Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: The Dodge Intrepid, Stratus & other Chrysler sedans are infamous for oil sludge problems with the 2.7L V6 engine. If someone offers to sell you a 2.7L V6 model, it's only worth the price of the scrap metal it's going to shortly turn into.

NOTE: Only the 2.7L V6 has the oil sludge problem. Our "Avoid like the Plague" designation is ONLY for models with the 2.7L V6 engine. All other available engines are very reliable with no major problems.

Even with regular maintenance, the oil sludge defect eventually destroys the 2.7L engine typically around 80,000-100,000 miles. The only true fix we know about is to put in the larger 3.2L engine, which has a great reputation.

This issue was never deemed a safety defect by the Feds, so there was no recall. In the end, Chrysler got away with FOUR YEARS worth of defective 2.7L V6 engines in their sedans.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
72,804 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Dodge Intrepid engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Dodge Intrepid Owner Comments (Page 4 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #30

Jul 102005

Intrepid 8-cyl

  • 100,000 miles


Engine failure. Engine failed due to water ump allowing water to enter engine via oil pan. Sludge problems caused timing chain to be excessively tight thereby causing too much pressure on waterpump bearings. Waterpump bearings failed thereby letting water flow directly into engine. Oil has been changed in this car regularly. This is entirely a design flaw. I still owe a lot on the car and can't afford a new engine or even a used one.

- Gallman, MS, USA

problem #29

Jul 212005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The vehicle just started knocking to it to the shop and was told it need a new engine car has less the 70,000 miles on it and its only a 2002. The repair shop says it has sludge that caused it to spin a bearing. The good news I have a warranty the bad news is the wont cover the whole repair and is given me the run around about fixing the car. Also had to have the transmission replaced just 2 months ago.

- Hephzibah, GA, USA

problem #28

Jun 212005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles
On 12/18/2002, I purchased a "leftover" 2002 Dodge Intrepid SE. I recently refinanced my home and paid off the car loan less than 3 years later. As soon as I recieved my title for the vehicle, the engine failed! I brought the Intrepid to a local mechanic who stated that he saw sludge in the engine and that I should contact sansone route 66 in neptune, NJ to replace the engine. I contacted the dealer who stated that the vehicle was out of warrantee for two reasons; first, because the Intrepid has 47,000 miles on it (I bought it with 12,801 miles on it) and second, because the mechanic found sludge in the engine which I was told was my fault for not changing the oil! I have changed the oil regularly with mobile1 synthetic oil and used mobil 1 oil filters (confirmed by mechanic) as well as having other oil changes done. This is a complete failure of Dodge/Chrysler to honor its commitment to repairing faulty engines; I have done research and have observed many others with similar problems.

- Toms River, NJ, USA

problem #27

May 152005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15 miles


I was driving to church on May 15, 2005 while I was approaching a stoplight the water temp. Gauge began to move to the dangerously high temp. Side and then the engine began making a ticking sound and white smoke came from the engine, then the engine shuts down completely. The thermostat & water pump failed which led to the oil getting hot inside the engine, which led to oil sludging because of narrow oil ports within the engine, which cause the timing chain to fail and the cylinder heads to become damaged. I called Chrysler about this engine defect and they placed the blame on me instead of fixing the defect. I will now have to replace the engine for $4,000 or let it be repossessed. I have a 2002 Dodge Intrepid SE with 2.7L engine.

- Fayetteville, NC, USA

problem #26

Apr 012005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,050 miles
Contact states the engine failed. When taken to a local service dealer they stated there was 1-2 pints of excess liquid in the motor oil.

- Albany, NY, USA

problem #25

May 132005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles
After getting a tune-up and coming back from a trip, without warning, the car started making clicking noises. The driver pulled over, and it had to be towed. Caller found out that the engine was a discontinued motor because it was a defective motor. Dealer said the motor was not worth replacing, and she had not called manufacturer yet. Caller had reason to believe there was consumer actions on this motor.

