1997 Pontiac Grand Prix SE 3.8 V6 from North America
Do your own Prix work, love your Prix, Study your prix, and it will love you back
I've had normal problems. I've replaced the alternator twice (but I have almost 260,000 miles on my prix). I replaced the blower sensor. I also had an issue with a locked up brake caliper. The Master cylinder had to be replaced at 200,000 miles. The car still purrs like a kitten and acts like it's good for another 200,000 miles. I've always used Dex cool, and other recommended fluids from the manual. I flushed the cooling systems every 80,000 miles, and never saw the fluid come out like sludge. It looked bad in the reservoir tank because the rubber hose deteriorated into the reservoir and made it look like sludge, but when I flushed the system out myself the actual coolant looked like it was new. The windshield wipers started stopping in the wrong position, but a little factory recall work corrected the problem for free. I'm just now (after following the manual recommendations for maintenance) having a problem with the water pump. I'd say that all-n-all my Prix has been the most dependable vehicle I've ever owned, well once I picked up a Haynes manual and started doing all of my own maintenance work. I don't know what it is that people fear about working on this car, but for some reason everyone I know that uses a mechanic to do their work with the Prix hates this car, and has problems with it. Everyone I know that works on the Prix themselves (again, that I know) find it to be very dependable.
This car has rocked since I got it. The only thing I don't like about it is that you may have a few extra parts to remove to get to some of your maintenance work, and changing the plugs is a pain in the a** because of the 3 plugs that are too close to the firewall. I've gotten almost 260,000 miles out of my prix, and if it wasn't for the salt from the roads up north, I could probably get another 200,000 miles out of it. Here's a list of my mods, that probably haven't made any difference in the car's life: Replaced the OEM intake with a K&N cold air intake system. Replaced the OEM exhaust with a hand-made (I should say hand-bent) exhaust, and removed the resonator. Use a lower temp thermostat because of the plastic Plenum (it's the heat that causes it to deteriorate). Only use Bosch 4+ Platinum spark plugs, wires, and oil filters. I add a can of HorsePower oil additive to every oil change (using synthetic oil).
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 26th January, 2008