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Dodge Intrepid



  • homerkchomerkc Posts: 113
    I drive my car mostly on the highway (about 75%), so I follow the regular (not severe use) maintenance schedule - except for oil changes. I just can't bring myself to go 7,500 miles between changes. I am wondering about the transmission. Should I change fluid more frequently? I have 28K miles and no trouble, but I don't want any trouble, either. Any suggestions? Also, opinions on transmission fluid change (machine) vs. fluid and filter? The machine DOES get virtually all fluid, while dropping the pan changes filter but leaves old fluid in the converter, etc.
  • emaleemale Posts: 1,380

    my '00 intrepid had the new "lifetime" tranny fluid (atf+4). which basically said you'd never have to change the tranny fluid under normal conditions. i still would change that around 60k if it were me...what does your owner's manual say??

    as for using the machine vs just dropping the pan. for a car that probably doesn't tow anything, i'd say just dropping the pan should be enough.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    I had the tranny fluid in my '00 Intrepid (base model) changed at 30K miles. My mechanic said it needed it, too. I used that car to deliver pizzas though, so it definitely qualified for severe service! Last time I had it in for a checkup was at 50,000 miles. They checked it out and said it looked fine, and that I shouldn't have to worry about it again until about 75,000 miles. I don't deliver pizzas anymore, and have taken some long trips, so the tranny's not getting the abuse this time around.

    As for the 2.7 and needing more torque, couldn't they just play around with it some, like with that active intake valve they used to have on the ES when it had a 2.7? It only gave it about 5 extra ft-lb of peak torque, but it raised the torque curve across the board, up to around 4,000 rpm where it peaked at 195 ft-lb. And around 5000 rpm, it still had the same 190 ft-lb as the regular 2.7. Or couldn't they revise the transmission ratios to give it a quicker first gear, so you could get to peak torque more quickly?

    I think the Crossfire concept car has a 275 hp 2.7, so the engine is capable of a lot more that what it's doing.
  • Well, being that it is so quiet in here, I will throw some stuff out there about my Intrepid. After nearly 2 months of ownership and 1600 miles, I am pleased with the car so far. Only problem is the driver's door speaker is blown (has been since delivery). Dealer called today to say the part is in. Had the oil changed last week at 1500 miles (my old mechanic said that you should change the oil early on the first one to get out the metal filings on a new engine), plus the local dealer sells a 5 oil change package - 5 changes with filter for $75, not bad.

    One thing I have noticed, though, is that the thing makes the white steam in the cold weather for a real long time. At an idle, even after a 30 mile highway drive in dry conditions, it blew the white steam. Also a bit of a burning smell has persisted, but seems to be going away (I know most new cars do it), but both of these things are a bit weird. No soot in the tailpipe, and coolant is A-ok. Anybody with any thoughts?
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    My guess would be that they spilled oil somewhere when they changed it, and you're smelling it burning off of the manifold. The last time I had the dealer change my oil, I think they got more on the engine than in it! Another reason why I prefer to do it myself. That, and the dealer charged me $26.95! But hey, it was cold out, the car was already in for warranty work, and I was leaving on a long trip that weekend. So I just didn't feel like messing with it myself.

    You probably did a good thing, changing the oil early. I've heard conflicting stories on whether it's really necessary or not anymore, but I say better safe than sorry! Although I waited until about 2000 miles before my change.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the white steam, unless you start smelling antifreeze, too! I think the white steam is just a by-product of today's cleaner-running cars. They burn more cleanly, but also run leaner, which means they suck in more air. I'd guess the steam is just the moisture from the air that was used in combustion.
  • scotianscotian Posts: 1,064
    I believe it has a 215hp 3.2L.
  • Jason5Jason5 Posts: 440
    Hello gang... Hope all is well. Haven't been around since before Christmas. EMALE! How are you? I knew you wouldn't be able to stay away. Thanks for the fast read on the return of "jeffey"--apparently he's strayed from his therapist again.
    Regarding this "debate" on the 2.7. Having driven several base Intrepid's with the 2.7, I too think it is a great engine. Yes it is a bit light on torque (especially in heavier vehicles). DC COULD increase torque and hp by adding variable valve timing control (as other manufacturers do) but I doubt they would.
    I'm still hopeful that the next Intrepid will be front drive and exhibit the same continual improvement evidenced from Gen 1 to Gen 2.. Peace and prosperity to all!
  • Does anyone have any experience with wheel swapping on these cars? I have a 98 Intrepid that I want to put a set of chrome wheels on from a 300m. The dealer was absolutely no help. I'm not sure about clearance and offset. Also, are the lug nuts specific? Thanks
  • I know the wheels on the R/T and the 300M with the PHP package are the exact same size.

