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Hopeful new member - please educate me on Fieros by samxerxesn
Started on: 02-06-2021 01:31 AM
Replies: 68 (984 views)
Last post by: skywurz on 03-28-2021 06:28 PM
samxerxesn
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Report this Post02-06-2021 01:31 AM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Hello!

I've wanted a Fiero GT for years now. It started when I got a summer job at OfficeMax and would pass a beautiful '88 GT tin-top every day on my way to work. One day it had a for-sale sign on it and I was over the moon! Sadly though, it was just a pretty face, and even at its incredibly low price I couldn't justify it in my position. Without the time to rebuild it I would have to pass on it.
Ronald Finger's Fiero rebuild series on youtube has only emboldened my passion, and I want to search for one again.

Now I think I can afford a Fiero, and I've found some options, but I thought I should get as much info as I could. I have some questions and I'd really appreciate some help.

When was the Fiero Suspension geometry upgraded? I've only heard that the '88 GT and Formula had the proper suspension that the car was always supposed to have, but would an '87 or '86 GT also have upgraded suspension?

What is the handling like? I own an MR2 Spyder, so I know how to handle a mid-engine car, but is there anything special about the Fiero GT? Some say they're fine, but a friend of mine says he was riding in one that just spun out for no reason at an intersection.

What parts can I easily check on a Fiero to make sure it's safe to drive home and not just another pretty face? Last time I had a shop look it over for me because I was still a novice wrencher, but I have more experience now and I probably can't drive it the hours to have my shop check on it. Can I easily check things like the state of the fuel injector, intake, shift linkages, etc? Would it be rude of me to ask to compression check it?

I have to admit, I don't plan to keep my Fiero stock. I'd love to put a supercharger on it, or V8 swap it, or both (maybe electric when the battery tech gets there). How does the community at large feel about these things, and how widely are the parts available (every now and then I see the same CL ad for an M62 supercharger for the fiero V6 pop up, but I don't see it right now)?

Is there any difference other than body panels between the fastback and notchback bodies?

I found an '87 GT for sale with really low miles (60K). I'm worried that's too low for a car from the 80's. What are the chances that it's sat its way into poor health? I'd need to drive it two hours to get home, so I can't risk loosing an axle on the highway because the boots turned to dust.

How hard is it to get a factory spoiler and attach it to the deck lid? I just really love the way the car looks with the factory spoiler regardless of function. I've heard that you can adjust the tensioner on the hood to account for the weight shift caused by the spoiler. Is this true?

Is there anything I should immediately upgrade on the car for the sake of its health?

Lastly, what is the Fiero community like? Every summer I organize the MR2 BBQ for my local MR2 community. Is there a similar event for the fiero?

If I think of anything else I'll add that, and please feel free to offer any other info that I didn't mention but you wish you'd known when you first bought a Fiero. Thank you all for the help!

-Sam X. N.
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hyperv6
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Report this Post02-06-2021 08:32 AM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Hi

Suspensions were upgraded in 88 only. They do drive better but some parts are difficult to find.

The 84-87 can be corrected. They have under steer and bump steer. They lack a rear sway bar and need a better front bar. Also you can put stiffer bushings in the rear control arms and sub frame to remove much of the bump steer. Note while noticeable it is not that bad. Just drive one and judge it for your self.

Gripe is good just on uneven roads it can dart a little on the 84-87 and steering is heavier.

Pull the carpet in the trunk corners for rust. You are in CA so you should be good if it is a CA car. Check for interior damage as original interiors are difficult to find.

Check for cracked exhaust manifolds. You will hear it. Check for rear side plugs rusted in. No having a compression test is not rude. Get it up on a lift look under the car.

Fuel system is an easy service. Nothing to check but you can change things like injectors very easy.

Yes if you pull the body off the sub frames are all the same. Just springs and slight tuning are different on a GT or coupe with a WS6 suspension.

As for mileage most low mile cars are great. Keep in mind even with low miles most were driven on weekends and stored well. Mine has 40k likes and runs like new. It is my weekend toy and I take care of it.

I just put one back on the road that sat for 20 years inside. We did replace the fuel system and brake system but today it drives just like the 35k miles it has.

As for losing a CV joint that can happen on any car. They also generally are making noise long before they fail.

Body parts and spoilers are not hard to find.GT tail lamps can be expensive.

Yes you can adjust the deck lit. It is a knuckle buster. Most just add a Rodney Dickman strut he sells on the web.

Upgrades are a matter of condition and need. Nothing critical from factory needs fixed.

Community is strong in the mid west with some pockets in other areas. Most of these were sold in the Midwest hence the stronger clubs.

I know a group used to meet yearly at Mission Bay in San Diego.

My best advice is to get the best condition car you can. Lower the miles the better. There are a good number of good low mile cars that will save you chasing parts and spending more to restore than you would just pay for a good car. Too many bargains end up as money pits. Not just Fieros but many collector cars in general. The market for collector cars is getting soft due to the economy and virus. May be a hood buying time.

Note many people put these cars into good long term storage expecting to make money on them. A number of them come out every year in good shape and at a good price.

As for engine changes don’t get crazy. Just drop a LS v8 in and be done with it. The weight is good on the all aluminum engine also very easy to get parts for it. If you chase some of the other engines you will have to fab up or deal with other issues.

