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Cadillac Seville / Cadillac Eldorado Forum Discussion, 2003 STS - Anything I need to know? in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; Originally Posted by starbond Ok, so the consensus seems to be walk away. Fair enough. Let me ask this, are ...
  1. #16
    basscatt's Avatar
    basscatt is offline Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Quote Originally Posted by starbond View Post
    Ok, so the consensus seems to be walk away. Fair enough. Let me ask this, are the 2002 and 2001 models relatively the same as the 2003? Do they have all the amenities like what the 2003 has? (assuming the original owner requested it)
    ======================
    the F55 MagnaRide struts and shocks started mid-year 2002 -

    the STS models before that have the F45 struts and shocks -
    they are even MORE expensive than the F55 -

    -------------------

    these cars are cheap to buy -
    and VERY EXPENSIVE to own - maintain - and drive -

    these were in the $50,000+ price range when new -

    maintenance and repair costs are based on the original $50K price tag -
    NOT the $5000 used car price -

    you really want to drive a Seville?
    you WILL pay - and PAY - AND PAY -

  2. #17
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    Submariner409 is offline If it won't run, install a sound system
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Put your checkbook in your pocket and walk. The code descriptions and engine picture killed the deal for me.

    That mirror "tint" is actually the heater film - the mirrors are heated.

    BUT - and this is a big BUT - these cars are now at least 12 model years old. Stuff wears out, rots, breaks regardless of mileage. They're neat, nice, fast cars for what they are - and you will need deep pockets to keep them that way.
    ryannel2003 likes this.

  3. #18
    N*Caddy's Avatar
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    That car doesn't look to be maintained properly, what was done to it was done on a budget.
    The thing is with these cars, you shouldn't do things on a budget...
    If you buy that car have a $7000 spare for the first year (assuming you plan driving for long).

    The mirror is 2 layers, first one is glass and the back one is the mirror, in between there is a fluid (liquid crystal, same thing on your TV). When you have a car in the back there is a light sensor in the rear view mirror (on the windshield) and that will command the mirrors to dim so the headlamps don't shine in your eyes. This liquid crystal gets darker thus it tints the mirror.
    You need to replace the mirror (just the mirror insert not the whole assembly), probably used is in the $50+ range, new is hundreds. The thing is most mechanics don't get how that works and how important is to snap it properly in place so most people will complain after that their mirror is making a clicking sound (that is because the sensors are not attached properly to the mirror). Needles to say being a Cadillac it has position memory thus involves not just a switch wires and some motor, it also involves a controller module and some position sensors and some more wires. This is the case with every single component, and this is why stuff is expensive and hard to find qualified people to fix it.
    Most people will say the struts are expensive and so on, is not just struts, is also control module, is height sensors, is lost of electronics in the background not apparent to the driver.
    Some will say Cadillac are old fashion…well the thing is are far more advance than most cars (with lots of buttons) the difference is are designed to work in the background for the driver not require the driver to adjust 100 things. This is why you don’t have a button to adjust say the suspension. There are sensors for that and everything is keept just right.
    Let’s consider a climate control... you have one with a button for fan speed, one for heat level one for cold level one for A/C on/off, or you have a knob to set the temperature to a desired level and forget about it. The second one is far more complicated than the first one yet first one looks technological because it has many buttons.
    Anyway…Cadillac, great car, cheap to buy used (less than a Hyundai), but you have to be able to afford it on the long run.
    Mr.BayArea likes this.

  4. #19
    Submariner409's Avatar
    Submariner409 is offline If it won't run, install a sound system
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Quote Originally Posted by starbond View Post
    Ok, so the consensus seems to be walk away. Fair enough. Let me ask this, are the 2002 and 2001 models relatively the same as the 2003? Do they have all the amenities like what the 2003 has? (assuming the original owner requested it)
    VERY few of these cars were built by the original owner - 98% were bought off a showroom floor with whatever factory installed option package the dealer wanted to floorplan based on area wants and sales.

    For your Seville shopping runs you need to print out a Cadillac RPO list and carry it with you. There is a sticker under the spare tire lid with a slew of 3-character codes - they are what is/was built into THAT car.

    You can line up 5 STS and 5 SLS from March of 2002 - and every one might be a bit different, depending on the dealer-ordered option packages installed in each car.

    RPO = Regular Production Option [codes].

  5. #20
    Aztec ETC ECS's Avatar
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Quote Originally Posted by starbond View Post
    Most STS here are older with over 150 miles, and that's not good enough for me.
    It's not the mileage, it's the condition. I've seen many high mile cars that are like new in, out & under and many low milers that that were ready for the yard.

  6. #21
    orconn's Avatar
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Yeh, the trick is to find a low mileage car that is in exceptionally good condition.

    Where in South eastern Ohio do you live, Starbond?

  7. #22
    starbond's Avatar
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Funny thing is I had completely written off owning a Seville since the miles were working against me and for a while was pursuing foreign upper level cars, but when I saw this black STS with only 90k, and 2003 (door label says 3/03), it reignited the flame, so to speak, but I will trust your judgement here. My rationale for low miles is that the wear and tear on the car will be much lower , hence giving me more time before I have to start replacing things. For the record, my current car a 17 year old Deville is at 98k miles and aside from the headgaskets the repair costs on the car have been pretty low in the past 4 years I've owned it.

    Orconn, I am in the Zanesville/Newark area, but live in Columbus, and right now the Seville numbers are pretty low.

  8. #23
    basscatt's Avatar
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Quote Originally Posted by starbond View Post
    Funny thing is I had completely written off owning a Seville since the miles were working against me and for a while was pursuing foreign upper level cars, but when I saw this black STS with only 90k, and 2003 (door label says 3/03), it reignited the flame, so to speak, but I will trust your judgement here. My rationale for low miles is that the wear and tear on the car will be much lower , hence giving me more time before I have to start replacing things. For the record, my current car a 17 year old Deville is at 98k miles and aside from the headgaskets the repair costs on the car have been pretty low in the past 4 years I've owned it.

    Orconn, I am in the Zanesville/Newark area, but live in Columbus, and right now the Seville numbers are pretty low.
    =======================
    don't rule out the SLS models -
    they look exactly the same -
    do NOT have the expensive "active" suspension -

  9. #24
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Thanks basscatt. There are a number of SLSs in my area as well which I will consider. Since these cars are 10 years past, I will not know what I'm missing in terms of suspension. and having driven a 98 Deville, I will not be expecting much fancy suspension magic. But I WILL miss that extra 25hp from the STS... haha

  10. #25
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    ^^^ Not as much as you would miss the additional bucks it takes to keep a STS in tip top order.

  11. #26
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    For what it's worth, I was in a position that I needed to replace a car for my daughter last summer. I stumbled on a nice '04 SLS with about 135K on it. I have NEVER bought a car with that kind of mileage on it. The car was in great condition with the exception of several minor cosmetic flaws, all of which I was able to take care of with a trip to the Men's Mall. So far it's been very reliable and well worth the price.
    Attached Images

  12. #27
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    Ranger, I know your daughters car has the "appearance package", with the fog lights. Does it also have the extra wood on the door panels?

  13. #28
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Nope. My '03 SLS had that. What's the appearance package?

  14. #29
    MoistCabbage's Avatar
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    Not sure what it's called, or what the RPO code is, but basically STS appearance - fog lights and body color grille.

  15. #30
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    Re: 2003 STS - Anything I need to know?

    Ahh, Gotcha

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