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Doug Demuro on PT Cruiser and his age and lack of experience with cars

Discussion in 'Mopar / FCA News' started by FThorn, Jan 10, 2020.

?

Your opinion on PTs?

Poll closed Mar 27, 2020.
  1. more positive than negative

    94.9%
  2. more negative than positive

    5.1%
  1. CudaPete

    Level 2 Supporter

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    IMO, when it became available, I think the 2.4WE, would have been a good choice to put in the PT. It would have easily fit, offered better power and economy, used a timing chain rather than a timing belt, and plugs were a breeze to change.
     
    FThorn likes this.
  2. 06PTElectricBlue

    06PTElectricBlue Active Member

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    In its heyday, the PT just screamed, "Please, do something special with me!" and there were many more accessories for, and the Gen1 was much more appropriate for modding, over the Gen2 :cool:

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    A PT also looks good with a 2-tone paint scheme :cool:

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  3. Ammo Alamo

    Ammo Alamo Member

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    My wife decided to buy a 2005 PT Limited, used. I was initially against it, but she was so adamant that I went along in the interest of family peace. Now, thirteen years later, I love the little beastie. The seats are a bit close together side by side, but the seat width and height, front leg room, and arm rests are perfect for me at 6' and my wife at 5'8". Once you learn to give the accelerator a proper kick to downshift the automatic it has plenty of power for normal driving. We have had one problem in all those years, The interior space behind the front seats is adjustable, the rear 60-40 seats come out and go back in easily (if you can lift 60 lbs) so the big dog has a nice place to lay when taking her to the vet. I replaced the gas struts on the tail, no problem and fairly cheap, so it is our daily driver which we also once drove to Canada 2000 miles round trip.

    I am not surprised to see 94% + positives on this survey. There are a lot of PTs still running strong in my small county north of Dallas near the OK border. My daughter, who drives only short distances like we do, has been through three or four cars in the past ten years, and we have had reliable service from out Petey for close to fifteen.

    Our 2005 PT Cruiser Limited, 4-cyl automatic, Vanilla color, is still great, though its 22 mpg actual is nothing to write home about. Except for occasional codes that take minor fixes like a new gas cap or cheap sensor it has been very reliable, knock on wood. We did learn the hard way to quit using a local tire dealer who apparently had a source for name-brand tires of questionable quality, which causes us to have all sorts of tire problems. Now all new tires come from WalMart, because we can get them rotated or serviced almost anywhere. Walmart is now our service choice for batteries, oil changes, and tires.

    However, now Petey's horn is not working, and I have to assume it could be the clockspring. I cold change it, but I can’t find a cheap aftermarket clockspring, so I anticipate eliminating the steering wheel horn circuit, and installing a bypass horn button.

    The biggest problem now is age (mine, and the car's) and service. At 70 I can no longer manhandle parts replacement like I could thirty years ago. Unfortunately, experience has shown me that the local Chrysler dealer, Jim Hodge Motor Company, is not to be trusted, and after talking to the service department the local Toyota dealer isn't looking much better. The next closest Chrysler dealer is 60 miles away.

    We can expect more service to be needed going forward, with a limited number of sources for aftermarket parts.
    Go, little Petey, go! We are too old and too poor to afford a new car! We just need you to last until we are a hundred, about thirty years from now…
     
    somber, dana44, gforce2002 and 3 others like this.
  4. Nuts&Bolts

    Nuts&Bolts Member

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    Glad I'm not the only one who doesn't think much of Doug - he seems to be quite keen on bandwagoning. I have also to say that I find his delivery very irritating; he seems to lack any sense of humour, and treats minor faults and flaws as if they're the end of the world.

