Car Forums  

Go Back   Car Forums > Vehicle Specific > Domestic Cars
FAQ Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 04-06-2004, 02:05 AM   #1
Patrick
CF Addict
 
Patrick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Louisville, KY. We don't wear shoes, and it would be a shame to see someone with a full set of teeth.
Posts: 196
Unhappy 1st Generation Neon- is it worth it?

Lately I have been thinking a lot about what I want to get when I go to buy a car. I want something that is relatively fast, and could be fast without too much work. Also, I have to be concerned with something that is fast, but is low profile so it'll fly under the parents' radar. I figured that a Dodge Neon would be good for this, but considering their shady reliability record and mediocre crash rating, would the car be worth the money? I mean, is it worth spending enough money to get the power to a level I would want it?
Patrick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2004, 02:10 AM   #2
Cliffy
CF Loafer
 
Cliffy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: NE Hampshire, England, UK
Posts: 8,441
I dont really know much about Neons as US cars really aint my thing, SuperJew, is the guy to answer this one as he has a Neon..If I was you I'd seriously consider buying the Neon as I know there;s room for tuning capability and in the parents eyes it's a safe, reliable (to an extent) family car
__________________


Please click here for the rules prior to posting, and here to introduce yourself!

Artwork courtesy of Gregg, aka Voda48
Cliffy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2004, 11:46 AM   #3
snoopewite
The 1st CF Entrepreneur
 
snoopewite's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: England
Posts: 782
Patrick, a 2.0 16v Ford Focus might be a better bet. The early American ones are meant to be shady themselves though.
__________________
This signature is in memory of vwhobo 03-26-2003 - 04-27-2004
The vwhobo fan club lives on for as long as his e-spirit lurks around these forums.
Late vwhobo fan club members - R34RB30DETTV, SuperJew, Cliffy, STiMan, Satty101, Integra_LS, Karburator, DodgeRida67, Bubba, Importluva and snoopewite - instigator of the unofficial vwhobo fan club
snoopewite is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2004, 03:35 PM   #4
ChrisV
The Big Meaney
 
ChrisV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: People's Republic of Maryland
Posts: 3,714
Early Neons had some head gasket issues, most of which have been fixed by now. The 150hp versions are pretty peppy, and you could get an ACR version (American Club Racer) that was designed specifically to go road racing and autocrossing (which thousands did, very succesfully). The ACR could be had in both 2 door and 4 door form, which really makes it insurable AND would "fly under your parents' radar."



There is a great aftermarket base for them, and it's now cheap and easy to make them rather rapid, and still be great daily drivers.

However, they WERE base level economy cars, designed to be inexpensive, so don't look for Mercedes levels of fit and finish, or luxury materials. That's not what they were about.

These guys http://www.howellautomotive.com/Howe...roducts_id=870

Are the best source of performance knowledge fo Neons. A friend of mine here in Baltimore was sponsored by them, and his daily driver Neon R/T was a serious monster.



http://www.bored383.com/movies/don-chris.mpeg

Video doesn't make it look all that fast, but 13.7 at 98 mph in a normally aspirated, no nitrous, daily driven 4 cyl Neon is nothing to sneeze at.
__________________
I'm not mean. You're just a wuss.



www.midatlantic7s.com
ChrisV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2004, 06:02 PM   #5
DJ Nonsense
CF Newbie
 
DJ Nonsense's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Posts: 50
I too recomend the Ford Focus for what your trying to do and the type of car that your tryin to do it in. Neons to me aren't very good cars and they have a record of being plastic.
__________________


Takes a long time to gain respect, but it only takes seconds to lose it
DJ Nonsense is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-06-2004, 07:10 PM   #6
soloman02
CF Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: NH, USA
Posts: 5
Well, you could always go for a ford taurus(what year is gen 3?) they have more torque than the neon( meaning more pulling power) they accelerate just as well, and if you get an sho model, you have it made
soloman02 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2004, 03:05 PM   #7
ChrisV
The Big Meaney
 
ChrisV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: People's Republic of Maryland
Posts: 3,714
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Nonsense
I too recomend the Ford Focus for what your trying to do and the type of car that your tryin to do it in. Neons to me aren't very good cars and they have a record of being plastic.