The 3800 SC was a good swap too but they are harder to find in low miles in good condition anymore. They can be found but don’t go for a high mile version.

Turbos have heat issues to deal with. Also don’t SC the stock 2.8. It needs O rings or you will pop head gaskets with much boost.
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cvxjet
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Report this Post02-06-2021 11:17 AM Click Here to See the Profile for cvxjetClick Here to Email cvxjetSend a Private Message to cvxjetEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I have owned my 1985 SE V6 since new......Over the last 20 years I have done a number of mods to it but still a Fiero. I live in San Leandro 25 miles west of you...If you'd like you could come by and I could show you my car and what to look for. Also, I belong to the Golden Gate Fiero club......

The Fiero was originally set up to be "Safe" handling (For average driver) whereas the MR2s were set up right off for the enthusiast driver....SO a little suspension tuning can really bring the Fiero around.

Let me know if you are interested in coming by.
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dremu
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Report this Post02-06-2021 02:06 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dremuClick Here to Email dremuSend a Private Message to dremuEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
To your point about community, there are a number of us in the Bay Area. I keep meaning to go to the local meetings https://goldengatefieros.org/ but haven't. Two years ago we went on the Vine Run with I think fourteen Fieros (and, oddly enough, an MR2 -- was that you?) which was great fun. On a purely personal level there are several members here who are very helpful (for instance, I saw cvxjet posted; I've met him in person and we had a good time talking shop.)

Speaking of talking, I imagine you get a bit of this with the Spyder, but with a Fiero, you have to allow extra time at the gas station and parking lots. Surprisingly often, you will get accosted by random passerby asking "Is that a *Fiero*?", generally followed by "I used to have one" or "I knew someone who used to have one." =))

One observation is that an older car like the Fiero may not be a good daily driver. Depending on your MR2's age, you may be familiar with the challenges of parts availability and having to wait to fix stuff, so having another car as a parts runner or just a way to get to work can be advantageous. Also, finding a shop that wants to work on the car at all, never mind one that's qualified, can be challenging, so you'll want to consider your mechanical skills, space to work, etc, to work on it yourself.

The Fiero is pretty well understood and documented at this point, so it's a matter of setting your expectations, deciding whether an orphaned conversation piece is the car you want to drive. Don't expect it to run like a brand new car (or even an older Toyota, ahem).

Engine changes in CA can be a challenge due to smog requirements. That can be an expensive rabbit hole of hassles and time, again, especially if it's a daily.

As regarding "upgrades" in general (quotes applied for a reason!), my past vehicle experience has led me to the maxim of "buy what you want from the git-go, don't try and upgrade a turd by polishing it. It's still a turd." I enjoy my Fiero, but if I wanted a Corvette ... I'd have bought a Corvette.

-- A

[This message has been edited by dremu (edited 02-06-2021).]

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Report this Post02-06-2021 02:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BoozemanClick Here to Email BoozemanSend a Private Message to BoozemanEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Lots of good advice given here. Buy a Fiero - you'll love it. This forum has been indispensible to me in terms of technical advice. The only thing I would add is that you need to be very careful when putting a Fiero on a lift (or letting someone else put it on a lift). There are coolant tubes that run down the outside bottom edges of the car that connect the engine in back with the radiator in the front. One of the most comon preventable sources of damage to a Fiero is some mechanic swinging the arms of a lift under the car and lifting it without looking first, thereby crushing the coolant tubes and completely wrecking the cooling system. PITA finding and replacing coolant tubes!

Good luck!

------------------

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hyperv6
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Report this Post02-06-2021 02:44 PM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Yes the owner experience.

I bought mine new and was treated like a celebrity. Then as the car faded in image I was treated as a fool. Today most people are really cool about it. They like above either wanted one, had one or knew someone who had one.

Also I have mine a little modified and some really have no idea what it is.

Note you will have some haters. They are not common but they are still there. There are also a few odd owners too. I have run into some who try to tell you they raced there cars professionally and or the car is the next thing to a La Ferrari but you will have that no matter the make.
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Report this Post02-06-2021 10:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for skywurzClick Here to visit skywurz's HomePageSend a Private Message to skywurzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
The bay area has an ok community. Could just be COVID but the Golden Gate Fiero club has not had as many events as they used to. Ive been on their mailing list for over 10 years and even went to some club meetings in 06-07. They would have a monthly meeting pre covid. Met dremu today i see he chimed in above. Great guy! Also some good guys up in Sac. I doubt you will see any tech sessions anytime soon. Used to be v8 swap tech sessions and so on.

So what about you? Do you have mechanic experience? Willing to get you hands dirty?

Imho that black 87 is overpriced.
Edit:
Also they don't post photos of the tail lights of that GT. Most GT tail light lenses are hosed they use 2 materials that expand at different rates (common on most of the interior parts too) so the tail lights are often delaminated or cracked. Luckily recently Keith Goodyear has brought back replacement lenses but they are not cheap (amazing quality). Keep this in mind when searching. Also keep in mind that a lot of our parts suppliers are getting older and are prime to retire. We have lost lots of great resources over the past few years.