    I would compare the specs on the tires, that should tell you all you need to know to make a decision.
  • rikstrrikstr Posts: 4
    I loved the look, the lines, the handling, the performance was great. After 37000mi. on my 99" a new set of Michelin's and 16" alloys, the road noise was still so intense I couldn't take it any more. The plastic inner fender wells just don't get it. My friend has a 300M and complains of the same thing, 32K for a nice 300M and it still has plastic fender wells, what are they thinking. Just got a 2002 Toyota Solara with everything on it. Wow, no plastic fender wells, actually has metal fender wells with acoustic dampening material, what a concept! Chrysler needs to get back to old days of a solid car. The new generation is just a little short on quality, compared to it's peers......Sorry, but it's the sad truth
  • ottowrkrottowrkr Posts: 778
    All wheels from all year LH cars will fit any LH car.
  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    The next Intrepid will definitely be RWD. It will be out in 2004.
  • emaleemale Posts: 1,380
    hey jason,

    glad to hear your still around...! i must admit that i'm a little disappointed the next generation lh cars won't be fwd. hopefully dc will at least offer awd.


    whether the inner wheel well is plastic or metal makes little difference. the problem with the lh cars is that they don't have quite enough suspension isolation and therefore road noise infiltrates the cabin more than in cars such as a wallowy camry or buick. the trade off is excellent handling and ride characteristics...
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    Intrepids on 16x7 rims, and have 225/60/R16 tires. A Buick LeSabre uses 215/70/R15 tires on 15" rims (probably 6 or 6.5" wide), so naturally it's going to be softer, gentler, and quieter as it wisks its occupants off to the beauty parlor for their weekly blue rinse. A Camry V-6 rides on 215/60/R166 rubber, mounted on 16x6.5" rims. Taking only the tires and rims into consideration, I'd imagine that the Camry would ride as rough as the Intrepid, but not handle quite as well. Not sure what Toyota does to their suspensions though.

    As for road noise though, Emale's right. The fender wells have nothing to do with it. My grandmother's '85 LeSabre has plastic fender wells, and it's one of the quietest cars I've ever driven. I'm not going to comment on handling, though ;-)
  • Well, after I waited over a week for an appointment at the local 5 Star Dodge dealer having told them I had a blown speaker in my 8 week old 2002 Intrepid, they had the car half the day to tell me they ordered the part (also changed the oil, whoppee!). After two weeks went by, I took it in today to have the new speaker installed. Oh, and by the way, it was at the ever-convenient time of 8am today. So at about 915am they shout out my name that the car is ready. Only problem, they ordered the wrong speaker, and it will be another 2 weeks or so until they get another. I'd hate to see how idiotic these people would be if they weren't such a "5 Star" dealership.
  • rdg1rdg1 Posts: 10
    I have a new '02 Intrepid. I noticed POST 935 mentions a burning smell. Mine has had a smell of burning plastic since new and it now has over 1000 miles. This is NOT the typical new car smell of things being used fo rthe first time, such as stickers burning off the exhaust, etc. It smells exactly like burning plastic and is emitted from the engine compartment for an hour or two after the vehicle has been driven to full temp. Anyone else seeing (smelling) this or have any ideas? I've had it up on a hoist and can't find a thing. Have an appointment for next Monday to have Dodge dealer check it out.
  • emaleemale Posts: 1,380
    the smell is will disappear within a few thousand miles, or at least that was my experience with 3 new intrepids (96,98,00).
  • thought i'd look into the intrepid site to see how you all are.glad to hear the majority are having no problems with their chrysler products,they are beautiful vehicles.the 98 intrigue still humming along at 45,000 miles with no problems,the 2000 legacy gt just hit 35,000 miles with only minor non-recommended maintenance expenses,windshield wipers and tires.any info on the new pacifica,i recommended an awd town and country to my girlfriend,but the pacifica would better suit her needs,she now has a durango.glad to see the two stalwart chrysler devotees,emale and jason5 are still here,but has jeffew left.continued good luck with your vehicles.any truth to chrysler going awd with the intrepid,makes a world of difference in performance.
  • smithedsmithed Posts: 444
    Unfortunately the AC compressor on our beloved '99 ES went the way of the junk yard at only 42,000 miles. Of course, I didn't buy an extended warranty, and am still glad I didn't. The ES does have an automatic cooling/heating system so the compressor runs a lot, particularly here in the hot, humid Southeast. Still, I would have expected it to last longer than it did.