Define "being good cars" and "record of being plastic."

Little hint. All modern cars have pretty much equal amounts of plastic in them. Exceptions being cars like Saturns, Fieros, Lotus', etc., that have plastic resin skins also.

As I said, the early Neons had problems with head gaskets, but most of them should have had the fix performed, and it's not really an issue now. Very early ones also had issues with trim bits having sub-par fastners, and the water-based paints that the EPA required of them had issues with delaminating (which can be fixed).

But for the price, they are actually quite good. They aren't going to be top line luxury cars, but shouldn't be expected to be. They HAVE proven to be very good at various forms of motorsports, from autocross to road racing (which is what they were designed to do) to SCCA Pro Rally and drag racing.
__________________
I'm not mean. You're just a wuss.



www.midatlantic7s.com
ChrisV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2004, 05:58 PM   #8
DJ Nonsense
CF Newbie
 
DJ Nonsense's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Posts: 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisV
Define "being good cars" and "record of being plastic."

Little hint. All modern cars have pretty much equal amounts of plastic in them. Exceptions being cars like Saturns, Fieros, Lotus', etc., that have plastic resin skins also.

When I say being good cars I mean performance wise.

And I really didn't mean "plastic" literary. What I meant is they tear apart easiser than some cars. Like your Saturns and not to mention one of the worse makes of cars IMO the Kia. But thats my opinion
__________________


Takes a long time to gain respect, but it only takes seconds to lose it
DJ Nonsense is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-07-2004, 07:29 PM   #9
ChrisV
The Big Meaney
 
ChrisV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: People's Republic of Maryland
Posts: 3,714
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Nonsense
When I say being good cars I mean performance wise.

And I really didn't mean "plastic" literary. What I meant is they tear apart easiser than some cars. Like your Saturns and not to mention one of the worse makes of cars IMO the Kia. But thats my opinion

Well your opinion isn't based on reality, so you might want to examine it a little closer.

The cars were almost literally designed to go road racing and autocross, including having factory parts specifically for them AND factory sponsirship of numoerous racing series In stock form, they aren't drag cars, but I've shown how they can be rather rapid for very little money. I really don't get how you can state they aren't good performers after that. In fact, there is one in the Grassroots Motorsports $2004 Challenge that is a 13 second quarter mile car AND autocrosser AND daily driver for under $2004 total... How can that be a poorly performing car?



As for the "tearing apart" again, I have to disagree. You have no proof of that, and I have a lot of knowledge of the fact that they don't "tear apart."

If you're going to enter a discussion of relative merits, you need more than your "opinion" when dealing with people who have decades of experience. I can point you to car after car after car that doesn't match your "opinion," and I really don't think you can prove your "opinion" to be factual. Or is it more important to have an opinion, no matter how factually wrong it is, rather than actually know what you are talking about, or learn a bit of reality?
__________________
I'm not mean. You're just a wuss.



www.midatlantic7s.com
ChrisV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2004, 03:47 AM   #10
DJ Nonsense
CF Newbie
 
DJ Nonsense's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Posts: 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisV
Well your opinion isn't based on reality, so you might want to examine it a little closer.

The cars were almost literally designed to go road racing and autocross, including having factory parts specifically for them AND factory sponsirship of numoerous racing series In stock form, they aren't drag cars, but I've shown how they can be rather rapid for very little money. I really don't get how you can state they aren't good performers after that. In fact, there is one in the Grassroots Motorsports $2004 Challenge that is a 13 second quarter mile car AND autocrosser AND daily driver for under $2004 total... How can that be a poorly performing car?



As for the "tearing apart" again, I have to disagree. You have no proof of that, and I have a lot of knowledge of the fact that they don't "tear apart."

