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Chrysler PT Cruiser (2005 and earlier)



  • i just rented a pt cruiser for two days on the hawaiian island of maui. it was a fully loaded limited edition with a sunroof, chrome wheels and power everything. i was expecting a lot after reading the reviews and have come to the conclusion that they are all true. if i didn't have the itch for a sports car then i would probably buy one. it's a real head turner, it's comfortable, the fit and finish is really good for a car in it's price range, the sound system sounds nice and it has plenty of pick up although you wont confuse it for a camaro or wrx. i drove it to the top of haleakala (a dormant volcano)which goes from sea level to just over 10,000 feet in under 40 miles. it had no trouble going up the steep switchbacks. real cool car.
  • teoteo Posts: 2,508
    Consumer Reports highly recommends the PT Cruiser. First year reliability has been "MUCH BETTER THAN AVERAGE". The PT Cruiser is, without a doubt, one of the highest quality, if not the best reliability, products to ever come out of DCX in many years.

    Resale value appears to be in "Toyota/Honda" territory according to CR.

    Autoweek magazine just finished a long term review on the PT Cruiser and the car got high marks for quality and reliability which is unheard on a DCX product.

    Congratulations, PT Cruiser owners, you have one of the best cars out there...
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Thanks for the news! ;-)

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  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    I just caught the CR frequency of Repair results myself. I think it's the first time I have ever seen a listing with ALL red circles.

    All the early car reviews commented on how tightly the car seemed put together. That was also my impression based on 1.5 months of ownership. It's good to see that that initial impression is being upheld, a year down the road.
  • msu1msu1 Posts: 6
    I was at a car show and they had a PT DELIVERY.
    does anyone know when or if it will be available?
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    From Edmunds' Long Term Road tests, here's their November review: 2001 Chrysler PT Cruiser. Anyone else got some notes to share...? Thanks for your participation. ;-)

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  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    I can't attest to the long term condition of my 2002 touring edition as we only have 4.5K miles on it so far. I am impressed how easy it is to rack up the mileage on the car, I am also impressed how solid the structure of the car feels, it gives the feeling of quality.

    When I first drove the car (It is primarily my wifes car) I was bothered by two things. The first was reflections off the trim panel covering the passenger air bag, passing trees would reflect off the shiny panel and I would see movement out of my peripheral vision. I have gotten used to that. I was also troubled by a rattling sound from the passenger compartment. I discovered the source and Chrysler had nothing to do with it. My childs booster seat was rattling slightly when he wasn't riding in it.

    Early reviews focused on two complaints, the lack of a passenger armrest and the odd placement of the rear window controls. By 2002 both were corrected with a duplicate set of rear window controls placed on the dash and the addition of a passenger armrest.
  • big_guybig_guy Posts: 372
    I guess the reviewers of the early PT had never driven a Suzuki Sidekick. I had a '93 Suzuki Sidekick JLX and it also had the rear window controls on the center console betweem the fron seats. I actually quite liked it because I could easily reach down and open or close the rear windows without taking my eyes off the road. To each his own I guess . . .
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    The rear window controls are at the back end of the console, so they are actually behind the front seats. The driver would have to reach behind him and locate the switches by feel to open or close a rear window. The later 2001/2002 have a duplicate rear window control on the dash console, so that the rear passengers can open their windows using the rear control, the driver or front passenger can do so from the front console.
  • Hi,

    My interest is piqued in the PT Cruiser. Fitzgerald's ( seems to have several on sale up to $300 below invoice. I am sort of curious as to how these cars can go from selling well over MSRP earlier in the year to under invoice now. Is it the case of production finally catching up with demand? Has the novelty worn off? Or is there some other story? By the way, the particular one I am looking at is a 5-speed 2002 basic model with power package for around $17K.

    Would appreciate any comments.
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Yes the price has dropped and continues to drop as the car becomes more plentiful. The German factory is now producing Cruisers for European consumption so that the Mexican plant doesn't have to split their output between North America and Europe.

