By on March 12, 2018

1976 Chevrolet Chevette Scooter in Colorado wrecking yard, LH front view - ©2018 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThe Chevrolet Chevette was a primitive, cramped, rear-wheel-drive econobox hammered together with obsolete technology… that sold like crazy because it was simple and cheap at a time when stagflation and gas prices were up and confidence in the future was down.

The Chevette Scooter was the most affordable Chevette; here’s one that managed to evade The Crusher‘s jaws until age 42, finally ending its days in a snow-covered Denver self-service yard.

1976 Chevrolet Chevette Scooter in Colorado wrecking yard, interior- ©2018 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsI have photographed quite a few junkyard Chevettes in recent years, including this ’77, this ’79, this optioned-up ’79, this ’80, this ’80, this ’82, this diesel-engined ’84 (yes, there was a Diesel Chevette, and yes, it was as slow as you’d imagine), this Chevette-sibling ’86 Pontiac 1000, this matching Chevette Scooter/Pontiac T1000 combo, and this bunch-O-Chevettes near Pikes Peak. Today’s is the first discarded Scooter I have seen since 2010; the extra-cheapo Chevette trim level was discontinued after 1984 and most of these cars got crushed before 1990.

1976 Chevrolet Chevette Scooter in Colorado wrecking yard, fender badge - ©2018 Murilee Martin - The Truth About Cars1976 was the first model year for the Chevette, which — believe it or not — continued in production all the way through 1987. A new ’76 Scooter listed for $2,899, or around $13,000 in inflation-adjusted 2018 dollars. With the Scooter, you got extremely basic transportation and no more: 52-horsepower Isuzu engine, four-speed manual transmission, no back seat, no radio, no frills of any sort. Miserable as today’s $13k cars are, they’re like starships next to the Chevette Scooter.

1976 Chevrolet Chevette Scooter in Colorado wrecking yard, Boise Air Terminal parking sticker - ©2018 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsThis one appears to have spent some time in Boise during the 1980s.

1976 Chevrolet Chevette Scooter in Colorado wrecking yard, engine - ©2018 Murilee Martin - The Truth About CarsYou could get a new (non-CVCC) Honda Civic for $2,729 in 1976, and you’d get a car that was superior to the Scooter in nearly every respect (as long as you didn’t live in a rust-prone region, in which case the Civic would be a heap of red powder with some glass and rubber parts scattered around within five years).


Tall people and German shepherds fit just fine.

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

Recommended

63 Comments on “Junkyard Find: 1976 Chevrolet Chevette Scooter...”


  • avatar
    Big3trucks

    I’m way too young to have experienced cars like this, and I’m definitely not complaining.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      Be glad too. These were the hot boxes and vinyl seats that I wish no summertime heat on no one.

      • 0 avatar
        Southern Perspective

        I remember these Chevettes. I drove one once, all the charming sonorous tones of a threshing machine, rode like a buckboard, handled like a stone, and as I recall, didn’t necessarily get good fuel economy if you really had to drive it somewhere.

        Mr. Martin is correct “Miserable as today’s $13k cars are, they’re like starships next to the Chevette Scooter.”

        GM was really ripping folks off with these sheet boxes, and great hordes swept into Chevrolet dealers to snap them up.

        Malaise era indeed.

  • avatar
    Dutcowski

    Utterly treacherous in the snow my Chevette was the only car I ever spun 360 on a snow-covered ramp. Luckily nothing got hit.

    It had the worst automatic choke. The sensor that controlled the THERMAC flap on the exhaust heat stove would stick and strangle the carb. It took a while for dealerships to become wise to the issue.

    I recall fairly comfortable front seats if cheaply upholstered in sweaty vinyl.

    A Tercel, Golf or Civic would have a marginally more expensive but much better choice.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      My 1979 Coupe is thr ingredients of what kids in video games pine for today. I had a pair of studded snow tires for the rear, and along with about 100 lbs block of steel in the trunk, I was always the one that had to drive when it wss wintry.

      • 0 avatar
        rpn453

        Any winter issues were probably the result of bad tires. These didn’t have enough power to get anybody into trouble if you had reasonable traction. Fun car for Western Canadian high school kids throughout the ’80’s and ’90’s.

        Mine had studded winter tires on the rear only, as was the style at the time. I had a few of those common black sand bags in the back.

  • avatar
    BillSellwood

    According to the Click & Clack bros, the engines in the bulk of the models were pretty reliable, coming from GM of Europe, and thus kept a lot of bad cars on the road longer than they otherwise would have. Another factor: replacement parts were dirt cheap.

