1997 Pontiac Grand Am SE 2.4 from North America


This car is a piece of crap


CD player never worked right.

O2 sensor went.

ATS light will not go off.

ABS always engages.

Overheats too easily.

Bad upper strut plates.

General Comments:

Handles good, but mechanically has a big downfall. I would not suggest buying another one.

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

Review Date: 30th April, 2012

30th Apr 2012, 07:30

I'd consider yourself lucky. The car is 15 years old, has over 180k on it, and you're complaining about that minor crap?

1997 Pontiac Grand Am SE V6 from North America


Dun-un-dun-dun-dun-dun-dun-duuuuuuh! Dun-un-dun-dun-duh! ("Frankenstein" by Edgar Winters)


When I first bought the car, it needed a new serpentine belt and brakes.

Two more sets of brakes went into it.

So did two new batteries, though to be fair, one was the fault of the alternator going out.

At 65K, gas started leaking. Tank and fuel line had to be replaced. New fuel line lasted all of seven months before *it* started leaking.

Gear on driver's side front window (manual knob) broke, requiring window to be pressed by hand whether opening or closing, when about an inch from closed.

Bezel that held the knob to control the driver's side mirror broke, causing the knob to fall down into the door. After taking the door apart to retrieve it, had to leave the knob hang out several inches past the hole to keep it from falling back in.

The metal strap that holds the muffler to the bottom of the car rusted out and fell apart. TWICE. I had to keep ramps in the trunk knowing in case of this contingency. By the second time it needed replaced, the rubber clamp piece that it hooks into had also rotted apart, and had to be MacGuyvered to stay in.

Cassette deck eventually stopped working (aftermarket CD player was actually quite nice, though).

General Comments:

Got surprisingly good gas-mileage for a V-6 automatic, and had good handling and power, but beyond that, the car was kind of a pain.

In addition to the repairs mentioned above, the car lacked cruise control and an adjustable steering wheel (which, admittedly are kind of a luxury), and a rear window defroster (which, in Pennsylvania, is a necessity).

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

Review Date: 26th February, 2011

1st Mar 2011, 03:35

That's not many parts for it being 14 years old. It sounds to me that whoever is putting the parts on, doesn't quite know what they're doing or is using used parts or cheap NON OEM parts. And when replacing a part, use the same brand that was on it originally; most likely ACdelco or Delphi. And after a original part has already broken and a replacement part breaks not long after replacing it, it has nothing to do with the manufacturer of the car, it has to do with the quality of the replacement part, and or the person installing the part.

1997 Pontiac Grand Am SE 3.1 from North America


OK.. Would not buy another though


Replaced alternator @ 130,000km.

Driver's side window motor replaced

Passenger window does not work.

Radio volume hard to manage.

Several tail pipes (every 3 years or so).

Water pump went @ 192,000km.

Instrument cluster (dumb lights on no tach & speed).

Bearings (twice).

Brakes (every 2 years with rotors).

Clicking noise in rear.

Replaced fuel lines and brake lines @ 196,000.

Still driving back and forth to work (17km each way). Really not too bad considering the KM's.

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

Review Date: 8th January, 2011

1997 Pontiac Grand Am GT 2.4 from North America


Wonderful car!


I bought this car VERY used. It is the 3rd 1997 Grand Am GT that I have owned. I obviously love my car!

Yes, there have been many things that have went wrong, but I do all my own work. No, I am not "butch". My daddy is just my best friend.

Off top, within the first week of having the car I did a full tune up. Plugs, plug caps, brakes, pads, rotors, everything that is included in general maintenance. I didn't know how long it had been and didn't want to chance the little things causing big problems.

Now, the problems.

The radiator had a crack in it. I just keep a check on the water and it doesn't cause any problems.

The AC compressor doesn't work to begin with, but I don't see the need to fix it. The bearings were good in it so, we will come back to that.

Day 9 of ownership. The car catches on fire. There was a crack in the coil pack housing and the fuel rail was a little loose ($375).

Nothing goes wrong for 3 months and then, 3rd gear goes out. Along with one of the shift cables. So, instead of just replacing 3rd and one cable, I rebuilt the entire tranny and changed both shift cables. While I was under there, I noticed it wouldn't be long before the clutch went out too, so I replaced that too ($1600).

A couple of months later, the alternator goes. While I am at it I change the serpentine belt ($130).

Almost 3 years go by with only minor things, plugs, brakes, little things like that.

Now, after 5 years of owning my beautiful red Grand Am GT, the bearings seize up in that AC compressor. I knew it would go eventually. But, when it did, the alternator had to work super hard, causing SLIGHT carbon built up on the plugs. Not a hard job, and a compressor from my favorite junk yard was only $40 ($200 from an autoparts store).

I live in Georgia, but the AC is a convenience I can do without. The car doesn't get really hot on the inside, so I have never charged the AC.

Today, the thermostat closed up, blowing a hole in the line to the radiator to release the pressure. ($25) It took 20 minutes and a couple of tools. Standing outside the autoparts store.

All in all, everything that has been wrong with the car was foreseeable and preventable. I absolutely LOVE my car, this is my play toy, my project, my hobby. I have put about $5000 into the car in 5 years, Not bad for the age of the car and the beating it takes from me. While I have spent even more in rims, tires, paint, stereo system, I consider these things as extras. I have never had brake problems, but then again, I downshift then use my brakes.

General Comments:

This car is my baby. I have bought several new ones while I have had this car, a 2005 Civic, a 2000 Prelude, a 2005 Ion, but nothing compares to the Grand Am. I would definitely recommend this car to anyone.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th January, 2010

29th Jan 2013, 21:56

So, I know this is really old post. But I agree the cars are good little cars. But I have lost most of my shifting. We have discovered that the problem is a shift cable is broken, but we can not find any... do you happen to remember where you got yours?