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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
61,017 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 Stratus suspension problems

suspension problem

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2002 Dodge Stratus Owner Comments

problem #3

Jun 092007

Stratus 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,500 miles


Rear shock upper mount attacked by corrosion, vehicle only 4.5 years old and 60,500 miles. Un-painted pot metal like material broke up into multiple pieces without warning. One minute vehicle drove fine, hit a typical pavement expansion joint causing a light clunk to develop. Within two miles I pulled over to inspect because the hammering in the suspension got so bad. Found the rear shock absorber was no longer retained at the upper end. Vehicle could still be driven home gently but there was nothing retaining the coil spring to the body other than gravity. Both upper mounts were replaced with painted replacement parts from the dealer. The left rear mount had not failed yet, but corrosion was rapidly turning it into powder from the top down.

- Ortonville, MI, USA

problem #2

Sep 022006

Stratus 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles
Rear strut mount plates disintegrated turned to powder creating unsafe condition with rear suspension. Replaced strut and plates. Have pieces what is left of it.

- Mahaffey, PA, USA

problem #1

Jun 292006

Stratus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,552 miles
I was driving at about 30 mph and drove over a slight depression in the pavement when I heard a loud bang from the passenger right rear. The loud banging sound continued as long as the car was driven. I noticed a compromise in the handling of the vehicle. I took the vehicle to a registered repair shop where I have been a customer for over twenty years. I was told not to drive the vehicle since the rear strut plate top mount had disintegrated due to the fact they were made out of aluminum. The driver rear strut mount was on the verge of breaking apart also. It appears that road salt probably contributed to this situation. The replacement mounts purchased from the dealer were not made of aluminum. The following repair/parts was performed: Rear shock & or strut assembly (2), upper shock mount (2).

- Amherst, NY, USA

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