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:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
5 / 1
Average Mileage:
78,778 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2002 Dodge Intrepid Owner Comments

problem #9

Sep 072015

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • 146,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Intrepid. While the vehicle was parked, the air bag warning light illuminated. In addition, the contact stated that the horn and cruise control feature were activated, but failed to function. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who diagnosed that the clock spring needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 146,000. Updated 02/23/16 the consumer contacted the dealer. However they refused to do anything about the air bag problem. Updated 02/23/16.

- Cincinnati , OH, USA

problem #8

Nov 212014


  • 97,000 miles
The car hit a patch of black ice and car slid into another vehicle going 55 mph on the highway. Driver was wearing a seatbelt at time of accident and the airbag never deployed. Driver had facial injuries and elbow went through windshield. Very fortunate that was all.

- Lansing, MI, USA

problem #7

Sep 012013


  • 170,000 miles
We bought this car as the third owner the air bag light was on the cruise control didn't work and the horn wouldn't sound.after searching the internet, and finding out that they had many many of the internal pasts changed and the multitudes of people reimbursed, we took our car to the dealer and told because we were the third owner, and that the mileage was high, they would not accept responsibility. The car was never been in a accident, nor has it been abused. I think that because my horn can't work it may be a concern. I also think wile driving my air bag may deploy causing an insident.both Dodge Intrepid, and other Dodge have the same problems. The problem can be resolved by paying 4-TO5 hundred dollars to the consumer. I feel as though the cost and replacement of the part should go back to the manufacturer as it is an internal part in the steering that breaks with out warning and without any cause from outside sources I.e.accedentsor other. Because not enough people contacted you, the manufacturer decided it wasn't good enough to be considered or issue a recall.

- Grass Lake, MI, USA

problem #6

Oct 012011


  • 75,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Intrepid. While parked, the contact noticed that the air bag warning light was illuminated on the instrument panel. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnostics where the technician advised that the air bag module would have to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 75,000.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #5

Jul 152007


  • 105,000 miles
Coolant would completely discharge randomly and the plastic harness inside the steering wheel breaks while turning, thus rendering the horn / airbag useless. The harness is a $400+ repair and the coolant system resulted in $2800 in repairs due to a chain effect of problems. It all stemmed from a defect overfill cap and water pump. The coolant discharge occurs on the drivers side wheel-well and could easily cause loss of control. It would be nice to have a functioning air bag if that were to happen.

- Crestview, FL, USA

problem #4

Apr 072007

Intrepid Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 116,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Dodge Intrepid. While driving 25, the contact made a left turn in an attempt to avoid an oncoming vehicle and crashed into a utility pole. The air bags did not deploy. The majority of the damage was on the front driver side of the vehicle. The contact can provide pictures and a police report if needed. The current and failure mileage were 116,000. The contact does not have the VIN.

- Bessemer, AL, USA

problem #3

Apr 292004

(reported on)

Intrepid 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Consumer's fiance' was injured when vehicle was hit on driver side door and the air bags failed to deploy.

- Garner, NC, USA

problem #2

Mar 232004

(reported on)


  • miles
While driving about 25 mph vehicle was involved in a collision. It rear ended an 18 wheeler. Upon impact, air bags failed to deploy. Driver was killed, and the front passenger was brain dead.

- Cedar Hill, TX, USA

problem #1

Sep 172003


  • miles
The consumer was driving approximately 35 mph when another vehicle hit the driver's front. Neither air bag deployed upon impact. There were injuries to driver and passenger.

- Cambridge, MA, USA

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