If you're going to enter a discussion of relative merits, you need more than your "opinion" when dealing with people who have decades of experience. I can point you to car after car after car that doesn't match your "opinion," and I really don't think you can prove your "opinion" to be factual. Or is it more important to have an opinion, no matter how factually wrong it is, rather than actually know what you are talking about, or learn a bit of reality?

You have a good point. You can show me thousands of cars hell I know many cars that don't fit my opinion on the Dodge Neon. But we are talking about Neons not other cars. I know many Dodge Neon owners that take fairly good care of the car and something ALWAYS happens to them. This from what I have seen for myself.

If I were to prove these things as far as the people I am talkin about I would be going out of my way. But I do agree with you on the Motor Sports Challenge thingy. But I have a question? Is this before or after the modifications?
__________________


Takes a long time to gain respect, but it only takes seconds to lose it
DJ Nonsense is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2004, 11:53 PM   #11
Patrick
CF Addict
 
Patrick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Louisville, KY. We don't wear shoes, and it would be a shame to see someone with a full set of teeth.
Posts: 196
Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisV
Well your opinion isn't based on reality, so you might want to examine it a little closer.

The cars were almost literally designed to go road racing and autocross, including having factory parts specifically for them AND factory sponsirship of numoerous racing series In stock form, they aren't drag cars, but I've shown how they can be rather rapid for very little money. I really don't get how you can state they aren't good performers after that. In fact, there is one in the Grassroots Motorsports $2004 Challenge that is a 13 second quarter mile car AND autocrosser AND daily driver for under $2004 total... How can that be a poorly performing car?



As for the "tearing apart" again, I have to disagree. You have no proof of that, and I have a lot of knowledge of the fact that they don't "tear apart."

If you're going to enter a discussion of relative merits, you need more than your "opinion" when dealing with people who have decades of experience. I can point you to car after car after car that doesn't match your "opinion," and I really don't think you can prove your "opinion" to be factual. Or is it more important to have an opinion, no matter how factually wrong it is, rather than actually know what you are talking about, or learn a bit of reality?

Thanks, ChrisV. I must say, to whoever posted about the Taurus SHO? No offense, but my integrity can only handle so much pain, and a Taurus is simply too much to take. I fear that I feel much the same way about a Focus. Thus far I've found myself more than skeptical of Ford's, and I'm certainly not their biggest fan.... which can be blamed solely on my father, who will buy nothing for himself other than Daimler/Chrysler products. Now, I might consider a Ford ZX2, but again I must pose the question, is there power enough to be mined to make it worth my while, before the ZX2 is "Found On Road Dead"?
Also, I am a big fan of Saturn's SC series. Actually, more of a fan of the SC2, because I really couldn't handle 100 horsepower in the SC1. I know that Saturn is the cheapest company overall to insure after Volvo, and they are as reliable as Domestic Cars seem to get anymore. I would love to have an SC2, but as far as I know are rarely tuned and I wonder if that's an indication of their potential. Opinions, anyone? By the way, thanks to everyone for the information on the Neons. I've always liked the 1st generation Neons, and not I'm pretty sure I'd want one.
**Uber-random question**- How much would a body kit that looks decent for a Neon go for? I know that on Pimp My Ride the body kit they put on a '92 Civic was $6,500.... which I will never be able to afford, so "holla" back!
Patrick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2004, 02:25 PM   #12
ChrisV
The Big Meaney
 
ChrisV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: People's Republic of Maryland
Posts: 3,714
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJ Nonsense
You have a good point. You can show me thousands of cars hell I know many cars that don't fit my opinion on the Dodge Neon. But we are talking about Neons not other cars.

So was I. When I said I could show you many cars that don't fit your opinion of Neons, I meant that I could show you thousands of Dodge Neons that didn't fit your opinion. I never talked about cars other than Neons.


Quote:
But I do agree with you on the Motor Sports Challenge thingy. But I have a question? Is this before or after the modifications?

Does it matter? If the total cost out of pocket is two grand, does that mattter if youy're talking a stock, or slightly modded example? In either case, it is a Neon that is doing these things for two thousand dollars total.

