19th Dec 2002, 11:08

The 2.0 sunbird engines, whether it be turbo or not, will have problems with the rod and main bearings going out if not maintained well. These cars could actually benefit from a higher flow oil pump.

As far as the other parts on the bottom end, that's unusual. I know people who are running turbos twice as big as stock, 22lbs of boost (Stock is a true 8-10lbs, depending on weather.), on a otherwise stock engine, and they are holding up fine.

When it comes to all the other little odds and ends, that's just the bad part about owning a 12 year old car that most likely has around 170,000 miles on it.

18th May 2003, 23:23

What is the problem with the 2.0? Why is there bottom end and rod trouble with this engine? Is it a ware and tare problem, or is it a design flaw? I know of two engines with holes in their blocks. Both are the number two rod. I've work on them and I've made up my mind what to do.

25th Aug 2004, 23:24

I Believe the original writer of the review, was talking about a 3.1L MPFI V6 engine, only to be found in a sunbird GT. Speaking of sunbirds, their not bad little cars to bomb around in, but nothing to spend money on. I owned too, a 1989 and 1990 both reliable with the same engines. the 1990 was more reliable, seeing how it was 1 owner, and the 1989 being 8 including me! Of course I didn't know. I ended up requiring to sell both. the 1989 gave to my sister and she put about 40,000km trouble free for 2 years and finally things started to break including the HEAD GASKET!! too big of a job for me too do so sold it and it still ran even though really rough. glad I got rid of it for $500.00 even though it was worth it, it still needed lots of work. So ill recommend the sunbird, but not for me again, I've had enough, as for the original writer, your right, these cars look great, but can have their cons just like any other car. Anybody even loose lots of coolant, and could never find the problem??? I'm still trying to think that over, but since I don't have the cars anymore... I'm curious.

14th Mar 2005, 21:47

Well, I've got over 140,000 miles on my '92 Sunbird convertible. It's still going strong. Some of the other writers are correct about maintenance and a heavy foot. Mine is not turbocharged, but it is still pretty quick for a 122 CI engine. The car is utterly reliable, the few problems I've had have never left me on the side of the road. My coolant leak problems were finally traced to the flange that the thermostat housing bolts to, it cracked across one of the bolt holes and had to be replaced (I'm taking care of that now). It is a high-mileage issue that most cars will see when they get to this point in one way or another. This car gets an average of 30 mpg on regular gas, is nimble enough to be fun and looks very racy, especially with the top down. I have no intentions of ever getting rid of it, and to that end have acquired a new crate motor for the day that the original finally just wears out. I am obviously prejudiced to liking this car, but I think it looks better than the Sunfires do. It will remain to be seen if the newer J-bodies can hold up as well.

22nd Nov 2006, 18:35

I have a 1989 Sunbird 2.0 OHC Turbo. I noticed a ticking sound about a week ago. The sound gets faster as you speed up the rpm. The tick has now been replaced by a loud knocking sound from the bottom end somewhere. Does anyone know what this could be?

16th May 2009, 22:15

That noise your hearing is most likely your bottem end bearing that is blown will need to fix that right away!

8th Jul 2009, 21:34

Hey, I've got an 88 Sunbird with 130,000 original km. I know the original owner and it was absolutely babied. This week the car just dumped all of its coolant all over the driveway after a ride home from work. The problem can't be traced, but seems to be coming from a transfer tube that runs under the intake plenum. It's a turbo by the way. Anyone ever come across such an issue? We're currently in the process of ripping apart the top end to get a good look at this tube.

Any tips or ideas are really appreciated.