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Pontiac Grand Am

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  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    Well guys...I'm not having a good trip. This a.m. I was backing out of the hotel parking lot and backed right into a large garbage container! Just left a little nick in the back passenger side bumper. I just flat didn't see it.

    rpm9-believe it or not, there has been a few times I wanted to sneak up on friends/family in my car and couldn't because I couldn't turn off my lights....part of my demented sense of humor...

    midlifecrisis-Do you remember back when we were in high school and we would get into debates with our buddies over what GM and Ford stood for? Being a GM guy, I always would argue it stood for "Great Motors" or "Go! Motors" and Ford stood for "Fix or Repair Daily" or "Found on Road Dead", and then my Ford buddies would come back with "First on Race Day" and "Gonareah Motors"...well I think that is the link back to the body cladding debate on Pontiac's, since the Grand Am is the most popular of Pontiac's current line up...it takes the brunt of the attacks. I would suspect that most of the people attacking the Grand Am are not fans of GM or American cars in general.

    I think SUV's get away with all the cladding because there is perception out there that it looks "rugged". The Escalade and Denali have a lot of cladding on their sides too. Your right about the Eclipse, it looks just like the cladding on the GA. I have read alot of reviews of the Eclipse where the cladding is mentioned and the GA is referenced.

    I don't have remote entry, it comes standard on the SE1, but not on the SE. I don't think it would help me with my door problem. I can unlock the door, it just won't open from the outside.

    Since we are very close in age (I will hit the big 4-0 in August), I think its perfectly okay to be excited about your car! If I recall, you have a GT. What is scary is that I get excited about a base model SE with a 4 cylinder and 4 doors (well 3 that work)!

    nerss-Thanks for your concern...I'm going to take it in for a repair Monday afternoon once I am back in Houston.

    Driving up here yesterday in the rain, the GA handled well. I am one of those annoying drivers that come flying past you in the fast lane in the rain...I got behind a little S-10 that had a radar detector and followed him until he got off @ a rest area. I don't drive reckless, I just like to get where I am going and I never weave in and out or speed in high traffic. I do go through bouts of road rage...but I try very hard to keep calm. I'm a classic type A personality, and NOT proud of it. I don't have Goodyear tires....I have B. F. Goodrich, Touring TA's. They seem to be good all around tires. I have read a lot of comments about the GA not being a good handler @ high speeds, but I have no complaints.

    I can't help you "vocus", I am only 5'8 and 165lbs, so I have more than enough room. I do have a couple of buddies that are in the 6'3 range that have commented that they are comfortable in the front...I drove to a ball game one night and one of them got stuck in the back seat and wasn't too happy with the leg room. As long as your comfortable, don't worry about what people say you "look" like in it.

    Well guy's, wish me luck! I am leaving in the a.m. to head back to Houston. The weatherman is predicting snow all the way into East Texas, so if you see on the news a Gold Grand Am SE Sedan trapped in a snow bank with someone trying to pry the drivers door open, its me inside!

    Take care all!

    Billy
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    What I did notice is that I have to "bow down" to get out of the front seats of the Grand Am too, even in the sedan though. I want the sunroof too, but am too tall to fit in the car with it. Though I got into a 2-door GT with a sunroof and fit fine, I did not fit in the 4-door. Also, I find the 2-door feels like it has more front leg room too. I might just get the 2-door GT1 and call it a day in about a year or so.
  • There may be times when you wish you could turn off your lights and cannot. But there will be more times that some moron will be driving around at dusk and should have his lights ON and doesn't.

    Having your lights always on will not cause a safety concern. The same cannot be said for driving with your lights off.

    By the way, some cars DRL's will go off when the emergency brake is engaged. Not sure if this is so on GM's. You can sometimes pull up on the brake handle slightly, and the lights will go off. Give it a try, but don't damage your brake!

    Brian
    Halifax, Nova Scotia
    Canada (where cars cannot be seen due to heavy snowfall)
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    I've been using Edmunds for a while and mostly hang out in the SUV section (I had a '97 Nissan PF which I turned in today). But I'm also the proud owner of a '99 Grand Am SE2 Sedan.

    While it's not the greatest car in the world, it's a great value. V6, steering wheel controls for stereo, programmable door-lock action, I love the auto head lamps (never have to worry about forgetting to turn them on or off), courtesy and auto-theater lighting, etc. Precise steering and handling. All this for under $20k ain't bad. Plus GM had some really low financing when I bought it. Almost like free money.

    Though the has had no major problems, I few annoying things:

    1) The Delco stereo- know that continously variable volume control (it's opto-electronic)? When it is really cold in the morning, if I try turning down the volume, it goes UP. The steering wheel control is fine. Anybody else seen this?

    2) Sound system- for an "upgraded" sound system, it sucks compared to the Bose in the PF. I suspect that replacing the factory speakers would help a lot. Anybody have good sucess with this, especially the high-mounted door tweeters?

    3)Those freakin' cup holders- whoever is the design genius who put them IN FRONT of the shifter should be shot. I saw the pop-out ones on the 01 GA, much better.

