Pontiac Grand Am

szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
Continuing on from 1999 Pontiac GrandAm...
My gas mileage in the SE1 V6 has been around 23 miles to the gallon with a mix of city and highway. Probably more highway then city though. I too have been good about not hot rodding around since it should still be on break in. I am hoping that it at least averages 25 after break in.


  • tffkaptffkap Member Posts: 11
    I have had similar results with my Alero. It is basically the same car with the same engine. When I started out, horrible milage. I mean like 20 on the HIGHWAY! Now it is better after 5500 miles. It is closer to 25. I doubt it will ever get to the 28 like they said on the sticker.
  • midlifecrisismidlifecrisis Member Posts: 391
    I'm thinking of buying a 1999 Gran Am GT-1 or waiting until the 2000's come out. Anybody have an idea when this will occur? Also, I would like to get any feedback on the major problems I've heard about the GT:

    Poor gas mileage

    Wind Noise

    Very stiff suspension, feeling all road irregularities

    Back up lights filling with dirt and water

    Stiff, uncomfortable seats for long drives

    Leaking door seals and trunks

    Poor legroom for front passenger

    Chips in hood paint

    Dead spot in center of steering control

    Poorly aligned door panels, etc.

    Were most of these problems encountered with cars built in 1998 during the GM strike?
  • jrbushjrbush Member Posts: 1
    Well I appreciate the responses that I have gotten from my gasmileage question. I took the GT on its first highway trip today and got about 26 miles to the gallon. That is not too bad but I was hoping for better. Something else has occured to me. Has anyone noticed that the tire pressure seems rather soft? For instance my car door indicates that the tire pressure should be at 30 psi, which to me seems very low. Therefore has anyone else got a different tire pressure for their GT. I wouldn't normally worry about it but the tires are rated up to 44 psi and 30 just seems too low. This is my 4th car and I have never had a car tire that was inflated at anything less than 35psi. Anyway my point is that if the tires are too soft then that could be affecting the gas mileage. Nevertheless any comments on this matter would be appreciated.
  • matty11276matty11276 Member Posts: 1
    I just purchased a 99 Grand Am SE1 today, but won't actually get the car for another day. I went and looked at the car tonight with a friend just because I was so excited to see it for the first time (it just arrived tonight at the dealership). while looking at the car, my friend an I joked a bit about racing the two cars once I get mine and both agreed that my Grand Am will definitely be much quicker off the line do to the V6 3.4 liter engine I elected to get. Though the car is supposed to be somewhat quick off the line, I wondered if it would shut down at a certain speed. Does anyone that likes to speed a bit have any comments on how their car performs above the 70 mile an hour mark? My friend felt that it would shut down, but I'm dying to prove him wrong by blowing him away!
  • mstan1mstan1 Member Posts: 9
    I purchased a 1999 GrandAm SE2 in February. Some people have mentioned chips in the front hood. Is this an inherent defect? I just thought it was from road construction. If it is a defect, does Pontiac recognize this and fix it ? I have absolutely no other complaints. The car is red with a air-foil on the back, has good MPG (28.5 hwy and 25 city/hwy). No leaks or anything.
    I've been polishing and waxing it with Meguiars in my spare time. It always looks slick. My wife thinks I'm nuts spending so much time detailing the car. I even bought all cotton USA bath towels for polishing and waxing.(as suggested from Zaino site)
  • mstan1mstan1 Member Posts: 9

    I was cruising along just 2 days ago at 75 MPH and I really had to look at the speedometer to see that I was going so fast. I couldn't even tell.It's a real smooth ride!
  • hugobeckerhugobecker Member Posts: 45
    matty11276 - I don't have any first hand experience with Grand Ams and speed limiters, but most manufacturers limit the top speed (using the ECU) to the speed rating of the OEM tires. On the V6 Contours equipped with Firestone Firehawk tires the speed is limited to 112 MPH. I seem to remember that the speed of some GM cars is limited to 105 MPH.

    *_DON'T_* run it to the limiter the first day you get it though, wait until after the break in period (or better yet give it a thousand miles and one oil change) before really getting on it. Your new car will last a little longer if you do. Check your tire pressures before making any high speed runs also. Underinflated tires can be dangerous at speed.
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    The fastest I have had my SE1 V6 to is a little over 75 miles. It was very smooth at that speed. For how smooth it was it might as well have been 50.

    I have not washed mine yet once. I wanted to make sure that I did not use the wrong thing and put swirls in the clearcoat or anything. When you wash your do you spray it then apply the polish. I assume that at some point it gets dirty enough that you have to wash it before you can polish it. Also for the rims do you use that no touch ArmorAll on it? Just curious, thanks.

