2008 Chrysler PT Cruiser 2.4L from North America
No regrets here
I can't fault this car for anything major, but time will tell. I had to replace the brakes at 55,000 kms, but that is due to city driving and all the sudden stops the city puts me through. Also had to replace the factory wipers. They just don't make them to last anymore!
I tore the bumper off, because this car is built low, and re-bar from a stall parking concrete barrier snagged me, and I effectively ripped the bumper off its pins on the passengers side. The dealership said I wouldn't believe how many of these 'accidents' they see a year. The parking lot was found responsible, and I didn't have to pay for it. Hardly the car's fault, more like a moron driver's fault!!
This car needs detailing BADLY. The seats show every single watermark from every drop of rain and melting snow that has come in contact with them. This is not only my car, as a coworker and the courier vehicles for my company have reported the same problem. It's not a huge deal, but people get in my car and make comments. I am not a dirty person, and these waterstains makes me feel like I am.
Still has a new car smell though. I can't smell it, but everyone else can.
This model does not come with a rear cargo shelf. I was told this wasn't standard anymore. Turns out Chrysler charges an arm and leg for a plastic shelf. If you need one, you can buy one at a junk yard for 50 bucks. Chrysler wanted to charge me over 350! Older models' shelves will fit the vehicle just fine.
My father owns a 2003 model in silver, which I have driven many times. Once my 1997 Pontiac Sunfire started giving me problems, I saw this car on the Chrysler lot. I had one in mind, but never found one I 100% liked (too many miles, too old, beat up, etc). I typically hate white cars, but white works with this one. I bought it, and still love it to this day.
I didn't buy this car for gas mileage, but it isn't the worst one I've driven. I don't fill up as often as you'd think, but I fill up more than the Sunfire. The computer tells me how far I can drive on the tank I have, which is a useful feature. I like how it has a compass built right in, and my mileage can be calculate by using mpg or distance remaining. There are a few trip counters and timers on top of that.
Interior is stylish and comfortable. Love the vent configuration and the cargo shelf (when I got it!). Might get the interior scotch-guarded. That might tackle the water-staining issue. It has great sound in the stereo and lots of preset buttons for the radio. Very user friendly dash.
Engine is underpowered for the size of the car. Car is heavy! My engine doesn't struggle per se but it lacks a get up and go. I miss that.
Lots of storage space! Love this car for storing and moving things. I moved a bed with it, a deconstructed futon, Ikea furniture. All sorts of stuff!
I bought this car, because it is a little larger and more easily seen on the roads. It's more safe than my Sunfire, and for the passengers in the back too.
It's sad that they stopped making this car. I feel a little bit of a friendship with everyone I meet at a red light with the same car. Chrysler, I would love for you to bring it back. I would buy another one (if you pepped up the engine).
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 10th November, 2010
14th Apr 2016, 14:09
I am the author of this review and I would like to follow up on the car and how it held up. I am in the process of purchasing another vehicle, so I thought I would provide some closing remarks.
This car has treated me fairly well, but at 148,000km I did not expect to have to replace/service the brakes so often. I suppose this is due to the fact I drive in a major city area and red lights pop up often.
I replaced the timing belt and water pump in 2014 at roughly 120,000km as suggested. I had to replace a few minor wear and tear things like a brake light (it got water logged somehow), the battery, plugs, the rear windshield wiper rusted so I got that patched up, the side mirror got smashed up in 2013 (I park on the street) so I got that replaced... I got sideswiped in 2014 (again, street parking... stop texting and driving, people, it costs everyone), but the damage was minimal and I was already falling out of love with the car anyway, so I never bothered to buff the marks out.
I had to replace the cam shaft sensor in 2014 at around 130,000km (had to limp to the dealership on that one and it left me without a vehicle for 2 days) and the rear wheel bearings at roughly the same time (maybe a month later). The car sounded like a goofy dirt bike and that was concerning... It started to seem like every 10,000km an issue would arise.
The problem with this car is that there are a ton of little things that go wrong with it all at once. But then big things start going wrong and you get really frustrated. October 2015 was when I chose to sever loyalty from my PT Cruiser. This is sad because my previous car, a 1997 Pontiac Sunfire, was my loyal friend for 215,000km. I felt like this car was falling short. The A/C stopped working, which was expected but disappointing (coolant leak, it was topped up but died again and I gave up).
I took the car in to get the brakes fixed (surprise!) and to have them check out a shimmy in the front end that occurred at low speeds on straightaways, as well as get new tires for the winter. What they found was a laundry list of problems:
- Brake rotor was seized on one side and leaking on the other.
- Radiator was leaking.
- Spark plugs were filthy.
- Power steering fluid was filthy.
- The tie rods had so much play that they could NOT give me my car back as they were worried that I would crash and sue them. That explained the shimmy and it was BAD.
It started turning into good money over bad and that bill was the worst in my car ownership history. That was it. I was done. The car was in the shop three days (they gave me a $70,000 Dodge Durango to use in the meantime... That was fun!) I drove the PT all winter without incident, but I decided that it was time to break up.
I gave this car the dealership treatment, regular oil changes, no hard starts and scary stops, I was the only driver on it for 8 years, and I feel like this still couldn't help this car reach the 200,000km mark.
I do not regret my purchase, as I was able to go car payment free for 5+ years, and I still loved the style and feel of the vehicle, but all good things must come to an end and now is the time.
If you are considering a used PT Cruiser, I would recommend you see the maintenance records and make sure the timing belt and water pump were replaced and get inspections done regularly. It's a gamble after 120,000km. My father's PT was over 200,000km before he sold it and I limped to 150,000. These cars do not like city driving, but who does? Not to mention its turning radius was wide to the point where everything was a 3 point turn at least...
I am sad to see it go, as we had good times, but I had to say goodbye.
14th Apr 2016, 23:39
The shop told you the brake rotors were "seized" and "leaking"?
Either they meant brake calipers, or you need to find another shop to take your new car to.
11th Mar 2018, 20:41
I no longer do business with this shop. Agreed.