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Dodge Caravan/Chrysler Voyager

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  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,769
    The new JD Power Initial Quality Study has the Dodge Caravan/Grand Caravan ranked 2nd to the Odyssey, and ahead of the Sienna.

    http://www.jdpower.com/news/releases/pressrelease.asp?ID=2004037
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    Very interesting information. Who would have guessed that Hyundai would have overtaken Toyota on initial quality so quickly?
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    Say it's not true. A Chrysler ranked above a Toyota in IQS?
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Any Survey that has the PT Cruiser tied with the Honda Civic for initial quality can't be all bad.
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    Crkeehn,

    Well, JD Powers must be apologists then.

    Haven't you heard of the monopoly of invincibility of Toyota?

    Regards,
    Dusty
  • dgcownerdgcowner Posts: 4
    Have a dealer parts department tell you if the part number on a center console for a 2005 model Caravan is the same as one for the a 2004 model. I believe they may be smaller than the one used in the 2001-2004 model. Good luck.
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    They will fanatically cling to their biased CR that uses their input to rate Honda and Toyota tied for most reliable and best quality.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,633
    "Chrysler has announced it will pour $113 million into its St. Louis South factory in Missouri to increase production of 2005 model-year minivans equipped with the company's "Stow 'N Go" seating system."

    Chrysler Goes With "Stow 'N Go"

    Steve, Host

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    We are thinking of purchasing a used 2003 Caravan. It has 19K miles. A friend who has a used car lot who used to work (and has ties) to a Chrysler dealership has been looking for a van for us. The van he found appears in fine condition. My questions:

    1) Can you by a genuine 'NEW CAR' Chrysler Brand extended warranty for the used van? This would be the same warranty you could have purchased when the van was new.

    2) What durations do the warranties run? 7/70, 7/100 etc.

    3) Is there a true Bumper to Bumper No deductble warranty. To be explicit I purchased such a warranty for my Camry. It did not list what was covered but rather the few items NOT covered.

    4) Can I shop around for the warranty at any Chrysler dealership or must I buy from the place where I buy the car.

    5) The biggie...WHAT DOES IT COST!!!!

    Thanks for the info. After buying American and Foreign I am of the opinion the the foreign are not nearly as great as folks would have you believe AND they are overpriced. The domestic do have more mechanical issues but cost far less. I think if I can get a year old van which has already depreciated a bit with a bumper to bumper warranty then I should be set. My only concerns are the tranny problems I read about and AC problems.
  • masterpaul1masterpaul1 Posts: 421
    The 2003 Caravan should still be covered under the original warranty. If not, you can contact a Daimlerchrysler dealer to see were you could go to obtain an extended bumper to bumper warranty.
    Our 2001 Grand Caravan EX had 37,027 miles on it when we bought it in September 2003. We purchased the extended Maximum Care Bumper to Bumper Warranty for about $1800 I believe, to 75,000 miles or May 2007(which includes a $100 deductible per every visit, first day car rental up to 100 miles free and $30 a day rental car allowance, $1,000 trip interruption and road side assistance which included sign and go towing and roadside assistance up to $100 each occurance). We purchased our van and extended warranty at a Daimlerchrysler dealer. Hope this helps.
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    Did you really mean $1800!!!!!!! And with a $100 deductible? This starts to put me back in the camp where the domestics companies must realize there will be issues and thus charge a fortune for their warranties. I spend $670 for a 7/75K bumper to bumper no deductible warranty for my Camry. Please tell me you meant $800!

    $1800 will pay for the tranny when it goes!
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,565
    For what its worth, our 1996 Caravan has had no engine or tranmission problems and it is at 79K miles. All put on by us as we bought it new, so I know the entire maintenance history.

    It has had two very costly AC repairs, however, last year and again this year. By now just about all the major AC components have been replaced.

    Still, I would take my risks and not buy an extended warranty. Especially when it appears to me DC minivans reliability has improved strongly in the last several model years.

    If I could buy a pick and choose a warranty, I would just want one that covers AC repairs for about ten years and 100K miles, as that has been the only weak point of our van. We still like it a lot. Drives and handles nicely for a van, is rattle free except for a few door rattles only when going over very rough railroad type bumps, and it still looks nearly like new when I waxed it up a couple weeks ago.