    That does not seem like a great deal. Those miles that you are giving up are going to be the best ones for it. I like to keep my cars a long time and how it was treated for those first few thousand miles can make a big difference on how it lasts. I would shop around or getting a lower model new one. I think you will be happier in the long run. They have some rebates and financing going on right now too.

  • janine9janine9 Member Posts: 1
    i would like to know what the difference betweern the ram air and the plain v6? it only makes 5 more horse power. why pay that much more?
  • dragonclawdragonclaw Member Posts: 6
    The ram air is Pontiac's way of saying intercooler. While having only 5 more ponies the gear ratios are different than in the se and this leads to much quicker takeoffs.

    You are not only paying for the engine but remember the GT comes with 4 wheel disc (se front disc rear drum) and "sport" handling, and the rims and tires are different. The GT has low profile tires. Also the exhaust system is different.

    The thing that I liked about it was that I needed to option alot of things to fully load a se (14 I think) but with the GT I needed only to include 4 options for my car. I left the chrome wheels and leather off.

    Besides I think the engine has more than what Pontiac is listing... I will have to check that out
  • hugobeckerhugobecker Member Posts: 45
    How much does a maxed out Grand Am GT sticker for?
  • hugobeckerhugobecker Member Posts: 45
    I think I've answered my own question. Digging in Edmunds, a maxed out GT1 lists at 23,355 (w/o shipping). Interesting in that I own a '99 SVT Contour that stickers for just $300 more.
  • L8_ApexL8_Apex Member Posts: 187
    Pontiac's "Ram Air" has no relationship to an intercooler. The Ram Air is simply a less restrictive intake that, if true in name, uses the velocity of the car to force a little more outside air into the induction system. "Ram Air", like "Wide Track" is more marketing than engineering but the rest of the improvements you've listed are genuine.

    Intercoolers are typically used in supercharged or turbocharged vehicles to cool the intake charge for a greater charge density. It's a small radiator of sorts.
  • ursridharursridhar Member Posts: 1

    I tried shooting up to 100 and cruising at 80 in my SE1 V6. It's absolutely smooth. But for the traffic conditions I probably could have done a little more.
  • dragonclawdragonclaw Member Posts: 6
    That teaches me to listen to a salesman...oh well I still love mine.
  • karnkarn Member Posts: 8
    I know this may be a little off the subject, but does anyone know how to find the paint code for the 99 grand am gt. I read the manual which told me to look under the spare tire cover. Did that and found 45+ codes, but they don't specify what the codes belong to. My car is a lease so I'd rather not go to my dealership for the touch up paint I need. Also, is anyone having problems with the steering seeming to loose at times and pulling during hard stops? I only have 3100+ miles and don't know if it just needs an alignment or not. Hopefully, I'll be taking the car into the dealership soon, but I would like to touch up my shopping cart dings before doing so. (That's if I can figure out the darn paint code for topaz gold metallic!!!!!)
  • toblongtoblong Member Posts: 1
  • basasjebasasje Member Posts: 1
    Has anyone noticed a rattling noise coming from the back of the 99' Grand Am??? It seems like something is loose in the back but i really only hear the noise when i accelerate. I plan to take it into the dealer when i get a chance.
  • mstan1mstan1 Member Posts: 9

