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Pontiac Grand Prix - 2000-2005



  • It is the dealer's responsibility to check functions before delivery in their prep department. I also believe the salesperson should double check before delivery. Thats what the prep money GM pays the dealer covers. But what I see dealers do on cars they get from other dealers is to blame the first dealer since they received the prep money.
    That said, isn't the GP a blast to drive. I always enjoy any chance I get to drive either of my Brothers' GPs. And to add to the engine discussion, it is the low RPM torque of the 3800 that makes it feel so much faster the then Saturn. Enjoy. (ps did you squeze into a 36 month lease or stay with the quoted 48 month?)
  • fantascpfantascp Posts: 175
    I stayed with the 48 month lease-I had to get the payments lower than what i was paying for the 2000 bonneville. I took out the extended warranty for about $8.00 more a month- I now have full coverage for the entire 48/60,000.
    I also passed on the upsell nonsense- "ETCHED GLASS VIN- CUT OFF GAS ETC.- I told the Dealer thats what i pay insurance for and why would I want to put those things into a leased vehicle that more than likely I'm not going to purchase
    thats how they really nail unsuspecting buyers.
    YES- Its really great driving the car- much more
    tighter feel of the road than what was in the Bonneville SE- this car has the Magnasteer etc package,full leather interior, heated drivers seat, sunroof, cd with the equalizer,compass/temp rear view mirror,trip computer,(the 1SC package)
    traction control-
    I got upgraded to the Cast aluminum 5 spoke(High Polish Wheels, the radio with the Equalizer, and the trip Computer- these were not in the original order- dealer could not find that car so to make the deal go he took the hit for the extra items-
    in this car because of my wife changing her mind on the color.*no extra charge!*

  • Hello everyone -

    I just happened to pop across this conversation and thought that I would attempt to shed some light on many of the points brought up here.

    First of all: I sell cars for a living... Specifically Saturn's, and I also own a Grand Prix GT and a GTP (Both 2000's).

    First of all... ANY GM car with a 3800 under the hood will FEEL like it is faster than the L300 because of the displacement difference. as you all know.. the Saturn uses a 24 valve 3 Liter Dual Over Head Cam engine (four valves per cylinder) and the Pontiac uses a 3.8 Liter 12 valve Over Head Valve engine (Two valves per cylinder)

    so: The Pontiac makes more torque ... which is the power you feel off the line, which also explains why the Pontiac will smoke the tires more effectively than the Saturn. Thus, you feel like your moving faster.

    Because the Saturn's engine displaces .8 liters less than the Pontiac, It uses Four valves (two for intake, two for exhaust) thus allowing the engine to breath more efficiently, creating a "better burn" - which makes more power.

    A good example of this would be to compare a 3 liter 12 valve Ford Taurus to a 3 Liter 24 valve Taurus... Same displacement, but the 24 valve one will blow the doors off of the 12 valve version.

    Next... The Saturn uses a much newer engine design than the Pontiac. The DOHC engine in the Saturn eliminates MANY moving parts found on the 3800... Mainly the pushrods. The more Reciprocating movement there is, the more power it takes to make the car go.

    This is why the Pontiac sounds more aggressive than the Saturn... Plus, the Saturn uses a timing BELT... not a chain like the Pontiac's 3800. There is a profound noise difference with that change alone.

    When it comes to reliability, anyone that had a Z34 Monte Carlo from the mid 90's or one of the pre 1997 GTP's knows that the 3.4 liter DOHC V6 was NOT a cheap car to maintain ... because the technology behind that engine (like many DOHC engines...) is still developing, while the "pushrod" Overhead Valve design on the 3800 has been used in engines for over 30-40 years.

    A lot more time has gone into perfecting the technology of the Pontiac's 3800 than the DOHC engines found in many cars (including the L300, Taurus SHO, etc etc...) so it will be inherently more reliable, and cheaper to maintain.

    Finally, Gears... The transmissions in ALL Saturn's correspond to the powerband of the engine it's mated to... So no matter how fast your going, the car can deliver optimum acceleration no matter how fast your going.

    This explains why the 182 HP Saturn VUE SUV (which uses the same motor as the L300) will outrun a 240 HP Ford Escape. (Trust me... I've done it) The Five Speed automatic in the VUE is designed for performance... (it will hit over 90 MPH shifting into 3rd, and wont feel anywhere near winded)

    All things considered ... there about the same (unless you don't like the L's "Whine" or you own a GTP... Which will give the L a beating it will never soon forget)

    My Advice... Saturn has addressed all of the "quality" and "reliability" problems of the DOHC engine it uses in the L. I wouldn't think twice about buying one... Plus they don't rust! A real plus in Wisconsin.