    That's all for now... glad to be here!

    TC
  • Yeah, I get that volume turning the wrong direction thing too...it happens when I turn the knob really fast. Strange.

    Has anyone had a problem with their seat not leaning back? I had it happen when I first got the car (Bad timing because I was on a road trip to DC and found out when I tried to lean back and go to sleep for a bit.) I took it to the dealer, and the guy just got in and yanked the handle really hard while leaning back forcefully. Here 2 years later, it locked up again...so I tried yanking the handle and it came off in my hand. Dealer here I come.

    Overall, I really like the car though. And I can't even come close to these payments when my lease ends in June!

    Mike Brewer
    99 Grand Am SE1
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    Made it back to Houston in one piece. Drove non-stop from the hotel in Little Rock to my house! 436 miles on one tank of gas! Took a little over 6.5 hours...averaged 67.07 mph. Averaged 32.05 miles per gallon. Not too shabby.
  • lrymallrymal Posts: 105
    > 2) Sound system- for an "upgraded" sound system,
    > it sucks compared to the Bose in the PF. I
    > suspect that replacing the factory speakers
    > would help a lot. Anybody have good sucess
    > with this, especially the high-mounted door
    > tweeters?

    The Impala guys have been complaining about this also. Their solution has been to by-pass the trunk-mounted audio amp and they claim the sound is incredible as a result. Apparently, the speakers are much better than the standard speakers and with the amp disconnected, the radio pumps out enough juice to net a good sound.

    I have the SE-1 and the CD head unit. Sounds great to me (no trunk amp), but then, I don't pump the audio up particularly loud. The lows and highs sound wonderful to me. The tweeter really enhances the sound. I previously had a '96 GrandAm without tweeters and I'm amazed at the audio difference.
  • I have the GT and I love my stereo. Especially when I compare it to my Windstar van stereo. I crank up the CD as loud as I can without shattering the glass. The rear view mirror does a thumping dance from the base. I've never had any stereo volume problems (knock on wood), and the steering wheel controls are the best. I never even have to reach for the dashboard!

    The most depressing thing about my car now is that it has snowed almost every week since mid-December in NJ. My car is bright red and begs to "glow" in the sunlight. It hasn't even been worth washing it since the snow started. There's so much road salt and grime that it makes the car look white. I have hosed it down a few times because I just can't stand to see the poor car suffer like that! LOL...

    It also stinks not to be able to use the sunroof. But when it's always below freezing it isn't even worth opening. Bring on the Spring - please.
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    Hey Midlife, you really love your Grand Am! That is great!

    Taking mine into the shop tomorrow to get the door fixed.

    That's what I miss about being in New Jersey...the snow! Down here its spring by mid-February.

    I can remember one time up there trying to wash my Integra in the winter and the water actually freezing to the driveway as I washed it. Almost broke my neck. Most of my neighbors up there always referred to me as that "dumb Texan"

    Stay warm!
  • whackowhacko Posts: 96
    I wonder if your old neighbors think of our new President as they thought of you. :)
  • I am just about ready to buy a used 2000 Grand Am SE sedan. It has 16,000 miles on it and options include: 3.4 V6, AT, power windows, power mirrors, power door locks, am/fm cd w/ 6 speaker stereo, power height adj. driver seat, cruise, power sunroof, 16 in alloy wheels, spoiler, AC, Traction control and ABS. The dealer is fixing all scratches and dings and selling it for $14,000. Does this sound like a good deal?

    Also, how difficult is it to put an aftermarket cd player in the Grand Am? Thanks.
  • nerssnerss Posts: 43
    It sounds like a good deal. I would obtain a history of the car and any service records that they might have on it. An aftermarket stereo is pretty easy to install and I would recommend an
    Alpine. That is what I have in my Blazer and I love it. The only drawback is that it renders any remote stereo controls on the steering wheel inoperable. Good Luck on your purchase.
  • Nerss,

    Is this Alpine a double DIN reciever or does it require an adapter kit? Also, what color is the display? I have a single DIN Pioneer in my current car that I love, but the display is blue, which I feel will look lousy with the red dash lights.

    If anyone has swapped their stock deck with an aftermarket that fits and looks good, please let me know. Thanks.
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    14k sounds good....check this site out and see what you come up with. You need to add your zip code and pick the appropriate equiptment. I found it helpful...


    http://www.kbb.com/kb/ki.dll/kw.kc.tp?kbb&&32&split


    Good luck...


    Can't help you out on the CD replacement issue.

  • nerssnerss Posts: 43
    The alpine is not a double DIN, but they do make a double DIN CD Player. Their colors for the display are blue and green. I noticed that there are less stereos coming in red display colors. I do beleive that the new Sony Xplod series do come in red. My friend has one where the dolphins swim on the screen while stuff is playing. He really likes it, but it cost him around 400. Let me know what you decide.
  • I feel that most of the currently available double DIN stereos are an eyesore, but adapter kits can be too. I will probably stick with the stock system for awhile until i do find one with a red display. I have not had the best luck with Sony products, so I tend to stay away from them. My friend had an older Kenwood that could switch back and forth between green display and orange display. Too bad other manufacturers didn't offer this option.

