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Pontiac Grand Am



  • I've been looking at the Grand AM for sometime. Does anyone think that the GT is worth it or is the SE good enough?
  • hengheng Posts: 411
    what was it doing or not doing on the curves?
  • I don't understand either what the car was not doing on curves. The car must have been beat to death to not be able to handle curves and be in need of shock replacement. You can't judge the car based on an abused rental car. As I posted previously, I LOVE to drive my GA on the curves. Granted, I have the GT model (with 16,000 miles) and I take really good care of it. But I test drove an SE model and it performed very admirable on curves.

    For leadfootnot: Your question could be debated for ever. It depends what you want in the car. I decided to get the GT because I wanted a V6, sunroof, custom cloth seats, 4 wheel disc brakes, a power seat and other stuff. It made the most sense for me to buy the GT. Besides, I liked the styling and wheels better. But that's only for me. Can you get by with a 4 cylinder? Do you need all these options? Do you need a RamAir engine with extra HP and torque? Make a list of all the options you want and price out the GT versus an SE with the added options. That's a good place to start your comparison decision making process. Good luck.
  • nirvana1nirvana1 Posts: 1
    i have a choice for a company car, the grand am se2 and the gp se. other than the obvious size difference, which is a better car?
  • patolocopatoloco Posts: 6
    In earlier posts, several people mentioned replacement of rotors, but I am confused if it covered under warranty or not. I have a 99 GA with about 19,000 miles on it. I bought it with 14,000 miles - understanding that the brakes would be a likely problem area. The rotors are already smoked. A nice blue color on both the inside and outside!! What do I have to tell the dealer in order to get the upgrade? Will I have to cover the difference in Price? Are they going to try and blame this on my driving style? Any input would be appreciated. Thanks - Dave
  • patolocopatoloco Posts: 6
    I have the SE with the V-6 and have been quite happy with it. The car accelerates great, and the gas mileage is usually between 25 - 30 mpg (depending on how heavy my foot is). I remember reading that the difference in horsepower was minimal - so options and styling would probably determine your decision. Although I have NOT driven the GT, so I can't speak for both sides.
  • hengheng Posts: 411
    I have a 98 GP SE and 99 Alero GL3 (which is very similar to a GA). Like you said, the bigger size of the GP is an obvious difference. The GP also rides steadier on the highway. The 3.8 GP feels like it accelerates quicker. My GP has the overhead console which is much better than the small overhead storage pocket the alero has. I'm not sure what the GA has. The GP is also quieter. I only hear the engine exhaust coming from the rear of the car while the Alero I can hear engine sounds coming from the front. The GP's trunk is much larger and has the articulated hinges. The GP rear seat has a center arm rest, the Alero doesn't.

    I have both cars. I like the GP better.
  • amloveramlover Posts: 2
    I am wondering if there is anyone out there who can Help me with my situation. I currently own a 1998 Mazda Protege ES and I am in the process of trading it for either the Olds Alero or the Grand Am. Since reading entries in this forum for both the Alero and the Grand Am I am lead to believe that the Grand Am is the better choice. I would really like anyone's opinion on this matter as it is hard to choose from the two. (I have already chosen engine type, V6 3.1 or 3.4 engine) Thanks for any responses!!!
  • obiwanobiwan Posts: 57
    Really, it comes down to styling issues. The performance of the two cars is so similar, even the Ram Air of the GA GT doesn't make a noticable difference. I'd say that you should go and look at both, up close and in person. Then look at the option lists and costs. They should be similar but the configurations could be different enough on the details to matter to you.

    After you look both over, you should have an idea which you like better. If not, go with the one you can get a better deal on.
  • hengheng Posts: 411
    I have an Alero. My friend drove over with his GA and pulled up behind the Alero. The GA is much snazzier in appearance side by side with the Alero. But separately, the GA looks over done and the Alero looks more elegant. Personal preference, take your pick. I won't be offended.
  • azurerainazurerain Posts: 3
    I was just wondering what most of you paid average for your 00' Grand Am GT1?, I am considering (well pretty much going for it) buying it. But I noticed on the site it said the 2001 GA/GT will be released August 1, 2000. So I am assuming the price will drop, did anyone notice this on new 99's when the 00's came out?. I won't be buying till after August 1st, so I am hoping to get a good deal.
  • obiwanobiwan Posts: 57
    I happened to get lucky when I bought my mostly loaded '99 GT1. It turned out the dealer had the wrong invoice when he was negotiating. They had the right vin number but the price of a loaded SE2. And I got it for $200 over invoice of that SE2. They didn't catch it until all the paperwork was signed and they couldn't back out of the deal. Quite embarrassing for them...

    As far as what to expect for a deal, you need to balance the timing of your deal. The later you get your car, the better deal you can get on the 2000 models. However, the longer you wait, the fewer cars you'll have to choose from.
  • rich310rich310 Posts: 34
    FYI--2001 prices for somes cars including ALero and Grand AM are in Kelly's Blue Book ( It appears that base prices are up, but more options are included so there is less need for an additional cost package.

