Chrysler PT Cruiser Owners: Accessories & Modifications

Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
What accessories and/or mods have you added to your PT Cruiser?


  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    This forum sure has been quiet lately.

    I put outside rear view mirrors for a 2004 on my 2003. I had rented a 2004 Cruiser and noticed less wind noise around the side windows than on my 03 GT. The 04 mirrors are different in that they direct air flow away from the side windows.

    The mirrors fit with no problem, but the wire plug did not match the receptacle on the car wire harness. Had to remove the sockets and switch plugs. Then discovered the up/down feature of the driver's side mirror is reversed (press up and the mirror goes down). Had to reverse the two up/down wires behind the mirror switch on the dash.

    The plus is that the new mirrors are a little bigger than the old ones. The minus is that road noise seems more pronounced now that the wind noise is reduced.

    The Goodyear RSA tires that came on the car have been getting noisy as they wear. Looking forward to replacing them with a quiet tire.
  • fbrusseefbrussee Member Posts: 31
    I've done the following to my '02 Limited in Inferno Red: five spoke MOPAR polished aluminum wheels, lowering kit, K&N intake, BORLA dual exhaust, shorty antenna, relocated front license plate lower (where it should have been in the first place), removal of exterior emblems, auxiliary AAOOGAH horn with console mounted button, blue dot taillights. I think it's the best looking, best handling, fastest stick Cruiser on the road!
  • antreyantrey Member Posts: 2
    Are there Mopar Turbo upgrades for the turbo versions of the PT cruiser? If so what are the claimed gains?
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    Yes, for the high performance (GT) version of the turbo. The stage 1 kit costs about $400 and increases power to about 240. One should also buy a new style pressure relief valve with the kit. Performance is increased in the mid and upper rpm range. The stage II kit is due to become available soon. This increases power to 270. Stage III, from what I have seen, is not going to be street legal and increases power to 300.

    The kits are sold VIN specific and appear, from the written no warranty papers that come with the kit, to give DC a way to void engine warranty if something breaks.

    I know two people that have stage I kits installed and both are happy with the increased performance.
  • daverosedaverose Member Posts: 233
    Are the kits "progressive" or do you choose the ONE you want?
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    Don't know, but stage I kit isn't expensive ($400).
  • cruiserinlvcruiserinlv Member Posts: 4
    Has anyone done any mods to the "non GT" turbo? I have the touring model with the turbo and am looking to kick in up a notch.
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    I've heard the stage 1 kit also works on the non-GT turbo engine. Supposedly it brings the power to the same 240 as when used on the GT engine. If you check on dedicated PT sites (PTOC, PTE, PTCC) you will probably find people that have already done modifications to the non-GT turbo engine.
  • cruiserinlvcruiserinlv Member Posts: 4
    thanks fndlyfmrflyr, I will check those sites out.
  • frenchcarfrenchcar Member Posts: 247
    Have any of you heard of or tried any type of modification that actually improves the gas mileage on a PT Cruiser with the standard engine and automatic. Perhaps different tires, synthetic oil, K & N air filter, Bosch Platinum plus four plugs, etc. ???? We rented one recently and fell in love with it but the gas mileage was really bad (16 to 17 mpg) This car had 2500 miles on it. HELP APPRECIATED
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    I use synthetic oil (Mobil-1) in nearly all of my cars and have for more than 35 years. The only exceptions were two VW diesels. I keep a log for my cars and record fuel used vs. miles driven. For the last 15 years or so I have not seen any mpg improvement when I switched the cars to synthetic. I have used K&N air filters too. Have one in my PT GT. Did not see any mpg change when I switched, but the OE filter was still clean. The K&N will help maintain mpg as the filter gets dirty. Platinum plugs last longer, but usually do nothing for mpg.

    It is not a good idea to use rental car mpg as an indicator of what a car will give over time - unless you drive that car enough to fill it a number of times. It usually takes several consecutive fills over many miles to get a reasonable idea of a car's mpg. The main reason is that, from my rental car experience, the tank is rarely full when the car is first rented (apparently never in my case), making mpg seem low.
  • norrmanndonorrmanndo Member Posts: 81
    I ordered a sub-woofer today from the dealer. It will fit in the side oval storage area behind the back seats on the driver side (about $370).

    #6 It's my understanding that Each stage just uses bigger fuel injectors and a computer modification so that it knows how much fuel is being sent. So if you buy stage 1 then Stage II will not be any cheaper since it's a whole new set-up (of injectors and computer module), but any additional gaskets, blow off valves etc. that you install with the 1st stage could be used with the second stage. 2004 PT Turbos already have the stage 1 injectors so they just need the computer Module. But I found out that my 2003 GT would needs new injectors. So, I'm considering getting the stage II when it comes out. I checked with my dealer today (when I was there for an oil change) and they said it still isn't available, but he said it's supposed to arrive very soon, so I'm not going to bother with stage 1. I may not bother at since my 03 is plenty fast, but I’ll think about it. I expect that emissions will be higher and probably worse mpg, but from posts I have seen the mpg doesn't appear to have gone down noticeably for Stage 1 consumers. Even though the emissions are higher, they're still supposed to pass in every state. You'll probably also have more noise and more sensitive throttle that some consumers might not like.