    When I brought my '99 GrandAm SE2 in to the dealer for the 5,000 mile checkup and oil change, the service manager said that they were aware of the CHANGE OIL light coming on as early as 1,200 miles. Mine came on at 5,000 mi. The dealer in your area should also be aware of this and it should be taken care of.No other problems with mine.
  • mstan1mstan1 Member Posts: 9
    Sorry Jeb, my message was for toblong-
  • sarnold1sarnold1 Member Posts: 1
    I'm looking to buy a first car for my teen. There's a clean '92 Grand Am w/excellent care history, no accidents but high mileage (136,000). Can anyone tell me if these cars are still reliable once the milage gets high?
  • verndvernd Member Posts: 3
    I purchased my 99 GT1 fully loaded with leather and the chrome wheels and I love it. I average 24.5 mpg in combined driving. I already have 3800 miles on it and it is only 2 1/2 months old. The hood getting chipped is from road debris. On the expressway, rocks fly up and skip across about midhood.
  • angeladenangeladen Member Posts: 1
    I am considering purchasing a grand am se2 -- but while test driving, I felt that the large headrest blocked my view out the back. The mirrors seemed more than adequate, but I am concerned about blind spots with changing lanes and gauging distance while backing up. everything else about the car was fairly impressive. has any recent (short) buyer experienced visibility problems? any input is much appreciated.
  • melissasmelissas Member Posts: 1
    Reading all of these is very informative, I have been looking at purchasing a 99 GT1 Sedan, has anyone asked their dealer about the paint chips, everyone is discussing? If so, did they give you a reasonable explanation? For the most part you all really like the cars, I haven't really heard a negative person on here!
  • bogackibogacki Member Posts: 1
    All Grand Am fans:
    Look forward to the new Grand Am Supercharged/Touring edition of the current Grand Am GT. From what I've read, ASC and Pontiac are close to releasing the car into production. In fact, almost all the mods are production ready. The car is incredible! Watch out Grand Prix GTP owners! Basically the car is the new Grand Am GT with the following additions: a Magnusson-Eaton designed supercharger unit, 18" multi-spoke wheels and tires, modified exhaust system, "true" Ram Air designed hood, BMW M3 style ground effects with modified wing, and Recardo leather seats (front and back). The only mod needed to be done to allow the car to meet standard warranty is a modified transmission. This will either be a modified version of the present tranny used in the all new Grand Am's, or a replacement with the 3800's. Although the head designer of ASC wants to see the car get a 5-speed manual. Wouldn't that be great! The car has been track tested and a 0-60mph time has been confirmed at 5.9! That time was taken with the stock 4spd automatic transmission, and on stock 16" Eagle RSA's! Talk about incredible! And the supercharger is only putting out 5psi of boost! Imagine the performance after a pulley changeout. There is no reason that it can't be pushed to 8 or 9 lbs. My guess is that the car can be brought down to the low 5's (0-60). I'll have to look at the article again and see what the 1/4 mile time was. This car is definitely Pontiac's tuning future. If they indeed go with a stick, watch out Camaros, Firebirds, Mustang Cobras (and maybe even Vettes).
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    I have had my GrandAm SE1 for about a month and have noticed what you are talking about. At first it bothered me but at the same time I noticed how big and well placed the side views mirrors are and now the headrests do not bother me so much. I think if you get the upgraded interior(SE2 maybe) the headrests are of the design with the hole through them. That might help you. I still look to the side to change lanes but the side mirrors are about the most useful I have found in any car I have driven.

    Happy motoring.
  • ethbagethbag Member Posts: 1
    I'm getting ready to buy my first new car and at this point it's the grand am GT sedan. From what I've seen I love the thing and I really haven't heard many negative things about it. I'm looking for a somewhat sporty sedan and this one seems to be the best for the price. Does anyone have any complaints or criticisms about the vehicle? Any great praises?
  • dragonclawdragonclaw Member Posts: 6
    ethbag: I got my Grand Am GT sedan in May. Now I would sing about it but I can't carry a tune in a suitcase.

    The only complaint I have about the car is the rearview mirror creates a large blindspot. Now this might be caused by my height (6'2") or the way I happen to sit in the car. Once I discovered the blind spot and learned to correct my driving style to avoid it I can find no other faults with it.

    I am more than happy with my Grand Am.
  • mantamanta Member Posts: 4
    Can I ask you how much you paid for your GT, and what options did you get? I'm in the market for an SE1, but was just wondering. Any help I can get in considering Canadian prices is much needed!

  • aam1aam1 Member Posts: 26

    I will be getting a Grand Am SE1 in the next 2-3 weeks. Would appreciate any advice and suggestions so that I can get the best car at the best price.
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    You should be able to get your car for just a little over invoice without too much trouble and without including any of the rebates available on the car. My SE1 is just over 1 month old. When I got mine there was a factory dealer rebate of $500 and a low finance rate. I was also able to get recent grad and I had GM Card credits. Between all that it was a pretty good deal. One thing that I found annoying was that for the well equipped GrandAm that I got it does not have map lights. Silly on a car with so many other features standard. I would also not pay a lot for the high performance sound system as they call it. The bass is really great but I am not sure it is the clearest sounding stereo that I have heard.

    Enjoy your new wheels. It really is a fun to drive car. The molding on the doors do a really good job of fending off door dings.

