1996 Pontiac Bonneville SE from North America - Comments

28th Feb 2002, 22:27

My 95 SSE has been plagued by problems since I bought it. Exhaust seals, windshield wipers, transmission, traction control, trim/seatbelt components, door lock failure, sway bar bracket, I could go on. It has only 55k, but I am going to trade it in, and not on a GM product. Their quality control is abysmal, I would advise against buying another product. I would have moved up to an STS if it weren't for the ridiculous amounts of problems.

22nd Sep 2004, 12:58

I have the 1996 Bonneville SE and have replaced the transmission at 70,000, the lower and upper intake gaskets, and it is still leaking!!! Now the heater is blowing cold air. But I love the way the car drives.

Jim Hamel.

3rd Dec 2004, 10:46

I have a 1996 Pontiac Bonneville SE with 110,000 miles on it. I have replaced alternator three times, battery two times, battery cables one time, engine motor mounts one time, and I have replaced the starter twice. I like the way the car handles, but this car has been quite an expense. I bought this car about a year and half ago with 66,000 miles. So as you can see this particular car is a money pit. It seems once you 80,000 miles the car begins to fall apart. To those of you who own one be careful maybe make another selection. This car will cost you a lot of money.

16th Dec 2004, 23:37

I have a 1996 Pontiac Bonneville SE when I got it it had 104,000 miles on it it was a very good car, but 3 years later with 149,000 miles on it the engine has blown out and the trans was on its way out.

22nd Dec 2004, 20:02

I bought my 1996 Pontiac Bonneville when it had 66,000 miles. Now it has 121,000 miles and the only things I had to fix was the serpentine belt and the water pump. It was a great buy.

8th Aug 2005, 07:48

I have had a 1997 Pontiac Bonneville SE for about 2 years now. I have had nothing, but problems with it. I have replaced the fuel pump, alternator, starter, battery, and a laundry list of other items. My engine stutters constantly when driving above 20 mph and no mechanics in my area have been able to tell me why or fix it at all. Does anyone else have this problem, or have any of you ever had this in the past? I also now have a new problem. Had to have my car towed last weekend and we thought it was the starter (that was only 9 months old). Not the starter. Apparently the battery cables were corroded so we cleaned them and had no other problems... until the other day, car won't start again. All power comes on so I know it isn't the battery, but it just clicks and the engine doesn't turn over. Can anyone help me out please? thanks.

21st Oct 2005, 06:39

Could be your battery is shot, but check the water level in the battery before just replacing it. Would the car start with a boost?

29th Oct 2005, 19:53

I had a 1996 Pontiac Bonneville, absolutely loved the way it went down the road, However, and 166000 miles the Upper Intake Plenum went out, filled the Engine with coolant, and I ended spinning a main bearing. And at the same time the transmission decided he didn't want to be joined to another engine so it decided to go the way of the junk yard as well. I also had to replace the Fuel pump twice, turns out there was a bad ground in that particular circuit causing the fuel pump to essentially short out. I also had to replace the Upper Intake coolant bypass elbow, that was a chore. All and all though, Id say it's a nice car to drive, not a good one to own! Good Day!

11th Nov 2005, 17:11

I bought my 1996 SE in 2000 with 40,000k, drove it with minor repairs until this week. Now its in the shop because it had antifreeze in the oil and spark plugs. It now has 115,000K and I'd hate to let it go. The car was excellent before this happened.

15th Nov 2005, 00:27

I bought my 1995 Bonneville SE new in February 1996 off a Pontiac Dealer lot. The 1996's had just become available. I'm one of the lucky ones, so far.

I was able to buy the car with only 22 miles on the odometer for a total of $16,595.71 including tax, title, and destination charge. The MSRP was $24,020. I was able to garner this great price with the help of a GM Employee Option 2 discount ($1171.75), Auto Show Rebate ($500.00), GM Rebate ($1000.00), GM Year End Rebate ($1000.00), and GM Gold Master Card Rebate ($2966.54). A total of $6638.29 in credits. I wasn't interested in the car though because I wanted to order a new 2006 in order to qualify for the GM Option 1 discount. At the time the Option 1 discount amounted to about 12% off the MSRP. The dealer wanted to get rid of the '95 so bad that they settled to sell the car for $21931.94 plus tax, title, doc fee, temp. tag ($23234) minus the $6638.29 in credits.

I service all my cars. At 10 years old the car has only 87K miles. My wife drove it most of the time. It was pampered and well maintained. The motor oil was changed every 3 to 4,000 miles. It didn't cost much to service the car since I made repairs myself. However, I wouldn't suggest purchasing this car if you're not a handyman under the hood. I thought the old model GM's were unreliable! This was my first new car purchase. I always thought I had problems with all of my previous used GM car purchases because they were probably not well cared for and maintained. This car was no better. Matter-of-fact it was worse because how well I know I cared of the car.

This is my list of repairs. At 30K I replaced the front disc brakes, brake rotors, and serpentine belt. The rotors were so badly corroded they were not salvageable. The alternator, battery, master brake cylinder, left front ABS brake wheel bearing assembly were changed out at about 70K. The car began leaking coolant / antifreeze about a month ago. At first a small leak. It has developed into a larger leak. I replenish about 1 gallon for every 80 to 120 miles of driving. It took some detective work, but today I discovered the source of the leak. This is where the lucky part comes into play. Its not an intake manifold or head gasket leak. I'm not sure what the name of the part is at this point. I'll need to do some additional investigative work. I'm picking up a Haynes Repair manual from the local main library this afternoon.

The part is a black plastic tube with a 90 degree elbow. The outside diameter is about 5/8". One end is inserted into the front of the intake manifold. This is where the leak is occurring. The opposite end of the 90 degree end of the tube is inserted into the bracket that the serpentine belt tensioner pulley is attached.

My biggest problem at this point is to determine the best method for removing this tube and installing the replacement part.

Any information related to my problem will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks for the time you took to read my story.