1998 Cadillac Catera 3.0 V6 from North America


Great Car!...but bring your wrenches


Transmission Soft Part Rebuild

Tire Wear

Leaky Valve Covers

General Comments:

A lot of these Catera reviews seem to be written by people who must rely on others to do their auto maintenance. I'd be cranky too if I had to pay dealership fees for the fairly involved surgeries that 97-98 Cateras seem to need.

If your automotive skill is limited to trips to the Quick Lube, take the prevailing wisdom and RUN AWAY from the Catera. However, if you're the type who owns not just one, but several torque wrenches, give these Cateras a serious look.

Cateras have a beastly maintenance reputation, most especially with cold-climate owners. Basically the 97-98 Catera V-6 timing belt is a hot-weather design and it destructs at an alarming rate when started cold. Catera resale values are way lower than you might expect given the caliber of car.

Bought my '98 in May for $1200 and took it down for a week to R&R timing belt, serpentine belt, and valve cover gaskets.

I would not attempt timing belt R&R without the special timing belt toolset - bought mine used for $100, but look around and you can find the toolset new for $200.

A lot of Catera reviewers complain about caution lights that won't go away. This could be bothersome if every new light means a trip to the dealership. So, if you don't have an OBDII scanner already, get one. USB models that work with your laptop go for $150 or so.

My 98 Catera has more than adequate power to "merge evenly with the flow of traffic". Ride quality is Cadillac quiet. It's a fairly heavy car for its wheelbase, and it's stuffed full of sound insulation.

The 97-98 Cateras are really nice cars, but that timing belt/leaky valve cover problem turns a whole lot of people off judging from the reviews. Use that knowledge to your advantage. It's a nice car if you know your way around an engine and you're prepared to do your own work.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th December, 2006

16th Apr 2007, 21:30

Very well written review.

5th Sep 2007, 20:24

I find my 98 catera to be very smooth, but some caution lights won't go away..

1998 Cadillac Catera 2.0 from North America


Devil in the blue dress..


So far I've sank 3700 into this car and I've only owned it for 30 days! I've had the heater control valve replaced, outer tie rods, coolant lines replaced, ignition coil and spark plugs and wires. Luckily I've been able to afford the repairs... for now. I'm too afraid to show off its beauty in fear that it's going to break down on me in the most inopportune time.

General Comments:

Very pretty to look at. Chrome wheels, cd/tape, moon roof, power seats - all of which do heat up. It's in my favorite color - GO SPARTANS Green.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 13th February, 2006

1998 Cadillac Catera from North America


Looks can be deceiving!


Oil leak after 3 months of ownership, warranty paid over $400.

I had to get new brakes and sensors after 8 months, and the total cost was $500.

I had to buy new tires, $300.

I had to buy a new battery, $70.

Now, the transmission light is coming on constantly, will leave at the dealer Mon.

Dealer just informed me of an Open Recall.

General Comments:

It seemed to be such a good deal while I was in college, a mom, and while my husband serves in Iraq.

This car has been a burden, but I'm trying to keep faith in it at least until my husband returns and my career is more promising.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 25th November, 2005

4th Jan 2006, 10:56

Tires, brakes and a battery at 90,000+ miles? That's called regular maintenance.

1998 Cadillac Catera from North America


Expensive mistake


Ecm computer fried at 45000 miles, $1600 at dealer. Electrical short from positive wire harness. Fuel pump died at 50000.check engine light always on. Several electrical problems.

General Comments:

One expensive trip to the shop after another. Car looks great, handles great. But too many pro blems. Cadillac dealers hate even hearing the word catera. It was a Mistske for GM to make this car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 23rd September, 2005

19th Oct 2005, 18:42

Funny, I was reading the reviews and noticed that I had the exact identical mechanical failures as mentioned. I also find it very interesting to find dealers not jumping at the opportunity to repair oil leaks money is not good enough to open that can of worms. In respect to the recall on the catera, cadillac should make good on the recall repairs after they are again the same problem as why they were recalled in the first place.