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Pontiac GTO Strut Problems

245

Comments

  • I took delivery of mine August 3rd, 2006. I beleive it was delivered with bad struts as I noticed the front end bounced a great deal. I assumed GM had softened up the suspension or something. I called the service department of my dealer and was told that they had not had any previous complaints. It was only when I took my 67 GTO to the Pontiac dealer for PA State Inspection that I discovered that I had a problem. I pushed down on a GTO on the lot and it was like pushing down on a rock. Mine bounced all over the place. The wind up of this story is that the dealer installed aftermarket struts on it since factory replacements were not available and said they would put on factory struts when they are available. All of a sudden, now I am on a list, a list that apparently did not exist a day before. I hate car dealers!!! They must go to school to learn how to look at you with a straight face and lie.
  • Picked up my car today. New struts and all. Not a bad deal for over a months time. At least I had a rental car, even though it was a Grand Prix. I'm just happy to get the car back. I was so excited to get it back, I couldn't wait any longer to put the Borla exhaust on (came UPS while the car was at the dealer), really sounds Great! Alot deeper of a rumble. I took the long way home from work just to drive it again.
  • I picked up my GTO Thursday AM. Not driving the GTO for 6 weeks, I had forgotten the sound of the engine and the power. It's good to have my GTO back in service. The front end has no bounce, but it still has a knocking when my wheels are turned and I drive off of the edge of my driveway onto the street. I wonder if the knocking reflects a different front end problem.

    There were at least 6 other GTOs in the service center parking lot. My guess is that they were there to have struts installed.
  • hammen2hammen2 Posts: 1,313
    Did you drive your car much with the blown struts?

    Have them check any/all suspension components (i.e. endlinks) for swelling/damage, along with the brakes and the undercoating. The strut oil is damaging to all of these components...
  • I bought an 06 GTO on July 5 in Mobile, AL. Struts blew out shortly after delivery. Car was stuck at the dealer for 31 days before they finally repaired it. I am convinced GM knew the car was defective when I bought it. Noone with GM, or the dealer, has even tried to allay my concerns regarding the reliability of the vehicle, or assure me that GM will coninue to support the vehicle. My expectations, to be dealt with honestly and fairly, were apparently too high. I conducted my own research on the defective strut issue - GM and the dealer told me nothing but lies. I researched the Lemon Law statutes and filed the documents necessary to protect my rights (you don't need a lawyer). I am currently making GM repurchase the vehicle - the GM internal paperwork takes ~3 weeks. The car is currently collecting dust in my garage. The sad thing is, I still like the GTO, but forcing repurchase appears to be the only viable recourse to protect my interests. I too was intrigued by the GTO performance, room and comfort, but GM simply cannot deliver adequate quality and support. What happens when something else fails, say in several years? Will replacement parts have to come on a slow boat from Autrailia? I love vehicles. I am constantly evaluating and ranking vehicles to determine what I may buy next. Obviously, the GTO was a bad selection. I have removed all GM products from my vehicle database. I will never consider purchasing another GM vehicle. I will relay my experience to all friends and colleagues. I understand now why GM is failing. 0% financing and 100,000 mile warrantees mean nothing if the vehicles are junk and the service and support lacks basic integrity and competancy.
  • Another strut failure here, I thought I was alone. I actually had a good dealership experience, one week and a rental. I hope nothing else fails.
  • Bought my GTO on July 5. Strut problem surfaced towards the end of the month. Went to the dealer, ordered parts, they said it was ok to drive in the mean time, but with a clunk every time I hit a pothole because the rubber bushing soaked oil and wouldnt stay in place. The parts arrive August 25, the day I am going on vacation abroad. I wait 2 more weeks to come back and get it fixed. Since then, the car developed a small creak/rattle coming from somewhere between the a pillar and dashboard, but will get that fixed for first service. Still enjoy the car every day, and I got up to 23 mpg on long trips at 75 mph.
  • Well I do agree with everything you are saying. I am having the same problem with my 2006 GTO. I am trying to find out more information about all of this so could you tell me what your sources are?
  • yuba4yuba4 Posts: 3
    I had the same problem - suspect struts were over-compressed during transport. They both gave out completely in the first 2000 miles and many foul words were uttered. Shop screwed up the repair, had to go in again, and again, but all is good now with 4000 miles on the new struts.

