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Chrysler PT Cruiser (2005 and earlier)

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Comments

  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    I have had many cars over the years. In the last few years I have read all the reports, studied all the surveys and worried over getting the best car in the style I wanted. I have ended up buying cars that always fell short in some way of my expectations. The PT was a car I simply wanted. The seating position is nice in my opinion. I wouldn't buy a Sofa or Chair that had me sitting on the floor with my feet stretched out so why would I get a car that made me sit that way? PT drivers tend to wave at each other and the aftermarket is loaded with parts. When I had my Prelude I could go to the parts store and no one gave it a second glance. The PT gets more than glances. The Prelude was a good car and did pretty much what I expected it to do. It just wasn't as comfortable. It is hard to describe to non enthusiasts but let me try. Driving a car is a bit like going out to dinner. We all like a nice meal but many of us look forward to dessert. Driving the PT is like dessert, its comfort food for the soul.
  • leejrleejr Posts: 3
    I got the 7 year 100k powertrain warranty for free but bought the 7 year 75k for $770. It is the warranty with the $100 dollar deductable. Would appreciate anyone's opinion on it. Honda has a 7 year 100k $0 deductable for $875. It tells you what's not included which is much easier to live with I think. We love our brand new cruiser with about 350 miles on it. I think it has plenty of power-very peppy. Our's is a 5 speed. You also have a great feeling driving it with response you get from others. Very fun car to drive and seems to be very well put together.
  • dlusgerdlusger Posts: 8
    We bought a 5 speed last October. Paid $1300 under invoice. The dealer in Upper Marlboro, MD is great with no pressure. They even faxed the invoice to my home with offer hand written at the bottom. Ask for Steve Brennen. They had the car on their lot since May. Seems nobody wants a 5 speed - except my European wife. Folks - if you can drive a stick, go for it - you won't regret it. We love ours. Acceleration gets better with time - must be break in of the car.

    Leejr - your extended warranty sounds like a deal. Assume it is a Chrysler contract. Did you buy the Power Train Care Plus or Added Care? We got the Maximum Care that's suppose to be as comprehensive as you can get (5000+ parts). Paid $1440 for 7/75000, $0 deductible after making an offer based on internet search. Always been a foreign car owner so I wanted to be cautious with a US make in its first production year.

    Now that the hype has worn off the PT Cruiser is starting a track record. Consumer Reports gives it steller reliability scores although crash testing was a bit subpar.
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    I had to make a run to a local funeral home and pick up some flowers to deliver them. When I got there the flower room was filled with flowers. I just flipped up the rear seats and filled the car with arrangements. I got everything but two floor arrangements.
  • andil1andil1 Posts: 97
    I subscribe to Autoweek Online and got an e-mail about the new cars introduced at the New York Auto Show. They mentioned a PT Turbo to be introduced this fall. It's supposed to be a 2.4L with 215HP and 145lb-ft torque. There's a 5 speed Getrag transaxle standard, and an optional 4 speed auto with a clutchless manual shifter.
    It has a chrome tip exhaust with a pronounced exhaust note, per Chrysler, and a set of 17-inch cast aluminum wheels fitted with a set of performance treads, GT and Turbo badges on the exterior, body-color monotone front and rear fascias, plus some inside reminders of this sporty edition! Oh, boy. I wonder if I can get the hang of a clutchless shifter. (Can't drive a clutch without stripping gears!)Didn't VW have one on their Beetle in the early 70's?
  • little9little9 Posts: 30
    Minivan seating is fine...not too hard, not too soft. I thoroughly enjoyed your posting especially when you used the analogy of dining and the dessert to follow. See the posting by Andil1 (above) and the issue of "underpowered" will be settled. GET THOSE PONIES ROLLING CHRYSLER!
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    in the '70s. My Dad had a '71 Superbeetle with it. It had an electric clutch that worked when you touched the shifter. Only problem with that, I could no longer drive with my hand resting on the "stick".
  • markregelmarkregel Posts: 32
    Not that I give Consumer Reports arguably biased reviews much credibility, it is worth noting that in the latest automotive edition, the P.T. received their top rating for reliability. Hard to believe, but true! In fact, it came in second place, beating out the likes of Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla. Only the Toyota Echo scored better (you don't want one of these, trust me!). I wonder what the so called "experts" at Consumer Reports think now of this "another example of poor quality from Chrysler" as stated in their first review of the Cruiser.
  • markregelmarkregel Posts: 32
    Okay, I have finally decided to get a P.T Cruiser. I prefer manual, but the big question I have is how does it shift? Is it smooth and precise? Any 5-spd owners that wish to give advice would be greatly apprecated. Please respond to [email protected]

