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    Thread: was I ripped off? 09 Routan - No Oil = Blown UP engine

    1. 02-14-2012 11:48 PM #1
      Hey Guys - not even a year ago, I purchased a Routan from Linden VW, in Linden, NJ and this is my timeline:

      6/20/2011 - Purchased "CERTIFIED" Routan
      7/13/2011 - Returned to dealer: replaced front brake pads and rotors /
      10/5/2011 - replaced rotors and pads for backbrakes / driver window problems / door drains were clogged / replaced headlight due to condensation


      As you can see here, I feel these people never actually inspected and fixed this vehicle before they sold it. In December I dropped it off for the 36,000 miles check. I put 4,000 miles and yesterday as it was being driven suddenly the oil light starts flashing very crazy, the engine starts knocking. The Van was taken to a nearby VW and they told me THERE WAS NO OIL AT ALL in the engine .. Is this possible????? Shouldn't there be at least some oil??? I had the vehicle towed to where I purchased it and they are saying I drove the vehicle with no oil and is my liability. Even though it is clear I've been having problems with the van ever since I purchased it.

      I honestly think they sold me a lemon to begin with, but I was too nice to catch it. Do I stand a chance on suing these people? They convinced VWOA that it was my fault and not theris, therefore, the liability lies on me for the repairs.

      This is my third VW and I'm so dissappointed at this dealer, not VW but this dealer. Please help guys.

    2. Member
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      02-15-2012 01:42 AM #2
      What motor? 3.8 or 4.0?

      Unfortunately, the problems you listed that you had with the van have noting to do with oil consumption, so I don't think throwing that around at the dealer will get you too far. Ultimately you are responsible for checking the oil, BUT, when you had it in for the 36K oil change, don't you think they should have told you that the van was low on oil? I mean, even though I would be just about ready to do an oil change, I always check the level just before draining it. Force of habit for me, but for a tech they probably just pop it in the air, pull the plug, go get a coffee while it's draining and never actually see how much came out. Perhaps you could look into the power train warranty for the 09's, maybe it is 50K, but it's gonna be hard to make that stick since there was no oil in it. Only plus side is, if you mechanically inclined, the Dodge and Chryslers are like a-holes, everyone has got one so there should be plenty of them in the boneyards to get a motor from. Sorry man, keep us posted.
      1958 VW Ragtop Bug
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      Be sure to check out the Original Routan Dead Pedal Click Here

    3. 02-15-2012 01:55 AM #3
      It's a Routan S - base model, so I'm assuming 3.8 L ... Well, the CPO warranty does expire at 60.k - I'm staying optimistic because I feel it may have something to do with their lack of service last time I took it in. It's my third VW Vehicle, I never had a problem with my cars before and they have records of all the times i took my vehicles for maintenance. I believe they will be considerate. I'll keep you guys posted.

      I think my argument will be this one: How do I know the technician who served it last put the right amount of oil in the car? After all, I did have to take it back 2 or 3 times for a problem they happen to forgot to check when I first purchased the vehicle. Just like they never checked my brakes before selling the vehicle and were negligent to other things, so I will base my argument off that since this is an actual fact and not just something I'm making up.

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      02-15-2012 02:07 PM #4
      Good luck. I think they're going to see all of that as irrelevant and focus on when you last checked your oil level. Not sure what the manual says, but I suspect it says monthly or at every fill-up. The vast majority of us don't do that, of course, but that's what VW is going to hang their hats on. You drove the vehicle for 4k miles without checking the oil. I agree with 58 that you could try the angle that it never leaked or used oil after you first bought it, and nobody just 6 or 8 weeks ago mentioned it was low at all when you brought it in for the 36k mile service, and try to get them on that. But good luck.

      Does it still run? Any obvious signs of damage? Similar thing happened with my 2000 Nissan, and I drove it for nearly a year before it started showing any signs of engine damage - it eventually started making intermittent tapping sounds (rod?) and wouldn't always maintain oil pressure. If you're in similar situation, you could try trading it or selling it at CarMax and get out of it while you still can and mitigate your losses.

