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szf2
08-22-2005, 11:51 AM
Plan on getting a Grand AM sometime within the next few months. Looking at a 2000 to 2002 model, probably with the I4 and manual tranny, but have to see.

Anyway, just curious if there are any particular trouble spots to look out for when getting a used Grand AM (e.g. common parts that leak or break, recall work that should be done, etc). Also, any difference between the years regarding reliability?

TIA

rennation
08-22-2005, 12:06 PM
Welcome :)

I think the manual is kinda rare, but u might find one, i dont know theres not many manual guys that post here....but the body style from those years is the ribbed....looks alot better in the 2003-05 years in the se. the gt has been the same body since 99 i believe.

I think you should get a gt in those years, they arent much more. They sell pretty low these days.

As far as problems, idk any.

Braves299
08-22-2005, 12:07 PM
I'm not too certain about the 2.4L but I know the 3.4 V6 has a common prob. with leaky lower intake manifold gaskets. Which isn't a big deal really if you catch it early (It's just a gasket). But other than that, I know it has a common problem with window regulators that stop working pre-maturely. Also, windows tend to get eaten up and get pretty decent scratches/gashes in the windows. And the rotors seem to warp fairly easily due to cheap metal that is used. Check out the TSB section on this website, it's pretty helpfull.

All in all the Grand Am is a good car for the price. You might have a few problems here and there but nothing too major. Especially for a used car, you can't beat it. Since they have such horrible resale value, you can pick one up for extremely cheap and it still lasts awhile. I have 145K miles on my 99 and its still running strong (3.4L V6 though).

Kdawg207
08-22-2005, 12:07 PM
trouble spots.....you name it...its trouble

Exodus
08-22-2005, 12:14 PM
LIM, rotors, turn signal twitching, window scratches, gas whore, 175 (probably less) horse power, you'll find a couple of new ones yourself

Braves299
08-22-2005, 12:16 PM
LIM, rotors, turn signal twitching, window scratches, gas whore, 175 (probably less) horse power, you'll find a couple of new ones yourself

175hp is for the 3.4 V6. He's looking into the 2.4 I4. Since when is the Grand Am a gas hog? I usually get about 300 miles per tank out of mine.. all city. Can't expect much more than that out of a V6.

Exodus
08-22-2005, 12:23 PM
for the horse power it has it could definitely have better fuel economy, plus mine's still stock, no intake no less restrictive exhaust, and whatnot.

xxbackhillxx
08-22-2005, 12:24 PM
LIM, rotors, turn signal twitching, window scratches, gas whore, 175 (probably less) horse power, you'll find a couple of new ones yourself
Awesome information, if he was looking for a V6 :rolleyes: And, I'm with David, my car gets 270-280 all city.

The I4's are strong motors. The only thing you should worry about are the rotors and window regulators, like everyone else has already stated.

Braves299
08-22-2005, 12:25 PM
All I have is SLP and I've never noticed a change in MPG. I've always thought it was pretty decent. And the hp/tq. was plenty for its time and price. We're talking a low $20,000 car brand new that was redesigned in 1999. It wasn't behind at all.. until now.

Exodus
08-22-2005, 12:29 PM
well he asked for opinions, i'm giving him my opinion from the experiences i get from my car "sideburns" :)
as for the grand am type, I need to learn to be more perceptive when I read.

Exodus
08-22-2005, 12:32 PM
All I have is SLP and I've never noticed a change in MPG. I've always thought it was pretty decent. And the hp/tq. was plenty for its time and price. We're talking a low $20,000 car brand new that was redesigned in 1999. It wasn't behind at all.. until now.

that is so true, guess im comparing it to now a days. guess ill shut the f..k up
now.

Rich
08-22-2005, 03:11 PM
yeah the 2.4 is a solid engine. ive had no problems with it. i wish i would have gotten a stick, would be a bit more fun. the only person who has a manual that posts fairly regularly is spyhunter though his is built up a bit. if you want a bit more indepth info on the 2.4 check out www.quad4forums.com

mcgrady
08-22-2005, 06:43 PM
If you're going to get the I4 then go with the 2002 model and Ecotec engine. So far, they're proving to be more durable than the 2.4 LD9 in earlier years.

2003SCT
08-23-2005, 09:13 AM
Buy a 4cyl. and manual combo....pref. Ecotec.....

Thats the most resillient combo you can imagine.


4 speed 3.4 is NOT...though I really havent had many issues.....just thinking long term.


