I have driven a Fiero since 1992, and for the first 17 years I had an '84 SE. When I drove it to the junk yard in 2009 it was still running fine, but it was coming apart from the dreaded under-the-plastic rust. A kind lady was nice enough to rear-end me, and I took the insurance money to Chicago to buy the car I always wanted, an '88 4cyl 5spd. I had not gotten a good look under the car before I bought it, so I missed the fact that someone had bottomed out this poor car several times, resulting in damage that turned into bad rust (as in disappearing metal) in critical places like the transaxle mount/rear corner of the engine cradle. I eventually resorted to zip ties to keep things from falling out (or dragging), and stopped taking extended road trips. Just before New Year's I hit a piece of concrete in the center of my lane that tore off the metal protecting the coolant pipes in the friont, caved-in and punctured the gas tank, and apparently broke the engine cradle loose on the firewall side. It still looks as pretty as ever, with all body panels solid, (just some scuffs on the bumpers), working headlights and bunches of replaced parts. It would make a terrific parts car for someone with a beat-to-hell body but sound undercarriage, or maybe someone could help me weld, glue, cut and paste this poor beast back together. My goal is to end up with a car just like this one, only solid enough for road trips, capable of taking and holding alignment. Many Happy Returns of the Day, VOS
Welcome to the Forum! Your mechanical aptitude will decide how to proceed. You could find a 88 with a blown motor and transfer everything to that car, but if you have to hire someone to do it, the price will be hard to take.
Thanks for the reaponse! (and from someone just one state over). My mechanical aptitude is the least of my problems. Far more troubling are the issues of a place to work (indoors), and keep the car up in the air for an extended period, welding equipment and someone who knows how to use it, someone who knows the tricks and can assist and keep me motivated, (I'm turning sixty this year, and I keep hoping life is going to get easier, Hah!). Also there is the "small" problem that a gas tank and engine cradle may cost as much as $850. I remember too well when that would buy any one of dozens of Fiero's on the market. Supposedly, there was an '88 4cyl automatic in Danville, IL a few days ago, but my request for information has not received a response. Fiero's do suprisingly well in the snow, don't they? Just watch out for the under-stear on the "old" ones. MHRD, VIctor
I think you will be able to find a rust-free car that does not run for $800 (complete with good fuel tank and cradle). You may have to drive a bit to get it, but it is much better than patching rust. Spend some time with the SEARCH function on this site......there is a LOT more here than it would appear. As for motivation, you need only to post a few comments about getting lazy, and forum members will jump all over it.