    5. 02-15-2012 06:09 PM #5
      spoke to VWOA today.. the engine is gone. they were trying to put the liability on me. However, this is my third VW, I have perfect maintenance record and never tried to rip them off. I beleive I might have to pay like $500 for a deductable but they will work a deal out for me. I'm very dissapointed though, I see this is a common problem on the Routan. The vehicle is not reliable and I'm going to have to swallow my recommendations on this vehicle from now on

    6. 02-16-2012 01:05 PM #6
      Seems like they redesigned engine... My '12 has a 3.6???

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      02-16-2012 04:50 PM #7
      I thought the Routan had a Low Oil Light not just a Low Oil Pressure light. I would take a look and see if that is part of your instrument gauge.. I have a 2011 and I will check mine.

    8. 02-16-2012 04:51 PM #8
      Just a few thoughts.

      1. an engine won't run with "no oil" in it. What is really no oil or just low on oil? (maybe really low)
      2. if an engine went from say 5 qts of oil to no oil in 4k miles, you'd know it was happening. You'd see huge plumes of smoke out the exhaust and all the cars crashing behind you from oil slick and your home owners association would be all over you for the pools of oil in your driveway.

      Its very common for cars (new ones too) to burn oil, some more than others. If you're bored, do some Google searches. For example, I had a brand new Subaru WRX STI and it used to need a quart of oil every 3-4k miles (totally stock engine).

      I have read that some people are having trouble with oil burning in Routan's but IMHO this is true for pretty much every car out there. The key is to keep up on your oil change schedule and do your due diligence and check your old every few thousand miles.

      Unfortunately, the good warranty people (sarcasm) like to see dealer performed maintenance and not receipts from Pep Boys from a DIYer. I do my on oil changes on my old Miata but our Routan (under manu warranty and CPO extended warranty) goes to the stealership for its oil changes, just to cover our butts if anything ever happens.

      I'm not knocking the original poster, just thinking out loud. I hope VW steps up and helps you out.

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      02-17-2012 04:13 PM #9
      The 3.6L Pentastar engine debuted in 2011 MY. It replaced the two different V6 designs that Chrysler developed in the 1980s and introduced in the early 1990s. Each of the older two designs came in different sizes, but as it pertains to the Routan there was a 3.8L pushrod and 4.0L single overhead cam for the '09 and '10 model years. The Pentastar replaces the old pushrod and SOHC engines beginning with MY 2011. Supposed to be much more powerful and fuel efficient, but only being 2 years old the jury's still out on longevity.

      Whether it's a low oil level or low oil pressure light, by the time it illuminates it's often too late. Had the oil light on my 2000 Altima light up a couple years ago on the interstate and I drove straight to the place where I often had it changed (right off the exit ramp). About a quart left with a 4+ qt. capacity. And I know with the real VWs, the aluminum oil pans often get punctured by road debris and by the time the dashboard light illuminates it's often too late and the engine is toast.

      I was doing some online research yesterday and found a TSB on the '09 MY Chrysler minivans for bad PCV valve. Wonder if that plays a part in the missing oil mystery.

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      02-18-2012 08:12 AM #10
      FOUND THIS WHILE SEARCHING FOR PCV ISSUES:

      VOLKSWAGEN ROUTAN:ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING:EXHAUST SYSTEM:EMISSION CONTROL:CRANKCASE (PCV)

      VOLKSWAGEN ROUTAN 2009 Safety Report #SB-10C9-S1
      VOLKSWAGEN ROUTAN 2009 technical service bulletin was issued Mar 01, 2009.VOLKSWAGEN ROUTAN 2009 had a failed ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING:EXHAUST SYSTEM:EMISSION CONTROL:CRANKCASE (PCV) . VOLKSWAGEN: PCV VALVE INSPECTION OR REPLACEMENT. A SMALL NUMBER OF AFFECTED VEHICLES MAY HAVE BEEN BUILT WITH AN INCORRECT PCV VALVE. THIS CAN CAUSE SOME VEHICLES TO EXCEED FEDERAL AND/OR CALIFORNIA EMISSIONS STANDARDS AND MAY CAUSE THE ...

      COULDN'T FIND THE REST OF THE TEXT AND IT DOESN'T SPECIFY A PARTICULAR ENGINE, BUT MY 4.0 HAS SHOWN SOME OIL USAGE AT 41K MILES, SO, I'M GOING TO REPLACE THE PCV VALVE AND SEE IF THERE'S AN IMPROVEMENT.

