Dodge Caravan/Chrysler Voyager



  • Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
    ...a few missing posts. They were removed for being off topic and/or confrontational.

    Vans host
  • temmtemm Member Posts: 2
    I ordered a 01 T/C last week. When I was looking over the invoice I noticed a $500.00
    advertising charge. Does anyone know if the dealer is really out $500.00?

    I ordered this van on 10/10. Dealership called this morning and said it was going down
    the line. Arrival date should be the end of this month. Hope this is true.

    The dealership offered $10,5 for my 96 T/C I bought in May 96 for $26,5. Including
    interest, that works out to about $330.00 a month. Only thing I had to replace on this van
    was tires and brakes which is normal for any vehicle with 80,000 miles. Of coarse the
    transmission was replaced but under warranty. I am well satisfied.
  • hersbirdhersbird Member Posts: 323
    I could find a nice low mile 1997 Town and Country LXI for $12,000!

    To give you 3 references (gee, I wonder how the dealer came up with numbers to give themselves a potential $10,000 profit?)

    On a 1997 T&C LXI with standard features and 45K miles:

    Edmunds $14,200 trade in and $17075 retail
    Kelly Blue Buok: 16,330 trade, $21,300 retail
    NADA (june 2000, sorry not current) $16400 wholesale, $18000 trade in, and $20500 retail.

    There are not many more major pricing publications out there and I really find it hard to believe 3 major ones put the trade in on this van $11500 at best.

    In a serarch of turned up 499 97 T&C's the least expensive LXI had 100000 miles on it and was priced at $11,000, the least expensive under 50K miles was $15,000, the mean price of all 97 T&C's all models was $17,985. Granted this is what dealers are asking and they do need to make some profit but even it they were willing to take $2000 off the mean price and still poket $2000 profit, they would still be able to pay $14000 on a trade. FYI there were 55 priced over $10,000 more then what you received as a trade in hence the possibility of a $10,000 profit.
  • carleton1carleton1 Member Posts: 560
    As in January 1999 the trade-in for my 1991 Astro CL in mint condition with 61,601 miles was between $2,000 and $2500 BELOW the trade in stated in NADA and Edmunds. Maybe there is also a secretive "price-fixing" between the used car managers of all dealerships in the area where aminh96 lives as it appears to be here.
  • carleton1carleton1 Member Posts: 560
    #432 of 433: interesting article on 2001 DC vans (binkybarnes) Thu 19 Oct '00 (04:52 PM)
  • palmer2palmer2 Member Posts: 5
    Does anybody know if the 2001 town and country LXi is as quiet as the 2001 Limited. Are there different levels of sound insulation put in the various models within the town and country van line-up. Am also considering the dodge grand caravan ES. Can I assume the ES is as quiet as the town and country? Also do the dodge grand caravan and town and country ride as well as each other. Is one a more softer ride than the other?
  • retiredagent1retiredagent1 Member Posts: 13
    Per the brochure, the limited has added insulation & is quieter than the LXI, we drove 2 identical LXIs, heard a droning noise in both, could not detect if it was the tires, wheels, or the transmission, it was between 45 & 50 mph in one & between 60 & 70 mph in the other, we are waiting to test the limited which is not avaiable in our area as yet.
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380
    that droning was probably coming from the exhaust...
  • elle5elle5 Member Posts: 1
    After months of getting used to the fact that my great '91 Toyota Previa AWD van was nearing it's end of service to my family, I quit agonizing! After eliminating Toyota's Sienna (too small) and Honda's Odyssey (not impressed)I started to read about the redesigned T&C. Today I took my husband,9yr twins and little sister to test drive a 2001 LXi AWD T&C. We all loved the quiet ride, the excellent handling, the stereo,the classy interior, tons of space and the power doors and lift gate. I now realize that I didn't want to give up driving an AWD minivan (especially now that winters in the north east are predicted to be colder and wetter: more snow because of no la nina or el nino). After stopping strangers who own T&C's, asking soccer moms who drive them,etc. no one has had any problems with the old design. I know if I start digging I will unearth some past reliability issues....but I think I will go with my gut feeling on this one. As one reviewer stated when beginning his piece on the new 2001 Chrysler T&C: WOW!
  • mechanmechan Member Posts: 7
    I believe the reason that DC increased the powertrain warranty in Canada to 5 yrs/100k km is to remain competitive with Honda and their Odyssey Canadian powertrain warranty which is also 5 yrs/100k km.
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380
    so, why do both dc and honda have longer powertrain warranties in canada than they do in the good ole' usa?
  • alingaling Member Posts: 598
    Hmm, that's interesting. My '94 Grand Voyager LE AWD has a 7 year powertrain warranty. It will be 7 years old as of December 23rd, 2000, so I guess I better make sure that everything is in order! I had the rear diffy changed under that warranty about a year ago because there was a very slow leak. I only have 90020 kms though, so I'm not worried about the mileage limit.

