“Badge engineering” is the sale of one manufacturer’s vehicle under another manufacturer’s brand. Manufacturers often do this to fill a small niche that is too expensive to develop their own vehicle for. GM took this a step further, deciding to compete with with import brands made entirely of badge-engineered vehicles. These cars were sold under the Geo brand name.
What does this mean when looking for parts?
In most cases, parts from the vehicle your Geo is based on can be used on your car. Front and rear fascias are often different, as are badging and some optional equipment, but otherwise parts are compatable. The Tracker, Spectrum, and Metro were also sold as Chevrolets, and aside from the name are identical.
Which cars share parts with my Geo?
At the time GM owned parts of Suzuki and Isuzu, while they also had a partnership with Toyota. Geo’s lineup is based on cars from these three automakers. Here is a list of Geo’s source vehicles:
Metro: Suzuki Swift
The GT and GTi version of the Swift came with several performance parts never included on the Metro, including a 16v 4-cylinder engine. 1995 and later Swifts were not offered with the 1.0l three-cylinder engine, and Suzuki never offered their own version of the fuel-sipping XFi.
The Subaru Justy is based on the same platform, but shares few parts with the Metro or Swift.
Tracker: Suzuki Sidekick
The Tracker and Sidekick are virtually identical. The Sidekick continued for several years as a Chevrolet, with the 1998 model being the same as the 96 and 97 Geos.
Prism: Toyota Corolla
The dash, hood, trunk and front and rear fascias are different between models, but otherwise they are identical. The Chevy Prism is a different design, sharing little with the Geo Prism.
Storm: Isuzu Impulse
This diverges more from its source vehicle than the other Geos. The Impulse’s Lotus-tuned suspension does not bolt onto the Storm without extensive modifications, and the Storm never got the Impulse’s turbocharged engine.
Spectrum: Isuzu I-mark
Sold only one year, the Geo Spectrum is identical to the Chevy Spectrum. The I-mark had a few more options than the Spectrum, but unlike the Storm, the Spectrum was offered with a turbocharged engine.