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Buick Rendezvous



  • arthur24arthur24 Posts: 6
    I have a 2003 rdv cxl with 7500 miles on it, I have had no problems with it.It has most options except towing. I purchased it because I really wanted to buy American. I think it is an excellent vehicle. The features are outstanding. Except for owners with real problems I think its critics are critics for the sake of it. I don't hear anyone complain that the base engine in the Highlander is a 4 cylinder, that must be awfully underpowered. I don't hear the critics complain about how ugly the Element is, but they criticized the Aztec. Everyone in my area that has a rdv speaks well about it. Even though the Escalade has around 100 more hp then Lx470 the critics say the Lexus is much better. Yet many more people buy the Caddy. Is it possible that car writers are out of touch or have an agenda.
  • regalluvr2regalluvr2 Posts: 114
    Last week we traded off our 2002 CXL AWD for a new 04 Bluestone Metallic Toyota Highlander Limited AWD with the 3.3 engine.In March 2003 we paid $22,900 for our loaded CXL with only 13,000 miles on it.

    Most places would only offer $13-14,000 for it in trade with only 31,500 miles on it.You still cant tell it from new.Finally we got an offer of $18,300 for it so we decided to let it go.Otherwise we would have kept it and put a GM extended warranty on it.

    Theres lots of things we liked about our RDV but we just couldnt live with all the electrical problems that we were having.There doesnt seem to be any fix for them.We once had a 1986 Toyota Camry that had electrical problems.We fought it for 2 years and never did get it fixed.It continually blew fuses and we had no lights.

    The straw that broke the camels back is that when we complained about our CXL to Buick Customer Relations they acted like we were the first ones to ever have BCM problems.We told them that Edmunds was full of Buick RDV's with BCM problems.I've counted over (60) RDV owners on here and other places with BCM problems and I'm sure its far more wide spread than that as lots of people dont even know about this place,wouldnt admit they are having problems, or dont have computers,etc.

    Only Buick knows how many RDV BCM's are going bad and they arent talking.When our BCM's went bad they were always on back order so it must be a ton of them.

    From 1995-2003 GM built the 3100 and 3400 V-6 engines knowing that the intake gaskets were prone to leak.Why does it take them so long to fix a problem?To this day they wont even admit that there ever was a problem.The internet is full of unhappy 3100 and 3400 owners with leaking intake gaskets.I see new posts every day on this.They need to admit that some Buick RDV's are having electrical problems and try and come up with a fix for them.Its too good of a vehicle to not try and fix it.

    Its just a shame about all the RDV problems as it was such a great idea.We like our new Toyota HL but theres things it doesnt have that the RDV did have.We wish we could have kept our CXL but we just didnt feel good about it.We sure do miss it at times.

    I made my last post at problems and solutions and this is my last post here since we no longer own a RDV.Good luck to all RDV owners.I know that alot of you arent having problems.
  • tracyegtracyeg Posts: 7
    I have a 2002 with both front door hinges now bent. Does anyone know if the newer models came with something to prevent the wind from pulling the doors forward and bending the hinges?
  • wws2wws2 Posts: 23
    Our 2002 CXL has had no electrical problems whatsoever. (Knock on wood.) Actually has had no problems at all, except for one small dash rattle when making left turns. Wife loves it, very practical, etc. We intend to keep it for many years.

    That said, from various complaints here it certainly seems that *something* is going on. I agree with regalluvr2 that replacing the BCM seems like it is a 'symptomatic' fix when a vehicle goes back multiple times for the same problem. The dealer mechanics are obviously not finding the 'real' problem. (E.g, a cable that is getting abraded? A bad ground? etc.)
  • nosuvyetnosuvyet Posts: 72
    Hi all. I've modified a bumper skid plate from the Envoy for my RDV (it fits reasonably well and looks ok) and I would like to know if there is any particular glue that would work best for the RDV's plastic since I don't know exactly what type of plastic it consists of. I don't mind sanding or scoring the bumper surface for better adhesion. Any thoughts?

    Thanks in advance for your help.