    yuba4
  • hammen2hammen2 Posts: 1,313
    Nope, it was NOT a transport issue (Since GM-Holden has years of experience not only shipping GTO's to the States but also Commodores/Statesmen et. al. to the Middle East). Rather, Monroe Australia, in a supplier cost-saving measure, changed the brand of strut oil from Shell to something else, and the "something else" didn't work. This was all documented on a thread on LS1GTO, until GM got P/O'd and leaned on the dealer who started the thread, who subsequently deleted it (it had been in excess of 600 posts thorougly discussing the issue and GM's lame response to it).
  • yuba4yuba4 Posts: 3
    Thanks for the info hammen2. You know, after paying someone thirty thousand dollars, it would be nice if they would just talk straight with you about the known problems. The one dealer was a joke and incompetent but the other one, I'm going to have to give the benefit of the doubt as I suspect the rep didn't know some of the nitty-gritty details. I'm not going to have a seizure if they tell me about an engineering mistake. There's millions of engineering details in these things and they're bound to get a few of them wrong. Just don't waste my time and talk to me like I'm an idiot. Ok, feeling better now...

    yuba4
  • I bought my 2006 GTO in August within 1 week one of the front struts blew out, the car was bouncing, bouncing, bouncing. I took it into the dealership, they said they are having that problem with ALL the GTO's the parts are on back order. They tried to put me back in the car I said no way, they finally gave me a rental. Then they said they were only going to replace one side, I called Pontiac and and told them both struts needed to be replaced. Then I was told I had an oil leak(rear main seal) so they had to replace that!! Then I told them of a clicking noise coming from the AC. Their response was that they tested other GTO's and found that they also had that same noise, it was the AC line rubbing on the fuel line and they did not know how to fix it "it is a common characteristic of this vehicle" Now almost 2 months later I am hearing a grinding noise take it back to the dealer I am thinking a wheel bearing, but no my tires are coupled. I explain to them that coupling is caused by bad struts, bad alignment etc.. They need to replace my tires!! Note: I only have 5000 miles on the car!!!!!!! Has anyone been able to do anything about these LEMONS??
  • I was told by the dealership when I brought my GTO in for strut problems that the oil in the struts was too thin and blowing out the seals. They are going back to last years struts!!! And it was on just about all the new GTO's.
  • I had my struts repaired in early/mid-September and I filed a claim with GM for reimbursement of the ~$1000 I spent on a rental car while my GTO was inoperable. Unfortunately, I am still playing phone tag trying to get my money from GM. I am not sure if they are just so busy that they don't have time for me or if they have simply given up on me ever buying another GM product. The funny thing is that I was contemplating buying a second GTO for my wife even as recently as a month back. At that time I thought that the strut problem was an exception to otherwise minimally acceptable customer service. I guess not.