    Otherwise, still a great car all around. The noise issue is a matter of taste. I kind of like the sounds it makes. The road noise became considerably less when I changed from the Eagles to Cooper Lifeliners. (My family owns a Cooper dealership, so take that recommendation as coming from a biased source.)

    Has anyone sprayed the wheel wells with undercoating to reduce the noise they don't like?

  • phardyphardy Posts: 12
    Hello all,

    I have 37,000+ miles on my 2000 ES. On Wednesday, the car started acting up. Whenever I took my foot off the gas pedal, the car would stall. I had the car towed to the dealership and the mechanic told me that there was "lots of carbon in the passages in the intake manifold." He also said that there was "lots of carbon in the idle speed motor" and that he would replace it. He said my problem may be due to a lot of stop and go driving.

    Has anyone had this problem before? Could this also be caused by waiting to fill the gas tank when the fuel level drops down to an 1/8 of a tank?

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    ...that sounds kinda strange. I could see carbon building up in the combustion chambers, exhaust manifold, tailpipe, etc. But how could the intake get carboned up? There shouldn't be anything burning in there, unless the car's backfiring up through the intake or something.
  • scotianscotian Posts: 1,064
    The throttle body has a path for air other than the throttle that is regulated by an electrically-actuated plunger valve. I can see this valve getting stuck open, closed, or just gummed up in a dirty engine. I don't know if you can buy the valve itself as a new one comes with a new TB.

    The valve & air path is in the upper right corner of this pic of an upside-down 3.5L TB:

    When I last looked at the throttle plate on my 300M it was clear that some dark stuff does get deposited on it.

  • Jason5Jason5 Posts: 440
    Hey group.. Still mulling over the "carbon deposit" message. I routinely use one of the high end gasoline additives in all our vehicles--every two months or so. We had snow here in the northeast over the weekend. Although my original GA's had a few thousand miles left, I checked on reasonably priced replacements from Sears and Sam's Club. Best deal was a Goodyear replacement at Sam's Club called the "Allegra". It's a 75,000 mile, T-rated, "touring" tire. I've been mightily impressed. Less noise, comparable to better ride and handling, definite increase in tread life. Most surprising to me so far is the traction on snow. Blew through 6 inches of new fallen snow on a hilly road with ease..
  • phardyphardy Posts: 12
    I had the dealer fix the problem. Everything appears to be fine for now.

    I was thinking about putting 1 tank of 92 octane gasoline (not additives) in my car every once in a while. How does this affect the engine? Does performance decrease at all? Any recommendations?

    I heard somewhere that when you start a fuel-injected engine, you're supposed to turn the key, wait for 5 seconds after the console lights up, and then continue to move the key into the start position. I think most people (or at least many) just put the key in and go. What negative affects might this have? Would this eventually result in lots of carbon buildup?

  • pine7pine7 Posts: 2
    I'm looking to replace my 96 sable,and some of the vehicles I'm considering are the Toyota Camery SE V6,the new sable,the Intrigue and the Intrepid.
    I've read and heard a lot of conflicting reports on Chrysler products,and read Consumers report a lot.The Toyota has a sterling reputation,but that comes at a cost.The sable was relatively trouble free,and I have no problem with it,and the Intrigue is nice but Oldsmobile is being phased out.The Intrepid is a great looking car,somewhat larger then I'm used to,but still striking on the road.Has the ownership experience been positive for the majority of you all.The bad press Chrysler seems to get reflects on the cr,but I consider the experience of those who drive the Intrepid every day,to out way the bad reviews.
  • ottowrkrottowrkr Posts: 778
    When you turn your key on and wait 5 seconds all you are doing is pressurizing the fuel line . Sometimes after sitting for a while the fuel pressure in the line will drop, most fuel injected cars have a line pressure of about 40 psi or higher . Every time you turn the key to the run position the fuel pump is turned on for about 3 seconds to prime the fuel system , most fuel injected cars use 40 PSI or greater line pressure .Turning the key off and on will not cause a carbon problem .What causes carbon build-up and sludge is short trips and stop and go driving . As for 92 octane gas , why would performance decrease? Using a higher octane is why the 300M gets more H.P than the Intrepid RT ,they both use the same engine . The 300 is rated running Hi-Octane and the RT is rated using regular unleaded.

     pine7 - I think the LH cars in general are good cars . The Concorde was tops in its segment in the J.D powers awards . The Intrepid came second in its segment. I know I am a little biased but take a good look at the LH cars before you make your final decision . If you want to ask a whole bunch of Intrepid owners about there ownership experience check out this site , they have lots of good things to say..