    Does removal of the stock stereo effect the theft deterant system? Thanks.
  • nerssnerss Posts: 43
    I believe that the theft deterrent for the stereo is located and only effects the stereo. Therefore when you remove the stock stereo it will not effect the rest of the car. The stock stereo is pretty good-for a stock stereo. My fiancee loves to turn up the bass of hers and listen to the little "bump" that it provides. That Kenwood feature is pretty freakin' cool. I have heard that Sony does have customer service issues and quality control issues, but cross my fingers we haven't needed them for service with any of our electronics. Talk to ya later
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    Got my '99 Grand Am SE Sedan back from the dealer this p.m.. The reason my door wouldn't open was the lock rod somehow came loose. Fixed under warranty with no cost to me.

    By the way, got to lookin @ my 30k service receipt and noticed the following:

    Recall 00036--CK on RECALL
    Completed

    Latch 10.268

    Replaced under warranty.

    Does anyone know what that is about? I never got anything in the mail, nor did my service advisor tell me they had done some type of warranty work.

    ???

    Thanks!
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    Component: INTERIOR SYSTEMS:CONSOLE (8/82)
    Manufacturer: GENERAL MOTORS CORP.
    Mfg. Campaign #: 00036
    Year: 1999
    Make: PONTIAC
    Model: GRAND AM
    Potential Number of Units Affected: 487400
    Manufactured From: OCT 1997 To: SEP 1999
    Year of Recall: '00
    Type of Report: Vehicle
    Summary:

    Vehicle Description: These vehicles do not comply with the occupant protection requirements of FMVSS No. 201, "Occupant Protection in Interior Impact." The console cover on these vehicles does not stay closed when a specified vertical load is applied.

    In the event of a crash, the console cover could open and the cover or items stored under it could injure an occupant.

    Dealers will replace the console latch mechanism. Owner notification began June 9, 2000. Owners who take their vehicles to an authorized dealer on an agreed upon service date and do not receive the free remedy within a reasonable time should contact Oldsmobile at 1-800-442-6537 or Pontiac at 1-800-762-2737. Also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Auto Safety Hotline at 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    tonychrys-thanks for the information....I was hoping it had something to do with my trunk latch which I have to slam hard about 3 times to get it to lock. Oh well....

    Take care.
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    I would still make them adjust it, if it is still under warranty. Latch problems/adjustments happen all the time on any vehicle.
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    The 99 GAs are notorious for the amount of road noise you hear. Has anyone taken their's to Ziebart or something like it to get underbody coating?

    TC
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    I guess I haven't paid much attention to the road noise. I'll take you on a ride in my Integra if you want to hear some loud road noise. You can't hear yourself think in it!

    In the GA, I have noticed some rather bothersome wind noise, but I assumed it was coming from the side mirrors.

    Thanks again for the info...you know, you did tell me to get the service dept. to look @ the trunk latch...unfortunately, I walk around in a cloud of confusion most of the time...

    Take care.
  • Has anyone noticed if their GA's chrome trim (around the door window) is starting to rust or discolor where the two ends meet? I noticed this on the driver's door right next to the mirror on a 2000 GA I am looking to buy. Is this common with all GAs? Thanks.
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    I remember researching the GA in 99 before I bought it and a common complaint in a lot of magazine reviews was the road/engine noise. It's definitely noticeable compared to other vehicles.

    I just took delivery of a Lexus RX300 on Monday. You sometimes forget the engine (220hp) is on it's so quiet!
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    I have a '99 and live by the ocean where things are NOTORIOUS for corroding and rusting. Mine seems to be holding up fine.

    My guess in your case is that something probably nicked/scratched/rubbed the top layer of the chrome and allowed the rust process to start.

    TC
  • joeyw1joeyw1 Posts: 1
    i used to own a 1989 grand am and it had over 200,000 miles when i bought it (mostly towing miles). Only one time did it not start (i live in iowa where it gets extremely cold). Even though the car was pretty used up when i bought it, it was still running when i got rid of it. In fact it is still running for these people. My point is i am thinking about buying a 1995 grand am,80K on it I don't want to do the loan thing so I am going to pay cash. I want to know if they have a good long running record without many difficulties. I am ditching a ford taurus which has had transmission, motor mount, and head gasket problems. I don't mind the minor stuff but want a dependable car. any input would be appreciated.
  • I had the console latch recall done by the dealer several months ago. When I got it home, it did not look or feel any different. It opened just as easy and the mechanism did not look any different. Either the dealer took me for a ride or the change was so minor it was unnoticeable. The whole recall just seemed so absurd to me. This is a downfall of living in such an overly litigous society.
  • tonychrystonychrys Posts: 1,310
    Agreed on the absurdity.

    But all it takes is one pen to come flying out that glovebox, during an accident, and poking someone in the eye. The lawyers will have a field day.

    8-P
  • jkidd2jkidd2 Posts: 218
    jdexter23

    Went out this evening and examined my chrome door trim around the doors carefully. No rust or discoloration on mine.
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