really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
94,200 miles
Total Complaints:
114 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. replace engine (38 reports)
  2. replace the engine (28 reports)
  3. not sure (15 reports)
  4. new engine (9 reports)
  5. rebuilt the engine (6 reports)
  6. needs new motor (5 reports)
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2002 Chrysler Sebring:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #74

Dec 012009

Sebring LE Convertible V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Total Engine failure in December. Just coughed and coasted to a stop. Less than 60K miles - purchased brand new in 2002 and bought the 7/70 warranty!...which means expired at 7 years in October. Now that is nearly perfectly executed planned obsolescence! Dealer quotes $7K to replace engine on a car that is worth $5K if running...and then actually asked me if I wanted to proceed!

Anybody need a doorstop with new brakes & tires?

- Rick C., Dove Canyon, CA, US

problem #73

Aug 032009

Sebring 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

We service the car like we where suppost to and still owe $5000.00 and it will cost that much to repair or replace the engine so we make payments for a car that sits in the driveway oh with full coverage.

- lmachado, Auburn, CA, US

problem #72

Oct 012009

Sebring LXI 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,000 miles

Thought I had ran out of gas but apparently the real problem was that the oil was full of water meaning a blown head gasket and/or cracked head. Contacted a mechanic who informed me this was a "Problem Motor" and that Chrysler would take no responsiblity for it. After visiting this site and reading all the comments I guess the guy knows what he's talking about. Still paying for the car so have to fix it by replacing engine with a later 2003 or above 2.7L engine. I really dislike paying for the car now and frankly they can come and get it and it would be fine by me. Do you think the finance company really wants a car back that needs a new motor? I doubt it! At least, I feel much better now.

- Bj S., Lufkin, TX, US

problem #71

Aug 242009


  • Automatic transmission
  • 124,000 miles

do not by a chrysler vehicle I have had to replace struts and tyerods often and now the engine is bad and it is going to cost me 6400 dollars to replace it Not going to happen any time soon I will never agin own another vehicle made by chrysler

- Julie R., McMechen, WV, US

problem #70

Nov 262007

Sebring LX 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 82,150 miles

OMG!!! I bought my car in 2003, I paid it off 2007. On Monday 26 November 2007 my car starts knocking real bad. So I pulled to the side of the road. Not realizing what the problem was I continue to drive home. As I approach a light my car shut off on me without any notification. I did not have any lights on warning me of any damages. Gratefully I am in the military and when your pulled over everyone seems to stop and asks if you need assistance. Finding the problem was easy for mechanics, my motor was DEAD. Just to be on the safe side I had two expert mechanics come out at different times to give me their opinion. I also even took it to the shop. I have to pay over $5,000 to repair the engine. The back thing is I get my maintenance done on the car every three months, I get it serviced when I'm supposed to. Why didn't anyone find this before it happened? The mechanics talk about oil sludge in my engine which caused my rod in my motor to go bad. This is crazy. I will never, ever buy another CHRYSLER. I called the dealership to find out there is nothing they can do for me. This is pathetic.

- LaShawnda C., Watertown, NY, US

problem #69

Jul 242009

Sebring LX 2.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 84,000 miles

NIGHTMARE....I DON'T KNOW WHERE TO START!!! I was financing my car and loved it. I kept up with my car and gave it all the TLC it needed AND OIL CHANGES INCLUDED, but it didn't need much. As time went by I paid off my car in about 18 months(paid off early) and I was so happy!!! Give or take 3 months later my oil light started coming on and off. I thought of it as being a bad sensor or something, nothing more. Boy was I wrong. Then on my way to work my car shut off, but it cranked back up. My goal was to take it to the shop when I got a day off, but I never made it. My car started making a terrible noise and running hot. I parked it in my yard and haven't touched it since. Now I'm riding around using my Expedition which is killing me on gas. My mechanic said it's a $1,200 job but can get higher because I need a new engine. I don't think my car would get fixed anytime soon or might not get fixed at all....I'M VERY ANGRY AT CHYSLER FOR CONTINUING TO MAKE THESE CARS WHEN THEY KNEW THIS WOULD OF BEEN A PROBLEM!!! I WANT TO SUE THEM IF IT IS POSSIBLE!!!

- shay83, North Charleston, SC, US

problem #68

Jul 082009

Sebring LXI 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,457 miles

click to see larger images

oil sludge resulting in engine failure oil sludge resulting in engine failure oil sludge resulting in engine failure oil sludge resulting in engine failure oil sludge resulting in engine failure

It should have came with a warning label caution change oil every 2500 miles or buy a better built car made by someone else because this peace of s... is not worth s... or by the way Thanks sure do appreciate it Chrysler the worst part is i have no money to fix it!

