Notes: The 2006 is the worst year for PT Cruiser engine complaints. Having an engine light on is annoying, but it's the complaints about the engine shutting-off while driving that really have us concerned.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
69,850 miles
Total Complaints:
16 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (15 reports)
  2. car will start to shake and will stall while driving (1 reports)
2006 Chrysler PT Cruiser engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Chrysler PT Cruiser Owner Comments

problem #16

Jun 122018

PT Cruiser Touring Edition

  • Automatic transmission
  • 69,000 miles


First of all, I love my PT. It is a 2006, this car has been treated beautifully. It has been unbelievably maintained by a close relative of mine and has stayed in a home car garage with Protective automatic doors for 12 years. Maintenance was done right on schedule and I have all the receipts to prove it for the last 12 or so years. Literally my relative and her husband were essentially nerds about taking care of it and they handed me the file with all it's paper work; and with every single oil change receipt in it since 2006. It has never needed any real repair or mechanic work. They bought it brand new, and I have the owner's manual too. It's a luxurious PT, with real leather seats and still smells new. They didn't drive it much or very far; except once, still in state.

About four months after it was transferred to me, pulling out of the parking lot where I work; and entering into a busy four lane inner town road, the engine shuts off, as I pulled out. A fleet of coming traffic was headed my way, as the traffic light turned green. I was instantly scared, but I thought I'd I just turn it off and turn it back on quick and it will work. Luckily, I was right. I was mad about where it happened. Just before that all the gauges went all the way up then down, which was spooky.

I asked the previous owners who said they never had a problem like that with it. I took it to a very good Chrysler mechanic and he said that P.T Cruiser are known have computer problems. He repaired it, and it worked beautifully for months; but now it's back. I thought that I wasn't driving it right; but all these other people say the same thing.

- Lacy M., Tifton, US

problem #15

Sep 182016

PT Cruiser

  • Automatic transmission
  • 168,000 miles

I have owned my 2006 PT Cruiser with ~ 168,000 miles for about 4 months. Occasionally, the engine will cutout/stall when it reaches ~ 2200 RPM. When I let off the gas it will run normally. Then when I reapply the gas it does the same thing when it reaches 2200 RPM. After a while the problem sometimes just goes away after 10-20 miles or shutting the engine off but sometimes it continues for hundreds of miles!!! Very dangerous when driving along on an interstate with 70 -80 MPH speed limits with the engine running normal and then suddenly I can only go ~ 55 MPH!!! It may go a month without happening or sometimes it may happen 2 days later. No Diagnostic codes present.

- Butch C., New Blaine, AR, US

problem #14

Jun 062015

PT Cruiser V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,000 miles

I have a major problem with my car stopping while driving. It is very dangerous and I am seeing that my PT Cruiser of 2006 is just one of many with the same problem. It seems that this is a manufacturers error and I should not have to pay for this fix. I am not able to afford to get this problem repaired. If a death occurs, it would surely cause a lawsuit.

- ottinger, Elizabethton, TN, US

problem #13

Apr 212016

PT Cruiser

  • Manual transmission
  • 53,000 miles


Dash lights come on then car stalls. Oil, gas, coolant battery okay !!!!!!This has happened multiple times but yesterday guys pushed me out of traffic !!!!!! HELP before I get rear ended in an accident !!!! Dealer can't help !!!!

- floa, Glen Burnie, MD, US

problem #12

Mar 302015

PT Cruiser

  • Manual transmission
  • 60,000 miles

For the past few months, my car has been stalling while driving. All the gauges will drop and sometimes it won't completely shut off, but it definitely loses powers as the gauges struggle to maintain. Occasionally, it will completely turn off and then come back on. It also does this while idling. I've taken it to the Chrysler dealership and they've told me that nothing is wrong with it (just because no codes were showing up and because they couldn't get it to replicate symptoms on test drive). However, I'm pretty sure something is dangerously wrong with it given the fact that I've had many instances in which I've almost been rear ended due to my car turning off while getting on the highway or driving through an intersection.