    Townhall Community Leader/Vans Conference
  • mechanmechan Member Posts: 7
    Checking the Honda USA website last night, the US Odyssey comes with only a 3/36k mile powertrain warranty, thus the likely reason why DC hasn't had to offer the 5/60k mile warranty on Caravans in the US.

    As an another example of differences between Canadian and US warranties, with the VW Passat sold in Canada, the ptrain warranty coverage is 5/50k miles and is worse than Passats sold in the US which have a 10/100k mile ptrain warranty.
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    It may explain part of it, but some of the competition (Toyota's Sienna) does offer an extended powertrain warranty of 5/60 in the U.S.

    Interesting about VW in Canada - I wonder if the basic warranty is any better (in the U.S., I was surprised to find that they cover bumper-to-bumper for only 2 years/24,000 miles).
  • mechanmechan Member Posts: 7
    I agree if you bring the Sienna (short wheelbase) into the comparison, but DC's marketing strategy may only recognize the need to match what its toughest extended wheelbase competitor (the Odyssey in this case) is offering.

    In Canada, VW offers bumper-to-bumper coverage on the Passat of 2 yrs/40000 km (I'm not sure about the rest of the VW lineup).
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380
    to anyone interested:

    i just got an email from a chrysler service tech friend of mine. he said that the 3.5l engine will only be available on the town and country this coming spring. along with that engine comes some changes to the tranny, especially better torque management. he went on to say that the "differential" part of the transaxle was upgraded significantly around a year ago. since the mid 90s the biggest problems with the 41te have shifted toward the differential part of the transaxle and its spider gears/pins rather than the tranny itself. seems that abuse such as spinning your tires excessively while stuck in snow or mud has caused these parts to overheat seize or even break through the transaxle casing. anyway, the upgrades should certainly help stave off this problem. also, just in case you are a chrysler transmission troll, this differential weakness is resident with the 41te only. the 42le in the lh cars has an entirely different differential that is quite robust.
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    Of course, since this is a Caravan topic, it is applicable - the Caravan uses only the 41TE.

    The $64,000 question is why DaimlerChrysler waited so long to fix yet another in what seems like an interminable series of problems with this transmission - it amounts to an admission that everything built up to a year (or so) ago remains problematic. Scroll up a few topics, and you'll see someone complaining about a failure in a 1999 Town and Country - a failure that sounds very simliar to what we experienced in 1993 (i.e., wham-bam-shudder-lock into low gear, with metal all over the inside of the transaxle).

    Maybe they have finally fixed the problems - what is really irritating is that they've known all along that these units have multiple failure modes, and that they've taken almost a dozen years to hopefully make things right.

    It also casts a lot of doubt on those who claim that it's just a problem with the wrong fluid being used (particularly for those of us who experienced the problems, despite proper care with only OEM parts and fluid being used for maintenance).

    Then again, maybe the Daimler part is FINALLY bringing the Chrysler part into the modern age, reliability wise.
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380
    making the differential more robust in the 41te may be overdue. but i know that the differentials in many transverse applications are not nearly as strong as those in say a logitudinal or rear drive layout. and remember that abuse has been the main killer. my dad has a 96 t&c that has about 70k miles on it and has been just fine. an electronics technician at my office has a 92 grand caravan that needed a new tranny at 130k (seals and snap ring went out) otherwise has been great and has nearly 200k miles on it presently. now keep in mind these two examples take good care of their vehicles and probably would never burn up their transaxle if stuck in say, mud. however, alot of people don't pay any attention to things like this, or even maintenance schedules. so, to each his own...
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    Many of these units have not been abused in the least, and yet have failed. Our first one went at 18,000 miles - no abuse at all.

