ANNOUNCEMENT: The Car Book 2018 is now online!

Ratings on over 1,000 new & used models going back 5 years, from the Center from Auto Safety. Learn more about The Car Book 2018 here. 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:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
120,242 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

problem #5

Jun 272017


  • 105,208 miles


An oil plug front left of engine block blew out pumping oil onto catalytic converter. Open flames melted wheel well, back bumper, and fuel hoses off of gas tank. Fire went out went all the oil was pumped out of engine and car stopped moving. I contacted Chrysler safety, they referred me to Dodge customer care; they initially created a case #31892226 but then sent a letter saying they were not responsible because the car was out of a three-year warranty period and also unspecified environmental factors. Although my wife and son were almost immolated, it wasn't important enough for them to check into. The car remains parked at a local garage awaiting investigation.

- Roswell, NM, USA

problem #4

Jun 082016


  • 145,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Intrepid. The contact stated that fuel fumes were emitting in and around the vehicle. After inspecting the vehicle, the contact noticed that fuel was leaking from the top of the engine and the check warning light illuminated. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 145,000.

- Evansville, IN, USA

problem #3

Sep 182013

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • 111,000 miles
Engine failure 2.7L 2002 Dodge Intrepid vehicle owned over 10 years 111K miles current odm, oil change was not due at the time of engine failure.

- Manteca, CA, USA

problem #2

Jul 222013

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • 111,000 miles
Engine failure sludge, engine design.

- Manteca, CA, USA

problem #1

Jan 172013

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • 129,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Intrepid. The contact stated that when driving approximately 55 mph or less, she would hear a loud knocking noise with the illumination of the low oil warning light. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where they advised her that there was sludge in the motor, which needed to be cleaned. The vehicle was repaired by cleaning the sludge out of the engine however, the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer where they advised that the fuel and the cam sensor could have been the cause of the failure. The vehicle was repaired for both components. The manufacturer was contacted and offered no assistance. The failure mileage was approximately 129,000. The current mileage was approximately 130,000. Updated 04/02/13

- Sanger, CA, USA

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