That's the bottom line. No matter when talking about a stock or modded car, the FACT is your wallet is the one making those decisions. What do you get for your money? If the Neon wasn't a good performaning car, then you couldn't GET what that Challenge car was for a total of 2 grand.
__________________
I'm not mean. You're just a wuss.



www.midatlantic7s.com
ChrisV is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-10-2004, 05:40 PM   #13
1997expresso
CF Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 17
1st generation neons had a VERY bad name in the auto market. But this does not go for all neons. If you are considering a SOHC automatic, with more than 100,000 kms on it forget it. Even though it may be cheap you are getting what you pay for. You are going to have lots of tranny problems and a list of others..If you can find yourself an r/t which comes with the 150 hp DOHC then go for it. Or you can also look for a 97 sport or expresso since this was the year that the car got an upgrade to the 150 horse DOHC. I would highly recommned the manual transmission though. A 97-98 Neon expresso or sport with about 70 000-80 000 clicks will set ya back no more than $4 500 bucks, keeping in mind that I am in Canada so for you americans that would probably be like $12 . Now that's value! Recently I have been doing some car shopping and found 98 honda civics with 150,000 kms on them for $9,000+ I know they are good cars and their re-sale value is obviously very good but come one who the f*** would actually spend 9 grand for a base 6 year old civic with that much k's on it? RIP OFF.
Best of luck.

Last edited by 1997expresso : 04-10-2004 at 05:49 PM.
1997expresso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2004, 06:06 AM   #14
Female racer
CF Newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 10
Ok, I can offer some info from personal experience.. I drive an race a 98 Dodge Neon. It was origionaly a SOHC. (granded I've swaped for DOHC and upgraded a lot of other parts) A few good points...I got it ad an unbelievable price. All cars are going to have problems. Nice thing about the Neons-you know ahead of time what they're going to be. (IE: engine gaskest/Oxygen sensor/EGR valve) I knew these were going to go bad-so I replaced them before it was an issue. Problem solved, no suprices. I'm not sure where you got the safety info, but I can tell you I've been in 5 accidents in mine (I street and drag race it) and It's held up beautifully. I was even rear ended at 45mph once. Car wasn't even totaled. They get exellent gas milage, and have a ton of things you can do to them. With about 3 yrs work I have a 10 second drag car. (granted-this is far from stock) Also, as an insurance agent I can tell you it has an exelent rating and a bonus lower rate. They're also easy to work on. Good luck with your decision!
__________________
Silly boys....racings for girls!
Female racer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2004, 03:17 PM   #15
1997expresso
CF Newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Female racer
Ok, I can offer some info from personal experience.. I drive an race a 98 Dodge Neon. It was origionaly a SOHC. (granded I've swaped for DOHC and upgraded a lot of other parts) A few good points...I got it ad an unbelievable price. All cars are going to have problems. Nice thing about the Neons-you know ahead of time what they're going to be. (IE: engine gaskest/Oxygen sensor/EGR valve) I knew these were going to go bad-so I replaced them before it was an issue. Problem solved, no suprices. I'm not sure where you got the safety info, but I can tell you I've been in 5 accidents in mine (I street and drag race it) and It's held up beautifully. I was even rear ended at 45mph once. Car wasn't even totaled. They get exellent gas milage, and have a ton of things you can do to them. With about 3 yrs work I have a 10 second drag car. (granted-this is far from stock) Also, as an insurance agent I can tell you it has an exelent rating and a bonus lower rate. They're also easy to work on. Good luck with your decision!


10 second drag car? WOW that is one bad-ass neon. My 97 is all stock. I was considering doing some performance upgrades to it but I am not sure where to start? I hear that replacing the throttle body is a good start and an Air Intake is gonna give it some more power aswell. Am I taking the right path in upgrading my Neon's performance?
1997expresso is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 10:47 PM.

Powered by vBulletin Version 3.5.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 2002 - 2011 Car Forums. All rights reserved.