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Chrysler PT Cruiser (2005 and earlier)



  • hardoohardoo Posts: 31
    I had a similar experience when I went to take my first look at the Matrix. I was looking at a midline XR, and they only had automatics on the lot, so I was thinking something in the $17 K range for the MSRP. Well, the dealership had stripped off the MSRP sticker and replaced it with their own which read $22,500. Another Toyota dealership I visited had a $2000 ADM on every car, $3000 on every truck. And a third Toyota dealership had a $700 "paint treatment" on every vehicle. For a Matrix vehicle that is no better than its competition, Toyota's sales practices might have urged me to consider other vehicles.

  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    PT's over the weekend. Although only one Dealer and while closed. The body color bumpers is a vast improvement. No Turbos at this Dealer. They had two '02 "Dream Machines" in Inca Gold. Very sharp but pricey....just over $24k. Although they did have them marked $3k off.
    Here in Austin I've seen many Dealers with "Market Adjustment" adds. But never a sticker swap. That is SLEAZY!
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,099
    While I've been comparing similar vehicles, I noticed that the Matrix, in general, was cheaper on the MSRP than the similar Vibe. Difference being, the "ADM" Toyota dealers put on the stickers to put the MSRP prices right in line with the MSRP of the Vibe. I've seen Honda do the same thing. I wonder what they are going to do with pricing of the '03 Accord since it is new? Will they continue their insistance of MSRP (or above) like they are charging for the Pilot, Ody, CR-V, and Acura's MDX, TL and CL? Toyotas are usually priced higher than Hondas, but with a bit of negotiation, you can usually buy a Toyota for a cheaper price than a similar Honda.

    U.S. brands have always been negotiable (except for low production specialty cars like the new Thunderbird).

    txyank...the '03 Cruisers look better than previous editions IMHO. If the Turbo Cruiser didn't drive so well, and I wasn't so impressed with it, I'd probably not look at them again after the dealer's shenanigans. They are very good cars, however and I'm willing to wait until I get the deal I want.
  • hardoohardoo Posts: 31
    It seems like we're on the same range of cars. Have you looked into the Protege5 by any chance? It's not a tall wagon, like the PT and Matrix which offer a SUV seating feel, and it's not quite so cargo-friendly as those options. It does offer a quality driving experience, however, as suggested in Car and Driver's comparison, as well as strong reliability as evidenced in Consumer Reports. Unlike even the Matrix, the P5 is still made in Japan by Japanese workers using Japanese parts, so quality is sure to be high. And stickering around $17-18 K, it is probably the most affordable of the bunch. Throw in the fact that they're currently offering 0% financing for up to 48 months and no payments until 1/03, and the P5 strikes me as a strong contender in this field. I think at this point that I prefer it to the Matrix.

  • I too am interested in the PT Cruiser Turbo but I believe its far too early to make a purchase with it being fresh to the market.

    I think i'll wait til the 2004 comes out; by that time the excitement will have died down a bit.

    Perhaps then i can pull off another great invoice deal. :)
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,744
    I also looked at the P-5. While it should sticker lower I have found that most of the dealers in my area are only stocking ones that have a window of 20k or a bit higher. It is also the smallest of the bunch. I did like the look but it had no more room than my sedan with the exception of a slightly bigger opening in the back because of the hatch. It didn't feel as if it had any more room than the Focus hatch and at least not as much as the Focus wagon. If room is not a concern it might be a good choise. It still doesn't catch the looks a PT gets but it does come stock with some boy racer goodies.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,099
    Went shopping again tonight. Went to an area of town where there are about a dozen different dealers selling different makes right next to each of those "Automall" type areas. I looked at and drove the Mazda P5. Have to agree with you about the P5. I liked it better than either the Vibe or the Matrix, dollar for dollar. It gave up a bit in acceleration compared to the Vibe/Matrix with the 180 HP engine, but you really have to stay on the boil with a 5-speed to get anything close to decent acceleration out of any of those. Handling of the P5 is its strong suit. I just thought I would get tired of the high revs after a while. Have to admit, they were all fun to drive for a short period of time, though.