- jayylee, Long Beach, CA, US

problem #11

Mar 092013

PT Cruiser Touring Edition 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,300 miles

Loss of engine power while driving 65 mph on freeway in the fast lane. This could have been a major tragedy had I not been able to immediately coast onto the shoulder of the roadway. Engine was turned off and restarted immediately. This even happened once as I passed my mechanic’s shop, so I drove directly to his shop, yet the problem was not able to be duplicated. (This happened on several occasions prior to discovering significant engine oil leaks - see separate complaint.)

- lisa norene, Suisun City, CA, US

problem #10

Jul 122014

PT Cruiser Stock 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,000 miles


Without warning, the gauges would all drop to zero, lose power and then recover. Engine did not completely stall, just hesitate when the accelerator was applied. As time went on the power loss/gauge problem would result in a stall. Once in park the car would start with no problem. Later on it would struggle but restart. Not particularly convenient in the middle of an intersection with no power steering.

This is becoming an issue of safety! With as many P Ts produced as there were, I have to believe there is a known fix and invite Chrysler to make it known. We love our little P.T.'s and want to keep them.

- Heather D., Fountain Valley, CA, US

problem #9

Sep 102014

PT Cruiser Limited 2.4ll Turbo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,008 miles

All dash lights come on, gauges go down to zero and car shuts off, the Chrysler dealer says the ignition is bad and will be replaced at owner's cost or warranty. Yet, this isn't the problem with the engine light, it's a faulty switch called power steering pressure switch, this also needs replaced, warranty doesn't cover it. I have two small children and this car is very dangerous. Also use car for work to transport clients. This isn't the first PT Cruiser which the Chrysler technician has seen.

It needs to be added to the recall list but won't be because they don't make them any longer. What about those of us that are having to dish out thousands of dollars to avoid being killed while driving? STEP UP AND TAKE RESPONSIBILITY.

- grantca, El Cajon, CA, US

problem #8

Aug 192014

PT Cruiser 2.4L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,240 miles

This has happened 5 times over a month. Engine ignition was interrupted while driving. Has not happened while parked.

- Charles C., EASTON, MD, US

problem #7

May 232012

PT Cruiser Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

I brought this car and when I took it off the lot it went OK for about 6 months. After that the motor went out, had to get another motor for $1200.00. Then the wires burnt up in the engine,$ 700.00. It would stall at a red light; as soon as I turn on the air conditioner, the motor sounds like it is pulling down; did I mention that it shakes bad; turns off in the middle of driving; jerks really bad when it is about to turn off.

I have been to the shop a total of 16 time in the 4 years I have had it. Is it haunted or just ready to die, did i mention that it shakes bad???

- Mitzy B., fordyce, AR, US

problem #6

Jun 062013

PT Cruiser Touring Edition 2.4L Inline 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,883 miles


blown head gasket, verified by mechanic I'm the mechanic this poor car was brought to. I have heard MANY stories of head gasket problems on the Chrysler 2.4 inline 4 cylinder engines. I did the last oil change on this car, so naturally I was concerned - I checked but there didn't seem to be any external leaks and the drain plug and filter were still in place. Oil level was so low it showed just a drop on the end of the dipstick. The customer cranked the engine over while I looked under the hood and it sounded like the engine had no compression. None. I guessed maybe timing belt, but couldn't verify that onsite. The car was towed to my garage, I found on further inspection that coolant was also low. Pulled intake manifold and valve cover, verified that timing belt was Ok by using a remote starter and watching the cams turn as the engine was cranked over. A compression test showed less than 30 psi on the best cylinder. Air cleaner box was full of oil, and also found engine oil pooled on top of transmission housing. Checked under car as best I could to asses any other contributing factors. It appears that the engine already has the 'upgraded' MLS steel head gasket as I can see two rivets in the part of the head gasket that extends out past the top of the cylinder block as viewed from underneath. As far as I can tell this car has not had any engine repair work done up to this point, so it seems to me a mechanical parts failure based on engine design. (I am an ASE certified master tech in three major categories with L-1 and L-2 drive-ability certifications as well, and over twenty five years experience with a wide variety mechanical repair and machining behind me. I do feel somewhat qualified to make this judgment). It was reported to me that there was no warning of failure, the car just lost power and stopped in the middle of a trip, on the freeway, fully warmed up and in clear conditions. These are very odd conditions for this type of failure to occur. I estimate that with parts and machine work the repair will probably run around $1000 for my customer to put this car back in serviceable condition. It alarms me that I will not be able to guarantee with any certainty that the repairs I do will be effective for any more than the mileage currently shown on the odometer. I called a local Chrysler dealership just on the off chance that maybe there was a recall of some kind being offered to owners of these cars for premature engine failures and was told that nothing is offered past the basic warranty. In my opinion, this is a premature failure - and I would have to say that a manufacturer that cared about their product would have some consideration for customers who had a car with these problems at this mileage. I don't see that there is a class action lawsuit as of yet, but I will do full documentation for my customer so they have all the information required should that come up in the future. For those considering a purchase of any Chrysler product with this engine, I would say - don't.