CHRIS

The_Wraith
08-24-2005, 09:33 AM
I've been getting 29-30mpg on my 2004 GT v6

Rich
08-24-2005, 09:42 AM
The Ecotecs Are Supposedly Really Good...I Cracked A Rod....GM Doesnt Know How The Guy came and looked at the motor and Hes still clueless...He works for GM But Ive had With the engine a Good 5 Thou In Repairs And Mines An 03


i thought it broke because there was no oil in it?

02andahalfgt
08-24-2005, 04:43 PM
Off Topic.... That is a freaking sweet avatar Rich!!

Rich
08-24-2005, 05:34 PM
thanks man. its an effect in photshop and it turned out that way. which im not complaining about lol. heres a bigger picture, i dont think the smaller one quite does it justice, heh:

http://i15.photobucket.com/albums/a393/Rich125678/blackwhiteGA700.jpg

nascarnate326
09-08-2005, 08:12 AM
I have 120,000 on my 99 se and a headlite is fogged, brakes, and now the abs/traction dosent work. Until it snows im drivin it the way it is. I feel as though ive got my moneys worth.
Currently I get 24mpg average. I like the 3400

DrFabulous
09-08-2005, 08:40 AM
The 2.4 LD9, found in 99-2001 Grand Am's, is actually a very good engine. Only real weakness is it's oil system, but it's nothing you're going to have to worry about unless you are really planning on driving your car hard. We're talking like autocross here. Other than that, it does very well. For a 4 banger, it doesn't do the best on gas, only slightly better than the V6, on account of the weight of the car. However, where the 2.4 really shines over the 3.4 is aftermarket. The engine is 5x more popular, as it was placed in J-body's (Cavalier, Sunfire) as the top of the line engine. Parts are readily available, and if you know how to work on engines, you can swap cams and the intake manifold of earlier 2.3 HO versions of the engine for some cheap power.

I don't know where that came from. lol I don't think I've ever been so factual in my life. Uhhh.... the 2.4 is a good engine. No problems like the 3.4, not the greatest on gas for a 4 cyl.

The car will only have problems with front rotors and power windows.

:)

mcgrady
09-08-2005, 06:57 PM
I don't know where that came from. lol I don't think I've ever been so factual in my life. Uhhh.... the 2.4 is a good engine. No problems like the 3.4, not the greatest on gas for a 4 cyl.


No problems like the 3400??? There are a few problems with the LD9. First is premature failure of crankshaft bearings. Second was water pump. Third was timing chain failure.

I work in the auto repair industry and I owned a Sunfire GT LD9 for 7 years. I've seen them all happen multiple occasions.

That being said, an LD9 five speed in a light car like a J-body is fun to drive.

crazypontiac03
09-08-2005, 09:50 PM
Plan on getting a Grand AM sometime within the next few months. Looking at a 2000 to 2002 model, probably with the I4 and manual tranny, but have to see.

Anyway, just curious if there are any particular trouble spots to look out for when getting a used Grand AM (e.g. common parts that leak or break, recall work that should be done, etc). Also, any difference between the years regarding reliability?

TIA



Run, Run to something else.

Panacea
09-10-2005, 12:27 AM
Yeah this is an old thread, but whatever.

Reliability, well, it depends on who you ask. My car (GT) has had it's fair share of problems, but I have had almost all of them covered under warranty. Yes, these many things should not go wrong, but they do. You could find problems with domestic or foreign. As for the 4 cylinders, I haven't heard of many problems. The Ecotec's are great engines from what I hear. The main thing to get fixed are the rotors. They're more of an annoyance than anything. No saftey issue.

For the most part the car is pretty darn reliable. I've beat the crap out of my car and have redlined quite a few times (100+) and I've smelt burning tranny (dont' ask) and the engine/transmission are still running great at 60,000 miles. At the price you can get one nowadays I would say you can get your money's worth. Good luck.

GrahamKracka
09-10-2005, 02:24 AM
i cant speak for the 4cyl....but my car is an abomination..id be a broke ass mofo if i didnt have a warranty

RAZE
09-12-2005, 08:24 AM
I'm surprised nobody mentioned trunk leaks.

2000 GT
09-17-2005, 01:16 PM
Welcome :)

I think the manual is kinda rare, but u might find one, i dont know theres not many manual guys that post here....but the body style from those years is the ribbed....looks alot better in the 2003-05 years in the se. the gt has been the same body since 99 i believe.