- edthecardman, Independence, MO, US

problem #67

Feb 102009

Sebring 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

I have owned many Chrysler products in the past, if Chrysler were proactive and looking to the future they would admit the problem and fix it. But as it stands not they would rather take the low road and duck the complaints. Chrysler----good luck in getting me to buy another car from you. THIS IS WHY AMERICAN CAR COMPANIES ARE GOING UNDER----NO ACCOUNTABILITY!

- Charles C., Dallas, PA, US

problem #66

Jun 082009

Sebring Limited 2.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

The oil just evaporated out of the car yet there is no sign of an oil leak. then it developed a high engine knock. So I treated it with oil treatments and drove it like an old lady. then one morning i started it and the engine rattled really badly. later that afternoon she refused to start.

- Reginald C., Colorado Springs, CO, US

problem #65

May 012009

Sebring Convertible 2.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,800 miles

it started out with the oil pressure light coming on because the sludge built up in the engine was slowing the oil flow in the oil pump causing the light to flicker and flash and sometimes stay on when coming to a stop because all of the oil would go to the front of the pan and the pump was not pumping fast enough therefore the return hose was sucking up air and causing the light to come on.

it was all downhill within weeks from there.

i have always used the best oils and the best filters and always changed the oil EVERY 3000.

- Jason S., Bedford, PA, US

problem #64

May 032009

Sebring ALL 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,000 miles

The problem here is NOT lack of oil changes, that is a CORPORATE COP-OUT !!! The REAL problem is in the COOLING SYSTEM !! The coolant goes low-flow OR NO-FLOW for no apparent reason. The engine runs just below or at overheat temps which causes the oil to break down resulting in the sludge. Due to the LOCATION of the temp sender the gauge will SHOW normal temp although its overheating until its WAY TOO LATE to save the engine. The same result can be demonstrated on the stovetop with a frying pan and Crisco: overheat the pan and the Crisco turns to goo!! Change the water pump,thermostat and radiator and you would STILL get the same problems and the same oil sludge. Chrysler Corp. is covering a design flaw which will cost BILLIONS to fix by blaming the owner for lack of maintenance. BTW I am a mechanic and have 16 years under my belt, customer replaced engine AGAINST advice all new parts STILL has SAME basic problem: will not run under 217 degrees NO MATTER WHAT. Result will be engine failure... AGAIN

Update from May 26, 2009: update:

The problem is NOT lack of oil changes!! While the oil change IS important it is NOT the cause of the sludge and failure of the engine!! The sludge is the excuse Chrysler has adopted to cover the real problem in the design which would cost BILLIONS to recall. The REAL PROBLEM lies in the COOLING SYSTEM: the coolant goes LOW-FLOW or NO-FLOW for NO APPARENT REASON. The temp. sender is MISPLACED and will show normal temp even though the engine is running too HOT. Instead of running at about 190-195 as it should the actual temp is between 215-230, JUST below overheat at ALL times. This breaks down the oil and causes it to sludge up the engine. You can change the oil every 1000 miles and the end result WILL sludge anyway!

This can be demonstrated on the stove with a frying pan and Crisco: OVERHEAT the pan the Crisco WILL turn to goo!!! Replace the radiator, water pump, thermostat and coolant you will STILL get the SAME RESULT, the engine WILL sludge and eventually WILL fail. DONT BUY into the "Its your fault for not changing the oil" CORPORATE COP-OUT!!!

If yours still runs GET RID OF IT!! If it doesn't you may get $1000 or more at a LATE MODEL junkyard IF the body is CLEAN. Do NOT buy ANYTHING with a Chrysler 2.7L they are ALL time bombs. FYI I am a 16 year mechanic and give the SAME advice to my customers. I no longer advise repair/replacement of these engines after failure because its just a matter of time(bomb).

- masarik, Arvada, CO, US

problem #63

Apr 242009

Sebring LX 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,653 miles

Driving down King Street, Car stalls at light would not start, making loud noises from engine, had it towed to garage to find out that the engine was no longer good, coolant mixed in with the oil, and the car does not start... the engine is finished. Piece of junk! I'll never by a Chrysler product again..........and still owe money on car. I won't get screwed by them again

- Daniel S., Sudbury, Ontario, Canada

problem #62

Nov 162007

Sebring LXI 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

Add me to the list on this issue!! Chrysler take responsibility?! Hell no! Toyota did when they had the issue (a design flaw leading to the premature build-up of sludge) Honda did. Hmmm....could this be why people aren't buying American cars? It's not just that they do fail, but WHEN they do, the manufacturers deny any responsibility and refuse to honor warranties. As far as my situation- this is what I faced:

The engine started ticking, then a little bit louder tapping, so I drove it in to a gas station and he knew immediately- my engine was done. He knew so quickly, that I went for a second opinion, same thing. So I needed to replace the engine- really great news when you're unemployed. Not having $3,000 to do that, and seeing that others were selling at the time for $8,000-11,000 (LXI, all options, moon roof, etc), I'm thinking that, minus the $3,000 engine, that still left $5,000-8,000 of value in the car (retail). I considered trying to sell it- even as is for $3,000- I placed one ad and a guy called and told me I was nuts. So I went to a dealer, figured I'd trade it in- again, Kelly BB trade amount, minus $3,000 (which they could fix for less- with their mechanics), but it doesn't work that way- they just dump the cars at auctions- they couldn't, and wouldn't, be bothered fixing it.

