Originally Posted by martman
I have 97 SE it is just turning over 230k kilometers or 150k miles. How long should this engine go.
Let me answer it this way... How old are you? I have a '95 SE which is going to outlive me. I already told the wife... when I kick the bucket, save money for the coffin, and just bury me in the car. No hearse, just have AAA send over a tow truck to take the car and me to the cemetery.
There are legions of L36s still on the road. Yes, some are just misfits/lemons and went to the yards years ago because they deserved it. But many of them, particularly when you find a gem, will just go on, and on, and on. If you have made it comfortably to 150K mi, you have as far as you want to go, still remaining.
My theory to helping the cars last, is to stay ahead of the curve. Don't let the car operate under strain.
A Delco or Anso 02 sensor watches your fuel and air.
180* thermostat buys you almost 10% reduction in thermal operating and wear.
Gutted air box, K&N filter, and maybe a high flow cat. Good breathing. Yes, they may be considered "performance mods". But they let your car operate more efficiently, not just "pop".
An inexpensive scantool can help you review what is going on under the covers. And should you get a CEL, at least you know, generally what is going on.
I am a major fan of the electrical/charging components. The Series II is particularly good at joining in a conspiracy of dysfunctional operation, and you don't even know it. At least a dozen times, I have seen a charging circuit test fine, but the battery is so swollen, it looks like it could explode.
This falls under the category of issues, which are likened to why your battery cables and connections should be cleaner and sounder than your teeth. The battery and alternator have specific assignments once you turn the car over.. kinda'. A battery which needs continual support from the alternator, takes the alternator'* amps away, from its other important duties... like the fuel pump. An alternator with only enough guts to charge the battery, and little else, you have the same risks of operating under lousy firing conditions. And if the circuit is shorted or interrupted because of the cables... you can get a whole bevy of problems.
There are many other things, but just stay ahead of the curve. If you get any indications, its better to replace something ahead of time, than risk stress on the car by thinking you'll wait for it to get near death before replacement.
The dealbreaker for my '95 would be the transmission. when it goes, she'll have to go.
But even with that... 2 years ago I could tell it was having some noticeable (to me only) slipping from the spindles (whatever) between the gear and overdrive. I thought, "well, this is it" and soon bought the '98 for the anticipated death in the family.
Drained some tranny fluid and replaced it with some Lucas..... She all but healed and has been merrily going along.
The car will not die, it just plain refuses to..
PS Sometime way back i met the biggest fan of the Bonneville i ever met. A handsome blond woman in her 40s, pulled up with me at a convenience store in a mint '97. From my travels in corporate America, I noted she was wearing (about) $1000 Armani business suit. In the checkout line, struck up a conversation. She was a chief financial officer at a fairly well-sized local/regional company. Talk about her car went on, ..225K miles, didn't know much about cars, but knew a lot about proper maintenance, "Yeah, it broke down once.(once?) A few years ago.. the starter went" and she really loved just traveling in her car, her Bonneville. But I had to ask..
"At your level, a CFO would normally have a Mercedes, or Lexus.. something like that. I know you like to drive, I bet you have a BMW 7XX at home....
"No. (grinning) Flashy looking hamburger, never tastes as good as seasoned prime rib."
Ya gotta respect passion.