  • smithedsmithed Posts: 444
    The 3 years of ownership of the Intrepid has had a few problems. They had a problem with the supplier of the window motors in early 99/late 98 and all 4 of ours had to be replaced within the first 9 months. The new ones have been fine. As above, the AC went out at only 42,000 miles, and it is an auto system, so it runs a lot. Still, I am happy with the Intrepid and it does look great (in the eye of this beholder). I rented a Sable in California in November and found it very comparable to the Intrepid, although not as stylish. The Mercury seemed great, though on twisty highway one north of San Francosco, not a Corvette, but a good road holder. Camry, I can't speak for, but the Toyota salesmen always annoy me, as do the Honda guy who tried to tell me an Accord was bigger inside than an Intrepid. He obviously didn't sit in the back seat.

    I got the 3.2 liter in our ES in 99 (that was the only way it came then). I don't know about the 2.7 liter as far as power. The 3.2 is discontinued in favor of a depowere 3.5, but the 3.5 and 3.2 were the same engine basically anyway. If it is hilly where you live, or you fill the car up with people, I wouldn't think the 2.7 is enough. But for 2 people and their luggage, it probably is.
    Definitely these cars should be on your shopping list.

    Ed Smith
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    I've had my '00 Intrepid for about 2 years and 2 months now. 57,000 miles, and nothing too catastrophic to report. Had the power door lock actuator replaced around 35K miles (under warranty). Passenger side mirror power went out around the 42K or so mark. Left it alone, since it was where I needed it, anyway ;-). At 50K, I had to have the thermostat housing replaced because of a small leak. Also, 3 of the 4 rubber door seals have shrunk up a bit.

    As for the 2.7's power, I noticed that when you load the car up with extra passengers or a lot of weight, there's a noticeable difference in performance. On steep inclines, it also gets winded and needs to rely too much on the lower gears for any performance, which also hurts fuel economy. A few months back, I bought a '79 New Yorker with a 360, and brought it back to MD from West VA. I was driving the '79 and my friend drove the Intrepid. Believe it or not, both cars actually got about the same fuel mileage on that trip back! Mainly, I think, because the NY'er practically coasted up those long inclines where the 'trep had to downshift and scream to keep up.

    If you compare a 2.7 to the base pushrod 3.0 that the Sable has, I think the 2.7 is the clear winner. Smoother, more refined, better passing power, better acceleration from a standstill, etc. Now Sable's optional DOHC 3.0 is another story. Same 200 hp as the Intrepid's 2.7, but a lot more torque. But then if you want guts, just go get an ES or R/T!
  • homerkchomerkc Posts: 113
    My 2000 Intrepid (2.7) is almost two years old, about 27K miles, and it has been absolutely trouble free. I got 30 mpg. on two trips - one over the Rockies with two adults and luggage. My commute, 16 miles on mostly highway, delivers 26 mpg. It has plenty of power with two people, but I do notice when 4-5 adults are in the car. It is a joy to drive, handles and rides as well as any competitor, and it is cheaper to buy than most. It certainly is more powerful than a 4 cyl. Toyota, and about the same price. The bigger engine is comparable in power to the V6 Toyota, but cheaper to buy. I think the new Camry is a very nice car - may buy one for my wife next. However, it is not as fun to drive as the Intrepid, in my opinion.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    ...if you got 30 mpg in the Rockies, I'm impressed! About 2 years ago, I took a trip in the Shenandoahs (anybody who's familiar with the Rockies calls these hills, but hey, there the only mountains we've got!) Well, with 4 people and a trunk full of luggage, I was only getting around 26 mpg. I do have a heavy foot though, which isn't going to help matters! I have broken 30, on a few occasions though. Still, compared to that 13 mpg Gran Fury I used to drive, it's a dream!
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