    Thanks!
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    I have the five speed and I have had many other manuals. It is just an opinion but mine seems to shift pretty well. It is smooth while still giving you the feel that you have it in gear. I have had some that you could not tell if you were in gear unless you let out the clutch. With the armrest down my fingertips just wrap around the shift knob, my arms are a bit short. If I am just cruising and not paying attention sometimes my fingers will flip the shifter from second into fifth. All that indicates is that it has a narrow gate. If I am not leaning on the armrest, that doesn't happen. As far as the way it shifts and the clutch engages? It is better than any VW I ever had.
  • dlusgerdlusger Posts: 8
    We went from a 96 BMW 318ti to a Cruiser. Compared to the bimmer the clutch was easier to depress - less fatiguing. The PT clutch engages a little abruptly. Seemed not much clutch travel to me. But, the learning curve was quick. I didn't notice after a short period. Now I see it as a very smooth clutch. Agree with boaz47 that it has small narrow throws. Once mastered, it shifts just dandy on a hard acceleration with smooth clutch/shift action. As I said in the earlier post - great acceleration. Real fun to drive.

    Still gets admiring looks even though Cruiser supply is plentiful.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    of great acceleration and PT Cruiser. At least not when you go from a GM pickup to one. Granted the one I drove was automatic but I had to keep kicking into passing gear to get it moving on the freeway.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    The stick pulls harder than the auto but it isn't as quick as many sports sedans. It is 4 tenths of a second slower through the quarter than a Sierra HD with a 8 liter V-8. Of course if people want something to pull harder they can just wait for the Turbo. Looks like next year. But then it is called a cruiser after all. I tried the auto and I will admit you can't be in a hurry. But then, in all fairness isn't it better to give the people time to watch your ride drive by?
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    The stick is a very pleasant driving vehicle, and is more than adequate to drive. It shifts well and is very easy to get used to. When I got my stick, I had not driven a stickshift in 15 years (since my marriage) I had little difficulty in getting back into the saddle. I have little difficulty in chosing my gear, when I want 5th, the gear level moves right into it. The other comment that it has a narrow shift pattern is correct.

    The Auto is also a pleasant driving car, certainly not as peppy as the stick. My wife has the auto and she has no complaints about it for the driving she does. It is certainly able to keep up with traffic easily.

    As someone else pointed out, the car is called a Cruiser. It is not a sports car, just a fun-to-drive, fun to be seen in car.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    with the 150 hp Quad-4. This car weighed 2800 lbs and was pretty snappy. When I first read about the PT it was supposed to be around 2800 lbs so I was looking for it to run as well. But then it got a little "porky" by the time it hit production. I'm in bumper to bumper traffic coming home from work so I'm not sure I could put up with that much shifting every day. But I would like to try.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    If I were still commuting in traffic I might have picked the automatic. I did that for many years when I worked in LA and in the afternoon traffic was a bear. But now I live in the mountains and have a easy 16 mile coast down the mountain every morning and the stick pulls a bit better for the windy uphill run in the afternoon. I plan on changing to a cold air intake and a free flowing exhaust soon. This car has enough power for my needs and I don't need the added temptation to see if I can attract more black and white cars. If a person wants more zoom they can wait for the turbo or the after market people have a bunch of speed parts for the PT. You can order everything from headers to superchargers right on line. It is my feeling that these cars are designed to be eye candy. Plus it is one of the most practical cars you can buy. I have never had a car that was easier to turn into a panel truck from a sedan or wagon.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    pretty difficult to find a rental with a stick. BTW, the automatic I did drive I rented while my Sierra was in the shop.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    From Edmunds' coverage of the 2002 New York Auto Show: 2003 Chrysler PT Cruiser Turbo. Let us know what you think.

    image

    Thanks for your comments!

    Revka
    Host
    Hatchbacks & Station Wagons Boards
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    It's about time, but I'll stick with my stick and my wifes auto, they're fine for us.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    I think motor options are good for just about any car. What the Turbo does is allows those that are leery of adding their own speed parts a factory option with warrantee. It should help the line a bit but I hope people won't have to wait two years before the price comes down out of the clouds.
  • jlvjlv Posts: 14
    Hello.

    I do not own a PT nor have I ridden in one. Someone told me they
    have a terrible blind spot at both back corners. I am very
    curious about what real owners have to say about this.

    Thanks.

    Jv
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    My understanding is that the 2001 cars with the rear headrests had very poor rearward visibility. The 2002 went with a smaller rear headrest which reduced the problem.