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      02-18-2012 12:53 PM #11
      Make sure you use genuine MOPAR. I can't remember if it was the ChryslerMinivan or DodgeForum boards, but there were a few mentions of after-market PCV valves making things worse.

      I just found two coolant leaks, so I'll be taking it in for warranty work soon and might have them also do the PCV too since I had to add a quart of oil during the current OCI. Making a list and checking it twice for warranty items (update the TCU/ECU software to address rough transmission shifting when cold, repair pax side power sliding door (cable broke), PCV/oil loss issue, coolant leaks at radiator cap (found a TSB/recall for that too) and at hose on other side of motor).

    12. 03-06-2012 11:46 AM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by Zambee500 View Post
      The 3.6L Pentastar engine debuted in 2011 MY. It replaced the two different V6 designs that Chrysler developed in the 1980s and introduced in the early 1990s. Each of the older two designs came in different sizes, but as it pertains to the Routan there was a 3.8L pushrod and 4.0L single overhead cam for the '09 and '10 model years. The Pentastar replaces the old pushrod and SOHC engines beginning with MY 2011. Supposed to be much more powerful and fuel efficient, but only being 2 years old the jury's still out on longevity.

      Whether it's a low oil level or low oil pressure light, by the time it illuminates it's often too late. Had the oil light on my 2000 Altima light up a couple years ago on the interstate and I drove straight to the place where I often had it changed (right off the exit ramp). About a quart left with a 4+ qt. capacity. And I know with the real VWs, the aluminum oil pans often get punctured by road debris and by the time the dashboard light illuminates it's often too late and the engine is toast.
      I was doing some online research yesterday and found a TSB on the '09 MY Chrysler minivans for bad PCV valve. Wonder if that plays a part in the missing oil mystery.
      The dealer Rep. Gave me maintain schedule, I saw the 2011 routN have no timing bell change schedule, is this a mistake or the 2011 routan has no timing bell,thank you!









      A mistake. Or the 2011 3.6l engine have no timing bell

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      03-06-2012 11:52 AM #13
      He is correct, no timing belt in the 3.6. But more than likely has a timing chain that doesn't need servicing like a belt does.

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      03-06-2012 12:41 PM #14
      I read elsewhere that the new 3.6L Pentastar has 4 chains The 3.8L from '09-'10 model years is also a chain, I believe. Only the 4.0L has a timing belt, and I believe it's rated for 102k miles intervals.

      I've been burned by chains on my last 2 vehicles. Never again. (Of course, I always said I'd never own a Chrysler, especially an automatic transmissioned Chrysler, and what do I do? Buy a Chrysler with an automatic but get VW dealer support with a much shorter warranty. Glutton for punishment.)

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      03-06-2012 03:07 PM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by Zambee500 View Post
      I read elsewhere that the new 3.6L Pentastar has 4 chains The 3.8L from '09-'10 model years is also a chain, I believe. Only the 4.0L has a timing belt, and I believe it's rated for 102k miles intervals.

      I've been burned by chains on my last 2 vehicles. Never again. (Of course, I always said I'd never own a Chrysler, especially an automatic transmissioned Chrysler, and what do I do? Buy a Chrysler with an automatic but get VW dealer support with a much shorter warranty. Glutton for punishment.)
      Could be worse, VR6's have a timing chain. BEHIND the flywheel! Yep gotta seperate the motor from the trans to do it Not to mention they typically start to make noise around 80K to 90K. And it sounds like a rod knock! For a while I was trying to buy some VR6 Jetta's that had "rod knocks". Usually a cheap score if you don't mind doing the work.
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    16. 03-08-2012 01:50 PM #16
      My Routan was also burning oil. Accross 2500 miles, the oil is so low that the dipstick wont even touch the oil. At first I just thought the engine was noisy, but later I found out it was because the oil was extremely low. Sounded similar to a diesel engine.

      So with your oil going dry after 4k miles, it seems like a plausible explanation. Every time I turn on my car in the morning a plume of white smoke will fly out, but nothing visible during driving. My car only has 42k on it, so they will definitely be fixing.