    Has anyone driven an Alero and Grand Am? Any preferences? What aer your reactions to each.
  • vorozabvorozab Posts: 1
    I owned a 1997 Grand Am GT, and have driven a '00 Alero base model. Obviously I preferred my GA, but it wasn't really a fair comparison. Among GM's, I've always been partial to Pontiacs anyway, previously owning a 1988 Bonneville SSE.
  • alhoutexalhoutex Posts: 14
    I purchased my 2000 GA GT in february of this year. I have 9800 hard driven Houston Texas miles on the car, and no complaints. I have noticed a pulsing in the brakes when braking at high speeds or very low speeds, like approaching a stoplight. Is this the rotors? Ive seen several postings about the rotors, and fear this is infecting my car. As far as choosing between a GT or an SE, there is no comparison. The 4 cyl is very strained when put under pressure. Also the steering wheel feels flimsy compared to the GT leather wrapped steering wheel. You can tell the quality difference between the two models. If you do like the SE, definitely get the V6.
  • The pulsing sounds like the rotors, unless it occurs when you hit the brakes hard for quick stops. Then it might be the ABS kicking in. I'm starting to get some rumbling/pulsing when I hit my brakes. Maybe I'll have the dealer check it out next time it's in. I have 16,000 miles on my GT.

    I have begun to notice little noises where interior parts seem to be rubbing together. But it doesn't seem to happen all the time. Nothing real major - just hope it isn't an indication of things to come. Anybody else notice this?
  • amloveramlover Posts: 2
    I am having a real problem deciding between the GA and alero. Definetly need a v6 engine, could anyone out there please convince me one way or the other??
  • pwilliamkpwilliamk Posts: 21
    I have an SE2 which I bought in January and I only have 5000miles on it. I have what seems to be pulsating in the brakes just like alhoutex. I can't see how that is possible after this many miles but I know that it is not the ABS because I am never on the brakes hard enough for this to occur. I also have the 4cyl and sometimes when I start it the engine runs irraticaly The rpms fluctuate up and down like 500-750rpm). I have asked the dealer what it might be but he said unless the check engine light or another fault comes (or if it repeats this occurence at the dealership with the computer hooked up: we all know that this will never happen) then there is nothing that he can do about it. Any ideas what might cause this a fuel throttle sensor or something in that line. Other than that I love the car and how it handles with the 16' rims and tires.
  • alhoutexalhoutex Posts: 14
    well, I know its not the ABS, cause I dont think ive ever had to hit them real hard. Ive got to take it in for the windows scratching my tint, so Ill have them look at it. If it is the rotors, they should still be under the warranty. does anyone know if there is a TSB on this problem? Other than the brakes, no problems, and no noises yet, although I dont have that many miles yet. The car get stares from everywhere, and It still makes me stare, so I can definitely live with a few minor problems.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    I dont think ive ever had to hit them [brakes] real hard.

    GM requires "to hit brakes" hard at least every 1000 miles. Otherwise they can't self-adjust. Look at the car's manual.

    Majority of people who have the warped rotor problem (GrandAm-Alero and Malibu-Cutlass) claim they never brake hard. Is it one of the reasons?
  • obiwanobiwan Posts: 57
    Well, I drive in L.A. rush hour traffic. I don't make a habit of it, but braking hard comes with driving on the freeways. And at 18,000 miles on my '99 GT1, my rotors are warped. I just haven't gotten around to replacing them yet...
  • hengheng Posts: 411
    You can't decide? I won't even try for you. But you are trying to start a big pissing contest here.
  • kjkelleykjkelley Posts: 4
    I've had this Grand Am for 1 year and 9K miles. It's a white 4 door with all available options (incl. chrome rims and subwoofer amp.)
    - Great power and low end torque.
    - Good handling (although my '87 G/A could pull more G's on a skid pad).
    - Excellent interior and seating (leather). The driver's seat can be adjusted way down and back for larger people (I'm 6').
    - Sunroof maintains headroom by opening on top of the roof, unlike the Grand Prix/ Regal which are larger but have less headroom.
    - Split fold-down rear seat is VERY useful. You don't get that in a BMW 323i for 35K!
    - Solid overall construction and feel.
    - The engine produces a ticking noise for about 2 minutes after first start. I quiets when the oil warms up. I believe it to be a bad lifter, or a clogged oil journal to that lifter. (The dealer bailed by saying I was 1/2 quart low - no way).
    - Heavy oil smell enters the passenger compartment through the vents for the first 1K miles after an oil change. This may be related to a PCV valve problem, since I pulled the PCV and cleaned it and the smell went away.
    - The brakes are good so far, no paint chips, or radio problems except rarely the volume doesn't respond to the knob being turned down. No leaks.
    - Have any of you seen or fixed similar problems?
  • I've noticed the ticking also when first starting up. It goes away by the time I'm ready to back out of the driveway (30 seconds), so I'm not concerned. If the oil were low, I'm sure it would tell me. This car has enough idiot warning lights to play a night baseball game under! Although I must say it saved me on a low tire pressure once. I had the light come on late at night, so I checked the tire visually and found no problem. When I got home I checked the pressure and sure enough - it was really low (tough to tell on low profile tires). Took it to the shop and there was a screw in the tread!