    Can't complain about reliability on mine ('02 manual with the 2L); she's just gone into the works to have her clutch hydraulics replaced wholesale. It's costing me £500 or so, but considering they've been in there since she left Toluca and the fluid's the colour of brown ale, I'm impressed. A surprising amount of the car is original, actually; she seems pretty solidly built to me. There are definitely weak points (the front suspension really hates twisty British roads, especially now they have lots of potholes), but overall, for a nearly 20-year-old car, she's held up pretty well. I'm especially impressed by the lack of corrosion on the bodywork. Have to say though, that my folks' '05 Toyota has needed almost no work on it in ten years; my PT, by contrast, has had to have the front wishbones and drop-links done, the rear shocks replaced, an ABS sensor replaced, two new sets of track rods, and three sets of welding on her sills, and that's having done 15,000 miles fewer. The quality difference is definitely there.

    People don't appear to grasp what the PT Cruiser is for: cruising. It's not the quickest off the line, but it's very happy to amble along at between 60 and 80mph for hour after hour. On the manual, both 4th and 5th gears are overdrive, I'm guessing to facilitate easy cruising at either restricted highway speeds (50-60) or proper highway speeds (70-80) in reasonable proximity to the power band, while not constantly running the engine hard. Its suspension is softer than a lot of other cars; that makes it very comfortable for multiple-hour stints. Its steering is very light and quite precise, once you get the feel for it; I'm always delighted by the fact you can drive the PT with a single finger at speed. Its front seats (less so its rear ones) are supremely comfortable - that armrest for the driver, alone, is a stroke of genius - and everything necessary's within easy reach without needing to move an inch. The longest I've driven mine is 4h without a break, and at the end I felt absolutely fine. In the diesel Pug I learned on, an hour in the seat gave me gorilla arm!

    One thing that really baffles me is why people complain about its power, or lack thereof. A 0-60 time of 10-12 seconds (engine and gearbox depending) is really not a problem unless you're trying to get up to 60 in under ten seconds. An hp:t of about 97 is not disrespectable, especially for its era. Sure, it's not going to outpace someone in a big saloon with a 4L under the bonnet; it's not designed to, and in any case, the practical limit on road speed is usually imposed by laws, traffic, and conditions long before you hit the limit of the car's performance. Wind that little 2L out to 2,500rpm or above and it'll pull you along quite happily. Maybe the automatics struggled a bit to get the change times right (I had to train myself to rev the engine to 2,500 or so before changing up, having learned to drive on a diesel), or maybe the complainers, like DeMuro, are too busy mucking about in supercars that 99.5% of the populace will never touch.
     
    Bill Sample and FThorn like this.
  5. 66coronet

    66coronet Well-Known Member

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    You have your, fat fender cars are ugly group and then there is me, fat fender cars are awesome.
    Pt Cruiser I bought new 2003 is the last car I'm going to buy new. I'll just keep fixing it.
    I like the new beetle and sad to see it go. I like the HHR. I don't mind the new Ram promaster city wagon and it's 2.4L with it's swiss army knife interior similar to the PT cruiser. I just wish that vehicle wasn't made in Turkey. But that's just my feelings with U.S. & Turkey relations. I wish it was made in USA or Mexico or Canada. Not just final assembly I could imagine PT cruiser (or moris minor, BMW mini cooper, vw bug, HHR, neon) like nose on the Promaster city and it would be the cargo van of the family of vehicles. I'd miss the 3 layers of storage I have with my pt cruiser. I suppose I'd have to build something to replace what I enjoy with the PT cruiser.[​IMG]
     
    #65 66coronet, Mar 2, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2020
    06PTElectricBlue likes this.
  6. 66coronet

    66coronet Well-Known Member

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    Yup, PT cruiser could have been a family of vehicles like what Motor Trend put out back in 2001. This body could have been the VW golf/Rabbit kind of car. Concept car was like the prowler with it being RWD and the FWD transmission being in the back. As pictured, I could picture it could have been 2.4L SRT-4 turbo 290hp AWD using the grand caravan AWD when it had one. I also can picture it as an economy car with 15" rims 1.6L (like they used in Europe for the PT cruiser and first gen BMW MINI). Plus all PT models to offer the 2 mode hybrid like the Saturn Vue hybrid. As for panel van, it could have been like the concept or pt cruiser nose on the Ram promaster city wagon & cargo van with sliding back doors and split back doors and tall ceiling. PT convertible was a nicely engineered car with roll bar that assisted in reducing wind buffering of the passengers. I wouldn't mind if they added a little more over hang to the 5dr for maybe another 6" of storage. The back shelf is the selling point for me. 3 levels of storage where top level one can toss 2 80lbs of pet food then middle shelf with siding would have the rest of the groceries with max weight 250lbs and under shelf storage for emergency stuff. [​IMG]
     