- Robert A., Riverside, CA, US

problem #5

Sep 092009

PT Cruiser Limited Edition 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,000 miles

we purchased a 2006 chrysler pt cruiser limited edition last year. two weeks later we tried to take a road trip and it started to stall out on us driving down the highway did it several times on the trip but we assumed it was just bad gas that we bought. we flushed and cleaned everything out thinking it would stop but it just keeps doing it more and more. a very annoying and i feel dangerous problem that should be addressed by the chrysler manufacturer. and on top of that everytime we stop at a red light or try to let it idle it will start spitting and sputtering and stall out.

- Christopher L., Junction City, KS, US

problem #4

Jun 072010

PT Cruiser Turbo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

I am still making payments on this car and I will be driving along and it starts to run really rough and then stalls out. Usually the engine light comes on. I have to remove the battery cable for 10 minutes to get a temporary fix.

- denisega, Suwanee, GA, US

problem #3

Oct 012008

PT Cruiser Turbo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,000 miles

I have a 2006 PT Cruiser Turbo that began having problems approximately 2 years ago. It runs loses power on the freeway. I've had it in the shop approximately 12 times for same problem. Sometimes the engine light comes on. Sometimes it doesn't. It NEVER does the same thing when it is in the shop. I'm told Chrysler has a policy as to how they handle these problems. However, I was also told nobody else has had this problem.

From reading input here, I know that is not true. I'm afraid I'm going to get killed or cause the death of someone else trying to get out of the way driving down the road. When it stalls and stops, I lose the ability to steer! Has ANYONE found a fix? I bought the extended warranty. That didn't do me any good. I keep paying miscellaneous charges for "checking out" the problem. Today I was told that since Chrysler isn't going to make the PT anymore, this problem would probably NOT get fixed. Has anyonce considered a class action suit?

- tfleeger, Jackson, MS, US

problem #2

Feb 232007

(reported on)

PT Cruiser

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles

PT Cruiser had been in the shop 5 times since purchased. It's a brand new 2006 car. There's obviously a major computer problem with the car and every 2 months or so, it shuts down another "computer-controlled" part of the engine. Have contacted Chrysler Corp. for solution but their policy is "as long as dealer "fixes" car, buyer has no recourse directly with them. No new car should be in the shop 5 times during the first year, but Chrysler refuses to stand behind their product and do what's right. They essentially have told me I'm stuck with the car. They would not let me talk to the district manager who made the decision that I'm not entitled to any satisfaction concerning the amount of times it's been in the shop. Not saying all PT Cruisers are bad, but I got a bad one, I understand that, just want Chrysler to show a little respect to their consumers.

- richardcalifornia, Fremont, CA, US

problem #1

Dec 032008

PT Cruiser

  • Manual transmission
  • 15,000 miles

My wife and I bought a new 2006 pt cruiser and starting at about 15k miles we have been having an intermittent stalling problem. It happens while sitting at a stop light, or driving down the road. While sitting at a stop light it will start running rough and then die. While driving down the road it will just die, but since it is a manual transmission it will roll start usually within 500 ft. I have had it into the dealership repeatedly and since the car doesn't set a code they tell me they can't find anything wrong. Occasionally the check engine light will come on but the next time I start the car it is off again and there are no codes stored. I feel like the dealership is stringing me along to let the warranty expire. It also intermittently uses oil but I don't know if the two are related. The dealership told me today that 1 quart of oil per 800 miles was acceptable consumption for the pt motor, bullsh*t! that is almost the full capacity of the motor between oil changes.

- Adam J., Newberg, OR, US

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