1998 Oldsmobile Alero GL 2.4
If you can get past the problems, Alero has potential: MUCH better than the Achieva it replaced!
Have had to replace the front hubs:
When I first bought the car, both, but have had to replace the right one twice more. (I had to pay for the 2nd replacement, since it was over 1 year old) Hub problems have been the cause of the ABS light coming on every time!
All winter I had a hesitation, and misfire. When I could set a check engine code, it would indicate 3rd cylinder misfire, and fuel injector circuit open. I assumed the 3rd fuel injector was bad, and I replaced it to no avail. Then I found a TSB about re-programming the PCM, paid $80 with no change! Then the engine would only run on 2 cylinders! After towing to repair shop, and having the head tech verify what I thought, the PCM (Powertrain Control Module) was bad! It was not opening the 3rd injector, and was holding the 4th injector wide open, dumping fuel into the cylinder!
Vinyl covering on rear door panels peeling at the windows.
Had to replace the heater blower motor resistor.
Had to replace the alternator at 105,000 miles, but I felt that was "normal" for an American car.
Have to "top up" the power steering fluid once a year.
Overall I'm happy with the car, considering the high mileage.
I am disappointed with the repeated problems with the front hub assemblies.
I am EXTREMELY disappointed with the PCM failing!
Great power output from 2.4L 4-cylinder!! When the PCM is not failing, it has GREAT pickup and very little vibration at idle!
The transmission is a little disappointing, with slow downshifts, and slower upshifts.
I love the body style (4-door), and with more cars were like this.
It seems that the 4-cylinder engine is better then the 3.4L six cylinder, from the reviews that I've read!
I'm going to be selling this one soon, and was considering a newer Pontiac Aztek, but am now weary, since it has a 3.4L six cylinder, most likely the same basic engine they used on the Aleros.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 5th April, 2004