1997 Oldsmobile Achieva SL 2.4L from North America


OK budget mid-size, but not great


Struts and strut mounts replaced 3 times.

Heavy clunk in front end.

Brake rotors don't last long.

Lumbar adjust in driver seat broke.

Steering rack replaced at 90,000 miles.

Doesn't hold an alignment.

Interior cheaply made. Trim clips keep breaking.

Engine undersized for car.

Brakes undersized for car.

Speedometer fluctuates wildly.

General Comments:

After replacing the struts and strut mounts three times, heavy clunk sound remains in front end. Now I hear it's possibly the lower control arm bushings? This car has been a money pit.

Fit and feel of the interior is poor. Switch bezels don't fit onto door panels properly, and opaque black paint is coming off of radio buttons. Carpet has a hole worn on driver's side. With floor mats, you'd think it would last longer.

Engine performance is good, with nice responsive acceleration. But handling is mushy, and cruise control doesn't work properly (due perhaps to faulty speedometer?)

Oldsmobile did not build cars to last, and now that 2004 is here, Olds is no more. Connection? Perhaps.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 1st March, 2004

16th Sep 2004, 08:57

I have the same car and I had the same large clunk in the front end. Your right about it being the lower control arm bushing and you probably just wasted your money on the struts. It was about a year ago, but I think the bushing only ran about $20 at the GM Dealer. I could only find the right one at the Dealer, both Advance Auto Parts and Auto Zone sold me the wrong bushing.

18th Sep 2005, 18:08

I have a 1997 also and it has the same problems with the sounds in the front end. Also the drivers side window motor does not work.

19th Mar 2009, 10:31

I also own a 97 Olds Acheiva with the 2.4l Quad four, right now it has 174,157 miles.

At 83,000 miles I replaced the water pump and thermostat, and also the serpentine belt.

At 100,000 I replaced the front brakes, at 115,000 I replaced the flex exhaust pipe, the drivers side window motor is shot, and now I need another brake job with rotors...

But with all that I'd say the car has treated me well. The engine is solid and runs great, it has just started using a little oil, it was down about a 1/2 quart at last oil change. (3000 miles).

I hope to keep the car about another year, it strictly takes my wife and I to work 5 days a week, we put about 20,000 miles on it a year. We are going to replace it spring 2010.

Agree it's kind of ugly, but it is comfortable to drive, the wife likes it because she can see well out of it. (unlike the Taurus we also have).

If you have one of these cars, good luck to you, sounds like I've been blessed.

1997 Oldsmobile Achieva SL 3.8 Liter V6 from North America


None too shabby for a hand me down


The engine needed replacing very shortly after I got it.

Front windows don't work.

I don't get the mileage I was expecting.

General Comments:

You wouldn't believe the power this thing has.I've outrun many "sports cars" and seen them in my rear view just kind of shaking their heads in disbelief.

Currently working on upgrading the audio.

Having trouble finding performance upgrade parts.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 22nd February, 2004

1997 Oldsmobile Achieva SL 3.1 V6 from North America


When equipped with the 3.1 liter V-6, this car is a suprisingly quick, comfortable vehicle


To date, the only thing that has gone wrong with the car is the passenger window is slow to close.

General Comments:

This car, when equipped with the 3.1 liter V-6, is a sleeping performer. Acceleration off the line is impressive compared to much newer vehicles.

Torque steer with the V-6 is evident.

The interior is roomy and comfortable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th October, 2003

1997 Oldsmobile Achieva SL 2.4 Twin Cam from North America


Durable spacious and peppy


-Rear Passenger-side power window needs work.

-1 of 4 Ignition Celonoids replaced.

-Ignition computer sensor replaced.

General Comments:

Very comfortable car, seating is very soft and pliable.

The car would perform better with the V6 option, however the 2.4 4-cyl is peppy.

Handles like a sedan, not too bad on corners.

Has proven very reliable in the short time I've owned it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd October, 2003