10th Feb 2007, 18:50
I have a 2005 5 speed and it runs and beautifully. Has plenty of power and will definitely do more than 70 on the hwy.
As for the initial review saying they were afraid to buy american just so you know the PT cruiser is actually a Mitsubishi. the 2.4 is a mitsu engine and the 5 speed is a Japanese Transmission.
11th Feb 2007, 13:32
I recently rented a PT Cruiser for a trip in New Mexico (Albuquerque to Taos), which included driving up and down mountains. I was interested in comparing the PT Cruiser to a Dodge Caliber I rented in Maryland. I must say I was very impressed with the PT Cruiser. The car is solid, comfortable for two hour drives and had plenty of power going up hills easily achieving 80 mph. I enjoyed driving the Dodge Caliber, but I must say the PT Cruiser was superior in my experience. I felt the ride and handling in the PT Cruiser was smoother and the engine had a better feel, maybe I'm not comfortable with CVT used in the Caliber. You sit a little higher in the Caliber and the windshield is farther away, which I didn't like, but someone familiar with SUV's may. I was surprised how different the two vehicles seemed and if you are interested in Chrysler products one of them may be a fit for you, I would definitely take them both for a test drive before purchasing either one. Previously, my wife would comment how ugly she thought the PT Cruiser was when we saw one, but after our trip she softened her view. I had always felt Chrysler had no cars that would appeal to me, but now I must say there is a least one I would consider buying, I still don't like cab forward designs seen in many Chrysler products.
1st Oct 2007, 13:35
I disagree that the performance of the non-turbocharged engine is adequate, at least certainly not with the automatic gearbox.
I hired one for a week in California to do the Pacific Coast Highway, Route 1, and at times the lack of acceleration verged on dangerous. Overtaking needed a lot of forward planning, more so than it does in my 1.3 Ford Fiesta in the UK. Accelerating on slip roads onto the freeways only just brought enough speed to get up to the pace of the traffic. Once roughly 75 is reached the engine is in the powerband so further acceleration is possible, but then this speed is higher than most freeway limits anyway. On hills, the car needed kickdown and a noisy 4500rpm to maintain speed.
I will state for the record that I had a light passenger and a boot full of luggage and this will have influenced the acceleration slightly.
The lack of pace is a pity because otherwise the PT is a very nice car. Handling impressed me, with good grip and balance and accurate steering. Brakes too were strong and not prone to fading. The only things to better my pace on the twisting cliff-edge roads of Route 1 were motorcycles! Unfortunately, low speed turning is hampered by a pathetic turning circle.
The car seems well made both inside and out, and I found the seats comfortable (I'm 5'9 and about 10 stone). With 16000 on the clock there were no rattles either.
A great car in need of more power - the turbo or manual transmission versions should be better!
21st Dec 2007, 18:57
Most recently Dec. 6-9, 4 of us travelled to Orlando, Fl and rented a PT Cruiser from a rental car company. I believe this to be the baseline model. It had 2300 miles on the odometer. Here are my observations:
The "trunk" is short and tall, which limits carrying anything larger than a medium suitcase.
The center console is wide enough to hit you in the knee upon entry, and certainly while operating the vehicle.
There is no front map light.
The parking brake is so weak that you can drive with it "on" and not notice.
The seating position is so high that a person 6 ft tall has his vision obstructed by the A-pillar and roof line, and the seat has no vertical adjustments.
While stopped at intersections, I had to "duck down" to see the high stop lights on the opposite side of the street (a lot are like that in Orlando).
The brakes had a "creak" as you eased on the brake pedal while stopping. Although it had a spongy brake pedal, it did stop more than adequately.
The turning radius seemed long compared to other vehicles I have driven.
I didn't drive the vehicle enough miles to make a call on the fuel economy, but with 4 people, it wouldn't be valid anyway.
Generally speaking, the vehicle seems safe.
Overall, this would probably be a good car for the wife to "toodle" around town in something cute... perhaps a first car for the teenage daughter. Male drivers need to be secure.
I saw ads at 15k for a new baseline model. For my dollars, I would buy a 3 year old something else with more features.
Glenn Yee Motorsports, LLC.
14th Jan 2008, 18:39
Have a 2006 base model. Will have it to 2009. That's when I buy and store the last model.
27th Mar 2008, 12:02
Yes this car isn't American so don't worry about that. As said before the engine is a Mitsu and the car itself is made in Mexico.
3rd Apr 2008, 19:56
So you think the Americans are still designing their own engines? Maybe for tractor trucks and jet airplanes, but not for 4 and 6 cylinder passenger cars. The PT Cruiser was built in Mexico, but under supervision of Daimler when they owned the company. The quality control was good.
5th May 2008, 01:42
The claims that the 2.4 is a Mitsubishi engine are incorrect. It's a Chrysler designed belt-driven 4-cylinder that was also employed in the Stratus, Cirrus, Neon SRT/4 and minivans. It's a decent, albeit older engine -- not to be confused with the new GEMA 2.4L that Chrysler uses in the new Sebrings, Avengers, and Sebring Convertibles.
The five-speed transmission is a standard Borg-Warner design produced for Chrysler, Ford, GM and Mazda for their cars.
5th May 2008, 01:44
"So you think the Americans are still designing their own engines? Maybe for tractor trucks and jet airplanes, but not for 4 and 6 cylinder passenger cars."
This is patently incorrect when it comes to talking about Chrysler's products.
As mentioned earlier, the 2.4 4 cylinder in the PT is a Chrysler design. Chrysler's other 4-cylinder products use a Chrysler-built 4-cylinder GEMA engine with Chrysler heads and a common block design that Chrysler shares with Mitsubishi and Hyundai.
Chrysler's V6 engines, including the 2.7 and 3.5 used on all its cars, are also a Chrysler design. They're set to be replaced with a "Phoenix" engine design from Chrysler that gets better mileage and more power.
8th Jun 2008, 11:06
We purchased our 2006 PT Cruiser Convertible with the 2.4 non turbo, and this car has been nothing but GREAT...
For the price you couldn't ask for a better car, great pick up, for the room they had to put the cramped 2.4.
Don't forget this car is heavy almost 1600kg, that's about the same as a Dodge Charger... so this engine does great at booting along, the power top is awesome, love the headroom front and back, for me I'm 6' tall, and for the rear passengers.
I am glad I didn't purchase "just another Mustang". This car has been nothing but great, and has certainly changed my mind on Chrysler products... And the things you can get for these "mini roadsters"... Awesome+++++