29th May 2009, 13:41

You don't mention your mileage, but at 9 years old I'm assuming it probably has over 100,000 miles. The popping sound could be a loose bolt in your front sub-frame (I've seen this). It's a very cheap fix: tighten the bolt. It could also be your CV joint. If water and dirt has gotten inside the boot it can wreak havoc with them. The boots are supposed to be inspected and replaced if damaged, but no one ever does. These could lead to serious safety issues so check them out. I have one of these cars and it is flawless. Just keep up the preventative maintenance.

29th Jun 2009, 21:08

I've had a 2002 Pontiac Grand Am SE1 arctic white V6 four door for over 6 years now. Bought it brand used with 20,000 miles on it.

I've put just over 100,000 of my own miles on it. Most of them were highway miles from upstate NY to north east PA when I was in the army and would go AWOL every weekend to see my family. This reliable car always got me back to base every Sunday night without breaking down and getting me court martialed.

My catalytic converter went at about 90,000 miles and cost 800 bucks.

I still have my original rotors and have only gone through 2 sets of front pads.

I realized when gas was 3.25 after Katrina that I should start being an economy driver and do the speed limit. I have kept track of my fuel from time to time, and can get up to 31 miles per gallon split highway/in town.

My reverse lights have never worked and no mechanic can ever figure out what to do besides change the bulbs and scratch their head. I pass inspection somehow.

My car makes a slight whining noise from the front driver side tire area when I'm in low gears. It never gets worse for tens of thousands of miles (maybe cuz I drive it so soft to save gas/tires).

I hit a deer with it at 35 mph and it held together pretty good. Still drivable with minor damage. Repairing the front bumper cover is expensive. I suggest buying a knockoff on ebay with no Pontiac logo on it for 400 bucks.

I got into an accident in Manhattan that destroyed the driver side of my car from the rear quarter panel to the driver mirror, both doors hit broadside by a big Chevy van that t-boned me. Nobody in my car was injured, not even whiplash and the car drove 140 miles home with all the damage and it never broke down. I used my insurance to restore the car instead of total it and it's held together fine.

I don't know how much longer I'll choose to keep it on the road, but judging by all the 93 Grand Ams I still see all over, even up here in the salty cold winters of PA, I'm thinking I'll not be missing it anytime soon. I love this car, it's my first car, I bought it with my soldiers pay, I've always loved it from day one. I love the way it looks more each year. I'll keep fixing it until it's costing me a new car payment per month on average and then split. Maybe someday I'll just put it in storage for a few decades and drive it around when I'm retired =)

18th Jul 2009, 15:38

I bought the 2002 Pontiac Grand AM GT1 brand new from a GM dealer. Had some issues with it stalling when I first got it and was covered by warranty (cracked manifold).

I got rid of it today as the transmission started to slip at 90K km's (56K miles). It would have cost me $2100 to fix it.

29th Nov 2009, 02:19

I own a 2003 GT1 sedan. I love my car. All these "problems" everyone has are because these cars tend to get the dog piss drove out of them and not have the maintenance done to compensate. This is true with ANY car you will ever own. I have had my car do every bit of its 150mph speedometer with no shakes or noises. The only sound I get is the door whistling from going so fast. I also make sure I check the oil, tranny fluid, and wheels before I go on these "speed binges". The only "problem" I have had is the passenger side window is off its track a little, and I have to push the glass forward after rolling it up to get it to seal right.

6th Dec 2009, 01:41

I still own my 2002 Grand AM GT. I bought it new in Oct 2001, it had 7 KM on it. I had similar problems with the windows, power steering. I have to say, I love my car! Like any machine, if you take care of it, it will last longer.

5th Apr 2010, 20:12

It sounds to me like it's really hit or miss when it comes to problems.

My 2002 Grand Am GT1 (3.4 V6 Ram Air) has been a saint compared to some of the other vehicles described so far. It’s a little over 8 years old (purchased at end of 2001) and is only now showing its age, and even there it is only the stereo system. It has been very well cared for since it was driven out of our dealer's show room, and it has rewarded us for the extra effort put into maintaining it.

The only issues early on were the noted tire issue (which has more to do with the poor quality factory tires than the car itself) and some battery issues. Dad first replaced the Goodyears with Pirelli speed rated tires, but those were replaced a few years back because the harder rubber of that type of tire tends to flat spot in cold weather, and makes more noise than usual once it starts to wear. I now have Bridgestone tires and they are very quiet.

The car has a little over 80,000 miles on it, and has had batteries replaced twice because they were not holding charge. The first replacement Dad chalked up to a low quality factory battery, the second time is still a mystery to us; we suspect something about the car is contributing, but there's no evidence for it.

No engine or drive train trouble yet (knock on wood) and out of the three Pontiacs we own (the others are 2003 Grand Prix GT, and 2007? G6) my Dad said he likes the handling of the Grand Am the best. The Grand Prix has more power (3.8 V6) and corners flatter, but otherwise handles like a tank compared to the lighter Grand Am. I have not driven the G6 much myself, so I can’t really compare its handling to that of my car, but I can say I would likely prefer mine simply because it’s my baby and I love it.

Overall we (my dad and I) have been very impressed with how few problems the Grand Am has had, especially when both the younger Grand Prix and even the practically new G6 have had more issues than they should at their age.

I will not say mine is typical for what you can expect of another 2002 Grand Am GT1, only that it has had very few (and relatively minor) problems over its 8-year, 80,000 mile lifetime. If GM still made Pontiac, and particularly if they still made the Grand Am, I would certainly buy another one.

As it is, I will likely get something else, since a used Grand Am is a gamble because they will all be at least 5 years old now, and there's no telling how hard the previous owner drove it or how well they kept up on maintenance. I don't plan on replacing mine anytime soon, I am very happy with it, and frankly it is still nicer 8 years later than anything I could afford to buy myself today.