So the bottom line was, no matter what the remaining value of my car was- if it didn't have a working engine- they would give me $0! So I would actually lose the entire value of the car, not just the engine, if I didn't keep it. If I kept it- I had to fix it- $3,000!!! Well, luckily, I HAD, had excellent credit over the years, before becoming unemployed, and had built up very high credit limits, with no balances- so I had space on my credit cards. (This all happened just over a year ago- those cards, that great credit...they're maxed out, shut off, credit ruined. What took 25 years to earn- gone in a year and a half!)

So the really comforting news is- the engine has been replaced and now....., I have no money and no credit any more either, to get a new car and I'M SITTING ON THE SAME LEMON OF AN ENGINE!!!! A TICKING TIME BOMB THAT ALSO MAY BLOW AT ANY TIME!!!!!

(When this happened a year ago, I registered complaints at a few sites- NTSB I think was one and a LEMON LAW one- I think Ralph Nader's group, and looked for a class action- and only found one started, but in another state. But I was contacted a couple months ago by a lawyer in my state- MA- and he started a case. Basically, I don't expect anything of it, and even if anything happened I know these things usually take years- but what the Heck, if he's up for it- why shouldn't I try and get my $3,000 back! Maybe they'll do the right thing and take responsibility like the other companies did.)

- Terry B., Weymouth, MA, US

problem #61

Nov 032008

Sebring LXI 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

wow... where to start... i had the car 1 year did all maintenance regularly.. changed oil, kept good tires on car and so forth. all was great with me and my lil convertible so i thought. Check engine light came on and airbag light so i took the car to the shop for a diagnostic.. i bought the car July 2007 and in July 2008 is when my problems started i guess. The shop said nothing wrong.. probably just a loose gas cap blah blah blah or an electrical issue no need to worry. ok cool. Im driving around 1 day and the car just dies all of the sudden, what in the world. it starts right back up. To make a long story short, Im out and about and the car seems to start to act funny as im driving, it makes a loud noise and is barely moving anyway as i pull into a gas station i raise up the hood and smoke and liquid coming from under car clearway liquid. I already knew... water pump.. arrghhh so the car gets towed to the shop and i need a new water pump, a seal crank, a tensioner, a gasket omygoddd $292.00is what i owed All is good 2 weeks later i get my car back from the shop. I think im good. boy was i wrong I was driving on my way to vote while making a left turn on a green light might i add the car died again. I am scared of this car at this moment, it is possessed. so thankfully i make it home. now the fun part, after a late night out with friends im on my way home at a stoplight and the car died at stoplight but this time doesnt start again even with jumper cables. The car gets towed to the shop again. I get a cfall 2 days later from the shop man. He tells me my engine is locked up and doesnt know if warranty covers it until they take engine apart to see what caused engine to fail. So what choice do i have i tell him go ahead take it apart it needs fixed. When they took it apart whatta ya know... ENGINE SLUDGE and i need to provide oil change receipts since i have had the car which i dont keep receipts like that i didnt know u had to, i have never had a car with a failed engine, so warranty wont pay a dime!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I still owe money on this car so i go ahead and pay for a new engine. The car stayed in the shop from november till Feb 13th. Now i finally get the car paid for get the car back and feb 17th check engine light came on while i was driving to work o my gosh does this ever end... i call the shop and say guess what check engine light on so i drop the car off another diagnostic says busted hose by gas tank which im getting a discount on since i have had soo much work done this car has a brand new engine with 100000 mile warranty probably if i keep my oil change receipts so i better do that but if anything else goes wrong i am not fixing it I am done with All chrysler products

- Amanda B., Springfield, MO, US

problem #60

Jan 312007

Sebring LXI 2.7L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,000 miles

when i first found out the problem, i started looking for repair solutions. this motor is a very expensive piece of junk. why would i want to spend so much money on a replacement that is more than likely going to have a major failure again! Everywhere I looked to find a replacement they told me it was a very popular failure. Why does Chrysler not honor such a big problem. It turns out anything I hear about the engine is very poor.