    Hope this helps!
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I only wish the L300 was a little bigger. It feels pretty small IMO.

    I like the new 2003 look though, big improvement!
  • fantascpfantascp Posts: 175
    Thanks for the info- as mentioned in my prior post- not knocking Saturn-its a fine auto- just that the Grand Prix GT offered more for the $$$$- when push came to shove- the Saturn Dealership could not match the Pontiac Dealers offer.
    What Saturn was originally offering was a L200- 4 cyl in comparison to the NA3800 GT 6cyl- they did up the ante to the L300 but still fell short on extra options that clinched the deal for the Grand Prix.

    Dindik- I got the same impression also- I can't remember the size dimensions of the inside passenger volume for each car etc however, I think the GP is larger inside.

  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    a) escapes only have 200hp
    b) toyota and honda have built OHC motors reliably for years....even more 'complexity'
    c) the GM 3.4 'twin dual cam' was a problem child motor because it was not a clean sheet was an attempt to morph a OHV design into OHC....they designed it that way so they could utilize existing tooling from the OHV family. That's probably why it was a bad was half-assed.
  • Hello. I'm really close to making the purchase of a 02 GT and was curious how the insurance costs were for this vehicle. Can anyone let me know what their expierence has been with insurance costs. I live in the suburbs of Chicago.
    Many thanks.
  • richm4richm4 Posts: 169
    Overall, insurance for the GT is very reasonable, especially for such a sporty car. I live in Chicago proper, and on a 98 4-door GT, married, no accidents or tickets, full coverage to the hilt, and I pay under $900 a year.
  • fantascpfantascp Posts: 175
    Passing on info for anyone who didn't know- Recall from the NHTSA for Grand-Prix- built 03/1997 to 10/97. Effective date 11/06/2002- Campaign # 02V286000
    Steering Gear-Rack and Pinion
    go to site below my name for the info.


  • Thanks for the post, because no one will know because it is not happening until January. Also includes some minivans, so look for the title in the release list for November 14th.
  • richm4richm4 Posts: 169
    I had the battery replaced on my 98 GT today, and had to pay $70 just for the labor portion, supposedly due to the placement of the battery in the engine bay.

    Does this cost sound reasonable to those who have had to have their battery replaced?
  • hengheng Posts: 411
    looks like the corner brace had to be removed and then replaced and maybe even the fuse box.

    Yes, it looks like they charged you for an hour of labor, although it looks like 30 mins worth of work.
  • andyz3andyz3 Posts: 10
    I just turned my 2000 GTP back in after leasing it for 39 months, and 39000 miles. The experiences I had with this car were typical for a GM product. It had plenty of power and good looks. The engine and transmission gave me no trouble at all. I was a little leery on the supercharger being troublesome. The only dislike was the fact I had to use premium gas at .30 more a gallon.
    But remember I said typical GM product.. so that means many trips back to the dealer for repairs.
    First problem the dash lights would go dim then alternator
    Then the CD player quit.
    Next the interior door panels came loose.( plastic clips is all that holds them on)
    Then the ABS light came on.wiring to left front wheel was worn through by tire rubbing it on right turns.
    Left rear speaker died.
    Next the car failed to start. Alternator they said. Battery I told them. The car ran fine after a quick battery charge at home to get it started. So they replaced the alternator again.
    Failed to start again Alternator they said..Battery I told them..I ran all the electrical equipment for 20 miles its charging fine. They replaced the alternator again.
    Failed to start for third time. They replaced the battery. No more trouble.
    Driver side window fell down inside of door. cable broke
    Water inside of both headlights. This is a problem with most GM cars. Water gets in the plastic chrome falls off and you might as well hold a flashlight out the window to see.
    Thank god all repair were under warranty. Only expenses I had were normal maintenance items.
    I also own a 97 GT my son drives. Only normal maintenance items, set of tires. Brake pads and a battery. 67000 miles. Knock on wood
  • I found on that NHTSA is investigating GM vehicles with the 3800 Series engine. It also claims that so far 44 complaints and 8 injures. I have a 2000 GP and sometimes it smells terrible after running for a while. I'm taking it to get looked at tommorow.
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    I've had similar experiences with mine (a 99 GTP). Many trips to the dealers for all sorts of things, including a tranny rebuild.

    It makes it hard to like the car. Yes it looks good, and yes it has nice low end torque, but boy do those trips to the dealer get to you after a while. I'm contemplating getting rid of it when my 100,000 mile extended warranty runs out. I hate to waste money like that, but I's also hate to waste it on repairs. Too bad. I wish GM cared more about its customers.
  • ruskiruski Posts: 1,566
    I leased a 98 GTP and did not have any problems. Well, once the steering rack needed to be replaced under warranty. That's it.
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    Some questions for you folks in the know:

    Will it be on the same platform as the current gen GP?