    I always smell burning oil after an oil change. Usually because the mechanic spills oil when removing the filter. It gets on the engine block and when it heats up - yuck! That usually lasts for a few weeks, no matter who much Simple Green I attempt to spray to clean it.
  • burdawgburdawg Posts: 1,524
    My 99 has many of the same habits your talking about. I get the oil smell in the vents (when on fresh air only, of course) after oil changes. It's not because of spillage or leaks, I do my own oil changes and I'm careful about wiping up. It has to be coming from the top of the engine, since the fresh air intakes are on the top of the cowl. It could be the PCV valve kj, since it is on the same valve cover as the oil fill, and it always seems to have oil seeping out around it. I may try a new seal. I can't see any other leaks.
    The noisy lifters on start up seem to be a characteristic of the engine and aren't a problem as far as I'm concerned.
    Hitting the trunk seals with high pressure spray can allow a little water in the trunk, but normally it's not a problem.
    I really like the car and it's a world apart from our 95 GA. I have 33,000 miles (about 2 years old now)
  • guylguyl Posts: 10
    When I was looking to buy a new car, I was certain I wanted an Alero. I loved the look. But as you know, when you drive it, then you know for sure. I didn't want a GA, I hated the look. Well, I took out a Alero and found it was smooth on the strait road but had lots of role on the corners and didn't take the bumps well. Then I listened to a friend of mine, who told me to take a GA out, you never know he said. I found it handled a little better, wasn't as smooth on the strait, but took the bumps well. Both of those cars were 4 Cyl. and similar options. The Alero was 500$ cheaper than the GA, and after negociations, the GA was 500$ cheaper. The Olds dealer would not budge. After driving the Alero and the GA, my opinion was that I prefered the drive on the GA. Currently I own a 1999 SE1 V6 fully loaded with the 15" tire. I'm in love with this car.

    The looks of the car is one thing, you need to drive it, drive both with similar options and see for your self. You sit in the car more than standing outside. What do you prefer, something that drive like you want, or something that looks nice, but drive like cr@#$p.

    So, take both out and see for yourself...

    my 2 cents
  • I own a 1997 Pontiac Grand Am and so far I have had nothing but constant problems with this car. Engine trouble, transmission work, AC broke, tires got flat, bad handleing, bad seats, bad dash, oil problems, etc. I could go on and on. It has been in the shop over 7 months so far. I would never but another Grand Am I suggest everyone here do the same! I own a Camry now and it is much better!
  • teoteo Posts: 2,508

  • obiwanobiwan Posts: 57
    Fastfoodman, many of us are participating in many of the other forums you are posting in. We see you post that you had "car x" and it is a piece of junk. You compare these cars to your Camry and always try to make the Camry appear so much better. In one forum, you even go so far to make the laughable assertion that your Camry is as fast as a Corvette.

    While the Camry may be a fine automobile, your frequent and highly dubious "personal experiences" do nothing to support your position. In fact, they serve to show that you are merely one of the mindless chattle being lead around by the Toyota marketing staff.

    If you want to be taken seriously, I would try a few things. First, be honest about what vehicles you really own and have owned in the past. You jump from forum to forum listing so many GM cars as having been in your stable. That leads us to the obvious conclusion that you aren't being honest with us. Second, take a few minutes to proofread your posts. Your spelling and grammar are atrocious and further the image that you are nothing more than a raving simpleton with no more than an 8th grade education at best.

    If you have something to say about GM or Toyota, try engaging in an honest and intelligent discussion. You will win more converts to your ideas that way.
  • I have a '99 Grand Am GT1 Sedan, and after every oil change, the smell of oil come through the vents for 1K miles.

    I believe I've found the solution. I change my own oil (every 2K-2500 miles). The oil pan is cast aluminum with "drip guides" directly below where the oil filter mounts to the block. These drip guides direct any excess oil spilled during an oil change straight down to the oil pan. They look like a small lip cast into the oil pan.

    There's a small drip guide about 1" below the filter. This is obvious and easy to clean. There's another way down new the bottom of the pan behind the front frame cross member that's nearly impossible to see. Oil collects on this one and it's not tilted down well (more flat) so it doesn't drain.

    The trick is to thoroughly clean both the top and bottom drip guides with a rag after the new filter is attached. GM should delete the guides, make them more shallow or increase the angle on them to help them drain.

    For those of you who go to Jiffy Lube, you'll have to deal with the smell, 'cause they'll never clean it... For the rest, try it!
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