    However, if it is the differential that is a weak link, it could explain why the units are so much worse in minivans than they are in cars (and in turn, why they're worse in larger cars like the Dynasty and New Yorker, etc. than in smaller ones like the Stratus and Cirrus).

    It will be interesting to see if the unit finally ends up being replaced, as 5-speed automatics become mainstream. However, I wonder how much better Daimler will be with transaxle design - since they sell essentially no front-wheel drive cars of their own.
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380
    it is a fact that mercedes 5 speed automatics will be produced for the next generation lh cars in late 2003. however, those cars are supposed to go to rwd at that time. it will be interesting to hear the first post from someone having to replace this tranny, especially as i'm sure it will be much more expensive than replacing a chryco tranny.
  • alingaling Member Posts: 598
    Actually it's the 2001 Chrysler T&C and Caravan topic :-)

    Townhall Community Leader/Vans Conference
  • alingaling Member Posts: 598
    Then again, you don't expect the MB built trannies to break down quite as frequently, right? ;-)

    Seriously though, the 722.6 MB adaptive 5 speed automatic transmission is one of the best in the industry. Although it is several years old now, there are very few issues with it (some which can be fixed by a software upload), and even Jaguar buys it from MB for use in their cars. This basic transmission design is used across the entire MB lineup, from the V6 C-class to the V12 S-class and CL-class.

    Townhall Community Leader/Vans Conference
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380

    of course you don't expect an mb tranny to breakdown...that's why it is much more painful when it does happen. and that will happen when this tranny is installed in "plebian" cars like the intrepid. i'd be willing to bet that the average intrepid owner is far less rigorous about his car's maintenance vs a merc owner.
  • emaleemale Member Posts: 1,380
    read that same story. obviously we are not getting the complete picture. and a couple quotes
    from that article are very telling. "it isn't as
    radical as it sounds." and "it doesn't mean that
    these or other projects won't be reinstated." (not verbatim)
  • indydriverindydriver Member Posts: 620
    I finally figured it out. It's 5 "metric years" i.e, 3 yrs U.S. ;-)
  • gcintendergcintender Member Posts: 36
    ...have an opinion about the Michelin MX4 17" wheel and tire option for the 2001 Grand Caravan ES? I'm considering that option for the van I'll be ordering shortly. I'll be doing a fair bit of cargo hauling in this van, so I need to know if the 17 inchers would be a help or a hindrance.

    Also, how are they in ice and snow? The long-range forecast for the Philadelphia area (where I live) seems to indicate more foul weather than has been the norm lately.

    That package costs $680.00 retail, so I need to do a bit of cost/benefit analysis.

    Thanks for your help!
  • rbacsafrarbacsafra Member Posts: 85
    If you are gonna do alot of hauling, I would suggest getting the 16" because you are going to need more comfort and cushioning when you get the van loaded down. Now if you want style and don't really care about comfort and etc etc...go for the 17"s. MX4s are good in the rain. I'm not sure about ice and snow. As soon as our 00 GCS 16" MX4s go...we are going with X-Ones. But we have been considering the 17" if we can find a set to buy or trade.

    Join the DC Minivan Club...FREE!
  • sac3sac3 Member Posts: 3
    According to a story in, DaimlerChrysler executives conceded in an interview that they may have to discount the 2001 minivans because of the ultracompetitive market.

    Also, if you're in California, the sales tax will drop by 1/4 percent 1/1/01 and the vehicle license tax will drop by 25% 1/1/01- a difference of several hundred dollars on a $30,000 purchase.

    Possible discounting and Calif. tax reductions may make it worth waiting a couple of months if you're in the market. If you wait until next year, then you might as well wait for the new 3.5L engine coming out in March. My wife's gonna shoot me...she wants her T&C NOW!
  • carhunter6carhunter6 Member Posts: 2
    The lower profile 17 inch tires will have a marginally harder ride, given the soft sidewalls of the MX4's. Steering response will be marginally improved as well. A tire upgrade on the 16 inch wheels will achieve better results at a lower price. The X-one is an excellent, excellent tire for a minivan. I have a set on my 91 DC and will put them on my 2001 TC. They have excellent rain and ice capabilities, even 3/4 worn, and they will give you the steering response you are looking for. They remain firm at 80 MPH and will last about 40K mile when driven aggressively. The 16 inch tires also lower the unsprung weight which means more HP at the drive tire.
  • indydriverindydriver Member Posts: 620
    16's cost much less to replace.
  • hersbirdhersbird Member Posts: 323
    15" are even cheeper and will give an even smoother ride, what suffers with each downsize in wheels is the cornering ability. I bet the brake size on the 2001 won't allow 15" wheels anyway so if you want the ability to do a little dirt roading while towing a popup trailer or something the 16" would be the way to go. The 17" just look better in my opnion.
  • gcintendergcintender Member Posts: 36
    ...just have the 14 inchers from my '87 put on the new van when it comes! Nah....

