1998 Oldsmobile Cutlass GLS 3.1 V6 from North America


Reliable car with good performance and lots of features, but low retail value


ABS light randomly goes on. I've heard this from other owners and Malibu owners.

Leather seats wore badly. Cracked and split on the driver's seat.

Fan stopped working on settings 1 and 2, another common problem with this model.

A/C seems to shut off on its own every now and then.

General Comments:

All in all, I've owned this car for 7 years now and I would say it held up well. I have never owned a car this long. No serious problems with the car, the only thing that annoys me is the condition of the leather seats. They did not age well. Performance is good, nice power to pass for a 6 cylinder sedan. Stereo sounds great for a GM.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th September, 2004

7th Oct 2004, 14:16

I just purchased a 1998 Olds Cutlass for my daughter (first car). So far the car is performing great. It is a very nice looking car and seems to have few major problems. One thing I've noticed in reading these reviews is the problems noted seem to be fairly consistent with each owner. Our Cutlass also has leather seats that have not worn well, and as noted by others, the air conditioner seems to have a mind of it's own in that it comes on and goes off as it pleases. Otherwise, I think at the moment we are pleased with the cars performance.

1998 Oldsmobile Cutlass 3.1 V6 from North America




Coolant leak. Purchased the automobile with 95,000 and thought the leak was near the thermostat. Which was the diagnosis of the Oldsmobile dealer as well. It was actually the head gasket, which is also part of the manifold. Fortunately I caught the flaw now, but the design of integrating the head gasket and the manifold gasket is poor in my estimation.

Received a call from my sons girlfriend, for whom I purchased the vehicle, 98,000 miles, the ABS light just came on. Ironically I had a trusted mechanic check the automobile, at 95,000 miles when I purchased the car. Brakes were in good order. Now the ABS light is on and the brakes are beginning to squeak.

Cars yields good gas mileage, 30 mpg, hope no more mechanical or electrical issues arise.

General Comments:

The car appears to function as designed. An inexpensive sporty vehicle, road noise is higher than I am accustomed to. Pick up is adequate, mileage is good for a V-6. Purchased vehicle from second owner who kept the car immaculate, thus the reason for buying a used high mileage car.

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

Review Date: 18th July, 2004

27th Nov 2004, 10:55

The head gasket and intake gasket are not one in the same. Yes, I agree one of the common problems is the intake gasket leaking, I have one. No machanic in the world can diagnose whether ABS light will come on, or any other light for that matter. They come on if a problem arises. People need to know that machanics are not miracle workers.

1998 Oldsmobile Cutlass GLS Oldsmobile 3.1 from North America


This is definitely a recall for the manufacture of this vehicle


83000 When I test driving, I noticed the noise in steering wheel, assuming it was a minor problem or would go away. Commented to dealer about the noise and he stated it was nothing.

I also notice a fluid light was on, asked the dealer about it, he said it was low on washer fluid, the dealer drove the car to the back of car dealership building and stated he added washer fluid to the appropriate area, which made the light go off.

Purchased car anyway without putting it on a machine first, later to find out I needed a new water pump, which was covered under the warranty, that was fine.

85000 The service department has now stated the car needs an intake gasket job, which the extended warranty does not cover.

Have not made first payment on car note, and the service work on vehicle is more costly than the note.

Also, just recently discovered the a/c unit goes off and on automatic, this seems to be another default.

General Comments:

I really like the performance of the car, it handles well.

The car seats more comfortably than most large makes/model, with plenty of room.

The stereo sound is superb and it's a great stylish looking car, but need more mechanical work.

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

Review Date: 5th October, 2003

2nd May 2005, 20:46

I purchased my 1998 Oldsmobile in Oct of 2003 at 41,000 mile. I have had it a year and a half, and never had any problems, except for the ABS light periodiclly coming on. Other than that no problems at all it now has 51,111 miles, and runs great. I guess I was lucky for.

6th Jun 2005, 09:25

Bought my 1998 Cutlass in 2001. Just traded it in. I purchased the extend warranty, which turned out to be the best buy of my life. It was in the shop 9 times for warranty repairs. Twice for intake manifold gasket replacement. Once for the front wheel hub sensor (required replacing the entire hub assembly), new shift kit in the transmission, once again for brake diagnostics, twice for the front window seal (same place each time), and twice again for other brake related problems. The A/C was a constant problem as well. The dealer told me several times that all the issues with the brakes not working properly were electrical, as were the A/C problems. Having the intake manifold gaskets replaced twice within 30,000 miles really concerned me. In the end, couldn't trust the car at all. It drove great, had lots of power, and looked nice (dark maroon), but mechanically it was a lemon.