23rd Jul 2004, 15:45

I have had several of these cars from chrysler that had the 2.5 four cyl engine and found them to be very reliable. I have had the temperature gauge go up and down on some of the cars, but never had a gasket blow. Most of them went for more than 200,000 miles with little trouble.

4th Dec 2005, 00:25

Many times.. temp gauge will go up... because its HOT... and you should check the coolant level and or thermostat for proper operation. When it does the ABOVE... AND the gauge starts to read LESS... its probably also that the coolant is TOO low and therefor your temp sensor cannot read steam vapor... only it can read sold water/coolant. When you continue to do this you are COOKING the engine. The end result is your head gasket gets blown. ALWAYS check for the mickey mouse things that can cause the MAJOR headaches and bills. Many times all these things can be avoided with a little checking of your basic fluids as per instructed in your owners manual.

1st May 2006, 01:11

My wife had one that we used for a while, the model with the 3 litre engine... it was her Grandfathers car from new... when he passed away, we bought it. Rad had already been replaced... we replaced the belt tensioner... upgraded the A/C to r134, replaced the shocks, exhaust, wiper motor, and the usual steering parts. Car had 126000 kilometers on it (about 75000 miles) when the Transmission gave out. We had it rebuilt / gave out again at 131000 kilometers / replaced it this time. Gave out again... we are selling the car now... as is. But I must admit, the 3 litre engine was good and it was cheap to run. It was not a "comfortable" car, but it was adequate. The body was easy to maintain as long as it was rust proofed... I have seen many that were not, and rusting in the rockers and fender & quarter tops was quite prominent. I was told by the local Chrysler dealer that the 3 Litre engine models had a habit of blowing transmissions. It was not the engines fault... it was a weak transmission for that engine. But otherwise... if the transmission had not been an issue, we would have kept the car as our daily driver and just used our SUV on days off. I looked at it as a no loose situation... the car was running / it was cheap / it wasn't worth anyone stealing it / and if it was hit... is was solid enough to protect and wasn't worth anything... so no loss. I just wish the transmission wasn't an issue.

4th Jul 2006, 02:02

Yep, the headgasket blew and took out the head at 156k miles on my '92 Acclaim. It just happens with the 2.5L 4cyl. engine. Expect it. $800 to replace the head and headgasket in my case. If you can get over that hurdle, it's an EXCELLENT car and otherwise a very long lasting engine! In 7yrs. and 182k miles of driving, I had a total of 4 repairs to make on the car... alternator (95k), radiator (120k), headgasket/head (156k), and the shocks (171k). Total cost of all repairs was roughly $1200 over the 7yr. period that I owned the car. Not too bad if you ask me for a car with 182k miles on the original engine and transmission by the time an accident finally killed it. I was still driving it daily at that point, but was having trouble with it idling erratically and the temp gauge jumping up to HOT on occassion. The car never left me stranded. Always started reliably. I don't think even an early 90's Honda Accord can beat that, especially given the cost of repairs.

6th Jan 2010, 18:08

The 2.5L Chrysler engine is about as durable as an anvil, and about as easy to take care of. The OEM head gaskets were not great - at the first sign of trouble with the head gasket (wild fluctuations of the temperature gauge, coolant loss, etc.) GET THE GASKET REPLACED. If done early, it's a comparatively cheap job because of the simplicity of the engine. Waiting will result in cracked head, which is much more expensive to replace. I've had three cars with this engine and they've all been very reliable, economical with fuel, and cheap to maintain. Because they were popular with older folks, there are still plenty of gently driven, low-mileage samples floating around. 2.5L all the way!