Minivan; Built in Japan
  • 4-door wagon
  • transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $1,000 – $1,500*


1992 Plymouth Colt Vista


1993 Plymouth Colt Vista


1993 Plymouth Colt Vista


1994 Plymouth Colt Vista

Pros:
  • All-wheel drive (AWD wagon)
  • Optional antilock brakes
  • Fuel economy
  • Passenger and cargo room
Cons:
  • Acceleration
  • Noise

An “in between” vehicle, the Colt Vista is an ideal choice for a small family on a budget. Not as versatile as a full-size minivan, the Vista is also not as expensive.

Overview

Mitsubishi launched an Expo LRV “mini-minivan,” for 1992. The Colt Vista was the Plymouth variant; Summit Wagon Eagle’s version. Subcompact but tall in profile, the Colt Vista seated five, with a sliding curb-side door and a one-piece liftgate. Base and SE front-wheel-drive models went on sale, along with an AWD model. A 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine, rated at 113 horsepower, provided the power for base models. Standard on the Colt Vista SE, optional in other models, was a 2.4-liter four that delivered 116 horsepower. Any model could have either a 5-speed manual transmission or an optional 4-speed automatic. Antilock braking was optional on all models.

Yearly Updates

1993 Colt Vista
Adding four-valve heads, the 2.4-liter engine got a substantial power boost from 116 horsepower to 136.
1994 Colt Vista
A driver-side airbag went into 1994 Colt Vistas, along with a manual 3-point seatbelt and height adjustment. The front passenger still had a motorized shoulder belt with a manual lap belt. The 2.4-liter engine was standard on the Colt Vista SE and AWD models this year.

Engines

transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive

Base-model Colt Vistas used a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine with a single-overhead camshaft, producing 113 horsepower. A bigger (2.4-liter) 4-cylinder went into the 1992-94 Colt Vista SE model, and also the ’94 AWD. That engine might have been installed in a base Colt Vista, or earlier AWD, as an option. Any model might have either a 5-speed manual transmission or optional 4-speed automatic.

ohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 1.8/112
Engine HP 113
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 116
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
24/29
24/29
24.3
ohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.4/143
Engine HP 116-136
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 136/145
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
22/27
20/26
25.1

Road Test

A manual transmission helps the base engine achieve adequate acceleration, but an automatic makes it feel underpowered. The 2.4-liter engine is a far better choice than the feeble 1.8-liter–especially with the 20 horsepower added for 1993.

Compact size, great visibility, and fine low-speed maneuverability makes the Colt Vista an excellent urban vehicle. In fast corners, however, the tall height and narrow track result in plenty of body lean and tire squeal. Grip improves with the AWD model, with its bigger tires. Ride quality is surprisingly supple. Braking feels strong and balanced, even if antilocking is not installed. Base-model Colt Vistas are not well-insulated against engine and wind noise.

Low step-in height and the sliding side door make entry/exit easy and inviting. Controls and gauges are logically laid out. Chair-height seats not only are comfortable, but they take advantage of the panoramic greenhouse to give a great view of the surroundings. Cargo space behind the back seat is tight, but the rear bench folds flat and can tumble forward to create a flat load floor from the tailgate forward.

Ratings

Model Tested: 1994 Plymouth Colt Vista 2.4-liter auto

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.

Performance

Acceleration - 3
30%
Fuel Economy - 6
60%
Ride Quality - 4
40%
Steering/Handling - 4
40%
Quietness - 4
40%

Accommodations

Controls/Materials - 5
50%
Room/Comfort Front - 4
40%
Room/Comfort Rear - 3
30%
Cargo Room - 6
60%

Other

Value - 4
40%

Total: 43

Specifications

4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
99.2 168.5 66.7 62.1
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
79.0 14.5 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
40.0 38.6 40.8 36.1
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 1993 Colt Vista 4-door wagon

NHTSA

(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 3
60%
Front Passenger Injury - 5
100%

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - N/A
N/A0%
Rear Passenger Injury - N/A
N/A0%

HLDI

(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Automatic transmission
Description: The pulse generator often gets installed backward after a transmission rebuild resulting in third-gear starts. (1994)
Automatic transmission
Description: No second gear and/or a loud tapping noise when shifted into or out of any forward range. (1992-94)
Doors
Description: The sliding doors may be hard to open due to a variety of problems including a faulty latch-connecting rod clip, rear door-lock holder, or striker that is out of adjustment. (1992-94)
Engine misfire
Description: Intermittent rough idle and stalling upon acceleration are due to a bad ground connection for the engine-control computer. (1993)
Manual transmission
Description: Hard shifting and gear clash can be eliminated by installing revised synchronizers. (1991)
Suspension noise
Description: The front stabilizer ball joint is prone to premature wear causing a rattling noise while driving. (1992-93)
Information stickers/paperwork
Description: Replacement Vehicle Emission Control Information decals should be on top of the original. (1993)

Recall History

1992-93
Description: Automatic seatbelt system may fail to operate correctly during crash.
1993-94 w/AWD
Description: Lockup of transfer case can occur.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.

Pricing

Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.