    As an aside, I took my 2005 Bonneville GXP to the dealer for servicing this past Thursday. The dealer reminded me that I really needed an appointment for service, but since they were slow that day they could fit me in. I mentioned that when I turned the steering wheel I would get loud knocks coming through the steering column. They said they would investigate. Anyway, to make a long story short, the intermediate steering column had failed and had to be replaced. I'm not sure what an intermediate steering column is, but I assume that it is important for safety. It occurred to me that as with the GTO, a safety related issue had the potential of harming me could have taken a back seat to the number of oil changes they had to perform. I'm sure had their service calendar been full, they would have sent me away, in a dangerous vehicle. Is this the way all dealers behave?
  • 06gto06gto Posts: 4
    Your comments about the loud knocks coming through the steering wheel on your Bonneville. In addition to my '06 GTO I have an '04 Grand Prix GTP. I am getting loud noises when turning and the feeling of cracking knuckles when turning the steering wheel. I now wonder if my GTP has a similar problem as your Bonneville. And I'll be pickled, the warranty just expired at 36K miles, I have 36,579 on the odometer.
    It must be Pontiac dealers in general. I stopped by for a non-appointment oil change on my GTO, was at the dealer bright and early. I was the only customer at the counter and I got this rash of crap that "I had two guys call out today, another guy on vacation" and yadda yadda yadda. Oh well their loss oil changed and on the road in 45 minutes at the local ExpressLube. Had a tire issue on the GTP, where do I go? To the dealer, car under warranty. Couldn't help, wouldn't help and couldn't be bothered to call a tire dealer or anything. Took the GTO in for an oil leak, replace the oil sending switch. Had a meeting I needed to be at asked the dealer for a loaner or a ride to my office, 3 miles away. Couldn't help. I called the local Enterprise joint, cost me $34.95 for two hours for the rental! Soooooo. It seems to be Pontiac Service at it's best.
  • I started this thread 47 messages ago looking for similar problems with the 06. My car was repaired within a week and there have been no problems since. I am very satisfied with the car and would not have given it back if they had offered. It is just too much fun to drive and at 10,000+ miles in six months we do a lot of that.

    On dealer experience I think those of you with problems have purchased from the wrong one. I have been doing business with the same dealer since we moved to this area and would not go anywhere else. The extra service they offer is more valuable than a lower price on purchase. They will bring us home, pick us up when ready, arrange rentals, work us in if we have no appointment, etc. This to me is all part of the sale and why I bought my Goat from them. Mine came right off the truck and I have heard of better deals but, from the experience I had compared with others, it was well worth a few extra bucks for piece of mind.

    All in all I hope this thing lasts until the next ones are out as I cannot imagine driving anything else. I could be an advertisement for them because at 60, I just love it. After all, what is not to love about 400 horses?
  • I'm pleased to hear that some GM dealership somewhere is behaving in an acceptable manner. My complaint is with GM more than the dealer since GM will ultimately drive the behavior of the dealer. I have to think that at the time I had taken in my GTO, it was already know that parts would be unavailable for 6 weeks and GM really did not want to pay for a rental. So instead of honoring the warranty and providing courtesy transportation, they chose to put my life at risk. If GM were to offer a refund GTO, I would take the money and run. I would do this because I have no faith whatsoever in GM. In a 12 month period I spent ~$65,000 on GM vehicles and while most of my interactions with them have been acceptable, the strut fiasco showed GM's true colors.

    I'm 45 and unless something drastic happens at GM, it is unlikely that I will ever purchase another GM vehicle. Given how poorly GM has done this year, I have to think I am not alone.
  • plistplist Posts: 19
    OK so far I have found out I've paid too much for my GTO from other forum,(Mick) now by this forum I find I may be driving a vehicle that will break down while I drive 500 miles during Holiday visits? I have no issues yet, but should I bring car in and demand my dealer replace struts,or at least tell me this car has been dealt with as far as Strut issues?
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Even if they go during your trip its not going to leave you stranded.

    -mike
  • plist

    From what I know the strut problem was on some early 06 GTO's due to a change in the supplier of oil for the struts. This was rectified. Other posts on this thread have the exact months this was an issue. If yours is a late model 06 I don't think this is an issue anymore.