    The car does have fairly thick window pillars and you do have to get used to proper driving technique. You not only check the mirror but also check out the window (which is what I was taught in driver ed all those many years ago.) That said, neither my wife's touring edition with headrests or my classic without headrests is difficult to drive.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    I had not noticed until you asked. Yes, there is a blind spot in the right rear. I would say it is a half of a car size blind spot. In other words when you look back about half of a normal car cannot be seen if it is right in the spot. But the mirrors are adjusted to view right into the same spot. I tend to use my mirrors more than some so I never noticed.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    of the new vehicles you'll notice many that are a lot worse. (or look like they would be based on the thickness of the "C" pillar). On my GM pickup it's the "A" pillar where it meets the dash combined with the side mirror. You can lose sight of a whole PT Criuser there!
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    My Mazda B-2500 doesn't have much of a blind spot but it is a standard cab with sport mirrors. I even looked at the PT Panel but I knew I would need bigger mirrors than standard if it didn't have any side windows in the back. Like I said I didn't notice the spot until someone asked but I think it is clearly covered by the standard mirror position.
  • After 4 years of having a Sebring convertible the PT blind spot is a lot smaller than the conv. but is larger then my Subaru wagon's 'C' pillar.Just takes getting used to. and remembering to use the mirrors. Thats why they are on the cars. Also unless you want 12 to 14 seconds in the quarter, this car is able to keep up with other traffic just fine.( I'm just a old fart ) but I've had 390"s and 430"s
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    to the left of a 300M yesterday on the highway and was looking at the back window and "C" pillar on it. Must be hell trying to see out of them. Gotta say though after all the aniticipation I was disappointed when I finally drove a PT. Other than the huge diff. in power from my truck I suppose the seating is more a matter of getting used to it. But dam they look cool!
  • frank58frank58 Posts: 54
    I have a deal weorked out to buy a PT but the power and seating scare me. I feel the lack of powqer and I just feel the it is a tight fit. I am not that big.

    Any commnets out there?

    Frank
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    Tight compared to what? Compared to a Yukon or Expedition? My son and his friends are all between 6 feet and 6 ½ feet and they have all commented about the increased headroom and usable legroom in the back seat. In truth is seats 4 adults in comfort. It has more room than the other wagons I was looking at plus it does not have that sit on the floor legs stretched our in front position. Power is good for the class it is in. The P-5 and Matrix only have 130 HP stock and the Saturn L series only has 142 HP. I don't know what the CR-V and Rav-4 have but in room and power the PT seems to hold its own. Not a racer by any means but respectable. If you wait till the beginning of the year I believe you can get the turbo with another 60 HP. I'm not sure if it will still be a ULEV car still but who knows? There is a reason it is called a Cruiser.
  • frank58frank58 Posts: 54
    Thanks for the input, and sorry for the typos.
    I am going to buy it next week, it is the new blue color with the touring package.
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    Sounds like a nice car. We have an automatic touring edition in Inferno Red and a 5 speed classic in Steel Blue. Both are very nice. I would consider the performance to be adequate with both cars, my wife is racking up the miles on her touring edition and still threatens to rearrange the face of anyone who comes near her beloved car.

    Recently I have seen comments on the suitability of the Cruiser for the handicapped, especially people who may have arthritis in the knees. With the upright seating position and the doors that open widely, it is a very easy car to get in and out of.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    Motor Trend or Car and driver had an interesting article on that issue. They were saying that the move towards taller cars makes it easier to get in and out. The also indicated that you have more room to get out of in a parking space because the door is not as wide. Low short cars need wider doors so you can get out and so they have to have more room to swing open.
  • 300michael300michael Posts: 1,815
    of your PT Cruisers? Is it 9006's
  • bpraxisbpraxis Posts: 292
    Hello everyone and I hope that you are having a nice day.

    Regarding the purchase of a New PT in your opinion will I regreat purchasing the base model instead of the touring?

    Is there that much of a difference in handling given the different suspension and tires? Actually I like the idea of not having to clean metal wheels and think I can live with the wheel covers.

    Thankyou very much for your feedback.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    You can upgrade wheels and tires if that is important. I believe you are offered more options with the touring model. It is more like a package deal. If you don't need the options offered with the Dream Cruiser series get the Limited Edition, if you don't need all or that get the Touring and if that doesn't strike your fancy get the base model. Most of the options I wanted will be aftermarket so some of the factory ones are not as important to me. All I wanted was alloy wheels and the 16-inch tires. I knew I wanted a stick and the color but that was about it. I like the sun/moon roof but I have always distrusted them living where it might snow. Even if you decide to get different rims and tires later at least you will not be making payments on them.
  • crkeehncrkeehn Posts: 513
    What Boaz said.