    Thanks to everybody for your opinions - I'm definately leaning toward the 16" wheels now.
  • carhunter6carhunter6 Member Posts: 2
    With the brake size increase on the 2001, 15 inch tires are the minimum size. 15 inch will give a better ride at the expense of handling and braking, and yes, will probably weigh less. It all depends on your driving tastes

    P.S. Removed the 14 inchers from my 91 and put 215/60R16 X-Ones on.
  • indydriverindydriver Member Posts: 620
    HMMMM. Is that a freudian slip?
  • indydriverindydriver Member Posts: 620
    Not willing to start an argument here, because I won't be dogmatic about "performance" in a minivan. I threw in the comment about cost because I am in the process of hunting for aftermarket 17's for the first time for my 300M and they ain't "cheep".
  • hersbirdhersbird Member Posts: 323
    Never thought correct spelling was a big deal, always felt the point was to communicate a thought so if you know the word is mispelled then you know the thought I was trying to communicate. This may offend all the english teachers out there, I know it did back in the 7th grade when I explaned it to then then. This has lead to many a freudian slip in the written conversation but that just keeps things more interesting.

    Indydriver- I've heard there are good deals out there on Firestone... but seriously I would reccommend checking out some of the different Dunlops.
  • rbacsafrarbacsafra Member Posts: 85
    You can't go wrong with Michelins. If you have to find a 17" tire, look at the Pilot Series tires or the XGTs. If you are sticking to 16" all means go for the X-One.
  • bettygbettyg Member Posts: 9
    I have been reading all
    of your comments and they are very helpful.
    I am waiting for a low
    finance rate before
    ordering an ES AWD...
    Edmunds is showing a
    0.9% financing for 60
    months for Dodge minivans. This is under the regional rebates...I cannot find
    this anywhere else.
    I have checked Carpoint
    and intellichoice. is
    there another web site
    I can check? Thanks
    for all the other info..
  • poochsterpoochster Member Posts: 7
    Just picked up our 2001 Grand Caravan ES. We placed our order at the end of September, so it took a bit more than a month to arrive. We ordered it with the the tow group, traction control, center console, 3.8l engine, power liftgate, alarm,and roof rack. Paid just over 29k, the sticker was over 32k. From what I can figure this is about one hundred over invoice. I did not pay any advetising fee's or dealer prep. The van is really nice, and I like the power liftgate more than I thought I would. What have other poeple been paying?
  • carleton1carleton1 Member Posts: 560
    Looks like an excellent price for an excellent vehicle. I look forward to your comments on this new vehicle in this forum. It appears that yours has most of the available options.
  • rolfe2rolfe2 Member Posts: 81
    $150 over invoice, less the $500 "owner loyalty" rebate, for an ES AWD with most options. However, the factory invoice did include advertising charges, as I expected. All other invoice items (options) were priced exactly as described in Edmunds.

    Since you aren't sure exactly how much over invoice you paid, perhaps you didn't see the invoice and the advertising charges were hidden from you. My understanding is that all dealers are invoiced for advertising and few if any will eat them.

    Being a distrustful kind of guy, when I picked up my vehicle I asked to see an invoice from a similar but different van so that I could verify that the advertising charges were the same as on my invoice. (The dealer tried to act offended that I would do this, but I pointed out that I knew he wasn't doubting my word when he had asked to see my I.D. to verify my identity.)

    Ordered in Sept before the dealer was able to quote MSRP figures for all the options. We negotiated on the basis of factory invoice, which was what I preferred, even though I didn't know the exact $ amount until the vehicle arrived exactly one month later (west coast).

    BTW, the van has exceeded my expectations so far. The only negative thing I can find to complain about is that it is a long reach to the e-brake release latch. Pretty minor.