    Am I remembering correctly that assembly will move to the Ontario plant where the sister car Regal is currently built?
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Production is indeed moving to the Ontario plant, they will be tooling up soon. I believe the platform is mostly the same but someone who knows more will have to back me up on that.
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    Thanks for the plant info.

    I seem to recall a rumor about the GP moving to the Bonnie's platform, but I think that plan was scratched.
  • stop talking about other cars in this board, you can go to a 300C board to talk about that car.
  • beach15beach15 Posts: 1,305
    Yes, the 2004 Grand Prix is still on the same w-body platform, but is a slightly "refreshed" model of the current. Thus, same basic construction and design, just a little stiffer or better re-engineered in places. Nothing totally new though.
  • orwoodyorwoody Posts: 269
    here is a link I picked up on one of these forums a while back on the new GP
  • dsm6dsm6 Posts: 813
    I'm glad they're moving to the Ontario plant. The Regal has always scored better on initial quality and reliability than the GP, inspite of their amazing similarities.

    I hope they make the thing crash better. It isn't a bad crasher, but isn't near the top either.

    If they take care of both my reliability and safety concerns, I might consider another one. My wife just loves the SC 3800.
  • I took my GP to my dealer and they had it all day. They clam they replaced several gaskets. Although I am not to impressed with my local dealer.
  • smily1smily1 Posts: 104
    You probably had the famous valve cover gasket leak. I need to replace mine as well. Even though I have an extended warranty, I want to put in some 1.9 ratio rockers while I have the valve covers off.
  • WOOOOHOO!!! I just picked up my 2002 GTP Coupe from Potamkin in NYC. Found it on GMBuypower... almost the last GTP coupe in New York! Traded in my 1998 GTP with 97,000 miles for $4100 ($2,800 after payoff of old car) New GTP has every option except polished rims....$28,130 MSRP, Sale price of $24,500... less $4,000 cash back, $620 free leather, $1813 GM card earnings..... total price.... $15,267!!!! Not one dime outta my pocket in cash. Payments are $20 less per month than my 1998! I'm STOKED!!!!!!
  • I own a GP SE 3.1L 45,000 kms. The Check Engine light came on under code P1404 for the EGR valve. The GM dealership said this is a common recent problem in GM vehicles (such as Montana) that will cause the PCM to fall out of calibration and trigger false codes. Therefore, they re-flashed the PCM and made the light dissapear. I was wondering if they'd just changed the trigger range so the light wouldn't come on that easily. Anyone familiar with this please reply, or email GM says they trust their factory trained techs and advised me to contact the dealership, which I did, they offered the "out-of-calibration" explanation. Thanks a lot. Dan
  • Found this with a Google search, for check if there are calibration updates for you late model GM cars. Also The California Air Resourses Board keeps close check on manufacturers, and in the past has fined them if they program the systems to ignore a problem (Think it most recently was Toyota or Honda, didn't go recheck, so sorry if incorrect). Most likely the reprograming did make the trigger range higher, since there was no problems with the way the car was running.
  • I entered my VIN there and it returned a small table like this (columns look misplaced in text mode):
    Part Number Cal. ID # CVN Bulletin # Description
    09361404 09361336 N/A N/A control module calibration
    12205454 12205278 N/A N/A software change to control unwanted idle speed.
    12207584 12207428 N/A N/A new calibration to correct setting of false dtc p0420
    12211484 12211452 N/A N/A new calibration prevents setting of false trouble codes.
    12214454 12214425 N/A N/A new calibration to eliminate false p1404 codes
    12221844 12221685 N/A N/A new calibration to eliminate false p1404 codes

    What is the Part number in the first column, is like a fix code or action ID? Second column is the calibration ID, I suppose. Seems that some P1404 codes are false indeed. I forgot to mention that my GP SE is 2001 model. Thanx.
  • The help page says:
    "The last line of each table indicates the latest part number issued for your vehicle....
    In addition to the information in these tables, you also need to know the calibration ID(s) and Calibration Verification Numbers (CVN) currently contained in your vehicle to determine if there is a later calibration available. Service scan tools have the capability to read calibration ID and CVN values from the vehicle controller...."

    There is a blank space after the word PART#: on my work order, although THERE IS an 8-digit part# printed for a door clip they replaced the same day, so I'm going to have a little Monday morning conversation with them ;-) Thanks again for the tip, Montanafan.
This discussion has been closed.