  • aam1aam1 Member Posts: 26

    Thanks for your advice. Just a couple of points since you have exactly the same car as I will be getting and I am also a recent grad:

    1. Does the "little over invoice' purchase price include the rebates or do they further reduce the final price?

    2. Does the 'standard SE1 sound system" include the CD or is that part of the high performance sound system?

    3. Did you get a V-6 or the standard engine?

    4. Did you get the solid style value package. Is it a good deal or not?

    Thanks for your help
  • aam1aam1 Member Posts: 26
    Hi Guys:

    Maybe some one can help me with this. I live in NYC and will have to pay 8.25% sales tax if I buy my Grand Am in-state. I was wondering if I can go to NJ, CT, or PA and buy the car there and pay a lower amount of sales tax. A friend of mine told me that I will have to pay the NYS tax if I register the car in NYS no matter where I buy it. Anyone here looked into this and have any information.
  • aam1aam1 Member Posts: 26
    Hi Stephen:

    Missed one more thing I wanted to ask you, are the invoice and MSRP quoted on the Edmunds site very accurate for the SE1?

  • yusufyusuf Member Posts: 4
    I am about to buy a '99 Grand AM SE, very basic model, for 3000 down and 430 pm payments....can anyone tell me if i am getting a good deal, also how is this car in reliability, performance and safety. I know it does not have good resle value though, right? How many mile can i put on it before it starts giving major problems
  • yusufyusuf Member Posts: 4

    One more question....I tried asking the dealer @ the recent grad. bonus and he tried to avoid the issue. How can I get this discount and my GM card rebate? Also, the car they showed me, though new, had for some reason a slight chipping of the paint on the driver side door on the corrugations that the Grand AMs have. Could that be potentially dangerous and could I ask the dealer to fix it or give some more discount?
    (I had posted earlier a msg about the same car in msg#37)
  • yusufyusuf Member Posts: 4

    One more question....I tried asking the dealer @ the recent grad. bonus and he tried to avoid the issue. How can I get this discount and my GM card rebate? Also, the car they showed me, though new, had for some reason a slight chipping of the paint on the driver side door on the corrugations that the Grand AMs have. Could that be potentially dangerous and could I ask the dealer to fix it or give some more discount?
    (I had posted earlier a msg about the same car in msg#37)
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    Hi aam1:

    1)The rebates further reduced the price. So I got it for $179 over invoice and then from that price we deducted the factory dealer incentive, my recent grad and my gm card discount. I was also able to get the 4.9% financing in addition. Worked pretty well.

    2)The SE1 standard sound system from what I read in a tape player. There are two upgrades to it. You can upgrade to the CD stereo edition of it or you can upgrade to the high performance 6 speaker sound system(which I have). I figure what the dollar difference is but the regular system should be fine. I got this stereo because it was what was available on the car on the lot. My only requirement was that the stereo had CD.

    3)I got the 3400 V6. It runs smoothly and is very powerful. Some friends criticized me for not getting a power moonroof. I was more interested in engine power then a moonroof. The four is also a little buzzy for my tastes but the power is still pretty good.

    4)My car did come with the solid style which included the spoiler, the alloy wheels and CD player. I really wanted the aluminum wheels, and CD player so it was a good deal for me. If you are really interested in saving money you could live without these options. I think this package is also responsible for upgrading to the BFGoodrich touring tires. I have been happy with their performance also.

    5)I assumed the Edmunds MSRP and invoice were correct and I put together a spread sheet before going to the dealer and found a car that matched pretty well the options that I priced out. When we went to deal I did not tell them any of this stuff or show them anything. They came back with the invoice price which matching up with my spread sheet was very close if not the same. The reason I am not eactly sure is my car included the variable assist steering too and they do not have that listed. To answer your question it should be good to use.

    Good luck and enjoy,
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53

    I would have them discount your car if it has some chipping or pick another one. We have a few dealers in our area around here so if my local one did not make me happy I was ready to go somewhere else. The chip I would not cause any safety issues and should not effect preformence, they probably just hit in their own lot.

    If you are recent grad they should be able to take that $400 off right along with the credits from the GM Card. I used them both on mine.

    I can say from the performance of mine with V6 is very good. The car stops, corners and accelerates with ease. I hope the reliablity will be good I have seen and heard of planety on old GrandAm going for long distances. My Buick was very reliable so I am hoping the Pontiac is made with similar quality. The resale value will probably not be great but I plan on keeping mine a while. The safety on the edmunds was suppose to be good. I thought I saw on the government site as 4 start from front 3 from side but I will have to check again.

  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
    you do have to pay taxes based on where you park your car.

