10th Apr 2010, 20:43

I have a 1996 Olds Cutlass Supreme SL. Bought it 3 years ago with 100,000 miles on it. Love the car, but did replace the intake gasket, rear strut housing on the left and the CD player keeps the CD until it feels like releasing it. Now we need to replace the right strut housing. Has anyone else had rear strut issues with their 96 Olds Cutlass?

11th Apr 2010, 10:43

"Has anyone else had rear strut issues with their 96 Olds Cutlass?"

I actually had a '95 and the rear struts failed at around 80K miles. The car was never used for hauling anything, and the mechanic said it was a rarity that they would fail so early, but they were replaced none-the-less. I actually put about $6,000 of repairs into that car in the 3 years I owned it, and traded it at 98K miles. It still needed a wheel bearing at that point, but I was tired of putting money into it so it went bye bye. I was very disappointed in the overall quality of that car, and especially the high cost of parts to fix it.

15th May 2010, 01:23

I have a 1996 Cutlass SL. I bought it with 64,000 miles and it now has 162,000. She mainly consists of highway miles.

I'm having the same problem with the rotors and the brake pads.

My door handle on the passenger side broke during cold weather.

The car itself is great. She doesn't burn any oil.

There are some common problems with these cars, but overall she has been good to me. I can get to Montgomery, Alabama on about a half a tank of gas.

12th Jul 2010, 09:38

I am considering buying a 1996 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme for my first car. The woman that currently owns it says that it keeps overheating. It has a gauge that is alerting her, not a light. She took it to a mechanic who told her to simply get the radiator replaced. She replaced that and the water pump, but the vehicle still is overheating. She took it back in and they said it was a cracked manifold. I don't know very much about cars, would a cracked manifold cause it to overheat? Is that a job that can be fixed on your own or does it need to be taken to a mechanic?

Please email me with answers.



10th Aug 2010, 05:15

I have a 97 Cutlass Supreme. I drove it pretty far one night in pouring rain. The next morning, I drove back, got off the freeway and noticed a scraping sound. At first I thought it was the brakes, but as I drove, it was really shaky and felt like it was gonna die when coming to a stop. In reverse it is perfectly fine.

Can anyone help as to what might be wrong? Please.

31st Aug 2010, 02:40

I bought my 1996 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme 3.1 SL four months ago from an older man who bought it new. It had 137,000 on it. He took very good care of it, and serviced it regularly.

Having read all these comments, I can see that there's lots of common failures. He told me he had to replace all 4 struts, but said his mechanic had to put ones on that don't fit right, because that particular year is different, and they don't make them any more.

He had to replace the fuel pump inside the gas tank, and now the gauge reads empty at a 1/4 tank.

The transmission overdrive had problems at 73,000, and he spent $900.00 to fix it, but they couldn't. So he had been driving it in 3rd gear since.

The CD player had just started having problems ejecting the CD when I bought it.

He had replaced the water pump a while back, and put 4 new tires on it.

After I got it, I had to replace the fuel pressure regulator and recharge the A/C myself with those small cans they sell. It blows very cold now.

The turn signal switch has gone bad, and won't cancel from a left turn, and it also controls the brake lights, so when I go to stop, I have to pull in on the lever as if to flash my head lights, to get the brake lights to come on.

The drivers door handle works, but it needs adjusting or replaced, because it won't release all the way when lifted on, and the door sticks when opened.

The trunk torsion spring broke one day (very loud), and I had to go to the junk yard to replace it. The thing I don't like is it locks you in when you put it in gear, but won't release on its own, and I always have to unlock the door every time to get out. I would very much like to disconnect that feature.

Otherwise it rides very smooth and is a comfortable car. No oil leaks yet, and the engine seems tight and strong. However I have owned several vehicles, and the feeling I get from this GM car is it is poorly made with cheap parts, and I better sell it before something more serious goes wrong, as it would not be worth putting money in.

4th Oct 2010, 00:56

I have owned my 1996 Olds Cutlass Supreme 3.1 liter for about 7 years now and here is a list of things I had to replace.

1. A/C pump.

2. Front shocks.

3. Rear struts.

4. Ball joints.

5. Steering rack.

6. Exhaust manifold.

7. O2 sensor.

8. Gas tank.

9. Fuel pump.

10. Fuel sending unit.

11. Muffler.

12. Tires.

13. Brakes all around several times (not many miles on them).

After all that, now the moon roof won't close.

7th Dec 2010, 13:48

I recently bought a 1996 Cutlass Supreme with the 3.4 liter 24 valve DOHC, and am having some stalling issues with it.

11th May 2011, 02:42

I have got a 96 Cutlass and I've had nothing but problems with it. I bought it with 105K miles on it and 2 years later, I have only put 20,000K on it and the engine's going.

I've had to replace a head gasket, both brake lines because they busted, driver door handle doesn't work, loud humming noise from the back when I drive, new gas tank, brake light stays on and e-brake is off, low oil light comes on but if I turn the car off and on it turns off, inside locks stick, no A/C, and I'm pretty sure it's going to be junk soon, if not already.

With your car overheating and smoke coming out from the hood after a few minutes of driving, it could be a head gasket. That's what happened when mine went.

30th Apr 2015, 06:35

This is an update, since I wrote this almost 5 years ago. I still have this car and it now has 276,000 miles on it. It has been a much better car than I thought. The engine (a 3.1) is still going strong and it hasn't been apart yet. I am getting some engine oil in my radiator now, which I heard is common when the intake manifold gaskets get bad. I did replace the rear struts, which were easy to replace for about $40 each from Napa.

I disconnected the automatic door locks, so now I don't get locked in. Real simple to do - just find the door chime and unplug the small connector that feeds the automatic door locks. The computer failed about 3 years ago and I picked one up at a junk yard for $42.00. I also replaced both front outside door handles, as they break.

Basically it's been a very good car to me. The paint has held up really well, but some plastic black trim around the windows has gone bad. The transmission is still going strong and has not been rebuilt, even though the check engine light says it's bad, code P1870. This code has been on since 78,000 miles, so I think it's a money maker for transmission shops.

Overall I am very happy with this car. It's still my daily driver 25 miles one way to work and back. I only had it towed once when the starter went out last fall. It's now April of 2015. Everything still works on the car, A/C, cruise control, all windows and locks, and even the CD player, but it still has trouble sometimes ejecting the disc.