Cavalier rpms wont go past 4, and she cant squeel

i have a 1997 cavalier i baught this year, she cant squeel out or spin her tires over, its the only cavalier i seen yet that can’t i had a buddy with a 95, and he recently baught a 2000, and its totaly differnt results, the rpms wont go no higher then 4, when in park or in nutural both the same,its not that i need the car to squeel out its just i know its lacking something, i tryed a few things like letting the air intake hose off the filter and trying but its the same thing air filters been changed, she still has good top speed but first gear she slowly picks up speed even if you put the pedal too the floot, its a 2.2 2200 sfi if anyone got suggestions please help asap thanks!

This is odd because most anything that would limit the RPM to an absolute limit of 4k would also cut into the top speed.

If you put your hand at the exhaust pipe outlet with the car idling, can you feel the individual bursts of exhaust? If it is just a smooth flow, there is an obstruction or bend in the exhaust system.

Next thing I would look for is a weak spark or some other problem in the ignition.

Pull a spark plug, does it look clean with sharp, new-looking edges or is it carboned up or are the edges rounded where the spark jumps?

You want your 97 Cavalier to spin your front tires? I suggest trying it on an icy road or at an oily intersection after a light rain. But considering that your engine won’t rev past 4 rpm, you might want to just jack up the front end and try spinning your tires by hand.

The engine has a rev limiter to keep people like you from doing what you’re trying to do. It’s limiting engine speed, while the transmission is in park or in neutral, to probably about 3600.

What you’re experiencing is the rev limiter part of the car’s ECM cutting injector / ignition signals to keep the unloaded engine RPMs below a safe limit.

As others have mentioned many cars, particularly those with slushboxes, have ECU programing to limited RPMs in part and neutral, there is nothing wrong with your car. If you are after speed and acceleration you bought the wrong car. The Cavalier is not a performance/sports car. Futhermore letting intake hose off the air filter is foolhardy. You are allowing unfiltered air into the engine, this is not good. And if the MAF sensor is downstream from where you opened up the intake hose the car will run very poorly since it’s taking a reading from the sensor that has no air going through it.

Cavalier…does that name sound to you like something designed to be marketed to the racing crowd? I think not.

The only suggestion I have is to be sure the maintenance is up to date and if you’re still not satisfied trade it for something racy.

4 rpm? Hell, my turntable does 33 1/3!!