    Actually, take a look at what is offered with the Touring Edition, which is not offered with the base. Are they things you have to have or can you live without them. The suspension is noticeably firmer with the touring edition, I suspect the handling is superior but I don't push either one to their limits. Some of the Things that come standard with the Touring Edition are very nice to have, the Remotes and Sentry Alarm system. It also comes with power door locks and power heated mirrors. Are those things you can live without or do you need them.

    My wife is frustrated with my Classic as she is used to the power door locks in the Touring. She is constantly leaving my car unlocked and I have to follow behind her and lock her door.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    If someone wanted to put in one of the more exotic after market security systems they all come with auto locks. I like the one with the auto start but I do not think it comes for a car equipped with a stick? At least you couldn't leave it in gear and start it. For me it is just who will get my money in the long run. The factory when I buy it or the after market people when I think I can afford it. For some it is better to get all they need up front, because they can't seem to save to get it later. For others it cost more to finance something they can buy later.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    cost of a PT I'd go for more than the base model. Although in my case I may have to buy a base model as I've decided I couldn't replace my pickup with one. So it'd have to be an extra vehicle. A most-of-the-time commuter. FYI......I haven't found any wheels easier to clean than a chrome wheel. And they look very good too. Even if I bought a base model I'd put on custom chrome wheels.
  • bpraxisbpraxis Posts: 292
    Thankyou for your comments about the base verses touring models. I presently have plastic wheel covers on my 2000 vehicle and I love the fact that no cleaning is required for various styled wheels.

    I will test drive both models and see if I can tell the difference in handling and ride comfort.

    I wonder if the base model with 15 inch tires would get better gas milage and be faster because of the greater power required to move 16 inch tires.

    Once again thankyou for your comments and have a great weekend.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    A 195 X 60 X 15 is only about .6 perent smaller than a 205 x 50 x 16. The unsprung weight of the 16 would only be a pound or two per wheel more than the 15 so you would not notice unless you were a AutoX racer. The stock 205 x 55 x 16 is just a bit bigger, maybe an inch.
  • herbeckgherbeckg Posts: 15
    The glued on plastic trim on my 2001 PT Cruiser is coming unglue d. One year old and 13000 km. Started on rear passenger door.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    I was wondering if you have been to see the dealer ora body shop to get it fixed. I would before it got to bad. Had the window rubber come lose on my Prelude about six months after I got it. Had some discussions with the dealer but got a body shop to fix it for 25 bucks. Lasted till I sold it...However the E-brake quit working at about 50,000 miles and it was prohibitive to get fixed. Always parked with the wheel to the curb and in first. I have been told several have had a problem with the E-brake on that model.
  • frank58frank58 Posts: 54
    Has interest fallen off the PT this far. I have not seen a message in weeks.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    as if the wagon board itself is that hot of a ticket. Also there aren't a lot of things to compare PTs to. Maybe most are out driving theirs? One of the things I have found that makes owning a PT nice is all the after market stuff you can get. I think I will make my own cold air intake however. I do like the duel exhaust systems I have seen and think that if I plan on changing to a free flowing exhaust that will be the way to go. It does seem as if a few more people customize their Cruisers than many of the cars I have owned in the past. So far I have no complaints.
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    you ever owned a Honda Civic but, FYI......it's THE MOST often modified street car on the road. Read that someplace. And to stay on subject, it ain't no PT Cruiser!
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    Yep, had an early Civic SI. And yes it is easy to modify. But not to the extent that I have access to my PT now. I can get a full front clip for a look alike 38 Ford with droupy eyes and all. An after market woody kit that will make a retro man cry. I doubt if anything comes close to the Civic in the after market speed parts part but I live in an area where PT customizing is a piece of cake. Maybe I should have qualified my statement with Customizing not Modifing? I could walk in and get wings or even ground effects for the Civic in a lot of places. I still had to hunt far and wide for body and interior mods that are pretty much centralized at the aftermarket PT store. There are at least four shops within 20 minutes of me that I can get custom PT things from. Doesn't make it easier to modify but it is easier than most to customize. But then you can get civic pars anywhere.
  • herbeckgherbeckg Posts: 15
    The HVAC Control on my 2001 PT Cruiser stopped working. One year old and 14000 km.
  • illini4illini4 Posts: 140
    I had the same problem (stuck in defrost mode). Cause was the body control module.
  • boaz47boaz47 Posts: 2,751
    Wasn't that covered by the basic warrantee? If it is stuck in defrost mode the outside air switch is stuck also?
This discussion has been closed.