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Pontiac Grand Prix Engine fires 3800 series II 1996-2003

Hi everyone, my 2002 grand prix had an engine compartment fire on March 11, 2006 and after much research by searching the web it become clear that the fire was caused the defective MOP intake manifold. I am looking for others that have had this experience with there GM 3800 series II engine made from 1996 to 2003. If you know anyone with same experience of an engine compartment fire in with there 3800 series II engine would you please respond.


  • jessica9jessica9 Posts: 12
    I recieved a message from th NHTSA that the investigation for GTs was closed but it only was upto 1997. what about those of us with newer models (1998 and up) that this has happened to. It is the same engine as the supercharged GP. please let me know if anyone has contated GM about this. I am more than willing to put together a class action lawsuit against GM
  • bedensbedens Posts: 23
    On March 23, 2006 my 2001 Pontiac Grand prix caught fire and burned. It was somewhere under the hood, could have been the engine compartment. GM sent a so-called "expert" to check it out and supposedly he couldn't determine the cause of the fire.
  • I was changing the spark plugs on my 2002 Grand Prix GT today, and I bumped the fuel line where it connects to the fuel rail, and it sprayed gas all over the place. Does anyone else have that problem?
  • My 2000 Grand Prix GT had an engine fire yesterday. After I turned on the ignition there was a loud "backfire" noise and flames came out of the engine compartment. The car is trashed. GM has to be aware of this dangerous problem and is obviously not taking any responsibility for it.
  • Our Grand Prix was totalled by fire in less than 15 min. The fire department was called but too late. The car smelled hot. Shut car off opened hood and flames erupted and within minutes it was a ball of fire. Contacted GM their response was basically too bad.. sorry to hear that... we can't do anything. They suggested we get the car towed from the wreckers and take it to the nearest GM dealer to inspect it to see why it burned. We explained that the car was totally burned. They said well it is just our recommendation. All this to be done out of our pocket.

    We contacted the GM dealer and he said he didn't think that was a great idea and thought GM was crazy.

    I then contacted our attorney and he advised to contact GM again and inform them we would contact Better Business Bureau and if need be go the legal route. GM called back 3 days later and said they would send an investigator. After a month they let us know the investigator couldn't determine the cause of the fire.... geeeee really??? And, there was nothing more they could do. We are now proceeding with the BBB and if need be the legal route. Cars just don't burn up... this was a well maintained vehicle and thank goodness no one was injured.

    What is it going to take before they acknowledge they have a problem? Hopefully nothing as serious as personal injury. GM needs to step up to the plate
  • OK something has to be done about this. If we all get together on this I think we can do something.
  • Yes, I know something has to be done... but what???? It is like David fighting Goliath. We just heard back from GM yesterday via mail stating Gm is not responsible.
    Their investigator could not determine the cause due to the severe burning. Surely, they have to have some culpability in this......................
  • Add me to this pathetic list. My 2002 GTP with 3800 series engine caught fire in my driveway last night after I had parked it and came into the house. By the time I new it was on fire there wasn't much that could be done. Fire department came before it blew up but it appears to be a total loss. I would appreciate any update from anyone who has had any sucess at getting anything done about this.
  • bedensbedens Posts: 23
    No one has had any success in getting anything done. I would give you my email address but not allowed to.
  • how did you go about contacting GM and the Better business bureau? My car started on fire and was a total loss within 15 minutes. Have you gone the legal route with the BBB? And is there any action we can take with how many people this has happened to?
  • bedensbedens Posts: 23
    I call the toll free number to customer service with GM, they sent a so-called expert who spent maybe 15 minutes looking at my car and they finally told me that they couldn't determine the cause of the fire and they aren't responsible. I can't give my personal email address here. I would love to for people to email me about this. There isn't much we can talk about here.
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,092
    You can change your email to public in your display preferences and then reference others to check your profile for your contact information.
  • bedensbedens Posts: 23
    Ok now if you want to email me check my profile or whatever it is to get it.
  • I was told to file a complaint with the National Highway Transporation Safety Association, these are the people who make the manufacturers do recalls. The web address is www. There were many complaints of fires and failures on the grand prixs. Hopefully they'll see enough complaints and something will get done about it.
  • My Grand Prix caught fire within 10 minutes of parking it...ON MY MOTHER'S CARPORT!! It almost caught her house on fire. The complete engind compartment was burned to a crisp within 10 minutes after the smoke and flames started, the fire department said it appeared to be an electical shortage under the hood. What does it take to get GM to do something, lives to be lost?
  • Karen,