    The most fun of them all, however was the Subaru WRX. WOW! That's about the only way to describe it. It's priced $2k-$3k above the rest (about the same as a PT Turbo loaded up, comparing MSRP to MSRP...low 20s). I couldn't get past the "cafe racer" look of it. The paint seemed really thin as were the body panels. They cut some definite corners in the details (no paint on some of the door jambs or under the hood/trunk, seats felt thin, swtiches were notchy feeling). But "bang for the buck" really can't be beat.

    Last dealership I stopped at was another Chrysler dealer. It was late...about 8:30 p.m. They had the candy apple red color on the floor with black leather and sunroof. It was stunning looking, to say the least. It had 7 miles on it. Sales guys were obviously ready to go home as they looked beat (it's been super hot for the last couple of weeks in my burg...I can only imagine what it was like "pounding the black asphalt" all day). What ended up being the Sales Manager approached me asking me if I was interested in the Turbo (here we go again...). I said yes but would come back when they (and I) had more time. He said, "you're here now, take it for a drive around the block. If you like it, it's the end of the day, I think we can work a deal if it's fair to both of us". Well, I figured it can't hurt. Pulled it out of the showroom. I drove it for about 20 minutes and still liked it best out of everything I had driven. Came back at 9:15 p.m. Only two people left at the dealership was the Sales Manager (who introduced himself as such when I walked in) and the finance lady.

    He said make a reasonable offer and lets go home. I said I had a trade. Showed him my '94 Saturn I use as a 2nd car. He started it up. Drove it around the parking lot and said, "it seems to run good". I had all the service receipts with me and showed them to him. He offered me $300 over the best offer I had since I have been shopping (that was also $300 over KBB value). Offered me $550 over invoice (what I assume was invoice since I had to take the sheet he showed me as fact) on the Turbo Cruiser. Besides, the price looked real close to what I had figured it would be. Sounded fair, so I bought it and it's parked in my garage right now.

    Finance lady asked me if I wanted extended warranty. I only had to use one "no" and we were trading titles and signing mileage statements.

    Didn't get out of the dealership until 10:30 p.m. Sales Manager actually washed and dried it for me by hand and filled it with a full tank of Premium since the "lot tech" had also left for the day, too. Wonder who gets the commission on that sale?
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Congrats on the purchase of your Inferno Red Turbo. My wife feels that Inferno Red is the best color, now she wants to trade hers in for an Inferno Red Woodie.

    Now the addiction begins. It starts with the fuzzy dice that seem just so right, hanging from the mirror. Then.....
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    would give a deal he made to the Salesman who needed it the most. BTW.....I would have bought a Cruiser when they first came out if they hadn't jacked up the prices.
  • Sounds like you got a decent deal on your PT Turbo! Let us know how well it does on gas...

  • hardoohardoo Posts: 31
    Don't you have a wife to whom you have to answer? :-) Every time I mention the Turbo, I get a subtle shake of the head.

    I agree with you on the Subaru. It offers something like 224 hp with AWD, and Subaru is right up there with Toyota in terms of reliability. You can even get it in wagon form if you're looking for competitive utility. I just can't get past the looks.

    So it comes down to the Turbo. I'd be interested in hearing the invoice price as well as the impact this purchase has had upon your insurance and your gas budget. Any ammo I can use against the wife would be much appreciated.

    Finally, I'll leave off by saying that I would have waited for the stick. But I'm just saying that because I'm jealous. :-)

  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    and thanks for sharing all the details of your PT Cruiser Turbo purchase. Btw, I believe you're the first one here to purchase the Turbo! If you have a spare moment, please feel free to also share (copy/paste) your notes in our new PT Cruiser Turbo discussion. We look forward to hearing more about your ownership experience.... Thanks!

