1993 Pontiac Sunbird LE 122 cid 4, 100 hp from North America


A steaming pile of ordure, but reliable


There have been no mechanical or electrical failures during my ownership of this car.

General Comments:

Where to start, where to start...

It's dog slow on the highway. I know that a car that's near the end of the line won't be especially quick, but a maximum speed of 78 miles per hour is totally ridiculous.

Second, it rides like some form of buckboard. The suspension is not only unable to absorb small bumps without upsetting the car, but it bottoms out on anything much bigger than a cigarette butt.

Third, it handles like a derailed locomotive. The limits are very low, very poorly marked, and exceeding them leads to truly terminal understeer. Of course, a discussion of the handling cannot be complete without a description of the steering. At parking-lot speeds it manages to be both slow and heavy. As speed increases, the power steering kicks in and deprives you of what little handling precision you had. During cornering, the fuel sloshes round the tank... away from the fuel pump.

The car was not screwed-together well. There are fewer components that aren't rattling than those that are.

The interior is ergonomically disastrous. To turn the lights on, you hit a switch on the left side of the instrument panel. To switch between low and high beams, you pull a stalk on the steering column. The steering wheel is gigantic and blocks your view of every gauge aside from the speedometer, unless you either raise or lower it, in which case it blocks your view of the speedometer. The seats are all very uncomfortable and the seatbelts are twisted.

It seems that the car was designed by someone other than an engineer. The leading-arm suspension in the rear is a sad-sack example of where GM went wrong; there are literally dozens of items that five bucks more per car spent at the factory would provide massive improvements in the driving experience. A small sedan with a curb weight of 3200 lbs indicates a complete failure on the part of the design staff.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 16th June, 2003

26th Feb 2004, 15:16

It sure is too bad that you have had such bad luck with your 'bird! I myself own a 1993 sunbird and I am overjoyed with it. I paid 250 for it and it didn't run at the time so I replaced the head gasket and I had a decently running car for under 500. I keep it maintained and she treats me well. I don't think it is underpowered of too heavy as you say. the only problem I have with mine is the rust on the doors and various spots on the car, but I don't regret buying one in the first place!

1993 Pontiac Sunbird LE 2.0 Overhead Cam from North America


A great deal for less than a grand


It had a not-so-healthy "tick" noise in the engine when I bought it, so I replaced the camshaft, lifters and rocker arms myself, fixed the problem.

The driver's seat rocks back and forth, needs a little bearing replaced.

The engine mounts are soft therefore the engine rocks a little.

General Comments:

Despite the high mileage, this car still performs really well.

It gives about 35 miles per gallon on the highway and roughly 23 in the city.

It's odd radio setup makes it rather difficult to place an aftermarket stereo in it, but it can be done with patience and creativity.

I paid 800 dollars for this car and it was originally from Alberta.

The body is in excellent shape.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th June, 2003

1993 Pontiac Sunbird SE 2.0 Gasoline from North America


Wonderful, economic, sharp looking cruiser!


The hydraulic valve compensators were stuck.

Needed new rocker arms because of stuck compensators.

Needed a new alternator.

Needed a new convertible top.

General Comments:

This is the first convertible I have ever owned and I have to say that I couldn't have picked a better one!

This is a very comfortable car to drive.

Though not meant to be a real performer, it is probably the best cruising car I have ever owned.

Fuel mileage is around 35 MPG.

The 2 liter engine is just adequate to power the car, but the pseudo 4th gear tends to engage too soon causing a lugging feeling.

Thankfully the engine is very similar to my old Le Mans' 1.6 liter engine to the point of sharing valve train components that it was easily repaired with spare parts from that one.

I absolutely love the ABS braking system. It's very crisp and accurate.

Steering is tight and positive.

The "sprung in the middle" ride of a convertible takes some getting used to.

Putting a new convertible top on it soon.

This costs about $930.00 U.S. but will be worth the investment as I plan to keep the car a long time.

This should prove to be a reliable, smooth running car for many years.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th June, 2003

16th Mar 2005, 19:28

OK first of all unless I'm wrong the sunbird only came with 3 gears.

21st Apr 2009, 20:02

The 5 speed makes a huge diff in these cars when they have a 2.0 engine.