Edit:edit:
In my experience as far as the community stance on mods you will find the purests and the guys who will do just about anything to their car.
Im a practical purest. Mostly because im in CA and don't want to fight about engine swaps. Also I mostly run the 2.5l iron dukes... The 4cyl.. from the mail truck... Im proud of it. Wasn't at first because people would engine shame and say you should just do a v8 swap and such... but you know what. It runs. And it doesn't get half bad gas mileage either. I have vehicles that were designed to go fast and stop fast and turn. I don't need my Fiero to do these things... Oh yeah and if you have not go and look at the performance specs of Fieros. Guessing you have never driven one. Its not fast. If you want fast and sporty you may want to spend your cash elsewhere.

But if you want an interesting looking car that nobody knows WTH they are or know how to work on them.

[This message has been edited by skywurz (edited 02-06-2021).]

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samxerxesn
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Report this Post02-06-2021 11:44 PM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Wow, some incredible replies here! Thank you so much for all of the advice and help. I'll usethis post to reply to everything I can.

I'm more than happy to get my hands dirty repairing and modifying this car. I've done a couple engine swaps and I replaced the 5 speed transmission in my MR2 with a 6 speed that has a factory helical LSD.

The Fiero wouldn't be a daily, Though I'd drive it more than just on the weekends, probably swapping out between the spyder and fiero. I also own a Subaru outback LL Bean to help pick up parts.

I'm aware of the Fiero's performance statistics and that doesn't bother me. The MR2 isn't fast either, and I made it slower by changing to a transmission with a taller final drive. For me it's just that, well, I really like them. The fiero is this fun blip in American car history and I really want to turn it into something fun and my own, preferably with a V8/Supercharger :P
It's the same way I feel about the MR2, and the profile of the car is just something I can't get over. Not to mention POP-UPUPANDDOWNHEADLIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHTS (sorry but I had to)

I do all of my own work on my MR2 for the most part because it too has issues with being broken just by being lifted incorrectly. With the exception of jobs that require specialized machinery, I can do most things. As far as parts for the MR2 go I'm lucky to be well connected within the community, but it isn't uncommon to have to shop around to find things. I'm sure the Fiero will be a bigger challenge, and I'm up for that. I will probably start off with correcting the handling and changing it to match what I want.

Thank you so much for the offer cvxjet! I don't know if I can take you up on the offer just yet, but I'll keep it in mind.

I don't know how skywurz found exactly the post I was talking about, but impressive! I agree that it's overpriced, but it still looks good to me and the miles are very low. I personally think it's worth going to see the owner and talking to them to see if I can get a better price. If not, then it is not meant to be.

I'm thrilled to find such a great community! If golden gate Fieros goes on another drive I'll be sure to join up! monthly meetings seems a bit sparse, but with that being said you are all more than welcome to join us weekly at MR2sdays when covid dies down! (incredible name, I know) https://www.mr2sday.info

You can also all come along to the MR2 and Friends BBQ. I organize it on facebook and the forums, and I'd be happy to post it up here as well.

I'll keep you all updated on how this Fiero GT works out
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Report this Post02-07-2021 09:53 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dremuClick Here to Email dremuSend a Private Message to dremuEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by samxerxesn:
Not to mention POP-UPUPANDDOWNHEADLIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGHTS (sorry but I had to)


When I brought mine home, I texted a photo of it to a friend with the caption "The 80's called. They want their popup headlights back."

Instant response: "Is that a Fiero?"

and then two minutes later

"#85 on Edmunds Worst Cars Of All Time" [something like that, this is from memory.]

I laughed. He actually gets it, he had a Fiat Spyder for some years I helped him redo the top end on. He only buys modern cars now

-- A
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skywurz
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Report this Post02-08-2021 12:33 AM Click Here to See the Profile for skywurzClick Here to visit skywurz's HomePageSend a Private Message to skywurzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by dremu:


When I brought mine home, I texted a photo of it to a friend with the caption "The 80's called. They want their popup headlights back."

Instant response: "Is that a Fiero?"

and then two minutes later

"#85 on Edmunds Worst Cars Of All Time" [something like that, this is from memory.]

I laughed. He actually gets it, he had a Fiat Spyder for some years I helped him redo the top end on. He only buys modern cars now

-- A


Lol
Pretty sure i have an email to my buddy in 06 saying "the 80s called and it wants its sports car back"
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Report this Post02-08-2021 02:21 AM Click Here to See the Profile for liv4GodSend a Private Message to liv4GodEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I find the Fiero to be an excellent daily driver. Its fast enough and nimble enough to enjoy the drive, but not fast enough to get out of control easily. As mentioned previously, from the factory its got understeer but that helps avoid drop throttle oversteer situations.
Even with the V6 it's not bad on gas with a manual. I've been daily driving my 86 coupe 150 miles a day commuting in and out of the bay area I average 27-28 mpg and I'm generally going 70-80 range. I've gotten up to 32 mpg traveling down to LA. The V6 can have a nice sound too it too with a high flow catalytic converter and/or muffler. You can definitely enjoy the car in stock form.

On the other hand, one of the cool things about the Fiero is it has plenty of potential to far exceed its factory performance. I V8 swapped my 88 Formula and it is fast and stable even at speed with minimal changes to the suspension. Its a great platform to make what you want out of it, or just enjoy as is.