    I think you should expand this link to GM 3800 engine fires. The 3800 Engine is used in seveal GM models. Expanding this forum would link the this engine to all GM makes that use it. The Engine is used in Chevy's, Buicks, and Pontiacs. I have a 3800 Series II in my Pontiac Grand Prix GTP. Let's open this up to get a better cross section and true picture of this issue.

  • bedensbedens Posts: 23
    Look at my profile and get my email address and email me.
  • Within 5 minutes of parking my car in Feb of 2003 it burned to the gound. There were no malfunction indications, not over heated and ignited while I walked away. Fire Marshal and independant investigator said the fire originated in the engine compartment, near the drivers head lamp area. It had a bumber to bumper GM policy in effect as well as full insurance. Pontiac laughted. The GM insurance underwriter called me an ideot and hung-up. My insurance company tried to have me accused of arson even though their investigator could not find anything....
  • chats1chats1 Posts: 158
    What year was your GTP, I assume it's a GTP? I owned a 1999 GTP and two years ago after my nephew who owned it at the time turned off the ignition and went into his office, five minutes later the gas station across the street where he left it for an oil change called him and told him it went on fire five minutes after he left. The fire dept. came and put it out. It burned the entire front of the car, started in the engine dept. He was able to retrieve all his belongings in the car. He had it towed to another business he owns and his insurance company paid him what the dealer in his area would be selling the car for. He was very satisfied with what he got for the car -- more than he thought. He showed me pictures of the burned car which I owned for three years and then he bought it from me; the car looked just plain terrible all burned. I don't really think you will get anywhere with GM unless someone is badly injured!!! It is really up to the insurance company to go after GM, not you. chats1
  • Sorry, Yes, 1999 Grand Prix, GTP, 60,000 miles, Serviced by GM every 4000 miles. Insurance Company baulked and then tried to have the county bring arson charges. Even after I provided the insurance company yet another Grand Prix fire and they just said it was poor owner up keep...
  • My car began to over heat yesterday. I made it to work, and had a friend take me to Autozone to get the specific coolant called for by the manual. An orange coolant, called Dex-Cool. As instructed, I mixed it 50/50 w/ distilled water, and filled it up. I then drove home, and it drove smoothly. On my way to work the next morning, a familiar feeling started up. My steering became difficult, especially when turning left. A clunking, stressfull sound started up within the engine, and the temp started creeping up. I got to work again, and waited til lunch time, where I went down again and screwed off the coolant cap. It was low. I checked beneath the car, to see it dripping coolant down into the gutter. I filled it up, as I needed to go to the bank, deciding I would just have to keep filling up the coolant until I had enough money to repair the leak. I didn't even make it 2 minutes away before the steering and noises started up again. I parked at the bank, only to come around the front of the car and see smoke steaming out of the passenger side, near the front of the hood and up by the windshield. I thought maybe I'd overfilled the coolant, and it was burning off, so I opened the hood, to find that the radiator was not smoking, no where near it. The engine was smoking. Up near the belts on the left of the 3800 logo. I'm very low on funds, and new I only needed to get back to work where I could get on here and hopefully get some answers, so I got in the car, and drove as slowly as possible back to work. Now, yesterday, on my way to work, when I sped up, the air would cool the engine. On this trip back to work, the faster I went, the hotter the engine got. It never hit the red, but was touching the edge as I pulled in. There is a strange clanking noise that speeds up as I speed up, and the engine sound jerky and strained. When parked, the smoke started up again. It did not smoke as I drove. The smoke smells like burning coolant, however, not that I'm an expert on car scents. Coming in here and reading this post on spontaneous 3800 engine fires has made me periodically check out the window to see if my GTP is in flames :sick: . I need help :confuse: Does anyone know what I can do about this? I don't know what else to do when my engine is overheating other than add coolant. But it's full and still smoking! I don't have the money for an engine diagnostic right now, don't have a mechanic i trust, and probably couldn't afford the repairs anyway. i will most likely try making the repairs myself, once I figure out what the problem is. :/ Did this happen to anyone else? Is my car going to burst into flames if I try to take the freeway home tonight? Any help is appreciated.

