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Old 02-27-2003, 02:41 PM   #1
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Default Used Bonneville info

Hi there- I'm new to this forum.
I have a question and would appreciate any responses. I am considering buying a used (possibly '99) Bonneville. What are the mechanical issues I should look out for? Are these cars generally reliable? (Engine, transmission, suspension etc)
Also, what pricerange would be acceptable for a 99 model with moderate mileage (say 45-55K)?
Thanks.
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Old 02-27-2003, 08:15 PM   #2
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Anyone?
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Old 02-27-2003, 08:29 PM   #3
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I can only think of one reoccuring issue with the NA 3800 engines. The intakes(because they are plastic) tend to leak coolant after time. If you put in a 180 thermostat it will help to prevent this from happening. If you take good care of it you probably will see very little in the way of surprise repairs.

What model are you looking at? SE, SSE, SSEI? Also how is the overall condition of the car?
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Old 02-27-2003, 08:34 PM   #4
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Can't be worse then my 89 se. New fender, new hood, new wheel well, new alternator.. hehe...
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Old 02-27-2003, 09:07 PM   #5
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I've got answers for you on my site! Check out my Tech Info section (All 3 pages of 100+ files) for all the info on these cars & their inherant problems!
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Old 02-27-2003, 10:29 PM   #6
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The Engine on our Cars and nick named "Bullet Proof"... that sums it up my friend!
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Old 02-27-2003, 10:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jr's3800
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bonneville_blue
The Engine on our Cars and nick named "Bullet Proof"... that sums it up my friend!
On this I must say I agree whole heartedly...
I've sent 2 cars to the junkyard, 79 Malibu and a 89 Continental. Neither could stand up to my driving. The 3800 series 1 SC under my hood just won't die, and I'm glad. I never plan on selling this car. Just gonna keep it as a spare. Good cars are hard to come by.
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Old 02-27-2003, 11:08 PM   #8
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Also the 99 year of Bonneville'* had all the bugs worked out by then. I have 101k miles on my 99 Bonneville SE and no problemos and I do lots of R&D and performance testing on it all the time.
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Old 02-28-2003, 12:09 AM   #9
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Thanks a lot guys! I have not looked at a specific preowned yet. So I don't know which trim level etc. The price range you mentioned sounds very reasonable too. My wife and I will need to buy a second car towards the end of the year and I wanted to do some research this time to avoid potential lemons. We own a 98 Taurus (3.0 Dohc 200hp). While I like the car, I found out about the notorious transmission problems only after we bought it (so far we haven't had any problems). I got my driver license on a Bonneville back in 93. So I guess you could say I'm nostalgically attached to the Bonny.
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Old 02-28-2003, 08:02 AM   #10
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I don't know what area of the country you live in.....But I just bought an 02 SE here in * Carolina.......near Charleston.....
It was marked $16,900 and I got it for $14,400.
It was a "program"........with 25k on it.......and they certified it to give it an extra 3k of warranty......to 39k.
It doesn't have the climate control.....just the basic heat/air system....
Only a single CD player.....
It listed for $23k+ new.
I was also very impressed with the certification........I think it was 120 points they checked......and they did replace the outer tierod ends.......nothing else needed it.
After I bought it..........it pulled to the right a tad.......so I went back and they checked the alignment.........
Then I had the wheels rotated and it cured the pull.
I don't know how much you want to spend.......but there are some awfully good deals out there.

Oh by the way.......it'* my second Bonny.......I traded the 96 on it.......with 166k miles and a leakiing intake that had just started.
Good luck and have fun shopping.
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