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      I have a major soft spot for Chevettes, they are remarkably similar to old Ladas in their basic layout (simple and rugged RWD compact). There was nothing really bad about them in a reliability sense, like you said the motors were durable, likewise transmissions. Not enough weight or power to really stress any components, and they were basic enough that there wasn’t much to break in the first place.

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    My roommate in college had a Chevette. One winter night we decided to take the highway to “the big city”. On the way back he managed to lose control of the car – bad driver + a few drinks – and we ended up spinning out, and getting stuck in a drift of snow. Luckily some stranger in a 4X4 truck hooked us up to some chains and yanked us out – with me driving since my friend was too shook up (blotto?) after losing control.

    Another college memory, back when I was driving a 1987 Nissan Stanza hand-me-down, I had a fellow in a Pontiac T1000 try to race me from a stoplight. Battle of the underpowered vehicles! Needless to say the “mighty” 2.0L in the Nissan managed to overcome.

  • avatar
    FalcoDog

    0 to 60 in 19.6 seconds
    1/4 mile in 20.0 seconds

    Let that sink in for a minute.

  • avatar
    Sub-600

    1976: Bicentennial Minutes, Bruce Jenner, Jimma Carter, and Chevettes. Malaise.

    • 0 avatar
      dukeisduke

      Don’t forget high jumper Dwight Stones, first insulting French Canadians, then wearing a t-shirt that said, “I LOVE FRENCH CANADIANS”. Ah, good times.

      • 0 avatar
        Sub-600

        Thanks a lot, I’d forgotten that goof. He was a chicken-lipped clown with a stupid haircut who was partial to Mickey Mouse. I remember that row over his Canadian remarks. He was perfect for 1976, not my favorite year.

  • avatar
    Flipper35

    A friend of mine always told the girls that he had a ‘vette.

  • avatar
    Aron9000

    As awful as the Chevette was, at least it was fairly reliable. There were worse things you could buy back then

    Dodge Aspen/Plymouth Volare(IMO the reason Chrysler had to be bailed out), Chevy Citation and the Buick/Olds/Pontiac version, Ford Granada(okay I just hate that car for pretending to be stylish)

    • 0 avatar

      My parents had a ’78 Aspen wagon growing up (white with fake woodgrain and burn-your-legs-in-shorts vinyl seats). It was fine mechanically, although my dad used to joke that the panel gaps were so big you could reach through them to unlock the door.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      I share your Granada-hate. Spending more for a tarted up Fairmont. Why?

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        Actually, the Granada was a tarted up Maverick, which was a tarted up Falcon. Truly archaic platform compared to the Nova. That said, Ford sold a ton of Granadas, if only because they tremendously resembled the LTD in style and available options. The Granada was also much more reasonably sized as opposed to the big boats of the time.

        The Fairmont with the newly developed Fox chassis was light years more advanced.

        • 0 avatar
          JimC2

          “The Fairmont with the newly developed Fox chassis was light years more advanced.”

          I read that with a chuckle. It could also be said that the Fairmont’s electrical system and its factory rustproofing were light years more advanced than the Maverick.

    • 0 avatar
      RHD

      The Citation and its sister X-cars were first available in ’79, as the “First Chevy of the Eighties!”, as if that were going to be a good thing.
      Close enough to ’76, though. It all kind of runs together since it’s now so long ago.

    • 0 avatar
      countymountie

      My first car was a death trap 76 Chevette in 1993. What do you expect for $350? Dad taught me how to drive a manual in that car. I can still remember his screaming. As a passenger, I put my foot right through the rusted floorboard and Colorado is not rust prone country. Spent the night in it before attending Dan’s Bake Sale in Fort Collins where Rush Limbaugh appeared. I sold it for the same money I bought it for several months later when I replaced it with a 1980 Pontiac Phoenix. That X car was leagues ahead in reliability, quality, and refinement but my standards still aren’t that high. Both taught me a lot about working on cars. I still have a Phoenix, would love to have another Chevette. But I wouldn’t really want to drive it, only possess it.