  • pwheatonpwheaton Member Posts: 1
    Anyone know when the rear cargo tray will be available? Also, will it just be an after purchase accessory or will it come standard with some of the trim levels?
  • rusherushe Member Posts: 2
    After finally deciding to get a T&C Limited, we were unable to find one in the dealer's region that had the color and options we wanted. So, last Thursday we told the dealer to go ahead and order one.

    Today, I got a call and was told they could enter process a factor order because "production has been put on an indefinite hold."

    Anyone know anything about this?
  • rusherushe Member Posts: 2
    (sorry, had a typo in the last posting...)

    After finally deciding to get a T&C Limited, we were unable to find one in the dealer's region that had the color and options we wanted. So, last Thursday we told the dealer to go ahead and order one.

    Today, I got a call and was told that they could not enter a factory order because "production has been put on an indefinite hold."

    Anyone know anything about this?
  • enetheneth Member Posts: 285
    Did you ask the dealer?

    Many DaimlerChrysler U.S. plants are on furlough to reduce inventories - so far, it's been just about all but the PT Cruiser (Toluca, Mexico) and minivan (Fenton, Missouri and Ontario) plants - perhaps inventories are building and Daimler plans to temporarily halt production at the van plants as well, or perhaps they're having production problems ramping the new models.
  • poochsterpoochster Member Posts: 7
    I can respect being a distrustful kind of guy rolfe (if that is your real name?) But I had about 2 months of research going into this purchase and had the car quoted from 6 different sources (online and in person). The price I paid was $120 over what Edmonds quoted as invoice and did NOT include any advertisement fee.

    To top it off, when I signed the purchase agreement there was $97.50 added for dealer prep. I told the salesman that they could find the money to pay for washing the car in the $640 destination charge. After a brief staredown puncutated by gathering up my belongings he removed the charge. The look on my wifes' face was unforgetable.

    There was nothing I could do about the loyalty reward, as this is my first Dodge vehical. But it sounds as though we both got good deals. Enjoy your new ES AWD (if you really did buy one?).

    Side note about the rear organizer, my wife called the 1 800 dodge number, and they are due out in January. It looks like a pretty neat feature. At least from what the video that came with my van showed.
  • bettygbettyg Member Posts: 9
    I am in the process of
    deciding between ES AWD
    with 29"S" pkg. or a
    T & C LXI...did your
    ES AWD come with 17"
    tires? I want 16" after reading the posts
    here on the pros and
    cons. Are the 17" an
    option or standard?
    Thanks for help...
  • rolfe2rolfe2 Member Posts: 81
    My ES AWD has the 29S package as well as the trailer towing option, and it does NOT have the 17" wheels or "touring suspension." My wheels are 16" and there was no option for 17" on my configuration (ES AWD, 29S and AHT).

    My understanding is that the ES non-AWD 29S package includes 17" wheels and the touring suspension. In other words, AWD makes a difference in what's on the ES.

    I suspect this is the same situation with the T&C, but I can't speak with first-hand knowledge.

    I recall seeing one of the car configuration web sites (I think it was KBB) indicating that ES AWD 29S had the 17" wheels, but that is incorrect, I believe.

    FWIW, my vehicle, when unloaded, rides pretty stiffly. I presume this is due to the heavy duty suspension that is part of the trailer towing option. However, I find it no problem whatsoever, and expect it to be even better with a load of gear or passengers. Also, I really like the cornering -- virtually no sway whatsoever, no oversteering. Fun to drive!

  • rolfe2rolfe2 Member Posts: 81
    Poochster (if that is your real name?):

    Just kidding. I know your mother didn't do that to you.

    Hope you didn't read my post as being distrustful of you -- I was referring to my dealer.

    Yes, my real name is Rolfe, and yes, I did buy an ES AWD. (And I thought *I* was distrustful :-)

    Sounds like you got a terrific deal. Congratulations.

  • rolfe2rolfe2 Member Posts: 81
    I can't offer any insight into whether production is suspended, but based on my experience, you are wise to double-check the dealer's story.

    I reached a price agreement with my dealer on a Dodge ES AWD with specific options in Sept. He told me that AWD's are only built at two points in time during the model year, and that the next build would be in early 2001. Thus, if I didn't take one that was a close approximation from his inventory or pipeline, I'd not see my vehicle until March.

    I checked and discovered that there were AWD constraints only on two colors (not mine), so I insisted they order it, which they did. It was built approx 10 days later and arrived exactly 30 days after the initial order.

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