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.


fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
69,500 miles
Total Complaints:
2 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (1 reports)
  2. replaced radiator (1 reports)
2002 Dodge Stratus cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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2002 Dodge Stratus Owner Comments

problem #2

Jan 012010


  • 85,000 miles


WOW AGAIN, this car is a PIECE OF SH*T. The radiator at the top part where it is plastic. A hairline crack develops along the front of the top plastic top of the radiator. That would be the part that connects to the entire aluminum unit. This plastic piece is also where the hose attachment is located. This is the second radiator that just cracked on its own. I replaced it with a salvage part because I didn't want to sink more money into this piece of sh*t (see black paint & transmission failure complaints). It is just not worth it. I am now using a two part glue from the auto part store. It holds for a bit but then leaks slowly.

- , Revere, MA, USA

problem #1

Sep 262007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles

This car is a joke. Get out of it if you can....

- , Omaha, NE, USA

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