anemic. The V6, which only comes in an automatic configuration and has more bottom end power, but is actually overpowered in the top end by the HOQ4.

The handling is OK. Most people would consider it better than average, but the weight of the car makes it feel somewhat sluggish. Compared to my last two vehicles (a 94 Saturn SC2 and a 84 Porsche 924S, both of which cost less for initial purchase and repairs needed) this feels like I'm driving a mini-van instead of a sports coupe.

The interior, although somewhat drab, is roomy with exceptionally comfortable seats. Numerous storage compartments in the "cockpit" allow for easy storage of nearly any small item. The largest complaint about the interior is the combination ashtray/cupholder which is located in an awkward position (directly in front of shifter & below HVAC controls).

Overall, the GT (HO Quad4) is a nice car. The only problem is the blue book values on them are quite high (good for resale, bad for initial purchase) and the repair costs will make you wonder why you pay more for repairs than you did for the car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 22nd July, 2004