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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 6
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
67,135 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.

2001 Dodge Intrepid engine problems

engine problem

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2001 Dodge Intrepid Owner Comments (Page 6 of 16)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #201

Jul 252006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,000 miles


Engine went due to oil sludge build up at 52,000 miles. Car was properly maintained.numerous problems with this car starting at about 30,000.

- Nesconset, NY, USA

problem #200

Feb 262006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • miles
My wife and I bought a 2001 Dodge Intrepid in 2001. The timing chain went out on us twice, the first time my wife was driving it and it was shaking and rattling. We took it to the dealership and they fixed it under warranty, without informing us of the problem with these 2.7 liter engines. The second time I was driving home from work on the freeway and the car lost compression, I pulled off the freeway and then couldn't start the car back up again. I had it towed to the dealership, they told me we needed to get a new engine which would cost us about $7,000 dollars, or they could try to fix the timing chain again for around $1,000 dollars, but there was no guarantee it would start. We called the dealership that we bought it from they told us they couldn't help us since it wasn't under warranty anymore. They said we could try to contact Chrysler, but they probably would not help us. So now we have a five year old car that we can't use and can't afford to get fixed. We are a young family with a 2 year old and 3 month old, and would greatly appreciate some help in this matter. Thank you for your time.

- Eastpointe, MI, USA

problem #199

Jun 162006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles
: the contact stated that the vehicle's engine blew while traveling 65 mph. The vehicle was cruising on the highway when a ticking sound was heard coming from under the front hood. Shortly after, the vehicle lost power, and the ticking sound became louder. The vehicle was pulled over and towed to an independent repair shop who determined that the engine was blown and that a new engine would have to be installed. The vehicle was not restarted once the ignition was switched off. The vehicle had an automatic transmission.

- Washington, PA, USA

problem #198

Jul 062006

Intrepid 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles


: the contact stated the vehicle's engine had significant sludge buildup. The vehicle was taken to an auto shop for a regular scheduled oil change on 05/10/06 who determined that the engine had this problem. A few weeks later, the vehicle was driven over a pot hole and heard a rattle noise. The vehicle was taken to the dealer on 07/05/06 who determined that it was unsafe to operate. The vehicle was driven to the dealership on 07/06/06 to purchase a new vehicle, however it would not restart when leaving the dealer. The dealer inspected the vehicle and determined that the starter or the battery was not the cause of the problem. The vehicle was towed to the residence. There are many complaints of Intrepid engines suffering from sludge buildup.

- Cherry Hill, NJ, USA

problem #197

Jul 152005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles
Water pump failure. On further inspection of vehicle, sludge buildup contributed to overall breakdown of engine. Dodge dealer said replacement is necessary.

- Mountlake Terrace, WA, USA

problem #196

Jun 242006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,000 miles
2001 Dodge Intrepid that was well maintained (oil changes always within owners manuals recommendations) and low miles (66,000) lost power on interstate. As driver began to pull over, steam appeared from engine compartment. Chrysler dealer told us that it was a complete engine failure.

- Towson, MD, USA

problem #195

Jun 132006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles


We were driving down a major highway and suddenly the car lost power and all of the lights came on, luckily we were able to pull off the busy highway without causing a major pile up. The car had to be towed to a garage where we were told that it needed a new engine! the garage checked everything, all fluid levels were normal, the guy said that there was no "explainable" reason why this occurred. A few months before this my timing belt was replaced along with several other issues (to the tune of $800) and it had just had one of the big check ups. The last 6 months or so my oil light would come on intermittently. I had this checked numerous times, the oil was always fine (and always maintained every 3000 miles). The garage at that time could not figure out why the oil light kept coming on and for lack of anything else said it was probably a short in the light. My car is only a 2001 and now is in need of a $6000 engine!

- Kingston, NH, USA

problem #194

May 142006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,622 miles
In February of 2006 we purchased a 2001 Dodge Intrepid for our daughter to drive. In may of 2006 she was driving the Intrepid South on us-131 just past the I-94 exchange when the engine started knocking. The oil light or check engine lights never came on. The car slowed down and came to a stop. Thank god she was able to get the car over to the shoulder of the road safely before the engine quit. So after a $192 towing bill and being told the car was a piece of junk, we are making payments on a $5,000. Dead horse in our driveway.

- Sturgis, MI, USA

problem #193

Dec 122005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,500 miles
I have been having a problem with my engine oil light flashing at random. Also the oil just seems to disappear into thin air. I have had the oil signet unit replaced and I follow regular oil change schedules. I have taken it to the auto mechanic on several occasions due to small oil leaks. I have heard horrifying stories concerning the 2001 Dodge Intrepid and their engine failures. I have to believe that they are true because as of right now two of my co-worker's 2001 Dodge Intrepids are sitting on our college campus due to engine failures. I am so terrified of driving this car. My job requires that I do a lot of traveling and I only have this one vehicle. Based on my research in the last couple of months that Chrysler is well aware of this major defect and should be held accountable.

