Notes: The Dodge Stratus, Intrepid & 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. Also the 2.4L engine doesn't have the oil sludge problem.

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.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
38,812 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 Stratus accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2001 Dodge Stratus Owner Comments

problem #4

Nov 182010

Stratus 4-cyl

  • 84,250 miles


Air bag light constantly on, horn and cruise control quit working at the same time. It is my understanding air bag is inoperable at this point and the cause is a broken clockspring in steering wheel. This is a major safety hazard that Dodge should be required to fix at no charge.

- Fairhope, AL, USA

problem #3

Jan 092005

Stratus 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 24,500 miles
The contact stated in December 2005 the air bag light illuminated. Afterwards, the steering wheel became extremely hard to turn left or right, and a there was a crackling noise in the driver's side steering column. Also, the horn and the cruise control were inoperative. There is a technical service bulletin 0801001 on the clock spring.

- Leominster, MA, USA

problem #2

May 172005

Stratus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,500 miles
Dodge Stratus 2001, 46000 miles. Car was purchased used from the us government on public sale. Air bag light on, horn does not work, cruise control also affected. This is caused by faulty clockspring part located in steering wheel. I called Dodge after discovering on your web site that there was a recall for 1,500,000 Grand Caravan that had a same problem caused by their faulty clockspring. Grand Caravan also had air bag light on, horn was not working and cruise control was off. I express my concern to Dodge since this is a safety issue and I was hoping they will consider fixing this. I been told to take the car to dealership for diagnostics and after they receive results they will consider fixing this. Diagnostics were performed and result was that the clockspring was broken. Dodge declined my request for fixing the problem. I end up paying for diagnostics to find out what I already knew. I believe that clockspring mechanism for Dodge Stratus is something what should be recalled for this model since it is safety issue, that appeared on other recalled models.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #1

Apr 102005


  • miles
2001 Dodge Stratus - crackling sound in steering wheel, air bag light on, no horn. The vehicle is still operating. There is also another report on your site of the same problem although I have not checked the cruise control yet. Date of prior complaint was 02/07/05.

- Ft. Myers, FL, USA

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