    #11 My gas mileage is 15-20 mpg with almost all city driving and considerable gridlock. And since it’s fun to put the pedal down, I really “rod it around” when I’m not hauling family or carpoolers. My highway mileage is about 25 mpg when I’m driving conservatively. I was disappointed at first with the mileage, but the car’s so much fun to drive I don’t worry about it too much.
  • norrmanndonorrmanndo Member Posts: 81
    I finally got around to installing my sub-woofer. It is a huge improvement to the sound system. Since it fits in the quarter panel, I didn't lose much storage space. I should have let the dealer install since they quoted a great price, but I wanted to do it myself and it took most of the day.
  • mdcruiser1mdcruiser1 Member Posts: 9
    When I had my 30K done somewhere else, they put in platinum-tipped spark plugs to replace the old ones. The car felt like it gained maybe 5hp and mileage went from 20-22 up to 22-24 average. I have an 03 Limited automatic, FYI.
  • hojohojo Member Posts: 6
    I also use Mobil 1 Synthethic Oil and still consistently get 18-25 mpg. I have the removable PT roof racks which add additional drag (and whistled badly until I put foam boat pads over them). I recently tried the Bosch Platinum +4 spark plugs. Acceleration is noticeably better, but gas mileage has not been any better on my first two fill-ups.

    Does anyone know how to reset power door locks? I replaced my battery and now the power door locks (and key fob and alarm system) will not work. The car is now out of warranty and the dealership was not confident where to even look for a reset. I can't afford to let them take the dash off and experiment. The shop manual says nothing. The fuse is good. An electronics whiz friend suggested taking the battery loose for a full day or more to see if the Power Control Module might reboot properly and "remember" to reset the door locks.
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    There are two kinds of door lock options. One will lock or unlock all of the doors with one turn of the key vs. one turn to unlock the driver's door and a second turn required to unlock the other doors. The second is the auto locking feature that locks all of the doors when the vehicle speed is above 15 mph.

    Both procedures are in the owner's manual that came with my 2003:

    To disable the double activation feature (have to turn the key twice to unlock all of the doors).
    1. Close all doors and put the key in the ignition.
    Within 10 seconds you must complete steps 2 and 3
    2. Cycle the ignition switch on/off four times ending in the OFF position.
    3. Press the interior door lock switch to the UNLOCK position.
    4. A single chime will sound.
    NOTE: you can turn the feature back on by repeating this procedure.

    To disable the auto lock feature:
    1. Close all doors and put the key in the ignition.
    Within 10 seconds you must complete steps 2 and 3
    2. Cycle the ignition switch on/off four times ending in the OFF position.
    3. Press the interior door lock switch to the LOCK position.
    4. A single chime will sound.
    NOTE: you can turn the feature back on by repeating this procedure.
  • fndlyfmrflyrfndlyfmrflyr Member Posts: 668
    The improvement you noted is common for a spark plug change when the old plugs are wearing out.

    Platinum plugs last much longer than standard plugs and 100,000 miles or more between changes is not unusual. There should be little difference between them and new standard plugs with respect to mpg or performance. I normally switch to platinum at the first plug change if the car did not come with platinum plugs. The main advantage is not having to change them again. I have noted that my plug wires need replacing more often than platinum plugs.

    I have found no performance or mpg benefit between synthetic and regular oil (of the same viscosity), at least nothing I could measure or feel. I like synthetic because it takes more heat to break down synthetic oil and the apparent better protection if one is late on an oil change.