      BTW, anyone else have problems with power loss accelerating on an incline or from a cold start? I will start to hear rattling and it feels like power is being sucked from my engine. Similar to when the A/C is turned on

    17. 03-18-2012 10:53 AM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by Zambee500 View Post
      Whether it's a low oil level or low oil pressure light, by the time it illuminates it's often too late. Had the oil light on my 2000 Altima light up a couple years ago on the interstate and I drove straight to the place where I often had it changed (right off the exit ramp). About a quart left with a 4+ qt. capacity. And I know with the real VWs, the aluminum oil pans often get punctured by road debris and by the time the dashboard light illuminates it's often too late and the engine is toast.
      I must say that I somewhat disagree with this. The light is triggered by low oil pressure meaning you have oil pressure until the light comes on. Not as though there is zero pressure for a few minutes before the light comes on. I had a 1980 Rabbit Diesel which I didn't put the oil filter on tight enough and the seal blew out on the highway, I immediately shut it off when the light came on. I have seen many other cars that were OK as long as they were shut down immediately. When the light comes on, don't try and get home, to the dealer, next exit or whatever......shut it off then pull off the road. I think a lot of people try and drive with the light on just for a little bit or don't notice when the light comes on.

    18. Member pefer's Avatar
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      03-20-2012 06:44 PM #18
      - Check the oil dipstick often, every gas fill up or two.
      - You will get a sense of how often it needs top up.
      - Carry a quart or two of oil in vehicle.

      Keep this process, engine will last as long as any other.

      Maybe last even longer, as there is less wear on piston rings due to oil loss/passage by them, lubricates top rings and cylinder walls better. - just my opinion, your results may vary.

    19. Global CSI Moderator nater's Avatar
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      03-27-2012 09:48 AM #19
      FYI Fred Beans in PA left my oil filter not even hand tight after one of our "free" oil changes. I got a call from my wife day after our service complaining of oil leak. I went to her work to see a puddle (2+ quarts) in parking spot. Oil filter is easily accessible from pass side wheel well without a lift. Put my hand up there and sure-enough, less than hand tight.

      This could have happened to you.

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      04-12-2012 09:12 PM #20
      Our 09 Routan with 4.0L was consuming a lot of oil, it had 36k miles when we traded it in. And we babied it. We had all the other problems you had too.

    21. 12-11-2013 04:08 PM #21
      I also have a 2009 VW Routan SE 3.8. with oil consumption issues. I would first notice the issue when I started to do the oil changes myself (After my warranty for oil changes expired) I would notice that 1 to 2 quarts would be missing when I would change the oil. I called the dealer and was told that it is normal for vehicles to burn some oil. I was not satisfied with the answer so i called the 1800 number in my owners manual to see if there was any recalls on this matter. I was informed that no recalls on my year and model but to take it to a dealer for inspection since I was still under warranty. Trying to make an appointment at the dealer was another headache, but thats another story. I was told to note the date I changed the oil and write down the next date of oil change and how many quarts was missing. Well by the time I did all the checking my 65K warranty had expired. So I figured as long as I keep an eye on my oil (which I do on all my cars) I would be OK. Well a couple of months later I get a call from my wife telling me that the van was smoking a lot. I thought it was the radiator or a hose, but No it was oil being burn. So now it got to the point that its spilling over night (I do not know were because I keep the engine clean and I can not see any oil) in the engine, so when the van gets hot enough it starts to burn the oil and smoking a lot. In another note I wanted to see if anyone else has a sound on the rear, my kids call it pigeon sound. On the back right wheel its getting very annoying, thinking it might be a shock, strut or the sway bar.

    22. 12-13-2013 12:12 AM #22
      I know the OP bought their Routan used but there is a breakin procedure listed in the manual. I have followed a break in procedure with both the Routan and my Evo. I haven't had any oil consumption issues whatsoever. The breakin procedure includes varying levels of engine braking to seat the ringlands properly.

      I was just reading Motortrend about their long term 6 series BMW. It seems the N63 engine has excessive oil consumption issues also but BMW has noticed less problems with the demo cars. Probably due to them being driven harder than normal. I don't believe babying a new engine is beneficial.