    Just one sample though, hardly statistically significant. Though, if you read some of the posts in Edmunds you would think all 10 million or so DC van buyers have had transmission failures in the last 20 years!
  • masterpaul1masterpaul1 Posts: 421
    We pay $150.00 a month for twelve months which = $1800.00. (that's without interest). I have heard of other places that you can get a cheaper warranty but not sure where. My advice to you is to shop around. If your the type of person that has thousands of dollars saved up in a savings acct. for those unexpected mechanical repairs, then don't get the warranty. In our case the warranty was a good deal. Another thing to think about is I would rather pay a $100.00 deductible then $500.00 for the repair. A few days after we bought our van, both driver and passenger window regulators went which coast about $500.00 to fix with labor. We only had to spend $100.00 for the job. This might not seem like much, but when your money is tight like ours, its easier to come up with $100.00 then the $500.00 and not fall to far behind in other bills. (Just something to think about). Also, since most vechicles are run totally buy computers, your more likely to have something to go wrong with that. It cost about $75.00 to $90.00 just for them to hook it up to another computer to let you know whats wrong. This isn't even going towards the parts and labor for the repair. So as you can see with certain things it will cost you more then what you would think.
  • davids1davids1 Posts: 411
    Dealers make a ton of money on these. They pay a fixed price and try to charge the customer as much as possible. I don't know what the fixed price is. On my 03 Grand Caravan Sport I paid $795 for the extended warranty. It essentially added to the 7/70 poertrain warranty to include all items in the bumper to bumper basic 3/36 warranty, with a $100 deductible.

    Shop around.
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    Like when I bought an extended warranty on my 2003 Voyager LX, I got things like 3 years of free oil changes, extended roadside assistance, and free rental cars when the van is in for work as part of the deal. I don't know about when buying a used van, though. I think those are all worthless. If I'm not mistaken, don't publications like Consumer Reports all say to never buy one of those aftermarket 3rd party warranties?
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,914
    Make sure you check out our Extended Warranties discussion, and the Smart Shopper board in general to see what folks have to say about the 3rd party warranty you're considering!

    kirstie_h
    Roving Host & Future Vehicles Host

    MODERATOR
    Need help navigating? kirstie_h@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.
    Share your vehicle reviews

  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    $800 for an extended warranty sounds more realistic, especially when the car comes 7/70 anyway. Funny thing about everyone mentioning AC repairs. My father in law had a 96 van and they can not even figure out why the sucker will not hold a charge. He just pays $50 to charge it each year; it lasts 3 months or so which gets him thru the summer. You'd think Chrysler would know how to get an AC to work by now.
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    I had a 1993 Caravan SE (3.0 L V6) that had A/C problems. No one could figure out why it would lose its charge. My last 2 Chrysler vans have not had this problem--knock on wood!
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Chrysler (and other manufacturers as well) had a problem with their A/C units when they switched from the CFC based R-12 refrigerant to the more "Environmentally Friendly" R-134a stuff. Unfortunately, the R-134 is a much smaller molecule, and can easily leak through microscopic pits and fissures in the fittings. What Chrysler found was that the "Boiler plate solution" as set forth by the group that set the standards up (ASA? EPA?) would pit when exposed to road salt and thus allow all of the R-134a to egress the system.

    Given that our 1998 GC SE is still operating with the factory charge in spite of the fact that it has spent its entire life in the north east, I suspect that by 1998, Chrysler figured out how to keep the stuff in the system.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    was there a resolution to the Pre-98 AC problem you describe. So far Pop - Pop is content to pay $50 a year to get it recharged. I wonder what a more permanent fix would cost?
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    My business partner had a 1994 Intrepid that had the problem. His dealership said that it was cheaper for them (I'm not sure if the "them" was ChryCo or the dealership) to charge the system (and maybe change a hose or two) for free each year. Either way, he never paid a dime to keep the A/C running on the '94.

    Since he upgraded to a 1998 Intrepid (and since to a 2001 Intrepid), he hasn't had a bit of trouble.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    ok, I am being offered a 2003 Grand Caravan Sport w/19K miles for $15K...extras look like a v6 (might be standard anyway) keyless entry and privacy glass. $15 sounds like a good price, maybe $500 - $700 less than what you'd expect to pay. The owner was a smoker and all this is contingent on them getting the smoke odor out of the van; I have my doubts they will be able to but told them to give it a try.
    WHAT DO YOU GUYS THINK--A Good Price?

