1996 Pontiac Grand Am GT 2.4 liter twin cam from North America


This is a well balanced car for a cheap, yet fun, time while driving


The water pump had failed and started leaking, causing the car to run very hot.

The front suspension sounds like something is loose or broken.

The tires can be rather expensive, but they fit the car well with the GT styling.

General Comments:

This car has a lot of snap at take-off.

It handles very well, the steering is really tight and turns on a dime.

This is a well balanced machine for both driving in the city and to take long trips in.

The seats are really comfortable and the interior is very appealing.

The GT styling gives the car the look of a well designed race car.

It has very smooth lines and the aerodynamics of it would easily allow it to reach a speed of 140 miles per hour with a performance chip installed.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th May, 2003

1996 Pontiac Grand Am SE 2.4L from North America


Great style design, but need better mechanical


Dead Starter- Very Difficult to replace-

Impossible to locate Harness Violet/Yellow sensor cable connector which disconnected while replacing starter! By length, it looks like it goes near fuel injector / manifold-


Car is still down!!!-

Haynes book Shows nothing!!!

Please Help ASAP!

General Comments:

Car is a great gasoline saver compared to 1994 model- But.

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

Review Date: 8th May, 2003

14th May 2003, 00:14

The wire you talk about should plug into the block for the cam sensor. With out this working the injectors won't fire, hence the car won't start. I just replaced the starting motor, and while removing the plug popped loose. The plug connector on the block is hard to reach, but sits near the back of the starting motor on the engine block close by the oil filter.

1996 Pontiac Grand Am GT 2.4 4-cylinder from North America


Solid and reliable fun


Front brakes have been done twice in the 36,000 miles I've owned it.

Major repairs (all around 130,000 miles) were:

Clutch assembly.

Ignition module.

One expensive fuel injector (thanks to a Pontiac dealer diagnosis mistake).

Catalytic converter.

Minor problems not yet fixed:

Passenger side power window switch needs replaced - you can roll it up, but not down. Passenger side window must be lowered by the driver. Not enough of an annoyance to me to replace it yet, as I'm normally in the car alone anyway.

Passenger side rear-view mirror glass fell out on the way home from work about 145,000 miles. Not exactly a big deal - just haven't gotten around to replacing it yet.

General Comments:

I bought this high-mileage car way too cheaply ($3,000 under average retail) and knew I was going to need to throw some money into it relatively soon after purchase. It appeared to be a solid, well-maintained car with all original parts, and that initial impression proved to be accurate.

Actually my biggest headache with this car has been the local Pontiac dealer, who misdiagnosed the real problem TWICE and cost me about $1000 in repairs that I just flat didn't really need. The real problem all along was the ignition module and catalytic converter.

After the 130,000 mile repairs listed above (which were performed by a local mechanic instead of the Pontiac dealership), the car has been dead nuts reliable with no problems at all for the last 28,000 miles.

This car *IS* showing it's age at 158,000 miles. It has many worn body bushings in the front, making for a real noisefest going over railroad tracks/sizable bumps, and it rides approximately like a go-kart. But, the struts are okay, and the exhaust system remains solid, as does the front end itself.

It remains fun to drive, looks a lot younger than it is, and everything still works at 158K miles. Doesn't use a drop of oil, runs cool, and the engine's as dry as a bone on the outside - no leaks anywhere. I drive it an average of 100 miles each and every day.

Don't let that Quad Four of yours overheat, though... if you crack the head (as some older models were known to do when overheated), that sucker's gonna cost ya upwards of $1500 to replace.

That said, I'd do this one again.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st May, 2003

17th Jul 2003, 08:04

What problem were you having with this car that your dealer misdiagnosed twice? I too have a 96 Grand Am, and am having problems with the engine not starting at random times. I think it is either the computer or a bad anti-theft module.