  • nosuvyetnosuvyet Posts: 72
    By the way, I've also had zero problems (except a wonky HUD) after 40,000 km (25k miles)and are about to take a 5600 km (3500 mile) round trip to the southern US in our RDV, so I'll let you know how it goes. I'll admit, if I was one of the ones having BCM or other major problems, I probably wouldn't be so confident.
  • nosuvyetnosuvyet Posts: 72
    Someone was recently asking about the new Ultra, and I see a black one locally. Looks really sharp. They finally dealt with the major cosmetic flaw this vehicle has (in my opinion) by painting the whole thing one color instead of the multi-tone nonsense they originally came up with. Sorry if I offend anyone who has one, but the white with the green cladding and the charcoal section below the cladding looks absolutely atrocious. Some designer must have been asleep when they thought up that combo.
  • jk27jk27 Posts: 244
    I own a 2002 Buick Rendezvous CXL -- purchased it in May 2002. I am pleased to report that I have just over 25,500 miles on it and (fortunately) have had very, very few problems with it. I have not had any repairs done. I have no electrical problems (e.g., BCM) whatsoever. I did receive the tailgate recall notification but I just haven't gotten around to getting it done.

    Comprehensive list of the problems: 1) The driver seat lumbar knob broke off and 2) my right passenger sideview mirror doesn't always return to its proper place after backing up. Aside from those very minor nits ... I've had no problems. Great car! I'd buy another one in a minute. Excellent luxury, phenomenal stereo, LOTS of room, good in Wisconsin snow (I got the VersaTrack AWD), good mileage and OUTSTANDING ride.
  • murfdogmurfdog Posts: 61
    great to hear the good news. I also bought mine in May 2002. We have put alot more miles then you have. We have close to 33k and also have had no real problems with it. Little minor things. Nice to hear good news for a change. Maybe we just happened to bother buy in a lucky month: may2002.
  • cmccullcmccull Posts: 33
    I got my 2002 CX in September of 2002 and have had no problems except the shifter boot was torn when I first got it and I had it replaced. Of course I only have 11,000 miles on it but I am very pleased with this car for the money.
  • with my 2003 RDV (purchased in Feb.2003) which IMO is a great suburban SUV despite the major warranty service to remedy the manifold intake gasket leaks and the liftgate latch recall repair to my RDV. No machine is perfect, and mechanical problems are definitely not indexed to the cost of any given vehicle (don't we all know someone who has a Mercedes, BMW, Jaguar, etc. that sees a lot of shop time?!). A few repairs, even an occasional major one, are certainly tolerable given the complexity of today's automobiles, although I certainly sympathize with those frustrated owners who end up with the seemingly inevitable lemons that roll off every factory assembly line. Fortunately, there are numerous consumer protection laws(e.g. lemon law statutes, implied warranties, such situations, so not too many buyers should ever get stuck. For everyone else, I hope they enjoy the ride, utility, and overall performance of the RDV as much as I do. Please keep sharing your experiences.
  • arthur24arthur24 Posts: 6
    I think for the money I made a perfect choice on my 2003 rdv cxl. The vehicle has all I really wanted and more. I repeat as I said once before the people who have real problems I feel for. If you check other sites like lexus or acura they are having trans problems noise problem etc. Even though for some reason we are led to believe they are perfect vehicles. I wished that people were more informed, rather then taking what some one else says and literally taking it as gospel.The hud on rdv is a great idea, getting little credit from writers. If honda or toyota had it they would be saying by those vehicles for that feature alone.I would like to know what Japanese vehicle offers as much for the same money as the rdv factually, not just some one opinion.
  • nosuvyetnosuvyet Posts: 72
    Just returned from a 3700 mile trip where it performed flawlessly. I won't buy another vehicle without a HUD and cruise control. One disappointment was the fuel economy. I got a 20mpg avg all highway. I probably averaged 70-72mph over the trip, so that didn't help. A steady 40-50 would probably get closer to 25mpg, but I don't have the patience for that speed.
  • jdlanganjdlangan Posts: 48
    We just acquired an '03 CX from my in-laws, have had it for about a month, and at just over 6000 miles it's in for the BCM - a five day wait for the part to ship! Fortunately I still have my old Explorer so I'm not without a vehicle.

    I had come to this board to ask if anyone knows if you can add the 3rd row seat to a CX (I realize it doesn't come in cloth, at least according to the '03 brochures, but as long as it coordinates I don't care). The dealership immediately said no, but since the cars come off the same assembly line and from what I can tell from the brochure the CX Plus package, which has the 3rd row seat as an option, is all trim and accessories, no real difference in structural.

    Now, I guess first questions first, have people had repeat problems with BCM's, or once they are fixed are they all right? If it looks like it could be a continual issue, I obviously don't want to put a lot of money into the vehicle. We drive our cars forever, my '96 Explorer which the RDV is replacing has 106K on it.