- Decater, GA, USA

problem #24

Mar 182005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,000 miles


Went to get a routine oil change; mechanics showed me the oil, stating that I needed to bring the car to the dealership due to a possible blown head gasket. In actuality, I need a new engine. The car only has 48000 miles on it. I have owned it for less than 1 year and still make payments.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #23

Feb 282005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles
Consumer states the engine developed a sludge build up. As a result, the engine needs to be replaced.

- Liberty, MO, USA

problem #22

Feb 082005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles
While driving on the highway engine completely failed. Contacted the dealer, and was told that there was a problem with the 2.7 liter engines. Sludge buildup caused the engine to overheated suddenly.

- Palm Coast, FL, USA

problem #21

Dec 232004

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,109 miles
Merging into traffic when engine blew. Had to have car towed and engine replaced. Had to tow car from first shop who wouldn't work on it to another shop. With out use of car from 12-23-04 to 01-31-05. But still making car payments. Had to travel 220 miles to get car when work was done than 220 miles back. Engine was replaced with another out of wrecked vehicle. Old engine was turned in for core charge to a salvage yard.

- Mission, KS, USA

problem #20

Jan 032005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


While driving vehicle stalled. Consumer was unable to restart vehicle, and had it towed to dealer. Mechanic determined that engine needed to be replaced due to sludge build up.

- Toledo, OH, USA

problem #19

Dec 212004

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • 59,000 miles
I financed a 2002 Dodge Intrepid in February 2003. The payments are over $400 per month for 6 years.on December 21, 2004, the engine failed. I still had a warranty on the vehicle, so I called to have it towed to the dealer where I purchased it. After authorizing them to break the engine down and see exactly what the problem was, I was told it needed a new engine. After the warranty company came out to do their inspection, I was told it was my fault and I was responsible for all charges. They said the problem was sludge buildup and lack of oil change. My problem is that there was no warning at all. There was no engine knocking, the check engine light never came on, the car was running good. And then one day the engine is no good. I still have 4 years to pay for this vehicle and I have to buy a new engine, which costs $4,000 to $7,000. (the engine only had 59,000 miles on it) this doesnt make any sense to me. I also have to pay the dealer $360 for breaking the engine down to find the problem. Is there any help for me or is there anything I can do? in the past week I have heard hundreds of complaints about these engine problems in the Dodge Intrepid. Thank you for your time. Lori justice 12/30/04.

- Clementon, NJ, USA

problem #18

Oct 272004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles
While driving consumer heard a ticking noise. Consumer pulled off of the road, and had the vehicle towed. It was later discovered that engine was blown. Manufacturer stated the warranty expired after the vehicle 's oil was changed.

- Delphos, OH, USA

problem #17

Sep 222004

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,553 miles
Cooling system failure cause the car to over heats and resulted in total damage of the engine; crysler refuses to supply the engine and my car is dismantled in the dealership for more than three weeks, and the dealership refuses to put back my car the way it was when was towed to the shop. I need desperatelly need help.

- Woodside, NY, USA

problem #16

Aug 042004

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving 65 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The driver tried to restart the vehicle and was not able to do so. The vehicle was towed to the dealer for inspection. The mechanic informed the driver that the engine needed to be replaced.

- Baraboo, WI, USA

problem #15

Sep 242004

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While driving 25 mph consumer heard a loud noise coming from the front of the vehicle. Suddenly the vehicle stalled. Consumer restarterd the vehicle, and it was taken to the dealer for inspection. Mechanic determined that the engine blew out, and needed to be replaced.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #14

Aug 112004


  • 38,200 miles
While driving engine failed due to sludge inside the engine. Consumer pulled over, and had the vehicle towed. Dealership was notified, but did not resolve the problem.

- Concordia, KS, USA

problem #13

Aug 072004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,000 miles
While driving 45 mph the engine failed completely without warning. Please provide additional information.

- Belton, MO, USA

problem #12

Aug 072004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,000 miles
Vehicle commenced to rattle and make other noises while coming onto the freeway. Vehicle would not restart. Dealer was notified, and informed the consumer that engine need to be replaced.

- West Point, VA, USA

problem #11

Aug 172004

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • miles
While driving vehicle stalled. Consumer was unable to restart vehicle, and towed it to dealer for inspection. Mechanic detrermined that the engine needed to be replaced.

- San Diego, CA, USA

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