    23. Global CSI Moderator nater's Avatar
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      12-26-2013 08:41 AM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by 16Vpassat View Post
      I know the OP bought their Routan used but there is a breakin procedure listed in the manual. I have followed a break in procedure with both the Routan and my Evo. I haven't had any oil consumption issues whatsoever. The breakin procedure includes varying levels of engine braking to seat the ringlands properly.

      I was just reading Motortrend about their long term 6 series BMW. It seems the N63 engine has excessive oil consumption issues also but BMW has noticed less problems with the demo cars. Probably due to them being driven harder than normal. I don't believe babying a new engine is beneficial.
      I too debated how I would break in my freshly built turbo motor...
      I decided to drive it hard (including lots of decel's) and it worked out just fine.

    24. Member redzone98's Avatar
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      01-08-2014 12:47 PM #24
      check my thread:

      http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthrea...&highlight=oil


      explains my adventure with my 2009 Routan.
      #projectcabby

    25. Member redzone98's Avatar
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      01-08-2014 03:44 PM #25
      Quote Originally Posted by bond007pr View Post
      Seems like they redesigned engine... My '12 has a 3.6???
      Actually the Routan has 3 generations of Crapler motors.

      the 3.8L is a carry over from the EARLY 90s Stroked out 3.3L motor.

      the 4.0L is a "new" generation motor from around 2005. and sucked so bad its discontinued.

      the 3.6L is a New motor, that is in a bunch of different Chrysler cars now.
      #projectcabby

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      01-08-2014 10:13 PM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by redzone98 View Post
      Actually the Routan has 3 generations of Crapler motors.

      the 3.8L is a carry over from the EARLY 90s Stroked out 3.3L motor.

      the 4.0L is a "new" generation motor from around 2005. and sucked so bad its discontinued.

      the 3.6L is a New motor, that is in a bunch of different Chrysler cars now.
      The 4.0L is really also a carryover from the early 90s. Stroked out 3.5L motor, you might say. Same way the 3.8L was a stroked out 3.3L from 1990. The 4.0L was introduced around 2007, so quite a bit later, but it was a stretch of the 3.5L and built as a stop-gap measure because what became the Pentastar was still 5 years away from being ready at the time. But the 3.3L pushrod was introduced around 1990, and the 3.5L SOHC motor only 2 or 3 years later.

      They were both Chrysler's first V6 engines designed and built in-house as V6s. Before that Chrysler 6 cylinder motors were either derivatives of their 4 or 8 cylinder engines, or they were 'borrowed' from AMC/Imperial or Mitsubishi.

      I didn't realize the 4.0L was considered to have "sucked so bad that it was discontinued". The major gripe I've seen on it is that it is fuel-thirsty and gets worse MPGs than the EPA ratings. Even though the pushrods were pretty rock-solid engines and overall proved statistically to be pretty good, I've read about far more negatives with the 3.8L (mostly oil consumption and underpowered) than I've seen about the 4.0L.

      Not intending to sound argumentative or 'defensive' about the 4.0L, but just curious what is considered to be so sucky about it.

    27. 01-08-2014 11:20 PM #27
      I had the 3.5, so called HO, in the Journey RT and now this 4.0 in my SEL Routan. I must say that the 4.0 is a much better engine than the 3.5 Has more power, pulls better and has the same MPGs. Which is not good. The mileage is my only complaint about the 4.0 thus far.

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      01-08-2014 11:51 PM #28
      Our 2010 SEL has the 4.0 and I love it. As far as fuel mileage goes, if I drive it I can regularly get 17 MPG or better around town and can hit the 25 MPG on the highway, but not higher that's for sure. Now it's the wife's van and she can get 16.5 but is regularly in the low 15 MPG around town. I tank the van up so I calculate off fill ups but the computer is pretty darn close. I know I've said it before but MPG is the last thing on my list when car shopping
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    29. Member redzone98's Avatar
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      01-10-2014 10:41 AM #29
      [QUOTE=Zambee500;84609534]

      Issues with warped cyl heads, head gaskets, water pumps. so just the usual stuff. The fact that the motor was in production for such a short period leads me to believe that the Manufacturer knows something that we dont.