    The extended warranty directly thru Chysler (over the phone) would be $1700 for a zero deductible maximum care package or $1275 for xero deductible Added care Package. (A $50 deductible only brings the price down a bit and a $100 surcharge is included since it is a 2003 model w/19K miles.) DOES THIS ALL SOUND CORRECT?

    To me it seems crazy to pay $1200 - $1700 for extended care when the vehicle already comes with a 7/70 Powetrain warranty? I could see maybe if 3/36 was all the car came with. IS THE EXTENDED CARE WORTH IT? Am I better off just banking the $$$$ and drawing on it for repairs as needed?

    THANKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • masterpaul1masterpaul1 Posts: 421
    andrelaplume, it would seem from your post that you are unsure if you need the extended warranty or not. My advice again is to shop around for one that suits your needs and what your willing to pay. Some places will charge more then others, but offer less services and cover less. Some will have a deductible and others will have no deductible. You have a lot of research to do on extended warranties. Here's something to think about. All of us have some type of auto insurance. All of them cover different things and some cost more than others. Sit down and see how much you are going to be paying every year for the insurance on the 2003 GC Sport. The point I'm trying to make is that some peoples auto insurance will cost more then the extended warranty. You have a higher chance of using that extended warranty then you would a claim on your auto insurance. It's really funny how people complain about how much an extended warranty that is about 3yrs or more, but don't even realize that they might be paying about the same if not more for one year of coverage on auto insurance every year.
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    The 2003 Grand Caravan is actuall $15.9K...I meant to round up to $16K!

    Also, regarding the warranty...any time I have had non-OEM warranties I have ended up getting jerked around and feeling as though I was ripped off. I have found the OEM warranties thru Chrysler, Ford, Toyota etc offer few hassles.

    I just find it incredible that I can buy a new Camry with a 3/36K warranty and extend it to 7/75K bumper to bumper with a $0 deductible for $650. Yet the Chrysler that comes with the same 3/36K PLUS an additional 7/70 powertrain charges $1600 for the bumper to bumper plan. It is almost as though Chrysler knows there will be a major repair and I am prepaying for it. Am I just panicking on this van's reliability?
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,565
    Yes, in my opinion you are panicking. If I were you I would skip the added extended warranty. You are getting a 7/70K engine and drive train warranty, so the major items are mostly covered. Bank the savings on not buying the extended warranty and use that for any repairs. Thus you are putting the money into your own warranty account, and if you don't need any repairs, you are way ahead. I have never bought an extended vehicle warranty, and despite the expense I put into AC repairs on our 96 Caravan, I still will not buy an extended warranty next time.
  • royallenroyallen Posts: 224
    Here's the big picture on extended warranties: they pay for repairs, administration and profit(for both sellers and the warranty company). Therefore there are buyers who receive a modest repair benefit, those who come out near even and a few who come out substantially ahead. I have never purchased an extended warranty (for a car) and have never had half the repair costs a warranty would cost. If I were to have a vehicle in the third category I would much prefer to get rid of it than suffer the hassles of excess repair regardless of how readily the company paid the bill. In my opinion these contracts are an example of lose-lose proposition with few exceptions. Roy
  • just did a complete tune up and now the service engine soon light is on any one know how to turn it off?
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    Problem is if you are in the 3rd category you must first fix it then get rid of it. A new tranny is the same cost as the contract. A new agrument was presented to me today. Take the $1700 and put it towards a van with a much better repair record which is less likely to have an expensive failure. Something to think about I guess. Besides, so far they can not get the smoke smell out of the van I was to get so the point may soon be moot.
  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    I was told by my Chrysler dealer in 2003 that the 7/70 warranty is not as complete as it sounds. I know he was wanting to sell an extended warranty--which he did--but he told me that the warranty only covers items touched by lubricant. Or something like that. In other words, if it's a mechanical or electrical piece that is not lubricated, the 7/70 does not cover it after the 36,000 basic warranty is over. You might want to check out the fine print of all the warranties.
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    FYI:
    There is a Maximum Care and Added Care. The specifics are supposedly on the cHrysler Web Site.
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