Here's my take on daily driving the Fiero:
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Dennis LaGrua
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Report this Post02-08-2021 06:19 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Dennis LaGruaClick Here to Email Dennis LaGruaSend a Private Message to Dennis LaGruaEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I would be cautious about having a Fiero as a daily driver, but with TLC and preventive maintenance, I guess some owners do it.
If I may quote something that was here a while ago.
"Pontiac Fieros, making mechanics out of ordinary men for the past 30 years"

------------------
" THE BLACK PARALYZER" -87GT 3800SC Series III engine, custom ZZP /Frozen Boost Intercooler setup, 3.4" Pulley, Northstar TB, LS1 MAF, 3" Spintech/Hedman Exhaust, P-log Manifold, Autolite 104's, MSD wires, Custom CAI, 4T65eHD w. custom axles, Champion Radiator, S10 Brake Booster, HP Tuners VCM Suite.
"THE COLUSSUS"
87GT - ALL OUT 3.4L Turbocharged engine, Garrett Hybrid Turbo, MSD ign., modified TH125H
" ON THE LOOSE WITHOUT THE JUICE "

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dremu
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Report this Post02-08-2021 10:14 AM Click Here to See the Profile for dremuClick Here to Email dremuSend a Private Message to dremuEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by skywurz:Pretty sure i have an email to my buddy in 06 saying "the 80s called and it wants its sports car back"


The Fiero is definitely the 80's with the knob going to 11.

 
quote
Originally posted by Dennis LaGrua:"Pontiac Fieros, making mechanics out of ordinary men for the past 30 years"


Now that's funny! (Sadly true *and* funny.)

-- A

[This message has been edited by dremu (edited 02-08-2021).]

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WKDFIRO
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Report this Post02-09-2021 06:06 AM Click Here to See the Profile for WKDFIROClick Here to Email WKDFIROSend a Private Message to WKDFIROEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Keep an ear out for the Coast Run in the fall. Probably after this Covid and after a portion of PCH is fished out of the ocean. There you can experience a solid weekend of FIERO where you can ask a crowd of seriously Fiero-ill people who love their Fieros about Hondas...okay Fieros. Want to just stand in the parking lot of the nice hotel close enough to hear the waves and talk about Fieros until 2 am and the fog has rolled in and warm hotel rooms are available but you just want to hang outside because the parking lot is full of Fieros and owners who have done just about everything that can be done to Fieros? Its great road trip to take.

Or if Fall is just too far away, there is the Northwest Fiero Fest in nearly a hundred days up in Washington state.

BTW Save yourself the heartache of a V8 in California unless you're into a special kind
Red Tape pain.

Welcome to the family and we hope to see you soon and answer (then argue amongst ourselves) all your questions!
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theogre
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Report this Post02-09-2021 10:48 AM Click Here to See the Profile for theogreClick Here to visit theogre's HomePageSend a Private Message to theogreEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
⚠️ Warning:
Do Not believe most YT FB and other videos how to "fix" Fiero and many other items.
Many Videos are examples of what Not to Do if you plain to keep the car on the road or even sell a car.
Worse, many are Very Dangerous and can kill you doing a job and/or after a job is done.

Related Example: Most videos how to solder wires and plumbing often haves problems and leave you stranded on the highway often at night or w/ a flood.

See my Cave, Safe Jacking, Jacking to Clear Engine, etc.

------------------
Dr. Ian Malcolm: Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should.
(Jurassic Park)


The Ogre's Fiero Cave

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Kitskaboodle
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Report this Post02-09-2021 10:49 AM Click Here to See the Profile for KitskaboodleClick Here to Email KitskaboodleSend a Private Message to KitskaboodleEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If you are looking at a very low mileage Fiero, you probably will have less worries
and will probably find less issues. However, if you do end up passing on the car
you mentioned and you end up looking at any Fiero over 100K, you will want to
look it over very carefully. Why? Because Fiero's tend to be abused animals.
Trust me on this. The Fiero is the VW Bug abused animal of the 80's, understand?

Words of wisdom: If you ever see an ad for a Fiero and it says, "Needs TLC"
....it's pretty much thrashed. Or, as I like to say, "Move on, nothing to see here".
Kit
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Report this Post02-09-2021 11:44 AM Click Here to See the Profile for skywurzClick Here to visit skywurz's HomePageSend a Private Message to skywurzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Kitskaboodle:

Words of wisdom: If you ever see an ad for a Fiero and it says, "Needs TLC"
....it's pretty much thrashed. Or, as I like to say, "Move on, nothing to see here".
Kit


I think its more about what kind of project you are looking for. What kind of time you are willing to put into it. Except pass on wrecked or salvaged. These don't bang out well. Unless its stupid cheap and that's the project you want (that's my project)

I would suggest making sure the car is complete and original. Lots i have seen lots of jerry rigged BS in these cars. Shops don't know how to work on them right and neither do most people. Also know what your rare parts are and commonly broken parts and check their condition. There's nothing wrong with a 200k Fiero project if you plan on replacing all of the suspension bushings, rubber hoses, bearings, and making sure the engine is sound but prep to rebuild it unless it was rebuilt with proof recently.