      just FYI, im not attacking YOU, so lets not all respond like, OH MYYYYYY 4.0L has been great.
      Last edited by redzone98; 01-10-2014 at 10:59 AM.
      #projectcabby

    30. 01-10-2014 11:28 AM #30
      [QUOTE=redzone98;84620883]
      Quote Originally Posted by Zambee500 View Post

      Issues with warped cyl heads, head gaskets, water pumps. so just the usual stuff. The fact that the motor was in production for such a short period leads me to believe that the Manufacturer knows something that we dont.



      just FYI, im not attacking YOU, so lets not all respond like, OH MYYYYYY 4.0L has been great.
      I have not heard of anyone with these problems. Has there been folks on here with these issues? I am on the Chrysler Van forum as well I really haven't seen these issues for the 2009 up motors. Probably not as bad as you are thinking. Now I'm not attacking your comment, I'm just saying that I haven't heard of this stuff.

      Regarding the short production period, you might be right, but I would suggest there are some important variables to consider. Someone mentioned it as a stop gap, which maybe why the short run. Also, you have an intervening recession that changed much of the Chrysler plans to the point that they are owned by Fiat and have a completely different approach to many of their engineering plans. For example, they scrap a bunch of the motor choices and consolidated to only a few options between motors and transmissions. That was a smart move that did result in short production runs (relatively speaking) for some motors and transmissions. The point being, that short production runs doesn't really indicate quality and reliability of anything. There are many reasons for changes in plans. What does matter are the problems you mentioned, but again I haven't heard of any of those. So...

      I almost forgot, OH MYYYYYYYYYYYY 4.0L has been great! Truthfully, I would have liked to get the 3.6 Pentastar, but that's only been in production a short period so who knows if that's a good motor. How long should I wait; how long should the production run be; before I know it's a good motor? I hope you find some humor in this.

    31. Member redzone98's Avatar
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      01-10-2014 11:51 AM #31
      [QUOTE=Steveaut;84621377]
      Quote Originally Posted by redzone98 View Post



      I almost forgot, OH MYYYYYYYYYYYY 4.0L has been great! Truthfully, I would have liked to get the 3.6 Pentastar, but that's only been in production a short period so who knows if that's a good motor. How long should I wait; how long should the production run be; before I know it's a good motor? I hope you find some humor in this.
      yea yea, i find some humor. Being a ford and a vw guy, im used to engine runs that last decades, not just years. Im not sold on this new 3.6L either. when i went out and test-drove a 2012, that motor had a really bad Lifter tap coming the motor, lasted all through warmup, and didnt go away until i returned to the dealer. maybe it was a bad motor? who knows. its power delivery is also not designed for the duty of a van either. all HP, no TQ
      #projectcabby

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      2005 Passat GLS TDI, 2009 Routan SEL
      01-10-2014 03:47 PM #32
      Quote Originally Posted by redzone98 View Post
      just FYI, im not attacking YOU, so lets not all respond like, OH MYYYYYY 4.0L has been great.
      And back at you, redzone. I really look at it as an interesting conversation, and a learning opportunity (for me). I'm not a Mopar guy, so this is largely new territory for me.

      I have a recollection, albeit faint, that there were significant delays in the Pentastar (then Phoenix) engine development. I don't know the original time-line, but 2007 makes sense. Chryco's minivans were remodeled and stretched beginning with the 2008 MY, and Daimler was separating itself from Chrysler in 2007 as all of that was going on. If the Pentastar/Phoenix engine was delayed 2-3 years, it would make sense that Chrysler would look to enlarging the 3.5L to quickly get something in the 250HP range. Perhaps the 3.8L was stretched about as far as it could go at 215HP and they needed something larger for the premium engine for the new larger "maxi-vans" that were coming out beginning in late 2007.

      In any event, the 4.0L design really dates to the early 1990s. That was all my point was, and I hadn't heard of any significant problems with it. But as I said, I'm not a Mopar guy so was interested to learn more.

      The jury is still out on the Pentastar. There were some early teething problems, but otherwise people who have them seem to love them. It does have 4 chains, and chains stretch over 10s of thousands of miles, and are often cost-prohibitive to replace, so I'll be interested to see what happens as the Pentastars start getting up over 100k miles on them. We should be finding out in the next couple of years.

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