    The price you quote is right in line, if it doesn't include the $300 Home for the Holidays rebate. I just took delivery of a 2002 Classic 5 speed, the only option was the privacy glass. The price before the "Home for the Holidays" rebate was about $16,640. The rebate knocked another $300 off. The bottom line for my car was about $17,314 when the MD tax and MVA and document prep fees figured in.
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Just added a Classic with 5 speed to go with my wifes Touring automatic. I thought I would mention my impressions.

    There's a lot more alike than different with the two cars, it's kind of like the difference between coach and first class in flying, both of them get you there at the same time. The comfort level is about the same, the suspension is noticably firmer with the Touring edition. Personally I kind of like the softer ride that the Classic offers. My impression of the drivers seat is that the two are identical.

    I felt that the noise level in the classic was a bit lower. I think that's more a factor of the manual transmission and the engine operating at a lower speed.

    I can't comment on the enhanced handling offered by the touring suspension and wheels, I don't intend to push either vehicle to its limit (especially my wifes car :-D) Again with performance, the classic is not broken in yet so I am not doing any speed runs.

    The main difference that I can see between the two vehicles is in the convenience items. Although the power and security accessories are very nice, I think that my classic will give me everything I need.
  • 4aodge4aodge Posts: 288
    Hello, everyone. My dad bought a bight silver 2001 PT Cruiser Limited with just about every available option about 6 months ago. It has ABS w/ 4 wheel disc breaks, heated seats, leather, pwr moon roof, chrome wheels, ect.

    The whole family loves the car, including myself, although I rarely get the chance to drive it. When I do get a chance to drive it, I am impressed with it's handling and the firm but still comfortable ride it gives. And yes, this car is still a head turner even after being on the market almost 2 years.

    Our 2001 PT currently has a little over 11k miles on it and still runs like new. It is just more proof that Chrysler has done some serious improvment on it's quality over the years.

    -Adam (16/M/CA)

    2000 Town & Country LX w/33k miles
    2001 PT Cruiser Limited w/11k miles
  • Can anyone here tell me who the artist is that does the "L.O.V.E - song on the PT Cruiser commercial. You know, the one with the young couple, and the girl swipes the keys out of the guys pocket and takes off with the car. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks.
  • carleton1carleton1 Posts: 560
    Looks like the PT Cruiser will be surpassed by the NEW Chrysler Pacifica.
    We love the PT Cruiser looks and versatility but that little 4 cylinder engine prevents us from buying one.
    The Pacifica with the 300M 3.5L V6 solves that little problem.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    A search turned up this tidbit: "The artist that sings "Love" in the PT Cruiser commercial is Jacklyn Fisher. The song was recorded specifically for the Chrysler Corporation and is not currently available for purchase."

    I haven't seen the commercial, but here's a link that may satisfy your curiosity. If you are into mp3's, there's a ~30 second rip on their forums of the song :-)

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  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Yes, the Pacifica looks interesting. Here's a direct link to our new Chysler Pacifica discussion on the Station Wagons Board. We look forward to hearing your thoughts on this upcoming cross over sport wagon, minivan, suv.... Happy motoring! ;-)

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  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    The pacifica looks to be a car without personality. One of the attractions of the Cruiser is that it is cute and strikes a chord in the consumer. After living with the car, the owner appreciates the flexibility and usability. The Pacifica will probably be a fine car but doesn't generate the same feeling, at least in me. It is just another generic car, albeit more attractive than the Aztek.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    This means you will only be able to enter here from the Hatchbacks and Station Wagons message boards. We've enjoyed the interaction/participation from the Van's Message Board, but for a number of logistical reasons, we've decided to make this change.

    You may also need to update your message center, if you bookmarked this discussion from the Vans Board. If you have any questions, please feel free to send me an email. Thanks for your participation. ;-)

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  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Perhaps giving a day or two leeway would be nice. Imagine my surprise when I went to the vans conference and my favorite discussion wasn't there.