Rare/hard to replace
Coolant Tubes
87/88 Gas tank
GT tail lights
Back windows
Power mirrors
Paint( you will never paint it like factory unless you pull all of the body panels... And now you need a new roof(I've killed every roof I've ever pulled))

Ill come up with more. I have 3 cars worth of parts strewn around here and just trying to think of what i don't have a lot of or was a PITA to pull.

But honestly id personally not pay over 1k for a Fiero. I love the car but like most of the community im cheap. I also do all of my own work and have plenty of other modes of transportation. I also have a general Idea of what im getting into because I've had a half dozen or so. Like i keep saying its all about the project you want to take on.

Edit:
More parts
Shift surround. Those can be a PITA to find in good condition.
The other Bezels

While not the end of the world still a PITA check the steering column to make sure its not loos by pulling down at 7 o'clock and up at 1 to see if there is movement. Its just one pet peeve of mine.

Also its asking a lot but maybe try to do some more research on whats original on what models of Fiero? I have seen GTs with the wrong steering wheels and such. Just allows you to find red flags. Sunroof but the fender tag does not have sun roof now you have to question how well of a job they did installing it and if its Fiero parts or some kit you cant get parts for. Headrest speaker seats but its a 86 or newer with B pillar speakers. 88 suspension in the front but not 88 on the vin... stuff like that.

Edit Edit
If its an 87 or 88 Check for vin tags. Every body part on these years had vin tags. Match them up. If they are missing that is a red flag if there is a mix that is a red flag.

Edit Edit Edit.

Here are some price guides. Some people will disagree with them... But also some people think Fieros are the the rarest thing in the world and each part is worth its weight in gold. There are also some people who think they are Lincoln or Napoleon.

http://www.fiero.net/price.html
https://www.fierofocus.com/fiero_value.html

and while im giving out free links
Here is the best info on Parts interchange i have found http://www.fierofocus.com/f...ils/PartsManual.html
and here is a link to find parts at wrecking yards (not pnp) https://www.car-part.com

theogre chimed in so i don't need to add his valuable info.

Kitchen's in the basement. Pans are in the attic.

[This message has been edited by skywurz (edited 02-09-2021).]

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cvxjet
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Report this Post02-09-2021 12:34 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cvxjetClick Here to Email cvxjetSend a Private Message to cvxjetEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
If you don't grab the Fiero you are looking at there are more "Fish in the sea"....Get one with no big rust issues, or serious....impact damage.

Check your PMs (At the bottom of the forum index page)
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Report this Post02-09-2021 04:07 PM Click Here to See the Profile for theogreClick Here to visit theogre's HomePageSend a Private Message to theogreEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by skywurz:
If its an 87 or 88 Check for vin tags. Every body part on these years had vin tags. Match them up. If they are missing that is a red flag if there is a mix that is a red flag.
Yes, starting for 87 model year DOT required most to all body panels, Engine Cradle, and more to have VIN tags. Engine and Trans have last ~ ½ of VIN stamped into them.
Many are hard to impossible to read like one on cradle because oil etc. gets on them.

If a panel was replace and bought thru GM etc then VIN tag is marked as replacement part w/o VIN number.
Mismatched # or No Tag then used/stolen panel used by who(m)ever and a Red Flag needed more attention before buying.
Either case the car was wrecked and need inspection at a good shop.

Side Note: DOT Might have stop this. I've seen No VIN tags on most panels from any brand in last 10+ years. Most VIN tags are/were installed so anyone can easily see them by opening the hood etc.

[This message has been edited by theogre (edited 02-09-2021).]

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David Hambleton
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Report this Post02-09-2021 09:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for David HambletonClick Here to Email David HambletonSend a Private Message to David HambletonEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Sam! Welcome! Here's my long-term ownership experience:

I ordered the 84 SE 2.5 litre 4 speed (on the right in the pic) in Sep '83, rec'd it in May '84 and 287,000 kilometers (about 178,000 miles) later am still daily driving it except in wet salty winter weather.

I bought the red '86 2.5 litre 5 speed coupe in Feb 2011 as an alternate daily driver. It had about 120,000 kilometers on it (about 75,000 miles) was very solid, but needed lots of cosmetic refresh (and a head bolt, then an engine, lol!).

Having two daily drivers is perfect since I can affect repairs at my own pace (usually slow) and still have a Fiero for daily use.

I bought the '88 Formula 2.8 liter 5 speed in 2008 with 5,200 kilometers (3,200 miles) on it. It had been stored indoors and exercised occasionally over the years and was in showroom condition.
Contrary to popular advice, I didn't replace anything until failure. So far a couple of calipers, the brake master cylinder, the distributor and a few minor things have been replaced.

The 84 has the WS6 sport suspension, so it handles fine as far as I'm concerned. The '86 base coupe is a little soft, but ok. The '88 might be better than the '84 with WS6 but in normal driving it's not particularly noticeable.

I've never found that the 2.5 litre engines couldn't keep up with traffic; if there's no traffic, it doesn't matter anyway. I find the 2.8 litre more than adequate and it snarls nicely at higher RPMs. Your results/wishes may vary...