  • avatar
    chopperjamie

    In 1984 I was a junior in high school in Buffalo NY. My friends Dad bought my friend a surprise for his birthday. It was a 79-ish Chevette Scooter. When I say bought, I mean he probably traded 3 chickens and a shovel full of top soil for it. It was a clapped out rust bucket. They spent the next 6 months restoring (yes, I am going to use that word) it and it ended up being WAY nicer than any Chevette that ever rolled off the assembly line. When they were done, all the rust was fixed and it was black with a silver stripe and red pinstriping that was all very, very well done.They rebuilt the drivetrain from the radiator to the rear end. The interior was perfect and had the finest Spark-o-matic stereo money could buy at the time.
    We drove the crap out of that thing.
    My buddy was a stoner artist type and his Dad was old school OCD. They fought like cats and dogs until they worked on that car together. I don’t recall them being best friends after that, but working on that car sure did bring them closer together and they found a fantastic respect for each other. His Dad came to appreciate the artistic side of his son when he walked into the shop with the paint layout designed and it looked good. My friend came to appreciate the detailed side of his father when all the nuts and bolts were marked in baggies and things were spotless when it was time for assembly.
    A clapped out rust bucket indeed….
    Thanks for the memories.

    • 0 avatar
      Featherston

      Great story.

      The Chevette I knew was a late ’70s example and belonged to a good family friend. She was a set designer for children’s theater in our town, and I remember the rear seat was distinguished by dog hair and spilled green paint from a set project. Between that, the smell of cigarettes, and various items dropped by her toddler, it was pretty filthy. My mom christened it “The Pit.”

      The Pit had some options: automatic, a/c, and cloth seats. If I recall, the cloth was really weird: imagine a velour with almost no pile, almost like the world’s worst Ultrasuede. Now imagine that with paint and dog hair on it.

      The car almost seemed to have its own mind and personality. If you criticized it, it would stall, usually in traffic. If you praised it, it would run fine.

      I was too young to have a license but old enough to move cars around on the driveway during dinner parties and such. I remember being stunned that the Chevette’s steering was so much heavier than any other car’s I tried. “So that’s what power steering means.”

      It got totaled when our friend, late one night, crashed into a car that was parked illegally on blind turn. Fortunately, this was on a residential street, and our friend had her seatbelt on. Both cars were totaled, and she broke her ankle pretty badly.

      • 0 avatar
        JimC2

        “So that’s what power steering means.”

        Heh. With manual steering and trying to park a car you learn that 12 o’clock/6 o’clock gives you the most leverage to turn the wheel. A little bit of forward or backward roll makes it a lot easier too. I tell ya, these kids who have only ever known power steering don’t know how good they have it!!

        The internet suggests the Chevette steering was around 3 1/2 turns lock to lock, not exactly quick steering ratio. Go figure.

  • avatar
    Der_Kommissar

    My parents bought two of these when I was a kid (4 door, not the scooter), and between them and the Olds wagon they bought later are the reasons I’m so wary to buy American. We had our first Chevette die just driving up a hill. Second one was reliable, but slow as molasses and as stated earlier, dangerous in the snow.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Even a Civic of that era would seem like something out of the future compared to the Chevette. My absolutely most frugal friend purchased the Chevette and yes it ran reliably for a long time. But it was truly the definition of a penalty box.

    In short the perfect vehicle for a delivery service.

    • 0 avatar
      Ko1

      “But it was truly the definition of a penalty box.”

      Side note: This should totally be a thing in hockey. You go to the regular box for minor infractions but instead of a game suspension, you have to do a Tim Horton’s run in a diesel Chevette.

    • 0 avatar
      MoDo

      Civics of that era had severe rust issues, like, rusting out on the dealer lot issues. Dads friend bought one new and Honda had to buy it back because the thing literally turned into swiss cheese.

  • avatar
    relton

    1976 was also the year of the first Cadillac Seville. I remember seeing both of them at the Detroit Auto Show, and saying to myself, “how could the same company be making both of these cars?”

    Eventually I had a Seville, and discovered that GM could indeed build a Cadillac with the build quality and electrical system integrity of a Chevette. Maybe even worse: the Cadillac had a lot more ways the electrons could get lost before performing their assigned functions.

  • avatar
    Duaney

    Murilee is too negative about the Chevette. I’m 6’1″ and fit fine in a chevette, but I’m cramped in my Dodge Dakota. I don’t agree about the “primitive” construction. While the Chevette has rack and pinion steering, lots of Japanese cars then had a conventional gear box. Short arm long arm front suspension is considered sophisticated today. Overhead cam cross flow cylinder head only in the Chevette at the time, many other American models didn’t offer this. Sophisticated rear suspension with coil springs and a torque tube provided a no vibration ride, many other foreign and American cars had leaf springs with fully open driveshaft. With sales up to 400,000 per year at times, buyers voted for the Chevette, and when GM wanted to stop production, the impressive sales numbers caused them to keep building the car.