I think you should get a gt in those years, they arent much more. They sell pretty low these days.

As far as problems, idk any.

Yea its a shame no one's buying them, i noticed pontiac took the grand am off thier site. :( its a shame...

GrahamKracka
09-17-2005, 02:02 PM
just dont get a GA..that car will **** you off to no end

onesexyga
09-17-2005, 02:23 PM
I love my ga. Got it cheap, and its been running great. Guess its case to case.

eric99gt
09-17-2005, 05:24 PM
love mine as well. It's done everything I've expected of it.

Mike Jung
09-17-2005, 08:25 PM
First this is IMO:

Get a GA (if you want 4-cylinder engine) with the 2.2L Ectoec engine.
The 2.4L engine is old & little on the rough side.

The 2.4L engine has more 'horsepower' than the 2.2L ecotec; but the ecotec is suppose to be more refined & more usable torque curve.
Hp is not everything.
I rather have a torquey engine over a high rev'ing hp engine with less torque for normal city driving.

Just ask Mike3800 (http://www.grandamgt.com/forum/member.php?u=139) how he likes his '04 Chevy Cavalier with the 2.2L ecotec engine.
(He used also have a GA, but not sure which type).

If you get a 2.4L engine good luck if you need the water pump changed (& similar designed on the 2.2L properly).
Which all cars at some point wear out.
It is like a 6.5-hour labour book rate repair & since you have the timing chain open; you better change the timing chain tensioner.
So the 3.4L V6 engine has LIM gasket problems (which is a 8-hour book labour rate job); but the 2.4L I4 has a expensive water pump change because it is driven off of the timing chain.
Water pump change on a 3.4L V6 engine is like 1-hour labour book rate.
If the mechanic screws up the water pump change on your I4 & your engine will make noise/run rough from the timing chain not being put back properly/or some thing.

Oh, I have seen a '02 GASE 2.2L ecotec break a timing chain (the I4 engine places more stress on it, by running the water pump,cams, & valves by it) on the highway, but yet to hear of a V6 push-rod engine have this happen so early in it's life.
GM push-rod engine technology might be old, but it is dependable.

My buddy has a '98 Sunfire GT 2.4L I4 (auto) & I have a '99 GASE 3.4L V6.
His is 2-months older than mine from the factory.
Same mileage range.
& his is in my opinion rougher shape than my engine.
I origianlly wanted a '98 Sunfire GT, until I test drove one in 5-speed & fell in love with a '98 GAGT 3.1L V6 push-rod engine.
I didn't like the torque in the 2.4L I4, even in stick.
On the 2.4L I4: I downshift to 4 & 3 on the highway, rev the engine to 5-6K: to get the feel of the passing power. & did not enjoy it; it felt lacking & all noise/rough.
Tried the GAGT 3.1L V6: in the same situation loved the torque feeling (once the auto downshifted).
So I wanted a few months & got the newer version GA.
IMO, 3.4L V6 push-rod is > than 2.4L I4 in quality & driving refinement.
In normal city driving: to relie on the torque to get you moving vs rev'ing it, in a I4.

PS: OEM that comes stock: Brakes & Tires on GA's suck no matter what engine you choose.

GTPguy99'sgirl
10-10-2005, 05:39 PM
I am going to be looking for a white gt does anyone know one who is selling one? or where i can get one?

Rich
10-10-2005, 05:50 PM
post a thread in the stuff wanted forum, there are a couple people who are selling their GA's. iirc there is a decently cheap silver one if you arent totally stuck on white. (though white GT's do look very nice.)

Ajaxus
10-11-2005, 12:50 AM
check autotrader.com as well as any used car dealerships in your area.

szf2
10-27-2005, 09:52 AM
Thanks everyone for the input. Looks like I will probably be going with the 2.2 Ecotech, preferably with a manual.

Currently just waiting for the wife's Achieva to kick the bucket. The tires will be below legal tread within a year. Since new tires cost more than the Achieva is worth, we will definitley be picking up a GA within a year.

redramair01
10-27-2005, 10:52 AM
trouble spots.....you name it...its trouble


:stupid:

2003SCT
10-27-2005, 11:41 AM
THis is all you need baby! Find an Ecotec with a manual....

http://www.gm.com/company/gmtunersource/html/race_shop_build_book.htm




CHRIS

szf2
10-27-2005, 07:20 PM
THis is all you need baby! Find an Ecotec with a manual....

http://www.gm.com/company/gmtunersource/html/race_shop_build_book.htm



1400 HP from a 2.2L! :not_worth :not_worth :not_worth

I'm not even going to guess how much that would cost. That is awsome, though, that there is a manual listing all the needed parts.

jake3217
10-27-2005, 10:14 PM
The Ecotec is a pretty stout motor, you won't be disappointed. Gas mileage is great, and it has an extremely flat power curve. For normal driving it's more than adequate. As far as reliability goes, mine was at almost 50,000 before I left for school, and I didn't have any problems to speak of with the engine. The only thing that gave me trouble was the whole warped rotors deal, but it wasn't that big of an issue.