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Report this Post02-10-2021 12:22 AM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by theogre:

[QUOTE]Originally posted by skywurz:
If its an 87 or 88 Check for vin tags. Every body part on these years had vin tags. Match them up. If they are missing that is a red flag if there is a mix that is a red flag.
Yes, starting for 87 model year DOT required most to all body panels, Engine Cradle, and more to have VIN tags. Engine and Trans have last ~ ½ of VIN stamped into them.
Many are hard to impossible to read like one on cradle because oil etc. gets on them.

If a panel was replace and bought thru GM etc then VIN tag is marked as replacement part w/o VIN number.
Mismatched # or No Tag then used/stolen panel used by who(m)ever and a Red Flag needed more attention before buying.
Either case the car was wrecked and need inspection at a good shop.

Side Note: DOT Might have stop this. I've seen No VIN tags on most panels from any brand in last 10+ years. Most VIN tags are/were installed so anyone can easily see them by opening the hood etc.

[/QUOTE]

I haven't noticed vins on most panels either. I have a few extra panels for my '01 MR2 just in case, but They don't have vins on them.
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Report this Post02-10-2021 12:30 AM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Wow, more great replies! Thank you!

The guy with the black 87 near me never replied. I went on the facebook fiero classifieds list and found this:

[url=https://www.facebook.com/groups/766198480213030/permalink/1775085099324358/?sale_post_id=1775085099324358&referralSurface=messenger_lightspeed_banner&referralCode=messenger_banner][/url]

It's rougher around the edges and further away, but similar low mileage, actually well priced, and he was at least responsive and willing to help by getting it smogged. It needs a few things quickly, like the hood release latch, but overall it looks like something I could handle.

The carfax checks out. Nothing due on the vehicle, Odometer was consistent, nothing done to it past vehicle repair. It needs a few things here and there and a spoiler (I think it completes the profile nicely) but I'm excited to see it this weekend.

My current daily is a convertible so I'm happy to have a tin-top.

What is everyone else's more experienced opinion?
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Report this Post02-10-2021 01:07 AM Click Here to See the Profile for skywurzClick Here to visit skywurz's HomePageSend a Private Message to skywurzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by samxerxesn:

Wow, more great replies! Thank you!

The guy with the black 87 near me never replied. I went on the facebook fiero classifieds list and found this:

[url=https://www.facebook.com/groups/766198480213030/permalink/1775085099324358/?sale_post_id=1775085099324358&referralSurface=messenger_lightspeed_banner&referralCode=messenger_banner][/url]

It's rougher around the edges and further away, but similar low mileage, actually well priced, and he was at least responsive and willing to help by getting it smogged. It needs a few things quickly, like the hood release latch, but overall it looks like something I could handle.

The carfax checks out. Nothing due on the vehicle, Odometer was consistent, nothing done to it past vehicle repair. It needs a few things here and there and a spoiler (I think it completes the profile nicely) but I'm excited to see it this weekend.

My current daily is a convertible so I'm happy to have a tin-top.

What is everyone else's more experienced opinion?


Bad paperwork run...


Also did you just say tin top?... You know what the car is made of right?


Edit

The wheels are wrong for a GT and the offset is suspect I'm not sure those are Correct... I have some silver GT basket wheels id give you a good price on... But that paperwork is not good.

Edit Edit
Assuming its out of CA DMV and its a CA original car (you have the car fax has it been registered in the last 6-10 years?) You must check the door vin tag. CA DMV will need a vin check at dmv if the door tag is illegible they will refer you to CHP. You will want to pull the drivers dash speaker before the chp visit. CHP is appointment only and for me was 2 months out. You have to be referred by DMV. So you will have to trailer it to DMV and if sent to chp trailer it to CHP. Because its a bill of sale only its recommend you get a bonded title as the original owner could show up and request their car.

Edit edit edit

Oh they are also going to want a statement of facts at DMV. "They want to know why the car fell off the system and what it has been doing". If you answer this wrong they will require a break and lamp inspection.

[This message has been edited by skywurz (edited 02-10-2021).]

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Report this Post02-10-2021 04:27 PM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by skywurz:


Bad paperwork run...


Also did you just say tin top?... You know what the car is made of right?


Edit

The wheels are wrong for a GT and the offset is suspect I'm not sure those are Correct... I have some silver GT basket wheels id give you a good price on... But that paperwork is not good.

Edit Edit
Assuming its out of CA DMV and its a CA original car (you have the car fax has it been registered in the last 6-10 years?) You must check the door vin tag. CA DMV will need a vin check at dmv if the door tag is illegible they will refer you to CHP. You will want to pull the drivers dash speaker before the chp visit. CHP is appointment only and for me was 2 months out. You have to be referred by DMV. So you will have to trailer it to DMV and if sent to chp trailer it to CHP. Because its a bill of sale only its recommend you get a bonded title as the original owner could show up and request their car.

Edit edit edit

Oh they are also going to want a statement of facts at DMV. "They want to know why the car fell off the system and what it has been doing". If you answer this wrong they will require a break and lamp inspection.



haha, I know the car is made of fiberglass, but glass-top just makes it sound like it has a sunroof anyways.

I didn't realize these wheels weren't an option for the GT. I was planning to change the wheels anyways. Feel free to PM a picture of those wheels.