    I also found no difference in performance or mpg between a clean OE type engine air filter and a K&N filter. I like K&N because it is a one time buy and, for me, it goes a very long time before needing a cleaning, paying for itself.
  • hojohojo Member Posts: 6
    Thanks for trying to help on the power door locks. Yes, my 2002 owners manual addresses turning on and off the "automatic" feature of the power door locks. The problem is that the power door locks will not work at all (automatically or by pushing the buttons), thus preventing the key fob remote and the alarm system from working as well. Something happened when I replaced my battery - not sure what it could have been - but a relay or something did not reset. A friend suggested disconnecting the battery for one hour so that the computer would reboot and perhaps "remember" the resets. I tried. He then suggested trying this for a full day, but I haven't had the luxury of not using the car for a full day. I have a Haynes Shop Manual, but it doesn't address this anywhere and there is no indication of any problems associated with changing out a battery (other than resetting the clock). Still looking for an answer.
  • charlesf1charlesf1 Member Posts: 52
    Has anyone done any investigation on wiring up the pre 2005 Cruiser with the garage door opener that is in some models of the 2005 Cruiser? If someone could come up with a way of installing the visor and have it work on the earlier models he could make a few bucks.
  • purplebugpurplebug Member Posts: 24
    Has anyone done this modification to their PT GT? I am getting a little upset about the plethora of PTs on the road in NJ and want to do something to make my future car unique. No, I haven't bought it yet. But the money has been set aside and the dealership picked. I saw this website, named pteazer, does anybody know of any other sites, dealers. Thanks
  • k2hk2h Member Posts: 7
    Is there anyway to get a power seat kit for a 2003 PT Cruiser GT, meaning like the
    drivers seat can move 8-ways, and the window switches for the front windows to program to one touch up and down, instead of one touch down, also one touch open/close sunroof???
  • taxladytaxlady Member Posts: 1
    hello....can you please tell me how you installed your subwoofer. im trying to get this done and no one seems to believe that a subwoofer goes in that side pocket. do you have to remove the that back panel and insert the subwoofer then replace the panel or did you slide it in the front. what did you mount it on???? did you make something yourself or did you purchase a mounting kit of some sort??? thanks for any help you can give me
  • redturboboyredturboboy Member Posts: 25
    New center dash, head lights. It looks really good.
  • twotonecruisertwotonecruiser Member Posts: 1
    I always thought the PT Cruiser had Classic Car lines & that it begs for a Two Tone Paint Job! But, busting the paint on a new car is always scary and the masking lines and overspray are a hassle, So, why not automotive sign vinyl? I was right! Clean crisp lines, Gloss just like new paint, A real Win-Win deal. image
  • norrmanndonorrmanndo Member Posts: 81
    Buy the sub-woofer from Mopar. It comes with all instructions. Nothing else needed except those star wrenches- I forget what they're called. The directions tell you what size to buy. But it's a big job if you do it yourself. It took me most of the day. Chrysler quoted about $75 to install and I should have let them. Sorry I didn't read this thread again for several months.
  • norrmanndonorrmanndo Member Posts: 81
  • diggerdigger Member Posts: 3
    I wanted to buy Bosch platinum +4 for my 2001 PT Cruiser but my local auto parts store told me that Bosch doesn't make plugs for car. Can you tell me the part number you used? :confuse:
  • dragonman1dragonman1 Member Posts: 1
    I can't seem to find out how to connect my led washer nozzels to the lights. There is a set of two wires, one red one black. Where do they go?
  • winpegwinpeg Member Posts: 1
    I just bought a 05 cruiser about 7000 mi. ago has anybody had trouble with the manual trans sliping out of third gear?? it has happened twice to me. other than that the trans. is great!!
  • tommy2tonetommy2tone Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 Pt with a 5 speed. I want to convert it to a automatic transmission. Can anyone please tell me if there is a conversion pkg that can be bought?
  • norrmanndonorrmanndo Member Posts: 81
    I two-toned our red GT and It made a huge difference. I had the top half part painted with the Ford shadow chrome CX paint. I forget the exact name but it a charcoal grey with chrome inside. It matches the dash that came in our car. The interior is black leather with crome dash. We also have the chrom package. I thought I was going out on a limb because of the cost, and since my wife dented the hood after rear-ending an suv, I decided to get it painted right, and went ahead with the two-tone at that time (since the insurance was paying to paint the hood anyway, I just had to paint the remaining top).
  • mrs55mrs55 Member Posts: 1
    can any one tell me how to set the clock on a 2004 PT cruiser
  • glorfindealglorfindeal Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2005 pt cruiser convertible and am tryiing to figure out how to remove the top dash so I can install the gps antenna for my RB1 radio. Anyone point to any links for this?


  • buroskyburosky Member Posts: 90
    Has anyone tried installing a Mod Chip on their PT? I was cruising eBay and I found a few listings for a Mod Chip that is compatible with my 2003 PT Touring Edition (non-turbo automatic). Does anyone have any experience to share? Did it help? Was it easy to install even for someone who is mechanically challenged like me?
  • marktkachukmarktkachuk Member Posts: 1
    have you had any answers yet.I have a 2002 i want to get a mod chip too. and a air intake as well,air intake adds another 8 to 15 hp so i'm told. but 250 bucks!!
  • buroskyburosky Member Posts: 90
    No responses yet. I'm hoping someone could share their experience. eBay also has a lot of listings for air intake for less than $250.
  • ke72spnke72spn Member Posts: 12
    I have had the GT 5-speed for nearly three years and never experienced this problem. In fact, ousdie from it being a tad notchy, I have had no issues with the shifter.
  • crusinchiccrusinchic Member Posts: 1
    I just purchased the stage 1 turbo kit from my dealer and I got a free blow-off valve. What a great buy! My guy said that it is some kind of special offer that Mopar is doing. I did a little investigation and found a link through a mopar website, offer ends September 30th.
  • kronykrony Member Posts: 110
    Just installed a AirRaid cold air intake kit on my '06 5 speed manual (non-turbo). Certainly seems to add some pep, they claim 12hp & 5ft-lb torque increase: (

