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Intrepidation

What are some crappy old GM cars?

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I'm doing an essay on How GM went from being the biggest and teh best to turning out crap to now working to improve their image...Which cars were complete piles of crap following the oil Crisis? I'd appreciate the help...thanks!

Also, what year was GM's highest market share and what percent was it?

Edited by Dodgefan
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Cimmaron, 86 Eldorado, Seville, DeVille, etc.

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The Cadillac engine that switched from a V8 to a V6 to a V4

The diesel 350 Oldsmobile V8

The great downsizing of 1985-1986 of all the fullsized cars and luxury coupes

The Chevy and Oldsmobile 350 debacle

The look alike GM cars from that same era in the 1980's

The X Bodies

The issues really started in the early 1980's

The whole stripping each division way of its independence and merging them in car groups( CPC and BOC)

The bad leaders Roger Smith, Robert Stempel and Ronald Zarella

The whole marketing effort to market cars like toothpaste and consumer products( 1990's)

The botched launch of the new Oldsmobile

The killing of Oldsmobile

The fact they let models languish for too long with out changes( 1992 Eldorado and the Saturn line up)

The whole Saturn start in the 1980's

GM stopped listening to the customer in the 1980's. They lost touch with what buyers want

The duplicates of models across car lines

The mess that has been made of the images of many GM cars( trying to fix that now)

Pontiac Aztek

The quality that suffered and lost them buyers.

the GM minivans( front wheel drive)

Bad cars:

Chevrolet Vega

Edited by NINETY EIGHT REGENCY
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It's not always the car as a whole that was a pile, sometimes it was just the engine. The 8-6-4 is the most notorious example even though it was one year only. Most of the crappy engines were from attempts to squeeze better fuel economy out of really large cars. One of the engines I loath the most is Cadillac's 4100 series V8. This engine was used on most Cadillac models beginning in 1982 after the failure of the 8-6-4. It had 125hp at 4200 rpm and 190ft/lb of torque at 2,000rpm. Put this in a 4,000lb. Cadillac and calling the performance "underwhelming" would be polite. The engine had to work so hard to move the car that there were no net gains in fuel economy unless all driving was done at a 60mph cruise. The intake manifold gaskets gave out fairly early in the engine's life and GM's initial response was to put "Stop Leak" into the cooling system. If there was a coolant loss and the engine overheated it was basically a goner as parts of the aluminum block would warp enough to ruin the engine. They never did get the issues of this engine fixed and it was replaced by a redesigned version that was 4.5 litres.

The 4100 is basically a deal breaker for me in my search for an old E-body or Seville. Since my target year is 1985, I would actually even take a car with an Olds 350 diesel over a 4100 because by 1985 they had the issues with the diesel worked out. The 4100 really ruins an otherwise good car.

Edited by Oldsmoboi
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I think the history of the W-body is a great example. The pre-1988 models had been known for good quality and high sales. The 1988 thru (in some cases) 2001 models had lackluster sales and had nothing but issues. Starting in 1997 with the Buick Century they turned that model lineup around.

Case in point;

1985 Monte Carlo = Collectors item, chassis had great sales numbers, loved by many, hated by few

1990 Lumina = Brake issues, electrical issues, etc., not able to give them away

2007 Impala = In top 10 for sales and in top 3 for quality rankings and built at #1 plant in North America (or #2 depending on year)

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I think you mean the transition from G-body to W-body. W-body started in 1988 and poorly as it was only sold as a coupe at first. It was rushed forward once GM saw the Taurus/Sable in 1987.

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I think you mean the transition from G-body to W-body. W-body started in 1988 and poorly as it was only sold as a coupe at first. It was rushed forward once GM saw the Taurus/Sable in 1987.

Exactly

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The Vega actually had some bright spots in it's history as wellas the bad stuff. And V8 Monzas were nice cars.

The Pontiac version of the Vega was called Astre - I saw a Pro-Street version at the last show I went too (extremely radical).

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Shadow? Oh, wait... Lancer? Whoops, uh... Aspen? Volare? Shoot, lemme think... LeBaron GTS? Hmmm... I guess I'm stumped.:smilewide:
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Pontiac Le Mans anyone? I'm taking the imported one from the late 80's. Chevy Sprint, Toyota Nova, original Geo's...all of these and many more are real low spots in GM's history if you ask me.

Edited by Delta Force79
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Pontiac Le Mans anyone? I'm taking the imported one from the late 80's. Chevy Sprint, Toyota Nova, original Geo's...all of these and many more are real low spots in GM's history if you ask me.

:yes: Absolutely.