    06PTElectricBlue likes this.
  7. Dave Z

    Dave Z It's me, Dave
    Staff Member Level III Supporter

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    They claimed they did not have any money to make those variations...
     
  8. 66coronet

    66coronet Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG] I think it looks nice with Dodge Stratus wheels and thought it should have been offered. I think the 150hp 2.4L is just fine for city driving. I think it has good get up and go when temperatures are below 70 degrees. I do find a difference and needing a higher octane as weather gets hotter. I've read that when going higher altitudes, get the turbo. As for cornering, I shift it down to lowest setting and it goes around corners kind of quick. Having the motor at 3000+rpm while cornering I find I have better control of slowing down and speeding up depending on what point of the S turn or corner you are at. Want stiffer suspension, that's what after market is for. I find headlights are good for 7-9 years if you leave your car outside in the sun. Love the paint long lasting compared to my paint separation of my 1990 LeBaron 2dr. I do find the car is sluggish on acceleration because if you are 25-35mph it only shifts down to 2nd gear and not screaming at 1st gear. The car needed to be a 5speed automatic to have a gear between 1st and 2nd gearing spacing. For better 30-60mph acceleration.
     
  9. 66coronet

    66coronet Well-Known Member

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    I suppose that's the reason why they don't have all those variations that the Chrysler 300 could spin off. I've seen a magnum nose on the Chrysler 300. They offered 300 Touring in Europe and it was basically a magnum. Why they (management) didn't want to sell them both as a 4dr sedan and wagon together in USA I will never under stand. Add another version where the magnum wagon had a raised roof, people would like the big side glass similar to the 1976 dodge aspen wagon. Customizes liked that reduced window look but family people like the big glass of older station wagons for visibility to back the vehicle safely. My sister went from 1965 Polara wagon 383 to 1976 dodge aspen wagon 318, 2.5L Aries K wagon then went to 2010 Hyundai Elantra Touring since 2010 Neon didn't offer a wagon and the Magnum just didn't have good visibly out for someone 5"2".

    Chrysler 300 was the only Chrysler sedan that is currently available RH drive for the RH drive market. Why couldn't they mix it up with the MAGNUM sedan, wagon, ute for Australia? I loved the fact the 300 offered different after market or dealership grills. They could have used those grills to offer different models & trim packages.
    The 2020 chrysler 300 has a little fin, ridge. Looking at it, it seems it would be easy for an after market to fasten into existing hole of the current tail light, an extension of the top ridge to come back on top 1" short of the back bumper then slope forward to the bottom of the light assembly to give the 1956 Fury/Savoy/Belvedere look. [​IMG]
    Then re-fender & hood the nose for oval or tear drop head lights and make the nose similar to the 1956 customized. So it could have a retro look Fury luxury & sport 5.7L/6.4L and savoy mid model 3.6L/3.0l CRD AWD and Belvedere 3.0L/ 2.4L turbo for low end torque base model, Luxury look Chrysler, daily driver low and medium models trim magnum or rename to coronet with 2006-2014 charger headlights. Then Australia, North american market, and Europe would have a LH and RH drive vehicle.
    The 300 platform could have many different cars on the same platform that would interest different buyers.
    All using the same glass and doors of the 300 to cut costs.
    If some models don't sell in high volume, the other models could compensate with the higher volume by being a cheap model and taxi/fleet duty if they can add a hybrid system to the platform.
     
    #69 66coronet, Mar 2, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2020

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