Even though the Chevrolet Cobalt nameplate replaced Cavalier almost seven years ago (ages in the automotive world), Cavy remains a popular choice on the used car market. Thus, Consumer Guide has published a full list of the year-to-year changes the GM's sporty compact has undergone in its third generation. This list is intended to help people on the lookout for a Cavalier get a better idea of particular model years. Some of the most noteworthy changes from that list can be found below:
- 1996 Chevrolet Cavalier: The Z24 got a new dual-camshaft (Twin Cam) 4-cylinder engine, which also came optionally for LS Cavaliers. Constantly illuminating daytime running lights were installed on all Cavaliers. Traction control made standard on the LS sedan and convertible with automatic gearbox.
- 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier: The base engine lost 5 hp while it was revised for smoother running. The convertible moves from LS trim to sportier Z24 trim.
- 2000 Chevrolet Cavalier: Base model got minor rear/front styling tweaks for 2000, and the Z24 got an exclusive new rear spoiler. Inside, the Cavalier now had a refurbished dashboard and console, Radio Display System (RDS) capability, more cupholders, and child-seat top anchors added to all three rear positions. Air conditioning and a rear defroster became standard features for all models.
- 2001 Chevrolet Cavalier: Convertible versions were dropped for 2001, instead, a Z24 sedan was added as an early '02 model. In addition to the Z24 coupe's equipment, the sedan got a bright exhaust tip, upgraded audio system, and chrome alloy wheels.
- 2002 Chevrolet Cavalier: The LS Sport replaced the Z24 model. It came with a new 140-hp dual overhead-cam 2.2 that replaced the Z24's 150-hp dohc 2.4. the list of standard features was extended with tilt steering wheel, CD player, tachometer, and power trunk release.
- 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier: A more affordable coupe model, the 1SV, was added for the 2004 model year.
- 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier: Cavalier gets no changes for a brief 2005 finale before its replaced by Cobalt this year.