    I once got a car in CT, registered it in FL, but my primary residence was in Yonkers, NY. I had to pay the Yonkers 8.25% tax.
  • yusufyusuf Member Posts: 4
    Hello All,

    I have seen a '99 Pontiac Grand AM SE1 which the dealer is offering me at a final price of 17800,inclusive of cost of certain accesories and other unreasonable charges like advertising($180) and handling of documents($349). Now though this car is sitting on the dealers new car lot, it has 4100 mi on it. Dealer's explanation ranging from:"this is a demo car" to "we gave it to one of our employees to ride back and forth from home and work". Does any one have any comment on this. I'd really appreciate any help that anyone can give.

  • aam1aam1 Member Posts: 26
    Hi Guys:

    Wanted your feedback on an offer I have from a dealer for a Grand Am SE1.

    Grand Am SE1 with 3.4L V-6, rear deck spoiler, remote keyless entry, low tire pressure, CD player and 15" tires. The car does not have a solid style package and is not a demo car. The price quoted by the dealer is $18,542 (invoice with options 17,956). In your opinions, what price will be a good price for this car? Any and all advice will be appreciated.

    One more thing, is the destination charge a part of the invoice price or is it added over the invoice price?

    Thanks for all your help.
  • mstan1mstan1 Member Posts: 9
    In February, I paid $18,500 for GrandAm SE2 out the door price with everything(spoiler included).I was on the cell phone int he dealership checking another dealer's price during the haggling. I told them another dealer offered $18,800 and if they couldn't beat that with a reasonable differnce, I was walking out the door. I also told him if it was a good deal, I'd buy it right there on the spot. It's amazing how these salesmen just remember a Pontiac incentive or local dealhip offer if you're willing to buy and if not you'll walk. Check with a couple of dealers. I think you should be able to upgrade to the SE2 for that price.
  • islander2islander2 Member Posts: 1
    Is 87 octane gas ok for Grand Am SE1 or should it be higher?
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    I have been feeding mine 87 Octane and it has been working fine on it. I did not check the book but I think that is the Octane it recommends for both of the GrandAm's engines.

    That must be with all the rebates included. I am not sure which apply to you (GM Card, Recent Grad), but that is a good price. I got an SE1 with every option except a moonroof for $18700, that price does NOT including any of the rebates. My price was a little less then $200 over invoice. I did not think that I could get too much lower then that so I took it. After taking off the 3 different rebates (factory, Gm Card, and Recent Grad) the price seemed pretty good to me. Hope you are enjoying you GrandAm.

  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    Argh! Two months after I got mine they now have $1000 cash back and 0%. My only savings on the cash back is they say it cannot be combined with any other GM or GMAC deal so I would not have gotten recent grad. They do not say for how many months it is 0%, I wonder if that is just for 24 months or not.

  • vallianvallian Member Posts: 1
    The 0% is for 36 months. 4.9% for 48 months, I forget what it is for 60 months. I only got $750 cash back though. I think the cash back is dependant on your region. I just signed up for mine last night, I will pick it up tonight! I'm really excited.
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    Thanks for the update on the finance rates. I would not have been able to afford to do mine for 36 months even at 0% so I do not feel quite as bad. The funny thing is I check Pontiac's web site and it said $750 also but when I saw it on TV last night it said $1000. Maybe I misunderstood it and that was rebate for Sunfire. Thanks for info.

    I hope you enjoy your GrandAm. I really like mine. I am still mad at the dealer for over filling it with oil on the first oil change. Over a half quart over filled. I drained out a good part of the excess. I think I will do the rest of its oil changes myself. I keep cars for a long time.

  • midlifecrisismidlifecrisis Member Posts: 391
    I was at a dealer on Sunday and they happened to leave one Grand Am open by mistake. I got in to check out the car from all the seat positions. I noticed that the doorhandle assemblies on both back doors were very loose. Has anybody else experienced this situation? Also, since I am considering buying a SE2 or GT very shortly, I was curious how the Grand Ams have been holding up in their first year. It appears like a solid car, but now that I got in one I'm not sure. How do the interior trim, controls, windows, locks, etc. hold up over time? How about squeaks and rattles? Any experience from an owner would be greatly appreciated.
  • szerfasszerfas Member Posts: 53
    Mine is only 2 months old but I can tell you what I have seen so far. I do not have any squeaks or rattles, I have taken it over some pretty poor roads too. All the door handles and switches operate well. Sometimes I think the climate mode control can be a little vague in feel. The one other thing that I noticed was that molding around the gear shifter moves with the moving of the gear shifter, that concerns me a little. Other then that the car is very tight. I have a terrible dealer that does not know how to change oil on a car but other then that is very good. My mileage is a little over 1500.

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