    • 0 avatar
      indi500fan

      You speak the truth my man.
      And the best Chevette ever was the one that Hot Rod plugged a 500ci Caddy into.
      https://bangshift.com/general-news/car-features/steve-magnantes-bad-seed-caddy-powered-chevette-lives-the-project-that-fueled-a-million-bench-races/

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    I knew a young lady during my college years who had a 1982 Chevette Scooter in bright red with a jaunty vinyl yellow and blue tape stripe running down each side. The car was almost as old as she was and I only rode in it once but I did help her with some minor issues (wipers that wouldn’t stop once started etc.) The Chevette (which was a hand me down) seemed appropriate, she was coming out of a working poor family and trying to make something out of herself.

    I was far more interested in her than the Shove-it.

  • avatar
    JimC2

    I see we have a few ‘Vette fans here on the B&B.

  • avatar
    Ermel

    It’s a third-generation Opel Kadett / Vauxhall Chevette from 1973, technically not too different from the first-generation Kadett from 1961. On its home market, it didn’t really compete with the Golf, but with the smaller Polo (from ’75), the Ford Escort, and of course the VW Bug. From ’74 through ’79, Opel and Ford were pretty much out of the water against VW; previously, against the Bug, the Kadett didn’t do too badly, and even managed to be best-selling vehicle some of those years.

    It wasn’t a particularly small, cheap, slow, or bad car, in other words. It just didn’t age well because its successor, the Opel Kadett / Vauxhall Astra, was a hugely different and much more competitive vehicle.

    • 0 avatar
      Featherston

      I think the North American Chevette was T-platform-mate of the 3rd-gen Kadett but was not a twin of the Opel or Vauxhall. (Wikipedia, grain of salt, indicates different wheelbases, for example.) It wouldn’t shock me if the Vauxhalls and Opels were better to drive, but who knows.

      Regarding “small, cheap, slow, or bad car,” bear in mind that when the US Chevette was introduced, it was sitting across the showroom from the ’71-’76 Impala/Caprice, which were almost 5.7 meters long. So, small? They certainly seemed that way to most people, even if they weren’t teeny tiny in an absolute sense.

      Cheap? Agree with you there. I think they were too durable to be characterized as truly cheap.

      Slow? Disagree, the US Chevette was slow, even by its market’s standard. Bear in mind that the US had stricter emissions at the time than did Europe. My guess is that the Opel-powered T-cars at least felt better than the “smogged” Isuzu-powered US Chevette. And conversely, V8 powered-US cars still had over 200 lb/ft of torque. They weren’t fast–although they were significantly faster than the Chevette–but they would’ve felt better in 0-35 mph, around-town driving. (And yeah, the Chevette slaughtered them on economy, so it wasn’t for nought.)

      Bad? Agree. Though pretty flawed by today’s standard, the Chevette was a success in terms of providing low-cost transportation. I wouldn’t categorize that as bad. It’s a shame for GM that the Chevette didn’t come before the Vega.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    My family had a couple of Chevettes. One similar to this one I bought at a city auction. It was a water department vehicle that needed some attention. I gave it a tune up and a battery, used it for a bit then sold it for a profit. The 1.6 Isuzu gas motor was smooth and had some spunk for that era. If only GM had the sense to use a larger version of it in the Vega instead of the ill fated aluminum block they could have been spared a lot of grief. Also the body was better constructed than the Vega.

    My dad owned a 81 Chevette diesel as his commuter car. 2dr 5 speed in dark blue. He bought it when it was a few years old and got several years of reliable service out of it. Normal maintenance kept it going the most difficult issue being a starter replacement where due to the tight fit needed a special Snap on bent wrench to remove it and the occasional glow plug plus 50+ mpg highway right up there with the top MPG cars of the day such as diesel Rabbit and Civic CVCC. The only issue was that it needed decent snows, even studded ones for adequate winter traction.The e-brake cable would occasionally freeze up when the temp was below freezing. Some teflon grease helped to free it.

    The car was equipped with dealer installed a/c which GM apparently did not offer as a factory option on diesel Chevettes. I guess they thought it would strain the 51 hp.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    Ah, the Chevette. In their review, Car and Driver famously referred to it as a “rear-wheel-drive sh-tbox”. I’ve a known a few folks over the years that owned them. One friend had a four-door (an ’84 model, IIRC), silver, with a trim package that included black steelies with trim rings, blackout grille and moldings, etc. It’s the only one I’ve ever driven, and the thing that stood out was that the steering column and wheel wasn’t centered with the driver’s seat, but offset to one side. I’m not sure I could get used to that.

