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1996 Geo Metro

  • 1996 Geo Metro Base Hatchback

    Base Hatchback

    • MAX MPG
      49
    • SEATS
      4
    • HP/TORQUE
      55/58
    • ENGINE
      1.0L I3
    • MSRP
      $8,380
  • 1996 Geo Metro Base Sedan

    Base Sedan

    • MAX MPG
      43
    • SEATS
      4
    • HP/TORQUE
      70/74
    • ENGINE
      1.3L I4
    • MSRP
      $9,330
  • 1996 Geo Metro LSI Hatchback

    LSI Hatchback

    • MAX MPG
      49
    • SEATS
      4
    • HP/TORQUE
      55/58
    • ENGINE
      1.0L I3
    • MSRP
      $8,780
  • 1996 Geo Metro LSI Sedan

    LSI Sedan

    • MAX MPG
      43
    • SEATS
      4
    • HP/TORQUE
      70/74
    • ENGINE
      1.3L I4
    • MSRP
      $9,730
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  • Review

1996 Geo Metro Review

Decent, but there are better alternatives.

Reviewed by Automotive on

Overview

The 1996 Geo Metro marks a rebadged version of the Suzuki Cultus. It launched in North America in 1989 and has evolved over the years with the Cultus and its siblings. Before the Metro debuted, General Motors used models derived from the Cultus under other nameplates like the Chevrolet Sprint.

The first use of the “Metro? name appeared in 1987 on a particular model of the Chevrolet Sprint that has a naturally aspirated engine. The first Geo Metro went into production in late 1988 and officially falls into the second generation of the Cultus.

The Range

Body Styles: three-door hatchback, sedan
Engines: 1.3-liter I-4, 1.0-liter I-3
Transmissions: three-speed automatic, five-speed manual
Models: Geo Metro, Geo Metro LSi

What's New

The biggest change evident in the 1996 Geo Metro concerns the larger engine that now provides an option for the base model. Other than this, some tiny details in the car change. The 1996 Geo Metro gets a zoned rear window defroster that clears the center of the rear backlight first. The base coupes of the Metro get dual exterior mirrors, and the LSi coupes get body-colored bumpers and hubcaps.

Exterior

The biggest change evident in the 1996 Geo Metro concerns the larger engine that now provides an option for the base model. Other than this, some tiny details in the car change. The 1996 Geo Metro gets a zoned rear window defroster that clears the center of the rear backlight first. The base coupes of the Metro get dual exterior mirrors, and the LSi coupes get body-colored bumpers and hubcaps.

Exterior

The 1996 Geo Metro comes from the GM Design Center, so it takes some styling cues from GM cars such as the Pontiac Sunfire and Chevrolet Cavalier. The Metro uses the Suzuki M platform, and its wheelbase measures 93.1 inches.

The length of the hatchback totals 149.4 inches, while the length of the sedan measures 164 inches. The width of the 1996 Geo Metro reaches 62.6 inches and it has a height of 54.7 inches, while the sedan has a height of 55.4 inches.

Interior

The Geo Metro offers just about adequate legroom up front, but not enough of it at the rear. In fact, the rear seat lacks so much legroom that the front seats need to be pushed forward in order to get four adults inside. Moreover, the rear seat feels firm, flat, and uncomfortable.

The controls up front seem easy to see and reach, thanks to the convenient and well-thought-out dashboard design. However, the steering wheel sits a little too high for comfortable driving, and it offers no adjustment feature.

Visibility inside the 1996 Geo Metro looks great in all directions, thanks to the tall windows and slim roof pillars. Cargo space seems good too. Despite the constraints in space, the Metro gives a surprisingly airy feeling in its cabin.

Performance & Handling

The 1996 Metro hatchback gets a one-liter, three-cylinder engine that delivers 55 horsepower and 58 lb-ft of torque. Sedans get a 1.3-liter, four-cylinder engine, although it remains optional for the hatchbacks too. This engine delivers 70 horsepower and 74 lb-ft of torque.

The lightness of the 1996 Geo Metro seems evident when driven. The suspension gets jarred when the Metro goes over bumps, and the kickbacks can be felt through the steering wheel. Cornering grip of the Metro feels modest at best, and it experiences a lot of body lean. The best engine/transmission combination for the Metro remains the four-cylinder engine and manual shift, which provides a lively city and highway driving experience.

Safety

The 1996 Geo Metro gets a four-star rating for passenger and driver safety in frontal-impact tests conducted by the NHTSA.

EPA Fuel Economy

Geo Metro 1.3-liter I-4, automatic: 30/34 mpg city/highway

You'll Like

  • Good fuel economy
  • Maneuverable
  • Good visibility

You Won't Like

  • Lack of passenger space
  • Noisy engines
  • Poor ride quality

Sum Up

Decent, but there are better alternatives.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Ford Aspire
  • Hyundai Accent
  • Suzuki Swift
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