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
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
99,867 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (1 reports)
  2. replace heater tube assembly, thermostat, coolant (1 reports)
  3. replace switches (1 reports)
2002 Dodge Stratus AC / heater problems

AC / heater problem

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2002 Dodge Stratus Owner Comments

problem #3

Apr 012012

Stratus Stratus

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles


When you need the a/c the most is when you can not get it to come on and work. It will be working good and then hot air will start blowing out of vents. If you have time to keep working with the controls you can finally get the a/c working again. Freon is good and is not the problem. Fan will only work on high for heater or a/c. I was first told the insulation was breaking apart and causing the a/c to get clogged and sometime pieces of it does blow out but the controls seem to be the main problem with the a/c. The heater has worked good but only with the fan on high. It gets hot in TX and would be nice if you could depend on it working all the time.

- , Graham, TX, USA

problem #2

Nov 202014

Stratus R/T 3.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

Craps out right before summer time, and in spring time we had some 90+ degree days.. still not fixed because the system leaks...everything on this car is failing. I will not repair because the cost of repairs is out weighing the cars value.

- , Belchertown, MA, USA

problem #1

Feb 152014

Stratus SXT 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 97,600 miles

heater fan blowing cold air

Heater Blowing Cold. Replaced Thermostat, drained antifreeze, flushed radiator, refilled with 2g of 50/50 pre-mix. Did not correct problem. Air possibly in system from anti-freeze being low? Previously replace with Mopar antifreeze 5 / year 100,000 - 2 years prior to problem. Radiator hoses were not leaking looked ok. Took vehicle in. Mechanic found Heater hose assembly had rotted and was drip leaking for sometime. Heater hose assembly $183.70. Antifreeze $29.98. Thermostat $15.99. + labor; about $70-$80 per hour.

- , Eastpointe, MI, USA

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