I'm not too frightened of the lack of title. It's because the car was bought at auction. My MR2 had the same situation and it worked out fine. I was going to drive the car back home from Chula Vista, but you make it sound like I won't get far. I suppose that if the door vin is illegible then I'll have to pass on the vehicle. You can all see the carfax here:

https://drive.google.com/fi..._Zu/view?usp=sharing
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Oregon88
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Report this Post02-11-2021 04:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Oregon88Send a Private Message to Oregon88Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I love the MR2 vs FIero debate. We all logically know which one wins, but kudos for you for wanting both cars!

I would love to also have an MR2, but we need pictures of your MR2 man!

its hard to say sometimes from an ad. You should take a buddy and go drive the thing!

the lost title application process isn't as scary as you'd think. Go to the DMV and tell them what you plan to do, someone will give you all the forms you need. Then when you buy it, make sure you have all the information the forms require.

I just bought a 69 chevelle with no title and it was very quick and simple in Oregon.

I should say though that my dad works at the DMV and he gave me all the forms i needed

Good luck brother!

[This message has been edited by Oregon88 (edited 02-11-2021).]

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Report this Post02-11-2021 05:28 PM Click Here to See the Profile for IMSA GTClick Here to Email IMSA GTSend a Private Message to IMSA GTEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Oregon88:


.....the lost title application process isn't as scary as you'd think.



Tell that to his state. Here in Crapifornia, EVERYTHING is jumping through hoops, bribing, begging, and paying extra cash.
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Report this Post02-11-2021 08:35 PM Click Here to See the Profile for skywurzClick Here to visit skywurz's HomePageSend a Private Message to skywurzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
In CA its too common for people to sell cars without paperwork and then you have to track down the original owner of record and get them to release interest in the car. (God forbid it have a lein or anything) If you can't you have to prove you tried. Typically sending a signature required registered letter with all of the paperwork. If it comes back you have to take that to dmv and let them open and see the paperwork you sent. Then they will issue you a title however if the owner of record shows up looking for their car you have to pay them off or give it them the car or go to cort. If the car is out of the system you can just go down with the car and an application for new title. They will do a vin inspection and you are good... If they don't send you to chp as mentioned before. However i thonk there's something like a 2 year window a owner with title could show up and cause issues. I've seen this run as a scam where somebody will sl a car like this and a friend or friend of a friend is the owner and knows about the sale. Then after the car is fixed/restored they will come after the person to try to extort money.

[This message has been edited by skywurz (edited 02-11-2021).]

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Report this Post02-11-2021 11:37 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cvxjetClick Here to Email cvxjetSend a Private Message to cvxjetEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I've owned my car since new in 1985 (May)........Still own it and the original owner rarely gives me any trouble..........

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Report this Post02-12-2021 08:32 PM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Oregon88:

I love the MR2 vs FIero debate. We all logically know which one wins, but kudos for you for wanting both cars!

I would love to also have an MR2, but we need pictures of your MR2 man!

its hard to say sometimes from an ad. You should take a buddy and go drive the thing!

the lost title application process isn't as scary as you'd think. Go to the DMV and tell them what you plan to do, someone will give you all the forms you need. Then when you buy it, make sure you have all the information the forms require.

I just bought a 69 chevelle with no title and it was very quick and simple in Oregon.

I should say though that my dad works at the DMV and he gave me all the forms i needed

Good luck brother!



haha, yeah none of my MR2 buddies really understand why I want a Fiero. I find it funny that all of us defend the MR2's lack of power by claiming its about the driving experience and the novelty, but as soon as someone brings up a Fiero they all start measuring power with scientific precision!

I went online and found all the forms I'll need. The owner also offered to get it smogged before I get there, which will help.

My MR2 is the 3rd gen, aka the youngest sibling the others keep in the basement :P
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samxerxesn

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My MR2

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Report this Post02-12-2021 10:49 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dremuClick Here to Email dremuSend a Private Message to dremuEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by samxerxesn:the novelty


They don't know "novelty" until they've been in a Fiero. The Aztek may have the ugliest car ever, but the Fiero was the least ergonomic. (Note they are both Pontiac. This should tell us something about drug use among engineers at GM.)

-- A

[This message has been edited by dremu (edited 02-12-2021).]

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Report this Post02-13-2021 04:17 AM Click Here to See the Profile for liv4GodSend a Private Message to liv4GodEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by dremu:


They don't know "novelty" until they've been in a Fiero. The Aztek may have the ugliest car ever, but the Fiero was the least ergonomic. (Note they are both Pontiac. This should tell us something about drug use among engineers at GM.)

-- A



That I would have to strongly disagree with. I spend more time in my Fiero than most people (up to 4 hours daily) not to mention long road trips, and find it considerably more comfortable than other cars I have driven, new or old.

The seating posture keeps weight distributed between thighs and bottom so you don't have a pressure point and get a sore bottom. The head position allows your head to sit straight in a natural position. Most modern cars push your head forward which is not ideal posture.

The center console and arm rest are at the same height so your arms can be rested at equal angles while driving and reduce arm fatigue. I rest my elbows on the arm rest and center console which puts my hands at exactly the ideal 9&3 positions on the wheel.
The shifter is also conveniently located parallel to the wheel such that you can quickly jump your right hand between the wheel and shifter without looking.