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Pontiac Le Mans anyone? I'm taking the imported one from the late 80's. Chevy Sprint, Toyota Nova, original Geo's...all of these and many more are real low spots in GM's history if you ask me.

I agree with the first part, but the Geos weren't so much bad cars as they were really poorly marketed. They should have gone to the different divisions...

The Prisms ended up being pretty good cars.....

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*raises hand*

OhOhOHH!!!!!

I've owned a few of the nasty ones myself! LOL

I've got to give credit where credit is due....

*Chevy Citation and it's other GM bretheren were bland terrible little cars that never had the success of even the bland K car rivals.

*ANY Chevy minivan. Terrible to drive compared to the other minivans... The Astrovans were NOT a nice vehicle to drive.

Dustbuster Pontiac Vans had an added styling repulsion too.

*Pontiac Fiero (sorry Viper). It came out to alot of expectations and floundered terribly. By the time changes were made to make it liveable it was cancelled, GM cut their losses and ran.

*Geos were less than stellar mechanically.

*Vegas/Astres had engine problems etc, but they WERE also entry level cars, the fit and finish of a cheap 70's car shouldn't have high expectations IMO.

*Cadillac's 4-6-8 deserves an honorable mention.

*Toyota / Nova was a low point that should never have happened IMO.

*Pontiac Aztec. From a styling standpoint it's a shining example of how to NOT sell a vehicle. If the looks were anywhere near acceptable the Aztec might have had a chance. The looks were disasterous.

*First generation Avalanche. Body cladding made it look terrible. Take a look at the NEW Avalanche in comparison, it's an absolute beauty beside the original. Good case for "improvement" IMO....

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*Chevy Citation and it's other GM bretheren were bland terrible little cars that never had the success of even the bland K car rivals.

*ANY Chevy minivan. Terrible to drive compared to the other minivans... The Astrovans were NOT a nice vehicle to drive.

Dustbuster Pontiac Vans had an added styling repulsion too.

If we're talking the U-Vans, then yeah, I agree. However, the Astro's and Safari's (as well as Savanna's) aren't that bad. In fact, they're quite good, and are superb when compared to an Econoline. At least when I drove an Astro, I didn't feel like I was going to die.

However, the Sprinter is my favorite.

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Anything with any variation of the Quad4.

I had a feeling you were going to say that....though I pretty much agree...( wow, even surprised myself..)

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I will say one thing about the U-vans. The ones with the 3800 are fast...

The Astro vans weren't the epitome of comfort of build quality, but the 4.3 in those things was a torque monster. Slap some bigger tires on an AWD Astro/Safari and you can have more fun than should be legal.

:yes:

Not only that-those van run forever-I can't tell you the number of vans I've seen with well over 200k on them....

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um do you guys not remember the number of X bodies and Sprints GM sold?

I loved my X body and my sprint. I say the Caviler/sunfire/sunbird and W/G bodies were pretty bad. the U bodies. caddies line up from almost 94-2003. buicks line up from 88-2006.

pontiacs line up from 2002-2006.

a mistake was the death of the B body should of just refreshed it.

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The First U-Bodies were the best ones they made. We had a 3800 Trans Sport and it was one PEPPY SLED. It was also light and aerodynamic because of the composite body panels and dustbuster snout... contributing to a real world fuel economy return of ~25-27MPG City and 40-43MPG Highway... Ours went 175K before we sold it in 1999 (saw it still running on the expressway as lately as last year, recognized it by a scuff on the rear bumper... very emotional... like seeing an old friend) but I see many these days with over 300K... no joke.

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The Astro vans weren't the epitome of comfort of build quality, but the 4.3 in those things was a torque monster. Slap some bigger tires on an AWD Astro/Safari and you can have more fun than should be legal.

<_<
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The First U-Bodies were the best ones they made. We had a 3800 Trans Sport and it was one PEPPY SLED. It was also light and aerodynamic because of the composite body panels and dustbuster snout... contributing to a real world fuel economy return of ~25-27MPG City and 40-43MPG Highway... Ours went 175K before we sold it in 1999 (saw it still running on the expressway as lately as last year, recognized it by a scuff on the rear bumper... very emotional... like seeing an old friend) but I see many these days with over 300K... no joke.

We had a 95 Lumina. I have no idea why my parents thought they needed a minivan, but they bought it. They realized their mistake shortly and traded it on a new Suburban in 96. It was a good van though and like you said they run forever, but it was still a minivan. There is actually a professor on campus who owns our old van. I recognized it by one of the pieces of side glass. When we had it I hit a baseball through the side glass. When it got replaced the tint didn't match up quite right. The same dealer stickers are on it still as well. Even though we didn't have it long, we made a lot of memories in that van.

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