  • avatar
    Russycle

    I’d forgotten how much the early ‘vette front end resembled a Vega. But then I’d pretty much forgotten about the Chevette entirely, thanks for bringing it back to my attention (that’s sarcasm, BTW).

    • 0 avatar
      JimC2

      “I’d forgotten how much the early ‘vette front end resembled a Vega.”

      I’ve never noticed that before, but now that you point it out I definitely see the (intentional) family resemblance.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    I grew up being carted around in an ’81 Chevette, my mom’s post-divorce, no-money wheels. Not a Scooter; the resulting luxurious bling included wheel covers, an AM radio, and a bit of chrome on the outside. 4-speed manual, gas.

    The virtues are as everybody is reporting. It broke often, but was super-cheap and easy to fix. It still ran and looked fine after 150,000 miles.

    It is impossible to understand how slow it was if you haven’t driven either a ’70s econobox or a heavy truck. Uphill on the freeway it would steadily slow down to 35 mph. I’m not sure it would hit 75 on the flat.

    The transmission and clutch felt like something out of a ’60s pickup.

    The handling, as others have said, was terrifying in the wet and worse in the snow. Unmitigated oversteer was readily available despite the total lack of power. It doesn’t snow much around here, but after doing an uncontrolled 360 down a steep hill, my mom stopped driving in the snow under any circumstances. We were walking or taking the bus.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    These weren’t bad cars per se in their late-’70s to early-’80s heyday. Nothing that anyone sold back then much better (for God’s sake, Datsun was selling the B210…enough said). These were actually pretty reliable cars, and when they did break, they were easy and cheap to fix.

    The Chevette’s problem is that GM made it way too long AFTER its’ heyday was done. I remember renting one in 1986 or so on a business trip, at the same time I owned a ’85 Civic. It was awful by comparison.

  • avatar
    Big Wheel

    Ah yes, the Chevette. Had two of them in high school/college. First was a 1982, four door, 4-speed manual, practically luxurious with AC & two-tone (light blue/dark blue!). It was a hand-me-down from my older brother, who “moved up” to a Pontiac Astre. I promptly crashed it within 7 months of getting my license, head-on collision with a Buick Park Avenue, old-school huge, boxy, RWD sedan, not the downsized FWD version. Dented the front bumper of the Buick, unbelted driver had a cut lip from hitting the steering wheel, nothing to the belted passenger. My car? Totaled. I couldn’t open up the driver door fully, had to squeeze out. Radio was blown out of the dash, just sitting on the trans tunnel. Headlight switch to the left of the steering wheel blown out of the dash, dangling by the wires. Somehow, all I had was whiplash & bruises from the seatbelt.

    Then got a 1984, but a real base model, not far up from this Scooter. Red with black vinyl seats, hotter than Hades in the summer. Had to put towels over the seats when in the sun. The glove box didn’t even have a door-it was just a hole in the dash. I put the bag of papers in it in the driver door pocket because I got tired of watching it slide around the glovebox. Another 4-speed manual, slow as molasses, but probably a good thing. Put a pop-up sunroof panel in it from Ziebart or similar. Timing belt failed about a mile from home, cost less than $80 to fix. Cat converter also failed, but at 49,000+ miles it was just under the 50k emission warranty, so that got fixed for free.

    Had lots of fun with it rest of the way through high school & college. Driving in the snow was an adventure, even with two 50 lb. bags of rock salt sitting on the rear wheel arches in the hatch.

    The usual jokes apply here as well. Calling it the “shove-it”. Telling people I drove a “vette” just to see the looks on their faces when they saw it was a Chevette.

  • avatar
    spookiness

    When I was a kid we had a 78 Scooter, with a backseat. My last memory of it was my dad jump starting it to meet mom at the Honda dealer after she got off work. We were picking up a new 82 Civic.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    A family friend bought a 1.4L Chevette in 1975 after having bought a 74 Chrysler Newport, and being appalled at his fuel expenses during the gas crunch.

    He always had plenty of money – and was frugal, of course – but even the Chevette got the better of him and he traded it a few years later.

    Today’s junkyard find is cleaner than most Chevettes were in western PA 30 years ago.

