Which Bonneville to buy? SSE? SLE? - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


2000-2005 Discuss your 2000-2005 Bonneville SE, SLE, and SSEi Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 08-25-2009, 08:45 PM   #1
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Default Which Bonneville to buy? SSE? SLE?

Hi all,
my 1998 SLE died recently and I am looking to buy another Bonneville SLE(2003-2005)
Can you suggest what year should I look based on the future repair costs taking into consideration that GM stopped making them. Will there be a shortage of parts? I was thinking about 2005 model but I just realized that they made very little cars that year and if I need a replacement part (a door or bumper , etc) - it will be much more difficult to find comparing to 2000-2004 models.
Also did GM make a lot of modifications for 2005 SLE or was it just new body?

Which year I should avoid (if any) because of the known defects?

Also what is the deal with SSE? I know some people don't want them. Is it just because of higher fuel consumption? Is it true that SSE models transmission and engine are more worn out than SLE with the same mileage? The only thing I didn't like about my Bonneville is its transmission that was very slow to kick down. So I would like to get SSE but I concerned because a lot of people don't want them.

Thanks.
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Old 08-29-2009, 10:02 AM   #2
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My vote is for the best and only Bonnie I know - the 2003 SLE. I'm not sure what your needs are, but aside from the warrantied intermediate shaft that was replaced and the manifold issue that I have read about on these forums (currently in the shop), Bonnie has been a dream. Everyone says how it is the smoothest ride and wonders why they don't see more. Plus, I'm a big fan of the foglights in the center up front
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Old 08-30-2009, 12:10 PM   #3
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Just bought 2002 SSE with 45K miles. Had plans to see 6 Bonnevilles on Saturday and 4 more on Sunday but when seeing the second vehicle became a victim of high pressure sales tactics at a Toyota dealership. But I liked the car (silver with black interior) and the way it drove.
Now have to take it from them ( I was on a rental car and could not drop it in the area) so will go there on Monday to take the car.
The are suggesting Vehicle Protection Plan from GWC (50000 miles/4 years for $2400). Should I consider it?
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Old 08-30-2009, 01:21 PM   #4
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This is just my opinion but I am not a big fan of protection plans. The number one reason is they are usually limited to items that normally won't go wrong. Take all the things that normally go wrong with the Bonneville and unless you have all that work done at the dealer, it won't add up to $2400. And it won't be covered under most protection plans. I do most of my maintenance so I would rather keep that money or at least not give it to the dealer in case something goes wrong.
There is one big reason dealers suggest a protection plan. THEY MAKE MONEY ON THE PLAN. A dealer sounds like they are protecting you but the bottom line. They make money adding a protection plan to your contract.
Like I said before, this is just my opinion.
I have seen protection plans work for some people but for me they don't.
Make sure to take a really good First Photo and post it.
Mike

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Old 08-30-2009, 11:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bruzer75 View Post
This is just my opinion but I am not a big fan of protection plans. The number one reason is they are usually limited to items that normally won't go wrong. Take all the things that normally go wrong with the Bonneville and unless you have all that work done at the dealer, it won't add up to $2400. And it won't be covered under most protection plans. I do most of my maintenance so I would rather keep that money or at least not give it to the dealer in case something goes wrong.
There is one big reason dealers suggest a protection plan. THEY MAKE MONEY ON THE PLAN. A dealer sounds like they are protecting you but the bottom line. They make money adding a protection plan to your contract.
Like I said before, this is just my opinion.
I have seen protection plans work for some people but for me they don't.
Make sure to take a really good First Photo and post it.
Mike

They probably make more money on financing and warranties than on the car itself. I aslo thought about the fact that it is unlikely that all the repair would cost much more than $2400. But all my previous cars were cheap ones and I just didn't care about dents or cracked windshield or other damagies. But this cars is spotless and I want to keep it that way. But not for $2400.
Also I spend some 20 minutes googling about warranties and a lot of people comlpain that the companies that provide warranties are very creative in finding ways not to pay for a repair. So I might think that he would buy a piece of mind with this warranty, but turns out this is not always the case.
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Old 09-09-2009, 09:57 AM   #6
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I have a 2000 ssei. Outside of the usual issues all bonnevilles had like intermediate shaft, rear window regulators, my ride has run perfectly outside of normal wear and tear things like battery and brakes/rotors. Mind you the only downfall in this economy is that I use premium fuel.

Either way, good luck in your hunt for your bonne!
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Old 09-09-2009, 10:17 AM   #7
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I'm an SSEi driver myself. Man do i love the car. Hs some good giddy up and go! ride is nice and havent had to many problems with things breaking. Ofcourse you have the normal problems. Overall, all Bonnies are solid! thats just the way they were made
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