1996 Dodge Stratus ES 6 cylinder from North America


Stay far, far away from Dodge


Radiator core

Fuse block (internal short)


Belt tensioner

Air conditioning (twice)

Water pump

Trunk seal

Steering wheel wore out in grip area


6 batteries

8 oxygen sensors


General Comments:

The car is extremely hard to work on. The radiator required removal of the front end by Walt's Radiator. The senior mechanic took two days. He said he would never work on another one.

Sears would not replace the struts... only Dodge could accomplish the work because it requires OEM parts. After market parts have to be modified.

The car is too heavy, and even with cable chains on will not go up hills with light snow on them.

Dodge completes partial repairs and usually doesn't fix the problem the first time. Usually the Man in the household is the only one listened to. My Wife has been extremely upset at this and refuses to take the car in for servicing.

Parts are expensive and take excessive time to obtain after order.

Shop manual are difficult to obtain.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 31st August, 2004

5th May 2005, 19:47

Your comment about after market struts is not true. Koni and KYB both make after market struts for the Stratus/Cirrus/Breeze. If a shop told you that struts needed modification then you were lied to.

30th Jun 2006, 00:18

I've never had a problem with mine, and I've had it for six years.

1996 Dodge Stratus from North America


Buy something that wasn't made by Dodge!


-My oil light started to come on, but everything was OK w/the oil.

-About a week later, my "door" courtesy light started coming on whenever the car was put into gear, so I had to turn my interior light off altogether so it wouldn't stay on.

-Next, my "brights" icon appeared on the dash whenever my lights were on, whether or not the brights were actually on.

-After that my power locks started acting up. I can always unlock, but once the car is started, I cannot lock my doors.

-Then my radio and clock went. Sometimes I can see a single line of light where the clock used to be (like part of a number is there) and my antenna goes up when I turn on the radio, but there's no display and no sound.

-And, of course, my air conditioning died. I'm petrified that my power windows will go too, and with no air, I'll suffocate this summer.

General Comments:

I took the car to a Dodge dealer, who said that I need to replace the oil switch, ignition switch, multifunction switch, body controller, and radio, but that might not fix the problem. I can't believe that all of those parts would go bad within a few weeks of each other.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 30th April, 2004

30th May 2004, 01:26

The 1996 Dodge was made with problems like any other vehicle. As a lot of us know it's main problems were generally electrical. It's electrical problems mostly due to the fact that someone programmed the on board computer system wrong. Simple mistake, but if gone unfixed could lead to costly repairs. I have heard many complaints from my customers about this issue. Most of them alerted the dealer as soon as the issue started. Some, unwisely, decided to "stick-it-out" and hope the problem got better. As a general rule of thumb, problems don't get fixed unless they're addressed. This electrical problem was small for those who followed that rule. For the others that decided not to get it fixed, were soon disappointed and blamed their bad decision on either the vehicle or the maker of the vehicle. I suggest that if you notice a problem like that beginning, you should take it in immediately! After all, since the company realized the mistake shortly after it's release, they added a FREE FIX for it if you took it to the dealer. It is not, however, the company's or it's subsidiaries job or responsibility to repair this problem free if it's left neglected by it's owner and incurs further problems due to poor maintenance and judgment. The same cannot be said if it were a WIDESPREAD SAFETY issue such as Ford and Firestone's poorly made tires on the earlier model Explorers. If in that case does happen, the company is solely responsible for addressing those issue's immediately. BY LAW.