    To everyone - For those interested, look for a direct link to our PT Cruiser Turbo discussion in the helpful Links on the left side of the page. Happy motoring. ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • Congratulations on your NEW Turbo PT Cruiser. I just read Edmund's nice review of 2003 Turbo PT Cruiser where it stated 215 HP and 245 Ft Lbs Torque (same as Chrysler 3.8L V6 in T&C / GC).
    Since first seeing and sitting inside the PT Cruiser, I have wanted one. We finally test drove an automatic and was surprised at the acceleration with 3 adults and 2 children aboard. However, it was a windy day and the PT was buffeted much greater than our 2002 T&C eL on the same road (I-15) just prior to and just after the test drive of the PT Cruiser.
    If I could talk my wife into having 2 vehicles I would buy the PT....but with only one, the T&C is a wiser choice.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,744
    Good for you. That is one of the things I have noticed about PT buyers. They look forward to getting a PT even before they see one. I didn't feel I could wait for the turbo but I know when the convertible comes out I may have to trade in my B2500 to get one. These cars have captured a spot in our culture or at lease in the auto enthusiasts culture that I haven't seen in years. I can't remember when I had a car in the last ten to twenty years that I wanted to buy things for. Like it has been said the fuzzy dice are only the beginning. Pinstriping, duel pipes, cold air, chrome battery covers, colored wires. These are not the things I used to think about. They are now.
  • Drove PT GT about 10 days ago and again last Friday. Compared it to Limited. GT has enough power, but is not "fast." Ride and quiet about same as Limited, but turn in is better.

    Checked a number of dealers and found many have several. Some dealers (SoCal) are marking them up well over factory sticker while other are selling at factory sticker, with at least one selling them below factory sticker - with no add-ons.

    Chrome accents package and Woody package not available on PT GT.

    Noted the wheels do not have an outer lip to attach wheel weights.

    Ordered one.
  • graphicguygraphicguy SW OhioPosts: 7,099
    Thanks revka...I'll mosy on over there.

    Hardoo, I indeed have a wife. That's how this whole thing started she needed a new car and thought the PT was "cute". I ended up buying it for myself and she took over my 300M. That's another long story, too. If interested I posted more details in the Maintenance and Repair Thread in the Zaino Part II topic.

    Using my guesstimate on invoice price (about $1,500-$1,700 below MSRP), I would say that invoice on mine was about $24,200-$24,400. Dealer gave up all but $550 of the "over invoice" profit. OF course, dealer still makes the holdback, too.

    Mine is equiped with every option available, including $200 extra for the "inferno red pearlcoat", leather, side airbags, sunroof, heated seats, etc. Maybe the only thing I could have got were the dealer installed options like custon graphics or a CD changer.
  • I noticed that the 2003 PT Cruiser numbers were just posted at

    This includes numbers for the Turbo!

    A PT GT Turbo "Loaded" with the 2CR package is $23,738 invoice, $25,450 MSRP in Michigan.

  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    I've had 7 pickups since '88 and the first thing I have to do is the Flowmaster Exhaust and K&N Filter. And chips in the earlier ones. (The ones that had chips that you change). I'd have to do the same thing with a PT!
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,744
    This will not be the first time for me either. What I feel is that it is easier to get things for the PT than it was for just about anything I have fixed up over the few years. with the exception of a civic I can't think of more sites dedicated to working on a car than the PT. There is a fellowship of PT owners that I haven't seen in car enthusiasts in years. If you want more power or a better suspension or just a better looking car all you have to do is ask and that information is available from one owner or another. I got more questions answered on the PTFYI site in one visit than I did in two years working on my old prelude. I not only plan on keeping this car but after the convertible come out I want another one. I am sure I will fix that one up as well.
  • fgaydosfgaydos Posts: 319
    Can you fold the passenger seat flat in the new Cruiser's?
    I want to get a recumbent bike and want to carry it inside if I could.
    TIA Frank

    Also, does it need premimum fuel?
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