    I am glad you like the car. I have a red 05 GTO and love it. I like your attitude - keep enjoying it!
  • The strut issue has not been Pontiacs brightest moment, that is for sure. but all of you should look at your front struts if it is a 2006. There is a paper on each of the struts. In the top corner of the paper is a build date. If it is form 1/15/06 to about 5/6/06, then you have what Pontiacs says is the "wrong oil". Also those of you who have had the struts replaced, makes sure they replaced the 2 bolts and nuts that secure the strut to the knuckle at the bottom (2 sets per strut) and the nut the secures the strut together. GM says they are 1 time usages only./ If they did, they would be charged out and show on your repair order. If they do not, then the dealership re-used them. They do not come with the OEM strut

    Also, there is a 95% chance your upper strut bushing is collapsed. I think it is due to the GM putting a spring limiter on the front coil springs when they ship them from overseas. Then they chain down the GTO. This puts long term very serious upward tension on the strut bushing, to the point where I have seen them tear. If the center portion of the strut bushing is equal to or higher than the outer part, then it is collapsed and damaged. What can this do? This can cause your front end to sag and eventually create noises by allowing metal/metal contact inside the strut tower in the fender. I also believe when the strut bushing collapses enough, camber and tow will change, thus you may have accelerated inside tread tire wear. We have seen this especially on vehicles with over 15k miles on them
  • plistplist Posts: 19
    dmsdesign

    Thanks for the info especially how to find build date info!
    plist
  • I received a letter from Pontiac yesterday that started " We would like to discuss your request for assistance regarding your 2006 Pontiac GTO....". I had submitted my reimbursement claim for the rental that I had (while my GTO could not be driven) at the end of September. As of Dec. 8, 2006 I had not yet received my check for ~$950. Numerous attempts to contact the customer service rep failed. She did not return my calls and at times her voice mail was full and no message could be left. The last contact I had with the customer service rep was the end of October, a voice mail left for me saying she had good news. I called Pontiac yesterday evening and talked to some more customer service people. The first person I talked to said that my case was closed and was curios as to why I was calling since my car had been repaired. I explained I had not yet received my money and I was put on hold. He tried to contact the customer service rep that was not returning my calls and he could not reach her. He poked around a bit more and said that the request for a check had been made and that I would receive it in 3-6 weeks. Nonetheless, he transferred me to yet another customer service rep that handles more difficult calls. I spoke to this young lady and explained my situation and I received a completely different set of answers. My case had been closed either Nov. 1 or 16 (I can't recall which date she said) because they could not contact me. There was no explanation why my numerous calls and messages I left for the customer service rep assigned to me were never answered or returned. There was no explanation as to why the letter I had received which was dated Dec 5, 2007 implied that my case was still open. In the end the customer service rep said she would see to it that a check be issued. Now I am totally confused. I guess I’ll have to wait to see if I ever get a check, and if it is for the correct amount.
  • I didn't mention in my previous message #44 that there also was an oil leak from my rear main seal that ad to be fixed and that my evaporator case had to be replaced, but now I am having to put a new rear end in and they are going to have to repaint my front fenders(both)from tape marks from transport. If any of you have any discoloration on your paint there is a service bulletin on it so have your dealership fix it! I have personally had it with this car because I still have a funny sound coming from the front end going down the highway and when I am not moving the car chirps!!
  • Is this strut problem on all 2006s? I'm eyeing one now.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    There is specific build date ranges it applies to.

    I am looking at used 05s, better prices, and better cars, the late 06 models they started to cheap out on things as the factory ran low on parts.

    -mike
  • I found an 06 for $27 on the lot and I also can get a GM discount. I don't like the ones that don't have the hood scoop.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    have the 6.0 and hood scoop.

    I'm looking at paying about $23k for an 05 6mt with 10-15k miles.

    The late 06 models can't plug-play the guage upgrade pack because they ran out of the P-P harnesses at the factory.

    -mike
  • Gottcha. I've been reading quite a bit about cheaping-out, etc. So ridiculous.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    My thought on last-year car builds is that as the factory winds down, they start using all the old parts they have laying around, not just on the GTO, I noticed it with the last year of the Isuzu Trooper, the tailights on the 99-01 were clear turns in the back in 02 the last year of production, some had orange, some had clear. So late 06 GTOs likely have a lot of bastardized parts in them.

    -mike
This discussion has been closed.