Good luck finding an M5 GA Ecotec, they didn't make too many of them.

2003SCT
10-28-2005, 08:25 AM
It IS a tough find however they are out there...I found one on ebay not that long ago with low mileage.

As far as the Ecotec goes....the design is AMAZING. The 2.2 only has one weak point for normal modders which are the rods...they arent anything special but SHOULD hold up without issue.....till about 275-300whp

The 2.0 Ecotec is THE motor to have...coming in stuff like the Cobalt SS and Ion Redline. That motor has everything you could want...fat forged rods, forged crank and one of the strongest 4 cyl blocks avail....save for the 4G63. What they have been able to do with the Ecotec is amazing and the best part is...its ALUMINUM. An Aluminum block making more than 1,000 is insane. Something like the 4G63 is already iron.

Anyway, taking even the 2.2 and putting the better rods and pistons(from the 2.0) should be able to take you 2 to 3 times the power it has stock. Thats while staying reliable and not costing an arm and a leg.

Mark my words.....THIS is GM's B series engine

By the way...I am gonna put a post for the book....I think everyone should see it.

CHRIS

HotGrandAm99
10-28-2005, 12:57 PM
I'd have to agree on the ecotec. I have a friend with an Ion Redline and that thing seriously moves.

nascarnate326
10-28-2005, 01:19 PM
Its as if GM finnaly has a rival to a vtech. Just 10 years later. Quite all right though, cuz Honda dosent have a gto...

bvill05
11-06-2005, 09:40 PM
No problems like the 3400??? There are a few problems with the LD9. First is premature failure of crankshaft bearings. Second was water pump. Third was timing chain failure.

I work in the auto repair industry and I owned a Sunfire GT LD9 for 7 years. I've seen them all happen multiple occasions.

That being said, an LD9 five speed in a light car like a J-body is fun to drive.


I have seem similar problems with my 97 GAGT 2.4L, but i think its an awesome motor. I was told my a GM mechanic that the 2.4 would our run the v6 because the v6 only has like 20 more hp and about 200lbs heavier. Perforamce parts are i found are hard to find, but after about 3 years of searching and comparing places and parts, i pretty much found everything i need for a 2.4L. Looking at close to $10,000 once i get finished with everything and have it put out over 400hp. if you plan on modding the car, kinda have an idea of whats out there for your car before going out and buying it.

UNCTYPE-S
11-09-2005, 08:43 PM
i find it hilarious how I mention one thing negative about a grand am, and everyone tries to sh!t down my throat, but when 3 people in here all say "dont buy it" they dont get knocked on. I never said to not buy the car. You know who you are too that gave me sh!t.

crazypontiac03
11-09-2005, 08:50 PM
I was one and I still say Dont Buy it!

GrahamKracka
11-09-2005, 08:55 PM
yes...stay far far......far.......very far away.....trust us

there are much better cars out there for simaler prices

Roush GT
11-10-2005, 07:06 AM
my car has around 89 k and the only things ive done that was necessary was new tires and brakes and a new cat.. How is that for reliability? I find it hilarious that the people that used to own ga's now rag on em

Lab Rat
11-10-2005, 01:52 PM
97000 on my 2000 2.4. Couldn't find a 5 speed when I bought it. (the stealership told me they could not get one, liars). So when the tranny started slipping at 75000 I did a 5 speed swap. Other than that I have changed brakes twice, changed oil religiously, and had some warrenty work done for recalls. But I spend too much on other stuff, new springs/struts (wanted lowered), wheels and tires, and have about 1/2 of the stuff for a disk brake swap. And the SC and exhaust is next (still saving up). So There's my $.02, but I am looking for a car for my 15 year old daughtor and I am leaning towards another 2.4, maybe a cavy.

