NHTSA — Engine And Engine Cooling: Engine Problems


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
43,900 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.

1998 Buick Regal engine problems

engine problem

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1998 Buick Regal Owner Comments

problem #10

Nov 052011


  • 130,000 miles


1998 Buick Regal w/ 3.8L engine. Had recall issue fixed March 2011. Vehicle caught fire after driving up to our local mountains. Fire began after vehicle was turned off, as we were getting our children out of the car. The fire began at the spark plug wires, continued up the wire assembly to the fuel lines and burned through fuel lines. Immediately had to disconnect battery, since fuel lines were spewing gas at the fire. We were able to put fire out with snow on the brushy hillside we were parked beside. Filed claim with GM. They denied it due to car's age, and claimed they have no responsibility after the car is 4 years old. Their recall fix did not work. The car still caught on fire anyway with my family inside.

- Glendora, CA, USA

problem #9

Jun 012009


  • 96,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Buick Regal. While driving less than 35 mph, the vehicle began to shutter and lost complete power. The contact smelled a chemical odor and maneuvered the vehicle off the road. The next morning, he discovered that half of the engine manifold and the spark plug retention wires were melted. The dealer had the vehicle towed and could not determine how the fire originated. The vehicle has not been repaired. The dealer is waiting to speak with the manufacturer. The failure and current mileages were less than 96,000. Remailed 10/20/09

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #8

May 242009


  • 90,000 miles
About two years ago my 98 Buick Regal began stalling while driving. It has stalled on the interstate numerous times as well as in intersections. Also at times it will simply not start. I have had a full tune up and get the car serviced regularly, but 4 different mechanics, even a Buick mechanic can't determine the problem. This is an incredible safety problem and I am very surprised no recall has been set up because with a quick search you can locate hundreds of complaints with the exact same problem. This needs to be addressed and fixed by Buick and NHTSA.

- Tacoma, WA, USA

problem #7

Aug 242006

(reported on)

Regal 6-cyl

  • miles


Consumer complaint concerning 1998 Buick Regal's computer malfunctioning. The consumer has had a new computer installed and the computer flashed. Now the vehicle is exhibiting signs of computer failure again.

- Manchester, MD, USA

problem #6

Apr 142004

Regal 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles
Numerous failures - power windows(same window 2X), heater/ac blower motor, turn signals (same direction 3X), alternator, water pump, engine strut brackets, leaky gasket valve covers. Current unresolved problem - failure to start although battery is fine. Replaced ignition switch and starter yet still fails regularly. Next repair, replace a wire in steering column that contacts the chip in the key"?"

- St. Louis, MO, USA

problem #5

Jan 082004

Regal 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1 miles
I just purchased the car used exactly a little over a year ago. The brake light on the dash board came on for a couple seconds and went off. Then next day after the brake light situation the check engine and entire dashboard came on while driving in a residential area. And caused the car to stall. Which thankfully I was able to pull over and did not cause an accident. The vehicle did start back up. And I took it to the dealership where I purchased the vehicle they could not find anything on the codes for the brake or engine problem ( which I had to pay $112). I said there has to be a reason even though the codes aren't showing. So they looked at the fuel pump system, fluids, and checked my brake pads. And still found no problems. They could not offer any other solution. So the next day I drove the car in the same area and the car once again stalled and good thing I didn't cause an accident was able to pull over. So the problem still remains. I see many complaints regarding this stalling situation I do believe this should be a defect for investigation in order to recall. As it it can cause serious potential accidents.

- West St. Paul, MN, USA

problem #4

Jul 082003


  • miles


Consumer states that while driving at any speed and without warning vehicle will shut off, causing consumer to pull over. Dealer notified.

- Lexington, KY, USA

problem #3

Feb 282003

Regal 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,000 miles
The vehicle stalled without warning, the dealer stated the crack sensor and the fuel sensor were the problem.

- Pleasantville, PA, USA

problem #2

Aug 171998


  • miles
Crank shaft sensor.

- San Pedro, CA, USA

problem #1

Jun 221998


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
When applying gas after making a complete stop, engine will shut itself off, consumer must restart vehicle.this defect could result in an accident. Dealer has replaced ignitions module and coil. Also crank case sensor. Defect is still occurring, dealer cannot duplicate defect. A trade assist has since been accomplished, vehicle repurchased by Buick.

- Brandywine, MD, USA

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