Vega? How about the Citation?

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4,036
Location
Chicago, IL
hmmm.... I owned a Vega.... actually, it never broke down, but the aluminum engine started making blue clouds of smoke just after 60k miles. a quart of oil every 300 miles.
 
Messages
15,056
Location
Canada
Citation/X-bodied cars weren't bad cars at all. I think there was a lot of hype about how bad these car were. The 2.5 I-4 and 2.8 V-6 are some of the better engines GM has produced for reliablility. I've NEVER understood why these cars were so hated.
 
Messages
1,007
Location
Dallas, TX
I hesitate to use the word "modern" and "Citation" in the same sentence, but it was a new generation of car compared to the Vega. EFI came along for it in 1985, and I actually quite liked the sportier X-11 version with the slick 5-spoke wheels, beefy tires, a bulging hood, 2.8 V6 and that typical 2.8 rasp from the muffler. My neighbor had one and it was a great car for her. The whole brake lockup doomed it, even though it was far from being the only car that would lock the rear brakes in a panic stop. I never really figured out why the Citation was singled out for this issue, but there was a LOT of bad press over it. Apparently it got quite tail-happy during hard braking. To me, that's just a common-sense issue, which has led to wide use of ABS. Little known fact: The Citation's drivetrain could later be found in the Fiero, a car I feel was killed before its prime.
 
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9,566
Location
Ontario, Canada
I had an 81 2.8L Omega for a few years 2000-2003. Rode well, had good power, comfy couch bench seat, had real air vents that blasted air into the foot wells. Got decent mileage even without a lockup torque converter. The bad was that intake manifold starting leaking and then the carburation started to go... I still regret not getting an "offroad" tuneable carb for it and getting rid of the vacuum tube spagetti... As for the rear brake issue, the suspension geometry would compress the back end when you got on to the brakes so maybe that helped break the back end loose? I never had an issue with it in the couple "panic" stops I did with it, always seemed that the front end locked first but I had new brakes on it.
 
Messages
3,398
Location
Midwest, Illinois
 Originally Posted By: ViragoBry
Little known fact: The Citation's drivetrain could later be found in the Fiero, a car I feel was killed before its prime.
Yes it was. I had two. A 1984 with the Iron Duke 4 cylinder. The drivetrain was virtually identical, right down to the steering arms being tied into the unibody and used for alignment purposes. There were about a million things that could be done to that little car. The aftermarket loved it. I had 17" wheels, P255 Gatorbacks on WEDS wheels, a header, Edelbrock intake, Koni shocks and struts, Herb Adams VSE sway bars (very trick, heim joint adjustment in front) and a body kit. It would just clear a beer can in front. The whale tail was molded into the rear trunk deck and would hold probably 5 gallons of water if it rained. I traded it for a much more powerful 1987 with the tarantula intaked 6 cylinder and a Getrag 5 speed. They were originally labeled as commuter cars for the post gas shortage seventies, and the over dollar a gallon eighties. But we knew better.. they were a poor mans Corvette, especially with a transplanted SBC in it's tail. There was a limited run of t-topped versions run at the end for southern states. I agree, killed before it's prime, and before it's full potential was realized.
 
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2,439
Location
snowblind in TX
The problem with anything that had an Iron Duke was engine fires caused by all of the leaking oil. That plastic Fiero body burned really, really fast.
 
Messages
3,735
Location
Miami-Dade County
 Originally Posted By: IndyIan
I had an 81 2.8L Omega for a few years 2000-2003. Rode well, had good power, comfy couch bench seat, had real air vents that blasted air into the foot wells. Got decent mileage even without a lockup torque converter.
My Mom bought a new 79 Omega with the 305 V8 just before she moved to Miami...It was a great car and she had no issues with it...It ran great and had excellent a/c. My brother wrecked it in 82 when it had around 80K miles on it...She was very upset about that as it never gave her any problems and it was the perfect size car for her.
 
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35,994
Location
ME
My cutlass ciera rear brakes locked up the first stop after sitting a while, or rain. Figure it was dust goo or rust, and knew to look for it and "practice" a stop rolling away from my house, before getting into traffic. Hadn't heard of this citation brake issue before now. For me the biggest problem with the car was its homeliness! It was trying to look like a full size car from the front, with the chrome grill, big rectangular headlights, and requisite 5 mph shock mounted chrome/aluminum bumpers. Didn't they have bench seats and column shifts too? With the hatchback rear it was trying to be a dodge omni or similar. Reminds me of the wierd late 70s GMs when they were hurridely downsizing. GM must have had a gazillion rectangular plastic dash vents left in their parts bins; they tried sticking them in every which way to make them fit in the downsized cars. And I know wierd 80's GM-- had an 82 cadillac cimarron!
 
Messages
6,917
Location
NH
 Originally Posted By: addyguy
Citation/X-bodied cars weren't bad cars at all. I think there was a lot of hype about how bad these car were. The 2.5 I-4 and 2.8 V-6 are some of the better engines GM has produced for reliablility. I've NEVER understood why these cars were so hated.
Agreed. Not anywhere even close to being the disasters the Pinto and Vega were. Citation was a decent car.
 