Jason E
11-16-2005, 08:50 PM
yes...stay far far......far.......very far away.....trust us

there are much better cars out there for simaler prices

No, really...there aren't...especially for the $$$$!!! My fiance's is my 3rd Grand Am...these little sh!ts are great for the $$. BTW, not to knock your new car...but if you think a GA was unreliable? Don't look at what the Titan pulls down for JD Power #s....you won't like what you see.

Anyway, I've sold Olds and Pontiacs for 5 years now, and have probably driven at least 50-75 different Aleros and GAs back from used car auctions. If its a 4, get a 2.4...for sure. Yes, its louder. Yes, its older. Yes, the MPG isn't as good. So? A 2.2/A4 Ecotec is like driving a sewing machine. You give it gas, and it sorta goes. A 2.4 has a way better torque curve, and is about as fun as a 4 banger can be. We've put 20k on ours in 6 months, and my fiance and I love it. Good luck finding ANY 4 banger stick...they hardly exist. Before I bought my '02 GA GT, I ordered for myself and almost bought a 2.2/M5 '02 GA SE coupe. I drove it 90 miles one night, and couldn't get over the gutless-ness of it. I am sure modded, its fine. But, an '01 Alero GX 2.4 that I had almost bought new 6 months prior was way more fun, stock for stock.

I won't get into modded ones, because I don't mod N bodies. But if you want to leave it stock, sacrifice the 2-3 MPG and get a 2.4...they're way peppier. In a way, despite the fact that the engine is louder, they almost drive quieter because you aren't revving the crap outta them all the time the way you do with the 2.2!

szf2
01-18-2006, 11:33 AM
Thanks everyone for the input. Just picked up a 2002 GA SE1 with the 2.2L ecotech and 65k on the odometer. The achieva added the las straw when it began having problems starting. Price for the SE1 was $7k. Not bad considering the body is in great shape and it has the "solid value" package with sunroof, 16" wheels, and 200W stereo. Plus. the dealer had put on new rotors, pads, shoes and resurfaced the drums plus added new calipers and two new front tires. Not to mention it was also the color the wife and I wanted (silver) and that it only had one previous owner (title is from 2002). So, we couldn't pass up the car when we saw it. Only thing that needed some attention was a bit of underbody rust which is expected here in upstate NY. Hit it with some rust converter last night and will finish off with some rubberized underspray this summer.

So far I am impressed by the 2.2L ecotech. Nice power and super quiet (compared to the 93 achieva and my 95 4runner). I am also impressed by the relatively small amount of maintenance that is required for the car. Regular tire rotations, oil changes, and air filter changes are about all that is required up to 100k (where spark plugs need replaced). The manual doesn't even mention changing the tranny fluid in 150k miles (unless hard driving), ball joints/ tie rod ends are all sealed, coolant doesn't need changed for 60 mos, etc. etc. Very nice. I also like the 6qt oil capacity and cartridge filter for extended motor life (not to mention the dummy oil light which gives me some peace of mind the PO changed the oil when needed).

All in all great car. Lots of thanks to all those who pointed me to the 2.2L Ecotech.

Rich
01-18-2006, 12:51 PM
congrats on the purchase. my bro has an ecotec cavalier and it is quick. i dont mind my 2.4 though. just curious, did you get the manual transmission?

nascarnate326
01-18-2006, 01:12 PM
Ill just say I have a love/hate relationship with it. I think that stands true for Most people with there Grand Am's.

szf2
01-18-2006, 09:02 PM
congrats on the purchase. my bro has an ecotec cavalier and it is quick. i dont mind my 2.4 though. just curious, did you get the manual transmission?

Thanks. Turned out it has an auto. My wife and I didn't care too much either way. The manual would have been nice for reliability and a little more fun to drive but the auto is nice for around town.

OT, Just changed the oil tonight and I am a newfound fan of the cartridge filter. They should all be like that. No hassle with an oil filter wrench, cramming your arm into tight spots, oil spilling everywhere, etc. Just pop the top, pull the filter, and pop in a new one. No oil spills even if the engine is completely full, plus you can see the filter's condition firsthand w/o cutting the thing open.

All in all, I'm impressed by the car so far. Have to see how it holds up for the next 50k or so. Thanks again everyone for the input.

GrahamKracka
01-18-2006, 09:19 PM
my car has around 89 k and the only things ive done that was necessary was new tires and brakes and a new cat.. How is that for reliability? I find it hilarious that the people that used to own ga's now rag on em

the reason I rag on it is cause it was a major peice of ****...which is why I got rid of it