  • avatar
    Ron in WA

    We were given a four-door Chevette with a 2-speed auto and AC in about 1988. It had been a rental car in Florida. The worst car I have ever owned, but I was glad to get it then.

    To get it to accelerate I would floor it in first up until I wanted to shift, then let up, and it would pop into second. If I let the transmission do it own thing it was pathetic. After the first year it failed Washington emissions so I tried to put a tune on it. I could not find the distributor, so replaced the plugs. A year or so later I tried again and finally found the distributor under a big metal dark cage that held the AC compressor. It must have been an aftermarket install.

    I so disliked the car that when I locked myself out I was able to just grab the top of the drivers door and pull it out several inches. No problem at all. After I had the keys I just shoved it back. As a point of reference, with a 1990 Corolla it took two claw hammers and a lot of serious effort to do the some thing.

    The Chevette was totalled, through no fault of its own. The best thing that car ever did. The insurance payout gave me the money and occasion to buy that 5-speed Corolla. Which I still have and love.

  • avatar
    threeer

    After my uncle retired from the service and returned to the US (1976), he bought a shiny red Scooter. My association with it is tied to him and my older cousin, who drove me around in it when we came to visit. I was all of 7 and didn’t know any better. While I could tell you every single car on the road based on just the headlights, other measures of a car’s “worth” escaped me. And, as I idolized my uncle until the day he died and thought my cousin was the coolest person on Earth, the Chevette’s severe limitations never registered to me. Years later, friends of ours in Germany (another military family) had a brown four-door that they comically put a flaming chicken decal on the hood of. It was then I realized how subpar the car really was. Still doesn’t mean I don’t think that little red Scooter was cool, though…

  • avatar
    tomLU86

    The Chevette was a viable small car for the 1970s.

    It was SLOW. Among the slowest of the cars.

    Yet it had better than average ride and handling.

    It did have fewer frills than Corollas and B210s, but it did have a hatchback and folding rear seat.

    And it was pretty reliable.

    • 0 avatar
      Duaney

      I have to continue defending the Chevette. I fail to see where all the negativity comes from. I drive a 84 almost daily. I can’t burn rubber. But it cruises effortlessly at 70 mph. I’ve had it up to 85, without any problem. I’ve never tuned it in 3 years since purchased. All this at 6,800 feet altitude in Colorado. Wonder how it would do at sea level? Where does tomLU86 get his idea that the car is “THAT” slow? Now I do know slow. Any VW Beetle. Any VW bus.Any old PU with a 4 speed. Any Ford Falcon with the six. Any Chevy Nova with the six. I drove many Chevy full size cars with the small V-8, the Chevette is just as fast. I don’t like any of the new cars, they have too much road noise coming up from the pavement. Such as a new Mitsubishi Lancer, Dodge Stratus, even a Buick. The Chevette doesn’t have the road noise. How about all the four cylinders that vibrate and hum, unless they have balance shafts? No balance shafts in the Chevette engine, yet somehow Chevrolet engineers achieved a smooth running engine without the horrible vibration. I owned a Renault R-12 for a while. The vibration and droning from the engine was so annoying, that I sold that car after a few months. I think if people trash out a car badly enough, even Cadillacs and Mercedes, those vehicles would give anyone a bad impression. The difference is that the Chevette’s keep running, enspite of all the neglect, then people aren’t impressed.

  • avatar
    Shawnski

    Cheap, basic and cramped, just like most Jap cars then. Not that there would be any anamosity towards those…. The cam in head engine was not Isuzu, this was straight Opel. A dull car yes, but rugged and reliable, absolutely!

  • avatar

    My, my, my… so many comments about what is for me the worst car ever made. Of course, count 1 of my indictment in the Court of the Car Guys will be my unending fondness for the Isuzu Piazza/Impulse, essentially a Chevette with a much nicer suit.

Read all comments

Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Recent Comments

  • randyinrocklin: I had a former employee that had one brand new in 86. Red/black. I have a ’04 Spyder and a 91....
  • randyinrocklin: Thank you for your informative post.
  • randyinrocklin: The best way to ever test drive a car you’re going to purchase is to rent one for a week.
  • Lie2me: I stopped watching, or caring about, Buick a long time ago
  • Scoutdude: In the First generation the GP was longer than the MC. The GP was on a 118″ wheelbase while the...

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Who We Are

  • Matthew Guy
  • Timothy Cain
  • Adam Tonge
  • Bozi Tatarevic
  • Chris Tonn
  • Corey Lewis
  • Mark Baruth
  • Ronnie Schreiber