Messages
4,834
Location
Kansas
 Originally Posted By: beanoil
But we knew better.. they were a poor mans Corvette
One of the problems with a Fiero was that it almost weighed as much as a Corvette.
 
Messages
1,007
Location
Dallas, TX
I always thought the Fiero had such potential, but have to assert that the 2.5 should've never been part of the picture. I remember two recalls (or TSBs?) for the Fiero when I worked at a Pontiac dealer that blew my mind. The first was a new dipstick. People kept running the car out of oil, so they made a modified dipstick that read full at 5 quarts instead of 4, giving another quart cushion between oil changes. Now THATS engine building. The other was metal replacement timing gears for the noisy nylon ones from the factory. We installed a LOT of those new gears. The 2.5 Grand Ams were particularly noisy for some reason. It's been written that the Fiero should've stayed around long enough to enjoy the benefits of the H.O. Quad 4 engine. I have to agree, despite the problems they also had with that powerplant. It would've pretty much made the 2.8 obsolete, and might've given them a reason to look for something even more powerful to shoe-horn in there. Loved the 2nd generation the best...looked like a Ferarri on a budget.
 
Messages
1,724
Location
Glen Ellyn, IL
I always though the 2-door Citations were sharp looking cars. Unfortunately its the hatchbacks that sold better and are thus most remembered.
 Originally Posted By: Kruse
One of the problems with a Fiero was that it almost weighed as much as a Corvette.
How much does a Corvette weigh? My 1988 Fiero GT with V-6 and automatic weighs 2865 pounds, which would probably be as heavy as it gets for the Fiero. The notchback models and manual trannies weigh less.
 
Messages
39,806
Location
Pottstown, PA
My mother had a two door hatch w/2.8. Great car. Impressive acceleration and excellent economy. She got 220k out of it before she gave it away due to UV dash cracking and the head liner going south. The bike chain let loose somewhere in the advanced mileage. I couldn't place the sound ..so a pro had to fix it with a whole reman trans \:\(
 
Messages
998
Location
Lexington, SC
Ahh, the GM X car. I had a 1980 Buick Skylark two door 2.8 V6 with 4 in the floor. This was the first new car I ever owned. Once I went to Road Atlanta for the SCCA 'Runoffs'. SCCA had a Showroom Stock class for the Citation X-11 with the 2.8. I think the X-11 had a High Output V6, but this class made sure they ran the stock factory set up. They were impressive, but quiet, except for the front wheels squealing in the turns. Can you say Understeer? I know you can! The significance of the GM X car was this was GM's first real attempt at a compact front wheel drive. Yes, I know the Olds Toronado was FWD but that was a tremendous car with a big V8. I liked my Skylark and got 26 mpg and put Pirelli P6's on it.It was the most recalled car GM ever produced....At least up to that time-1980. I still remember thay bragged in the ads that it was the most tested car GM had ever brought out. I wish to state I am still a big GM fan to this day.
 
Messages
8,369
Location
Texas
 Originally Posted By: beanoil
 Originally Posted By: ViragoBry
Little known fact: The Citation's drivetrain could later be found in the Fiero, a car I feel was killed before its prime.
Yes it was. I had two. A 1984 with the Iron Duke 4 cylinder. The drivetrain was virtually identical, right down to the steering arms being tied into the unibody and used for alignment purposes. There were about a million things that could be done to that little car. The aftermarket loved it. I had 17" wheels, P255 Gatorbacks on WEDS wheels, a header, Edelbrock intake, Koni shocks and struts, Herb Adams VSE sway bars (very trick, heim joint adjustment in front) and a body kit. It would just clear a beer can in front. The whale tail was molded into the rear trunk deck and would hold probably 5 gallons of water if it rained. I traded it for a much more powerful 1987 with the tarantula intaked 6 cylinder and a Getrag 5 speed. They were originally labeled as commuter cars for the post gas shortage seventies, and the over dollar a gallon eighties. But we knew better.. they were a poor mans Corvette, especially with a transplanted SBC in it's tail. There was a limited run of t-topped versions run at the end for southern states. I agree, killed before it's prime, and before it's full potential was realized.
Now that brings back memories. I had an '85 Fiero 2M6 SE model. I special ordered this carmto be different. Everybody else got the GT with the V6. I got am SE model and loaded it up fully including the 2.8V6 which made 140hp only in 1985. It dropped to 130/135 later years for whatever reason. Anyhow - loved the car and I remember surprising a lot of IROC-Z's in the day!
 
Messages
8,369
Location
Texas
 Originally Posted By: Kruse
 Originally Posted By: beanoil
But we knew better.. they were a poor mans Corvette
One of the problems with a Fiero was that it almost weighed as much as a Corvette.
Not true. As a Corvette owner and previous Fiero V6 owner I can attest.
 
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