    Normally I wouldn't look at the hatchback or station wagon as the PT Cruiser is/isn't a hatchback/station wagon/van. In fact, what is the PT Cruiser (other than loads of fun?)
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    I agree, it defies classification, as also mentioned in this Edmund's article. Edmunds' has it listed as a wagon in their New Vehicle guide. The NHTSA classifies it as a van since the rear seats can be removed. And the environmental protection agency says it's a car. So take your pick. ;-)

    Normally I wouldn't look at the hatchback or station wagon

    With all the new crossovers hitting the market, you'll also be finding a lot of other interesting "hatchbacks" and "station wagons" on these two boards. I look forward to seeing you around here. Happy motoring!

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  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    I drove a Pt Cruiser 2 weeks ago with the 5 speed. I love the car, although it could use some power. A turbo would be ok, but a 6 cyl, would be better.

    However, I could not believe how tight the engine compartment is! Question...where is the oil filter?

    I could not find it. When I asked the rep, he too couldn't find it, so he brought over a few other reps. They couldn't find it either!

    You should have seen it...4 reps crawling all over this car looking for an oil filter.

    So where is it?!!!
  • sumtymsumtym Posts: 7
    Chrysler must have had a hard time coming up with a new design I think they looked at a old Ford album and modified the 1953 Prefect.
  • heart93heart93 Posts: 15
    Hi all,
    I've been lurking for awhile & enjoy the discussions on the board, so I decided to join.
    I purchased a 2002 PT Limited in October. I have about 4,000 miles on it & am really happy with it so far. The dealer sold it to me for the Friends & Family price (2% below invoice, if I recall correctly) and gave me $600 more for my trade than anyone else was offering.
    I purchased the 5 spd, as I thought the automatic was a bit of a dog. The only options I added were 4 wheel ABS w/ traction control, heated seats, and the upgraded radio.
    This is my first Chrysler, and I was a little leery of the quality, but so far the car seems very well put together.
    I would be interested to know what types of aftermarket accessories other owners are putting on their PTs.
  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    I agree the 5 speed is a better way to go. I almost bought a PT cruiser a few weeks ago, but my $3200 GM card points changed my mind.

    The cruiser is very solid...congratulations on a great purchase. What color did you get?
  • heart93heart93 Posts: 15
    I can't say I blame you - that's quite a bit of money to pass on. What vehicle are you going to use it towards?

    I bought black, although my first choice would have been silver. This is my 3rd black vehicle, which basically proves that I'm an idiot. They look awesome cleaned up, but are absolutely heartbreaking trying to keep clean (especially in winter).

    Case in point - I spent a few hours on Saturday getting it all cleaned up and we had an ice storm by that evening. Plus, I'm already starting to see minor scraches. For some reason I always seem to notice them more on a black vehicle.

    Oh well - I'm still really happy with the car (& it does look really good cleaned up).
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    heart93- Glad you've have come out of the dark... and joined the discussion. I think black is a great color for the PT Cruiser. I look forward to hearing more about your ownership experience.... ;-)

    jpelder- "4 reps crawling all over this car looking for an oil filter."

    You'd probably have better luck asking someone from the service department. Good luck. ;-)

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  • heart93heart93 Posts: 15
    One nice thing about the black is that there aren't many around where I live - cranberry & silver seem to be the most popular. In fact, I was feeling pretty pleased with myself at having a somewhat unique Cruiser until someone where I work bought an identical one about a month after I did.
  • jpelderjpelder Posts: 235
    The cruiser I drove was also a black 5 had just the equipment I wanted too. Figures!

    I ended up getting an Alero sedan with the 5 speed and sport package. Of course, it is black! However, this is my first black vehicle so I am just learning the joys of grime removal. It may require more cleaning, but when it is clean, nothing looks better than black!

    Fortunately, it is a 3rd vehicle, so if it's yucky out, we keep it in the garage and drive something else.

    I love the Alero, but the cruiser has a special place in my heart.

    Revka, you may be right about asking the service dept about the filter location, but that is pretty sad. Doesn't anyone change their own oil anymore?
  • fgaydosfgaydos Posts: 319
    What do you want black for? They already look too much like a hearse.
    The best thing about the car is the paint job. They have the best colors.
    Bright, vivid colors make them look more like a roadster.
This discussion has been closed.