I could go on.
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Report this Post02-13-2021 10:54 AM Click Here to See the Profile for dremuClick Here to Email dremuSend a Private Message to dremuEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
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Originally posted by liv4God:

That I would have to strongly disagree with. I spend more time in my Fiero than most people (up to 4 hours daily) not to mention long road trips, and find it considerably more comfortable than other cars I have driven, new or old.

The seating posture keeps weight distributed between thighs and bottom so you don't have a pressure point and get a sore bottom. The head position allows your head to sit straight in a natural position. Most modern cars push your head forward which is not ideal posture.

The center console and arm rest are at the same height so your arms can be rested at equal angles while driving and reduce arm fatigue. I rest my elbows on the arm rest and center console which puts my hands at exactly the ideal 9&3 positions on the wheel.
The shifter is also conveniently located parallel to the wheel such that you can quickly jump your right hand between the wheel and shifter without looking.

I could go on.


I'm referring to the placement of the controls. You're right, basic seating actually is pretty good, even for a "man of stature" such as myself. We met on the Vine Run one year, and I think I'm about your height with like twice the width .

But the window and mirror controls are under your elbow instead of on the doors like normal cars, and the shifter blocks the radio and partially the climate controls.

I figure it's part of the charm of the car, and its funky, 80's-taken-to-11 feel. But as compared to any of my 20xx rides, well, there's no comparison.

-- A

[This message has been edited by dremu (edited 02-13-2021).]

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Report this Post02-15-2021 06:10 PM Click Here to See the Profile for skywurzClick Here to visit skywurz's HomePageSend a Private Message to skywurzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
So the weekend came and went did you get it? if not a white 4spd just popped up for 25 not associated with it but the outside looks clean. has EGR issue probably super hard to get solenoid issue that people outside of the community/non mechanics cant solve. (as the parts discontinued and one guy who may or may not be active in Bakersfield refurbs them.)

[This message has been edited by skywurz (edited 02-15-2021).]

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Report this Post02-17-2021 06:02 AM Click Here to See the Profile for AustralianClick Here to visit Australian's HomePageClick Here to Email AustralianSend a Private Message to AustralianEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I used to sell toyota and can say the Mr2 is a lot easier to drive the style of driving is same but the amount of energy used to drive would be greater depends on set ups but if you thinking regular clutch but working it you want dual friction clutch and no power steering vs lighter clutch and power assisted steering. The Mr2 is a great car to drive and even work up but the fiero is an awesome car to toy with.
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Report this Post02-17-2021 12:48 PM Click Here to See the Profile for cvxjetClick Here to Email cvxjetSend a Private Message to cvxjetEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by dremu:


I'm referring to the placement of the controls. You're right, basic seating actually is pretty good, even for a "man of stature" such as myself. We met on the Vine Run one year, and I think I'm about your height with like twice the width .

But the window and mirror controls are under your elbow instead of on the doors like normal cars, and the shifter blocks the radio and partially the climate controls.


-- A



The seating was one of the few things that even (Anti-American) Car & Drivel said was good on the Fiero. As for placement of controls, I liked my buddy's TA because the window switches were in the center- accessible to both of us...Always thought that was a good design (But that was an Automatic trans car where you rarely "Shift"...)

Probably the weirdest thing on the whole Fiero was the placement of the parking brake lever- to the left of the driver. A lot of people are confused by that. Funny (But sad) story; In a review of the Fiero back in the 80s a tester complained about the parking brake- "It forms a barrier to entry and exit so you tend to never use it" Shows just how DUMB some people are- you would figure the guy would have READ the owners manual and found out that it is a ratchet setup and after setting it the handle will just drop back down....
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quote
Originally posted by cvxjet:

Probably the weirdest thing on the whole Fiero was the placement of the parking brake lever- to the left of the driver.


Porsche 944 and Jaguar XJS had it. Those are just a couple off the top of my head.
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Report this Post02-17-2021 01:08 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dremuClick Here to Email dremuSend a Private Message to dremuEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by skywurz:


Porsche 944 and Jaguar XJS had it. Those are just a couple off the top of my head.


In left-hand drive, or in right?

Also, the gas cap release.

-- A
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Report this Post03-01-2021 11:54 PM Click Here to See the Profile for samxerxesnSend a Private Message to samxerxesnEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Hi all!

Unfortunately the vehicle in SoCal didn't work out. The place I was going to stay over the weekend drive fell through and the seller stopped responding to me.

I tried contacting a few other sellers but mostly bad luck.

Now though, I've found an 88 GT in Louisiana and the seller has been very prompt with me. He sent me a video and the VIN and the report looks really good. I'd be willing to have it shipped to me, but I was really hoping someone from this forum who lives in Louisiana near Baton Rouge or Geismar would be willing to check it out for me. I realize that's a huge think to ask, especially in a pandemic, but if there's someone out there willing to help I'd really appreciate it.

So that's the story so far.
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quote
Originally posted by skywurz:


Porsche 944 and Jaguar XJS had it. Those are just a couple off the top of my head.


Same era Corvette had the same parking brake setup as the Fiero.
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