    Only surprise is how loud it is...easy on the throttle and there is no difference but at wide open above 3000rpm it is really loud, I mean wow loud. That was a bit of a surprise but I think I'm ok with it. I'll see if it'll give me a few more miles/gal.
  • britsoftbritsoft Member Posts: 7
    I'd never admit this if the car were still under warranty. I put a jet chip in my Cruiser about a year ago and it has worked fine, though I do not think it really does anything to improve the car's performance or fuel mileage. But then when you have a car with all the power you can use and it get's 24 to 26 mpg at 80 mph, how could you tell? I also have an LCD ODB Code Reader mounted on the dash that tells me real time mpg.
  • britsoftbritsoft Member Posts: 7
    I put a Jet module in my 2005 Turbo Convertible at 15,000 miles and with 40,000 miles now I can really see no improvement, if improvement is even possible. The car runs so well anyway that the mod would have to do something significant before it would be noticed, and I have not noticed it. With what I know now I would have saved my money :cry: . ...Bob
  • caligirl10caligirl10 Member Posts: 1
    I have the 2001 Touring Edition. I would like to know if anyone has put smaller tires on the front than on the rear. Does this effect how the car handles? Do you have a photo of a car that has had this done? Thanks Nancy
  • wschellwschell Member Posts: 3
    I have a 2007 PT convertable automatic turbo with 7000 miles on it. Getting 17 miles to the gallon on average. I was told by putting a Magnaflow exhaust on I will get better gas mileage by 2 to 5 miles per gallon. Has anyone tried this and does it work.
  • tedebeartedebear Member Posts: 832
    I was told by putting a Magnaflow exhaust on I will get better gas mileage by 2 to 5 miles per gallon.

    Who told you that - the shop that wanted to sell you the exhaust? :D

    It's true that better airflow, both at the intake and exhaust, will help the engine breathe easier, resulting in slightly better performance. However, you're not going to see anywhere near a 5 mpg increase by switching to that exhaust.

    You might try a Google search for some of the PT Cruiser enthusiasts websites and see what they've done performance-wise to the intake, exhaust and other things. I put a better flowing intake filter in my wife's Cruiser, made the intake box less restrictive and a few other things, by getting ideas off some of those websites.
  • wschellwschell Member Posts: 3

  • duettomduettom Member Posts: 5
    I have a 2006 PT Cruiser GT Convertible with the 5 speed manual. During wide open throttle the car would have almost uncontrollable torque steer with the front end steering itself alternately to the right and left. I installed a Freedom Design Strut Tower Brace and am happy to report that the torque steer is almost totally gone.
  • weatherman1940weatherman1940 Member Posts: 1
    I just sold my 2003 PT (base) and it had both the factory deep tint and cruise control. Sad to see the LX didn't have tint or cruise. It will be tinted next week. The dealer (service and parts) said they can add the factory cruise for $425 (in NC). Some shops offer aftermarket units for about the same price, but they have a GM stalk type configuration.

    Anyone here have cruise added to a 2007 or 2008? Also, anyone know the % tint that came from the factory on the back door windows and liftgate glass?

    Any help is appreciated.

  • geswho22geswho22 Member Posts: 1
    I just paid off my '04 PT and I want to convert to burn alcohol (I don't want to pay $6 a gal like it will probably be this summer). If you've read Dave Blume's book Alcohol Can Be A Gas, you know modern EFI engines can run E85 unmodified. I am beginning experimentation with E85, but eventually I want to go 100% alcohol. I need to find either an aftermarket PCM that can be programmed via laptop, or software (possibly hacker) that can view and reprogram the PCM flash memory. Does anyone know anything about either of those? If so, please provide a link to a web site, or other info that could help me. I would much appreciate it. Thanks. :)
  • pt_nickpt_nick Member Posts: 3
    I am looking for a turbo for my '01 PT. Is there a way to make it a turbo without changing out the whole engine? I was reading about the two engines and it seems like the 2.4 turbo has more to it than just a bolt on turbo.
  • kronykrony Member Posts: 110
    There are aftermarket turbos available:

    and superchargers as well:

    for the money might want to research the cost of trading for a car with a turbo...or for about $500-600 you could put a nitrous kit on to add anywhere from 25-75hp.
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