    Any thoughts? I have come to really love driving this vehicle, after admittedly initially thinking it was too 'mimi-van' for my SUV tastes. Until this opportunity came along, the intention was to try to get another year or two out of the Explorer, then get a new one with the 3rd row seating.
  • pcs15394pcs15394 Posts: 27
    People have reported numerous replacements of the BCM according to this forum. Some have been replaced four or five times. The third row seat can probably be added, but if I remember was cost prohibitive. In other words it cost much more to put in after market than to just order the vehicle with the seat.
  • jdlanganjdlangan Posts: 48
    I'm sure it wouldn't be cheap to put the seat in, but since the car was given to us I don't mind spending to get what I want and is more practical for us, as long as we aren't going to be spending a fortune in time or money for other repairs of course. The carpet in back has cutouts where I believe the seat would mount, but if you pull them up there is just a metal plate underneath - looks like a knock-out to me so I suspected there may be something underneath. I guess the question is whether or not they put the mounts in anyway, ie. is there a structural difference b/n the CX and CX Plus package which lists the seat as 'available' when they come off the assembly line? I have no idea who to ask, the service department said it couldn't be done, but my husband talked to them so I don't know if they elaborated as to why, or if they really know all of the specifics. Any Buick reps reading this board?

    Not surprisingly, when I called yesterday and asked the dealership to take a look at the brakes after reading these boards since it's sitting there for a week - ours squeak also - I asked about the BCM history, they said they've only replaced one or two and that it hadn't been a big deal for them -
  • pcs15394pcs15394 Posts: 27
    The BCM may not have been a big deal for the Dealer but alot of people have had issues. Check the Problems and Solutions section for Buick Rendezvous and do a search on BCM. You should come up with quite a few messages. As far as the third row seat, I am not sure if the plate can be removed and the seat installed or not. I would think that most of them come off of the assembly line with the same basic configuration. If you don't have the third row seat, there must be a fairly large storage bin where the seat goes?
  • jdlanganjdlangan Posts: 48
    We don't seem to have any of the stoarge options, just a flat - well recessed below door sill height - deck. Your thoughts mirror mine on the issue of assembly line construction. When I pick it up sometime next week I'll have to ask more questions of the service people. But, I guess we'll wait and see if we continue to have problems before we put a lot of money into it. Thanks!
  • oldmanoldman Posts: 35
    As a long time toyota driver, I recently rented a 2wd rdv for a week. My thoughts:
    superb 3.4L powertrain. Superb aerodynamic control with virtually zero wind noise at hiway cruise. Excellent seating fabrics and well executed stitching detail. Excellent second row seating, my teenagers were impressed. Decent fuel efficiency 26.3 mpg. Roomy interior. Easy parking space manuevers by virtue of short front/rear overhangs.
    Now for the downside. logwagonly ponderous handling. Undertired with firestines? Wierd rubbery wiggling ride vibration over irregular road surfaces. Underboosted clumsy steering. Totally unreadable dash gauges in daylight, drab and generic monocolored "mass produced" shot out of a giant injection moulded dashboard--lacking even a pretense of labor intensity. Wierd seat adjustment mechanisms, impossible to figure out how a particular lever does anything. Intrusive and dangerous parking brake pedal (As a physician, I've seen these pedals actually embedded in the shreaded flesh of a drivers left leg in side impact collisions). My 2cents. Not a bad vehicle depending on what discount they give, but not a car for the person who really likes the driving experience, IMHO!
  • chaser04chaser04 Posts: 3
    Just bought a Rendezvous "ultra" with everything, had a price of $53995 cdn. Its Dark Steel Blue with no lower accent color its all blue, also has chrome accents around the bumpers. It Came with a 3.6L VVT 245hp V6, which came from the cadillac CTS. It has a navigation system, 4 captain chairs, roomy third row(but not much room behind it)(oh well), trailer package, leather and suede seating, 6 disc CD changer w/8 speakers (sounds awesome) but no sure on how many watts it is, also came with running boards, 17x7" aluminum wheels, AWD, onstar, heads up display, i got the sunroof instead of the DVD player w/ fold down T.V. screen (you can't get both)(2 bad), I'll just have to put some Screens in the head rests. So ya if your into buying a SUV i would defenatly recomened a RDV, especially the Ultra.
  • neals1820neals1820 Posts: 13
    Why are the Ultras so hard to find. A dealer told us the engines are back ordered from GM????
    Any thoughts.
  • tmakogontmakogon Posts: 74
    Ultras are hard to find. Today at 15K mile service I talked with the sales manager - he said the three Ultras they had sold really fast.