- Americus, GA, USA

problem #192

Jun 062006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 119,812 miles
: the contact stated while driving 65 mph the oil light illuminated, the vehicle started to jerk and then stalled. There was a loss of power steering and ABS. The vehicle was pulled to the side of the highway. The vehicle was then towed to the contacts home for inspection by a local mechanic. The mechanic determined the engine had oil sludge and needed to be replaced. Although the dealer was alerted no further inspections have been made. The manufacturer has not been alerted.

- Bloomington, CA, USA

problem #191

May 052006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,345 miles


I have a 2001 Dodge Intrepid. Recently, while driving on interstate 70 the car's engine made a loud noise and then suddenly died. I was barely able to escape being struck by other cars as I steered onto an exit ramp. Our local Dodge dealership diagnosed the engine trouble as oil sludge requiring a new engine. We change our oil regularly. This is a well documented problem with the Chrysler 2.7 L engine. ( Chrysler has refused to do anything about it.

- Independence, MO, USA

problem #190

Jun 012006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,000 miles
: the contact stated while traveling 35 mph, with no warning, the vehicle stalled. The vehicle would not restart and was towed to the dealership. The dealership determined the timing chain stretched and jumped causing engine failure. The engine needs to be replaced.

- Fairport, NY, USA

problem #189

Mar 092006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles
The car, without warning, died while being driven on the freeway.

- Merced, CA, USA

problem #188

Jan 012005

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,700 miles
: the contact stated while stopped at a traffic light the engine failed without warning. There were no indicator lights illuminated prior to the engine failure. The vehicle would not restart and was towed to dealer for inspection. Upon inspection the engine failure could not be determined. The manufacturer was alerted.

- Winder, GA, USA

problem #187

Apr 282006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles
Engine failure due to oil sludge.

- Kingsport, TN, USA

problem #186

Mar 302006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,700 miles
The day after I got a routine oil change on my 2001 Dodge Intrepid, I was driving in town and my car seized up and died. I did not know what to do, so I put it in park and tried to restart it. I was on a hill and fortunately, was not traveling fast so I was able to drift in neutral to a curb. What a feeling, a sudden jolt, losing control of the steering and the brakes. I certainly did not expect the news that was to follow. I had the car towed to a dealer and was told that I needed a new engine and the cost would be about $5500. How could that be? there is only 48,700 miles on this car and I have it serviced every 3000 miles. I certainly cannot afford to put a new or rebuilt engine in this car and still have a loan on if for over $4000. I began to investigate and found out that the company has been well aware of the problem with the 2.7 liter engines and are doing nothing about it. There is even a clause that states that extended warranties are not available on this engine. Furthermore, I understand that the trade-in value of any car with this engine has gone drastically down. We, the consumers, are being shafted by Dodge. I loved this car and expected to own it for at least 10 years. Now it has become my biggest nightmare. Any.

- Tamaqua, PA, USA

problem #185

Apr 302006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,000 miles
I own a 2001 Dodge Intrepid with a 2.7L V-6 engine with just over 83,000 miles on it. Driving between tampa and orlando Florida, engine started making a rattling noise and lost power. No warning lights came on and the temperature gauge was normal. I was able to coast to nearby exit and get off of expressway, but stranded in remote area. It appeared car overheated with a burst bleeder housing. After getting it towed to orlando, I learned that the engine blew a head gasket and was damaged beyond repair. Replacement quotes are in the range of $3,500 to $4,000 range.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #184

Apr 242006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,600 miles
Engine on 2001 Dodge Intrepid failed on my way to work on 4/24/06. Engine is 2.7L 6 cylinder DOHC - timing chain broke - and engine is ruined. Will cost 7,700 to replace.

- Branford, CT, USA

problem #183

Apr 282006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,075 miles
Blown engine with 62,075 miles. I have all service record on this 2001 Dodge Intrepid SE 2.7 liter.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #182

Mar 152006

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 81,467 miles
The oil light on my 2001 Dodge Intrepid began flickering at stop lights. I took it to the dealership, and was told that I had a short in my electrical system, not a major issue. Two months later, my engine began sputtering and died on the interstate during rush hour. I was able to restart it and make it to work with my engine smoking badly, but had to have it towed to a mechanic, who told me my engine was shot. Dealership would do nothing. Car had 81500 miles and warranty ran out at 80000.

- Lexington, SC, USA

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