1999 Cadillac Catera 3.0L from North America


Car is good, but has little too many problems


Timing Belt Tension-er broke which resulted in the broken timing belt. This caused the valve to bent and the engine seized on the freeway. The whole engine needed to be re-built. The car had 58000 miles on it. Luckily I had another warranty bought and these people evaluated the problem and there was a recall on some part for this car and therefore, GM had to take the burden of re-building the engine.

Currently I have a problem with the car. I lost power in the radio, the trunk and gas lid. I cannot open either the trunk or the gas cap. I have run out of gas. Can anyone tell me how to manually open the gas cap lid.

The trunk can be opened manually by pulling a lever from the inside of the rear seat. Any help will be appreciated. Thanks.

General Comments:

The road handling of the car is great. I like the interior of the car. Being heavy it gives a good and sporty ride. If it was not for the little too many problems I had when the car was new I would have bought another one, but not anymore.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 15th November, 2007

16th Nov 2007, 09:58

Maybe this will help:

I had an Oldsmobile 98 that had an electric gas flap release. There was a fail safe cable in the trunk near the gas cap. look for a cable or string in the trunk, or pull back some of the trunk material in search of it.

Did you check fuses? You may have a blown fuse.

If that doesn't work you can aways get a screw driver and pry the gas flap open, most likely wrecking it, but you can put gas in it.

Good Luck.

1999 Cadillac Catera 3.0 liter from North America


I love my Catera

General Comments:

I have a 1999 Cadillac Catera I purchased from a gentleman who went into a rest home in 2003. The car had only 3,300 miles when I purchased it for only $10,000. It now has 60,000 miles.

The original sticker was for $35,000. Because of the bargain price, I decided to give it a try, although this held one of the worst ratings by Consumer Reports.

I have to say that this car is one of the most incredible cars I’ve ever driven. It is equivalent to a 5 Series BMW, and I have fortunately only had a few minor problems with it.

The headlights are very poorly constructed, as well as being not very efficient when they were working correctly.

The fog lights were replaced (by me under warranty) because they would develop condensation, and the replacements did the same.

There were some other minor problems that I had to overcome.

Because of what I paid for the car; if it stopped running tomorrow, I more than got my monies worth. However, I know that others have had major problems. I just have been very lucky.

This German built Opel, with a Cadillac name, has been a very good car for me.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th June, 2007

1999 Cadillac Catera Sport 3.0 V6 from North America


Looks good sitting in the garage, but hardly ever leaves the yard. Unreliable


We bought the car for my mother. The dealer was asking 5,900. After a quick look-over, it was apparent that the car had under gone some engine repairs. The dealer denied any major work (said the hood lifts were replaced, and that was it, but for some reason he agreed to drop the price to 4,500; 5,100 after TTT). When my mother returned from the test drive, she couldn't get the sunroof to close. When the dealer got in, the car closed first try.

One week after buying the car, we moved. While the car was packed with stuff, a brake caliper popped off the mount. After removing the tire, I found a bolt missing in the driver's caliper mount. Easy fix, but what would have happened if I was stopping to avoid an accident?

Then my little sister test drove it. The steering wheel locked up (something in the blinker switch). It quickly released, but a few days later I test drove the car. No apparent trouble at first, but after pushing the car's performance for a short bit, the wheel locked up, resulting in slight fender bender into a clay rut.

After that incident, we removed some broken plastic from the blinker switch, no troubles, but you gotta turn the blinkers off every turn.

A few weeks after that, we started to lose a little oil, maybe a quart a few days, and after about 6 days, the radiator blew up on my mom. After popping the hood at a local gas station, OMG. To say the least, we found out where the oil was going. It looked like a 6000 pound baby had the runs under the hood. There was probably about 3 quarts of oil stuck to the underside of the hood, and about another 3 quarts everywhere else in the motor compartment. I've replaced an oil cooler, 2 radiators (one defective and not cheap), and several hours of cleaning the cooling system. We still have no heat. None of the fans work, and the car overheats. Even doing the repairs myself, it's still proving to be costly.

LOL a Caddy commercial just came on, stating their reliability. What a joke.

The car still needs a few sensors that have to be ordered from Cadillac, and we wonder if it will ever run worth a crap. I would not suggest buying one unless it's mine. LOL.

General Comments:

Good looking car.

Decent handling once we found the Sport button on the shifter. We were satisfied with the performance.

Overall, not a bad car, just VERY VERY unreliable. Thinking about maybe putting a roll cage in it, and making a demolition derby car out of it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 24th May, 2007

27th Jan 2008, 21:16

I recently purchased a Catera knowing I was going to have issues. A buddy and I tore the engine down and put new heads on along with a complete gasket set of course. I found that the car is quite comfortable and with a classy look. I love the performance with this car, it's not on the low end of the scale, but it doesn't compare with some other cars I've previously owned.

9th May 2011, 18:39

I just purchased my 2nd Holden Commodore VT 1999, which Cadillac uses as the Catera's wheel base. The first one was very well broken in after about 200,000 miles approx, and did well for its original condition (wasn't that great, being an ex-police cruiser), but saying that, it was reliable, and I can jump in and go long distance Point B without a problem or worry.

The second VT I just purchased was hardly driven, and much better condition, and guess what? I still love it! I guess I can see why the Catera has failed miserably - in the engine compartment. Low quality engines. If you drop in a Holden ECOTEC V6 3.8 Litre with matching auto transmission, or a Chev Block LS1 with a manual, you can have a good driving Caddy.