What to look for in a '03 SSEi? - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


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Old 11-29-2010, 01:11 AM   #1
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Default What to look for in a '03 SSEi?

Hi guys & gals, first time poster on this forum so be gentle with me. I'm planning on looking at a 2003 SSEi tomorrow and was wondering if there are any problem areas I need to look at specifically. I was searching for something like a buyer'* guide but couldn't really find anything.

For reference I previously owned a '92 SSEi and currently own a '97 40th Anniv. SSEi. So I'm familiar with the drivetrain in general, just looking for things that might be specific on the later generation models.

Oh, BTW, I also used to own a '89 20th Anniv. Turbo Trans Am. I guess I like my forced induction Pontiacs.

TIA,
Ron Kristin
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:21 AM   #2
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OK, I feel a little stupid because I just found the sticky. dh2

Any other tips would be appreciated.

Ron Kristin
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Old 11-29-2010, 09:08 AM   #3
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Check the body around the rear subframe. Sawgunner had a problem with his SSEi dripping fuel and rusting it out. The only other thing I can think of is the hood. Watch for bubbles in the paint.
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Old 11-29-2010, 11:49 AM   #4
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CHeck the rear shocks for leaks, pop the hood look for oil pooling around injectors (valve cover gasket failure.) Do an aggressive test drive, goin through all the gears, listen/feel for slipping. Also listen to Supercharger< make sure theres no squeaking. (also during ur test drive, its important to hit the highway. around bends if it feels like the rear of your car is sliding around, possible indication of bad rear shocks. in a nut shell, look over and test as much as reasonably possible. there are some things that are quick and easy to fix, others that can be a pain in the butt.
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Old 11-29-2010, 11:35 PM   #5
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Thanks for the tips. Unfortunately I got in late today due to delays so I didn't get a chance to see the car yet. Oh, and I don't know how aggressive I'll get to be in the test drive. Today was 20 degrees, heavy wind, & snow. The roads here are only mildly plowed & salted. Hoping for some slightly better weather tomorrow even if it'* colder. Either way it'* certainly not ideal conditions but I just happened to be in the same town as this car for business.
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Old 11-30-2010, 09:45 PM   #6
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Ok, finally got over to check out the car today. Weather was not great, about 20 degrees & windy and just after sunset.

The good: 2003 SSEi, 58k miles, very clean (inside, outside, under the hood, undercarriage), drives good (from my short test drive), good color combo (white/taupe).

The bad: Ah, no low beams! And no indicator that they were out. Do the newer gen cars not have a warning on the DIC if a bulb(*) are out? My '92 & '97 both did. The fog lights work as well as the high beams.

Also getting a "check gas cap" message on DIC. Could just be a bad cap, could be any of several sensors/components.

The passenger front window is fast on the way down, slow on the way up. Is this normal? Is the driver'* window express up & down and the passenger only express down?

Possibly a bad speaker, maybe driver'* door. Sounded better from passenger side.

Missing the following options: HUD, XM, & heated seats. Also missing the emergency kit for the trunk & rear mats.

So my test drive was shortened without the use of low beams. Tried high beams and got flashed by about 20 cars. Stopped and turned around, checked out electronics and interior. Drove back behind another car with only fog lights on.

Since I'm only in town until early Thursday morning if I'm going to drive it home (some 1,200 miles) I'd have to do the deal tomorrow. Decisions, decisions....
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Old 11-30-2010, 10:31 PM   #7
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Can you tell if the bulbs are burnt out, or simply not working. I believe there is a fuse for each.

I can't say for sure but I will assume the passenger side window goes up slower to prevent kids from getting their heads stuck.
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Old 12-01-2010, 12:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danthurs View Post
Can you tell if the bulbs are burnt out, or simply not working. I believe there is a fuse for each.
Well they look like they had been replaced with Sylvania bulbs. I didn't pull them but I figured it'* either bulbs, fuse, relay, or switch.

The gas cap error worries me a little but it depends what code it throws up.

They were willing to deal a little on the price but I think I'm gonna pass for now. For a little more I can get into an '07 Grand Prix GT, SC Series III, less miles, and powertrain warranty up to 100k. Doesn't quite have the looks that the Bonnies do but a good, zippy car for a daily driver.
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