- Shaye C., Hamilton, OH, US

problem #59

Jan 062009

Sebring LX 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles

I was driving home from school Tuesday evening and I noticed a loud knocking in the engine. I immediately pulled off to the side of the road and the engine light came on and the car died. I only had 37,000 miles on the car. I have maintained regular oil changes on the vehicle and now Chrysler does not want to cover the vehicle under warranty. They are blaming me for the problem. I just had the oil changed on Saturday before this happened and prior to the oil change, I was not having any issues. I WILL not be having the car repaired because I will NOT give another dime to Chrysler. In fact, I am going to paint the car bright yellow and sit it in front of my house with the words LEMON painted across it. I have been forced to buy another vehicle and it is a CHEVROLET!!!!! I will NEVER buy another chrysler product and will continue to pursue legal action against them in this matter.

- Angela M., Manassas, VA, US

problem #58

Jan 062009

Sebring LXI

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,000 miles

This car has been NOTHING but trouble since I bought it in July of 2007... now I know why the previous owner traded it in! After spending about 2-3K on repairs in the last year and a half, it is back in the garage because this week it has died while stopped at a stoplight twice! After about 10 minutes it did start up again but the engine light now stays on. Mechanic said it sounds like it could be a tune up job but he won't say for sure until he looks at it. I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER AMERICAN MADE CAR AGAIN! Thank you US Government for giving more money to horrible car companies like Chrysler!

- Trevor M., Plymouth, MA, US

problem #57

Dec 312008

Sebring LX 2.7L

  • CVT transmission
  • 112,000 miles

2002 2.7 l Chrysler sebring had water pump failure 6/08. Chrysler dealer replaced pump but failed to replace new gears, chains and tensioners in kit. Returned car week later with bad knocking noise was notified it needed new gears and chain and tensioners with new pump. Had car six weeks another 600.00 bill for parts no labor car jumped time 3 times at dealers while putting it back together. Car has no sludge problem everything crystal clean. On 12-31 while driving oil light came on for 3 seconds then motor quit won't refire. Motor shot dealer doesn't no if they warranty their work six months since I put 7000 miles on their work. Auto in great shape except engine I offered to purchase motor replacement in june because of high cost for water pump but service manager assured me everything in motor was in great shape.

- dmoedy, Caro, MI, US

problem #56

Dec 242008

Sebring Lx Convertible 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

I am still crying,, loved this car, mint condition, garaged, low mileage, just spent $900.00 2 weeks ago to keep it in top running condition,, put new top on to keep it looking beautiful, Christmas Eve on way to mom's, on turnpike in Florida, felt & sounded like engine was falling out of car,,waited 3 hrs for AAA to come tow us.

I am soooooo angry.... want class action suit,, ,if no one has started it , I WILL,,, please let me know, don't want to reinvent what's already taking place,, but Chrysler must pay for this,,,,

- Patty B., Davenport, FL, US

problem #55

Aug 152008

Sebring LX 2.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

Bought the car in August of 2007 after my previous car, a wonderful Nissan, was totaled by a red light runner. Still owed on that one, just my luck. So the dealership hooked me up with this gem. I already hated Sebrings but I was stuck between a rock and a hard place. The car ran great from September to February. First I noticed the heat wasn't working. Somebody suggested I put coolant in the engine. Whatdoyaknow it worked. One day on the way to work I hear a popping noise and the engine starts smoking. The temperature gauge goes all the way up and there's hissing coming from under the hood. Luckily I was almost to work. I pull in, still hear the hissing. Lift the hood, and the coolant is bubbling out of the reservoir. I let it sit all day at work, put coolant in it, then take it to the shop. Thermometer needs replaced. $500 later, the car is running like new.

Five months later the car starts overheating again. I didn't have money to get it looked at so I kept putting coolant in it. I went through about a gallon a week. Never noticed a leak during this time. About a month of this, then finally I notice a leak. I take it to the shop, the mechanic says he can't see anything wrong. It didn't overheat when they drove it around. Check back if it starts overheating again. A week later, sure enough it overheats. I'm on 71 and the temperature guage goes all the way up. I couldn't stop because I was nowhere near my destination. So I turn my heat all the way up to get some of the hot air off the engine. It works. When I get to my destination, what coolant was left was spewing all over the ground. Luckily I was able to drive the pos to the shop. They had it for a good week, they replaced the water pump housing $400. Which wasn't even the problem. Yes, the car was still overheating. Finally they told me that I had a blown head gasket and I might as well get a new car and get rid of this one. Oh that would be nice if I didn't still owe $4000 on it. So that makes two effing cars I get to pay on that I don't drive. Sweet! I hate you Chrysler. I hope you don't get bailed out.

- Kiara R., Columbus, OH, US

Read the next 20 complaints »