    Thanks, -Heather
  • Heather,
    My 1999 Grand Prix GTP did not make any engine noises or smoke prior to catching fire, it was running perfectly when I parked it on my mother's carport. Within 10 minutes, the car burst into flames, thank God the fire department was close by and her home did not burn. The car was a total loss, this seems to be the pattern with everyone else that has had engine fires. I am no car expert, but if I were you, I wouldn't park the car anywhere it could cause damage to anyone else's property. Have you had the oil checked? It sounds as if the engine is about to blow and you definitely have a leak, probably the water pump is going bad or gone, they make strange noises.
  • chats1chats1 Posts: 158
    Heather, when my nephew's 99 GTP (I owned the car and then gave it to him), caught on fire, there were no warnings whatsoever. He was in his office across from the gas station and they called him, saying that five minutes after he turned it off, it was on fire, coming from the engine compartment. The fire dept. had to come to put it out. The car was totalled and he was very satisfied with his settlement from the insurance company. As far as your coolant goes, do you think the coolant bottle needs to be replaced. It may have a hole in it. My 2002 GTP had to have the coolant bottle replaced because the coolant was leaking out. The only warning I got was the "Coolant Low" light came on and then went out. I took it into the dealer. The first time they said the hose was lose and fixed it. I got home and saw an oily substance on the garage floor coming from that area and took it right back. They had to replace the bottle. It had a hole in it. You may have other problems also. I would not drive that car. I would take it in immediately and see what's wrong. chats1
  • Bad as I hate to say it, add me to this list also. My 2000 GTP burned up today. I went to lunch came back to work and 10 minutes after I parked it the engine compartment went up in flames. No way for the fire department to know where it started from, and the state investigator is for arson type fires only. I called GM and filed a report about it after reading all these threads about the engine fires affecting these vehicles. They sais someone would contact me within 2 days. This kills me, I've only had the car 3 weeks!!!! Something has to be done about this problem before someone dies.
  • bedensbedens Posts: 23
    Please get my email address and email me.
  • I just found this site. Has anyone ever received anything from GM for this problem. I had a 1999 grand prix gtp that started on fire while i was in a department store for 5 minutes. The car was totalled and gm did nothing.
  • My vehicle also started on fire. I parked and went in a department store for 5 minutes and when i came out it was in flames. I think we should try to start a large complaint with GM. Anyone with me?
  • Good Luck...I can't even get Pontiac to tell me the VIN number ranges of the NHTSA's investigation and recall of
    Grand Prix for engine fires...
  • chats1chats1 Posts: 158
    I had a 1999 GTP which when I bought a new 2002 GTP my nephew got. Last year the 99 went on fire 5 minutes after he parked it. It was totalled. The insurance company settled with him; he had no problems at all; they gave him what the dealer in his area would be getting for the car; he was very satisfied. I think it is up to the insurance companies to go after GM. I honestly do not think that you will get anywhere with GM. It is very difficult to sue large companies. If you do try, get the lawyer to take his fee on a contingency basis. I now have a 2006 GXP -- hopefully no fires. This is quite scary and seems to be very common, as I read these posts. chats1
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