1996 Dodge Caravan Reviews - Page 7 of 12

1996 Dodge Caravan SC from North America

Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.0 / 10
Distance when acquired14000 miles
Most recent distance200000 miles
Previous carPontiac LeMans

Summary:

Absolutely love it

Faults:

Nothing major at all!!

At 170,000 Miles the transmission started to get a little sluggish. At times, it is a little slow to shift, but this doesn't happen very often, and in the scheme of things, isn't much more than a little annoying.

We heard that the Caravans have transmission problems, so we expected this, but it hasn't been anything major (yet?). When the transmission is not acting up, which is most of the time, it shifts perfectly.

At about 160,000 miles -- Weird electrical problems in the cigarette lighter and horn. For awhile there, the fuse would blow if I used the cigarette lighter, and this would take the horn out too. We went through about 3 fuses before it righted itself somehow. Now I use the cigarette lighter every day for my cell phone, and it has been just fine for over 6 months.

To be honest... every car I've ever owned has begun to have weird electrical problems soon after I've started to drive it. (Maybe it's me??)

That's IT! We've done nothing to this van except regular oil changes, and it's always run great!

General Comments:

I love this thing! I haul my kids and the dog around in it, we've taken it from Ohio to Florida and back twice now with no problems.

It's a bit of a gas hog, but less so than the Pontiac Gran LeMans I owned previously, and hey - it's a VAN! I don't expect it to be economy.

It's got great power. Zippy when it has to be.

It's very comfortable to drive.

The SC is a bit smaller than other caravans. Not as easy for people to pile into from the side door as other vans I've been in, as you have to squeeze past one of the seats to get to the center aisle. But once you're in - it seats 7 people and a bunch of luggage quite comfortably (And has!).

We'd definitely buy another Caravan.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th June, 2003

1996 Dodge Caravan 3.3 V.6 from North America

Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 3.3 V.6 Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.6 / 10
Distance when acquired59000 miles
Most recent distance109113 miles
Previous carToyota Pickup

Summary:

Could have found worse.

Faults:

Power Steering constantly goes out.

Guzzles down gas like theres no tomorrow.

Windshield wipers do not work properly in delay setting.

Tires seem to bald faster than usual.

General Comments:

For 109,000+ miles on my van, and no transmission problems (yet), unlike most other caravan owners, I believe I have gotten my fair share of moneys worth from my van.

I am not to happy about the space in the van, for it is not as roomy as they advertise, but when you have a family of four, and the only other vehicle is a small standard 4 cylander pickup truck that barely seats two, I can't complain so far.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 8th January, 2003

1996 Dodge Caravan SE 3.1 from North America

Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 3.1 Automatic
Performance marks 0 / 10
Reliability marks 0 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 0 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 1 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
1.2 / 10
Distance when acquired51100 miles
Most recent distance94000 miles
Previous carDodge Caravan

Summary:

A high priced LEMON

Faults:

Two days after purchase had to replace starter.

Dies while driving down the road.

Dies after idling awhile and won't start.

Starts when it feels like it.

Box with fuses and relay switches makes a high pitch whistling noise even after van is off.

Have had in shop numerous times and still not fixed. Last time was 2 days ago and mechanic is baffled.

General Comments:

This car is a totally SOUR LEMON.

I own another Dodge Caravan, 1992, and have never had this much problem with it and what problems there was they were fixable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 2nd January, 2003

1996 Dodge Caravan LE 3.3 from North America

Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership1996
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 3.3 Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.0 / 10
Distance when acquired0 miles
Most recent distance190000 miles
Previous carDodge Van

Summary:

A great car with some small irritations

Faults:

Transmission went out just before 36,000. Dodge later decided the noise was normal and that it really didn't need to be replaced. (We bought the first year of the new model and drove a lot of miles fast, so were one of the first with "that" noise.)

Brakes need to replaced at least once/year under normal conditions. They warp too fast, too.

Constant creaks and groans under the front end make me worry.

Air bag light comes on a lot. I wonder if it will work when I need it.

The cruise control doesn't work (185,000 miles).

The CD player intermittently won't receive a CD or won't eject a CD.

Windshield wiper comes on when we start the car intermittently.

There is a scraping noise in the steering wheel/column.Over 85-90 miles per hour, the car/steering wheel vibrates, and I don't feel in control of the car.

The paint peeled off the door handles (white) to reveal black underneath.

General Comments:

The blind spots in the C or D (back area) columns are dangerous!

On the positive side, we love the comfort of the adjustable seat (wish there were one on the passenger side, too) and both sets of back seats.

There is tons of space in the back to lug around the details of life and traveling.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th November, 2002

23rd Apr 2003, 12:25

Considering the number of miles you have on the vehicle I would say the van gave you the best years of its life. I also own a 1996 Dodge Caravan and love its roominess, interior comfort and ease of driving smoothness and maneuverability. Yes, some similar things have gone wrong with my van. The annoying windshield wipers with a mind of their own. But the airbag light and cruise control has to do with the clockspring assembly which was recalled and can be fixed for free at the dealership.

Average review marks: 5.0 / 10, based on 46 reviews