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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
77,337 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 suspension problems

suspension problem

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2001 Dodge Stratus Owner Comments

problem #12

May 152014

Stratus 4-cyl

  • 150,000 miles


Front lower right ball joint and control arm failure. This resulted in catastrophic damage to the brake lines, control arm, loss of control, steering, tie rods, upper ball joint, cv axle severed, and bent frame. Chrysler told me that because of my VIN number I wasn't eligible for the recall repair, yet the 2001 Dodge Stratus, 2.4L sedan has been recalled by Chrysler for this same problem, with lower control arm and ball joint failure. Had I been notified of a recall, this could of been avoided. What if I was on the highway and this happened" and why wasn't my vehicle recalled???"

- Sterling Heights, MI, USA

problem #11

Jun 182014

Stratus 4-cyl

  • 248,866 miles
As I tried to start driving I heard a sound like a crack then I stop the car and walked around it and had found that the right side tire at the rear end was broken.

- San Leandro, CA, USA

problem #10

Dec 142011


  • 119,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Dodge Stratus. The contact stated that while driving 80 mph, the ball and axle joints detached from the vehicle. The contact was able to safely maneuver to the shoulder and stop. The vehicle was towed to a local repair shop. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was contacted and they stated that the vehice was not included in any recalls. The failure mileage was 119,000 and the current mileage was 125,000.

- Athens , GA, USA

problem #9

Apr 152009

Stratus 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles


I have had my car for a little over 3 years now. First it was the passenger side ball joint. Then a year later it was the ball joint on the driver side plus the control arm. Then it was the brakes and rotors. Then right after that I find out the ball joint I had just replaced on the passenger side needs replaced again! now my oil light comes on at idle after the engine has warmed up. Had the oil changed as always between 2000 and 3000 miles as I should. Had the oil sending unit replaced and still have a oil light on with a full engine of oil. Now my steering column just today made a cracking sound as I was backing up with the wheel turning to the left. Then the airbag light came on and wont go off. Now my steering is stiff. Talked to a mechanic and it is a safety issue.

- Bloomington, IN, USA

problem #8

Jan 282001


  • 70,070 miles
Dodge Stratus 2001: Severe squeaking during suspension movement: The car was having problems with squeaking noises during movement. Then while driving my daughters and their friends to the skating rink, I heard a loud pop, then grinding noise coming from under the car while making a left turn into the parking lot. I checked to see what was wrong and the left rear tire was bent outward and almost detached from the car. I had it towed to the closest repair station and was told it was the ball and joint, and that both left and right ball and joints would have to be replaced at a cost of $1000. As a single parent I can not afford this. I would like to know about the national recall and if I am entitled to repair cost under the recall. Thank god we were not injured and that I was traveling less than 10 miles per hour during this failure.

- Austell, GA, USA

problem #7

Nov 032009


  • 78,000 miles
2001 Dodge Stratus. Loss of control. Resulting in 2 separate crashes. I did sustain injury in the last incident. I was trying to turn left into a parking lot, wheel turned only partially. I could not get it to move the correct direction, and I ran into a tall (15in.) curb. Sustained whiplash and a large knot on my head. The 1st incident was while trying to turn left and my car would not go that way. I ended up hitting yet another tall curb, due to loss of control. It may be worthy to note I have replaced the lower control arm on the drivers side, but am still getting periods of having a hard time turning my wheel. This occurs whether in motion or just starting my car and turning the wheel to leave. I also had to replace right side due to failure of the wheel to turn right as well. I actually was going about 30mph and barely made my turn, almost broadsiding a sitting vehicle. When I checked it, my tire was "bent inward' at the top. The whole tire was, well, like this, / (but actually bent the other way, inward. My steering wheel works randomly. Please advise, as this is my only mode of transportation. I don't know what else to have fixed on it! I've already dipped almost $2000 "fixing" it. Thank you. The incident date below is just the latest. The one where I hit my head. As of today, my steering has a mind of its own.

- Springfield, IL, USA

problem #6

Jun 022009


  • 118,112 miles


Lower ball joint, upper ball joint not made very well.

- Merrill, WI, USA

problem #5

Nov 182003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,000 miles
When turning corners a crunchy noise was heard.

- Amelia, OH, USA

problem #4

Mar 212003


  • miles
While driving the vehicle started to swing from left to right.

- Still Water, ME, USA

problem #3

Nov 022001


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Consumer states that the whole front end has been replaced, however the vehicle continues to have suspension problems, possibly causing problems with the steering.

- New Martinsville, WV, USA

problem #2

Jul 122002


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
While making a left turn it felt like something was rubbing. Vehicle has not been examined by dealer.

- Reklaw, TX, USA

problem #1

Jun 152001


  • miles
Suspension feels very loose at higher speeds when you encounter bumps and potholes in the road also steering wheel catches and pulls right when attempting to make a right hand turn causing the vehicle to hit curbs or cross into traffic

- Tulsa, OK, USA

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