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Cadillac Catera and Cimarron Forum Discussion, Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>> in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Please avoid 1997 - 1998 (and some 99) models, they are the epitome of this car. Apparently most of these ...
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    Vesicant's Avatar
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    Post Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Please avoid 1997 - 1998 (and some 99) models, they are the epitome of this car.

    Apparently most of these problems pertain to this year(s)...

    1. Valve cover gasket leaks
    2. Alignment Problems
    3. Oil Cooler leak , resulting in oil in the coolant
    4. Electrical Problems
    5. Transmission electronic problems
    6. Engine Pulley/Camshaft Pulley tensioner
    7. Water Pump
    8. A/C Pump Seizing
    9. ABS/Traction Control module persistant problems
    10. Emissions Control Equipment

    To anyone who is considering these years (and some 1999); I and many others strongly reccomend you walk away from the car and save yourself not only money but fustration and time taken away. Ask any owner here, and every single one of them will have had either electrical, mechanical or engine problems. Because of Cadillac backing away from this certian model of car, support is almost non-existant in the United States. Most now rely on (from the dealer) remanufactured parts shipped in from Germany or England at a PREMIUM price because they have to be made specially for our US version car, some may products not even be made and have to be reproduced from blueprint. Ontop of this, shipping costs are outrageous- not to mention the surcharges the mechanic will strap on. When you get done bankrupting your account the parts are installed by stubborn Cadillac dealers and their mechanics not wanting to deal with your car, which usually results in a terrible job done. Most have no option but to go to a dealer because they have the knowledge and correct databases to work on your car whereas average mechanic shops do not.

    The good news is that any model 1999-2001 are practically flawless as far as these major problems go. Restructuring and a redesign of the car's internals and externals resulted in much better results. Any other problems with these years, are common failures that can happen to any make/model. Parts availability and professional help "resistance", are still hampering this car no matter what year. The 3.0 engine, known for having oil cooler leakages in this automobile; is also used in the Saturn L-Series and the base Cadillac CTS (3.2L-Same engine). Apparently the same oil leak problem the Catera has, has also shown up in these engines alike. Which means that more support is available for this problem.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Hi guy's, I'm new to the boards and i wish i would have seen this before I bought my 97 Catera.

    I haven't had any problems with it other than someone put Mercedes Benz Calipers and Rotors on it so it's hell getting it to pass inspection.

    Also my Engine light comes on and will stay on for a while then go out on it's own, Have any of you had this problem?

    I joined this board because i saw a ton of helpful info and you guy's seem to be really into making your Catera's run better.
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    Exclamation Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Quote Originally Posted by D.Boy
    Hi guy's, I'm new to the boards and i wish i would have seen this before I bought my 97 Catera.

    I haven't had any problems with it other than someone put Mercedes Benz Calipers and Rotors on it so it's hell getting it to pass inspection.

    Also my Engine light comes on and will stay on for a while then go out on it's own, Have any of you had this problem?

    I joined this board because i saw a ton of helpful info and you guy's seem to be really into making your Catera's run better.
    The engine light sounds like it may be just a simple problem. Go to say an AutoZone or anyone else who does it for free and have it scanned for histories or any current ones.

    Man... putting Mercedes parts on this car? That sounds like it could be trouble, they arent designed for it. Which could be dangerious. This also - to me, spells out that the car may have been improperly serviced. Have it checked out.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Yeah, I'm having them fixxed as we speak 500 bucks down the hole. I noticed it when i went to buy Pad's , the dealer gave me the real one's but when i took off the old one's they were really small and square. So i looked up the pad's and saw that they were Benz pad's.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Hey guy's i bought my 97 used, took it thru inspection and the guy said everything was ok but i had a bad right rear hub. He also told me that the owner of the car must have took good care of it cause the engine looked brand new. The car had 81,000 miles on it when i bought it and i hear you don't need to change the tranny fluid untill 90,000 or 100,000, is this true?

    Also How can i check to see if it is still under warranty? I also want to check the history.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Quote Originally Posted by D.Boy
    Hey guy's i bought my 97 used, took it thru inspection and the guy said everything was ok but i had a bad right rear hub. He also told me that the owner of the car must have took good care of it cause the engine looked brand new. The car had 81,000 miles on it when i bought it and i hear you don't need to change the tranny fluid untill 90,000 or 100,000, is this true?

    Also How can i check to see if it is still under warranty? I also want to check the history.
    Transmission Fluid: yes

    You have to go to a cadillac dealer to find that out - for the warranty.

    History you can go to carfax.com and buy a report.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    so you recomend the 2000 model ?

    seen a couple , they had odd headlamps on them , almost looked like zenon lamps and had led turn lamps in the rear , neat car

    i looked at a 98 , but found 3 electrical gremilns , worst being a sunroof that would stick open or half closed or anywhere , and would never latch shut , good ol webasto ! and its rear end sounded like it was shot(possible pinion depth issue) ...didnt look at another again , but if the 2000 is that much diffrent ill go peek at a couple

    do they require the use of premium fuel ?
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Im not sure about the 98-97, but i know the 99-01 require premium.

    Xenon was optioned from 99-01 .. youll know it too, it has a segmented headlight with a true projector bulb ... reminescent of the BMW setup (the eye look).

    They are dandy lil cars, and arent THAT bad performance wise, i reccomend you try sport mode on one. And also the mulit-ram air intake system opens up at around 4000+ rpms... thats where the fun begins .

    This is an HID headlamp: http://memimage.cardomain.com/member...068_2_full.jpg (this is an Opel Omega wagon, same thing... nice aftermarket front spoiler too)
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    well folk

    i will have to agree with the 97-98 crapter's are junk.

    SOmehow.. My car is mis firing on #3 #4 and #6.

    junk ass car. Never in the 200K miles and 10 plus year of owning my Supra has it giving me that many problems!!!
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    I have a 2001 sport with 36000 miles on it. I just bought it a few weeks ago for $14,500. Do you think the price was right?

    My only concerns so far are the shifting between 1st and 2nd when its cold. it only happens on the initial shift after sitting all night, after that it is fine. It gets to about 3500 rpms before it shifts. Other thing is the fog lights. The switch works and the green indicator light comes on on the dash, but they don't work.

    Any ideas?
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    That was a good price, we got our 2000 for 15.. :rolleyes2

    The shift thing when the car is cold, thats a built in function to warm up the o2 sensors... its perfectly normal.

    As for the foglights, it could be the wiring, fuses or the switch. Check the manual. It lists fuse locations.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Quote Originally Posted by JefferyG
    That was a good price, we got our 2000 for 15.. :rolleyes2

    The shift thing when the car is cold, thats a built in function to warm up the o2 sensors... its perfectly normal.

    As for the foglights, it could be the wiring, fuses or the switch. Check the manual. It lists fuse locations.
    Thanks man!

    But isn't it hurting the tranny since it has to shift at a higher RPM?
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    There's been some debates about that... if GM made it function that way when it first runs... then it must be compatable.
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    I suppose!
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    Re: Considering an older Catera? READ THIS>>

    Hi JefferyG,
    You mentioned that the 1997, 1998, and some 1999 Cater's had many problems. I recently bought a 1999. Is there any way of telling whether my car belongs to the infamous group above?
    Thanks,
    John
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