    I believe the current 2004 options allow the new 3.6L cadillac engine only in the Ultra and in CXL AWD Plus. 2005 may have CXL FWD with the new 3.6 liter engine.

    By the way, we recently brought a dryer in a factory box - it fit in with much room to spare. Still very happy with our '02.

  • ray80ray80 Posts: 1,643
    I heard of one instance (elsewhere)involving the sister vehicle of the Rendzvous where the mechanic went beyond assuming BCM was bad and found the shifter has worn through insulation on wiring harness, creating a short. I am assuming here that the BCM is located in the center console area on the Renezvous also. Might be something to check when failure happens, more so for those that have had multiple BCM replacements
  • wws2wws2 Posts: 23
    > ... the mechanic went beyond assuming BCM was bad and found the shifter has worn through
    > insulation on wiring harness, creating a short...

    That is good to hear.

    Re: my message 3682, I've taken the RDV in for service (scheduled oil change, lube, etc) and had them look at that underdash rattle again. They found it this time - slightly loose hinge on the hood. While there, I asked the service advisor about BCM problems. He said he has never seen one yet... (This is from a moderately large Silicon Valley dealership.) Again, I think folks who are being told their BCMs are bad should be insisting that the mechanics look a bit deeper.
  • wws2wws2 Posts: 23
    > .... logwagonly ponderous handling. Undertired with firestines? Wierd rubbery wiggling ride vibration over irregular road surfaces.

    No question the Affinity tires suck. They need to be at 35 psi or so for 'ok' handling. But ours has now gone through the first two at only 14k miles - just from normal street wear. Replaced the two with B'Stone Dueler H/L in the rear. Will replace the Affinities in front by fall.

    > Underboosted clumsy steering.

    Never noticed this. Perhaps the rental had a problem?

    > Totally unreadable dash gauges in daylight,

    HUD is available...

    > drab and generic monocolored "mass produced" shot out of a giant injection moulded dashboard--lacking even a pretense of labor intensity.

    Ultra trim is available. Lots of wood dash kits on ebay.

    > Wierd seat adjustment mechanisms, impossible to figure out how a particular lever does anything.

    Have not had a problem with it. But ours has the memory seats.

    > Intrusive and dangerous parking brake pedal (As a physician, I've seen these pedals actually embedded in the shreaded flesh of a drivers left leg in side impact collisions).

    Interesting observation. Never thought much about it.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 21,315
    > drab and generic monocolored "mass produced" shot out of a giant injection molded dashboard--lacking even a pretense of labor intensity.

    You probably haven't shopped many vehicles. Most are plastic and most have upgraded models. If you're comparing it with automobile dashes from luxury line cars, it ain't gonna compare. > Weird seat adjustment mechanisms, impossible to figure out how a particular lever does anything.

    > Weird seat adjustment mechanisms, impossible to figure out how a particular lever does anything.

    The owners manual explains it very well on my Buick. Have you read the owners manual and tried the seats with it in hand?

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • Just checked my RDV's Coolant and it looked kind of murky but still the orangy color. It's supposed to last for 100,000 mi, but not too sure of that. The RDV will be three years old and just turned 15000Mi. Wife drives it mainly. Wanted to replace it with original equipment GM product "DexCool". Looked it up and was astonished by what I had found. Seems all the potential engine problems with leaking gaskets reported on this board because of defective gaskets may just have been caused by "DeXCool". Check out link tml Check out embedded links in article and I am sure you will do what I will do this weekend and change the coolant to something like Prestone. Comments please~~
  • ray80ray80 Posts: 1,643
    One thing the article doesn't say is whether or not this vehicle had anti-freeze changed after the 5 years. I believe the intake gaskets are just bad parts and crack, not from anti-freeze. I saw the ones taken out my daughters GA and it was just broken, didn't see any evidence of the rest of the gasket being eaten away or anything. I have heard elswhere if your going to change to old type anti-freeze, make real sure to flush <all> the old coolant out (they don't mix well at all), and be ready to replace other things like water-pump early (silacits sp chk) can do a number on those
  • Ray80, There are apparently many articles out there supporting the links I put up. A good friend of mine just did some major work on his wifes Camaro due to gummy black Dexcool. Did not understand your comments on the water pump. Do you drive or own a GM with Dexcool. Would like to get other comments. Good Idea which I was aware of to thoroughly flush out the old coolant before replacing with a different product. Check out
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