I am looking for a used vehicle, and have been interested in the Chrysler Pacifica (without having driven it). Now that it is being discontinued, is it wise to buy one?

The most prevalent complaint with that vehicle has always been the anemic power output of the engine vs. the weight of the vehicle. And, of course, since it is really a variant of the Chrysler mini-vans, the transmission is subject to problems as it ages.

If you can find one with relatively low mileage on the odometer, and if your independent mechanic gives it his blessing, you may be able to find one that suits your needs. Just be sure to have the transmission serviced as per the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule.

A coworker has one. He says he enjoys driving it, but it’s been back to the dealer multiple times for warranty work. Consumer Reports rates the reliability as “worse than average,” and they suggest avoiding the '04 and '05 models. Gas mileage? Good luck.

The manufacturer will have service parts available till 5 years after the model is discontinued. After that the spares will still be available through after market companies. Chrysler has a very bad reputation for transmission across their vehicle lineup so be careful.

Life is sometimes frustrating! I am decidely a non-American car buyer (asterisk follows) but every once in a while a US car catures my interest. Pacifica is one of those; I liked its looks and form-factor and even rode as a happy passenger in one. The pattern of frustration continues in that now I see that the Pacifica is being axed.

Of the Ten Worst 2007 cars, Chrysler Corp makes five (Pacifica is not on the list). Most on the list fail because each has a long list of negatives including weak crash test results, poor MPG, stunning depreciation, and poorer than average reliability. What’s not to like?

Is there something unshakably wrong with US Car Manufacturers? Is it an industry we can afford to lose?

The promised “*” : my 2000 Mercedes ML320 was made in North Carolina. Not perfect, and not the same goodness as my other two German-made Mercedes cars owner earlier, but the ML is one nice car for the money.

In my view, IF our US car companies stopped trying to make a hundred different models and stupid variations
on the same theme, and instead focus on superb design, quality and performance on a few models, the US could be a nearly unbeatable contender for many generations in the world wide market.

The biggest problem to be solved: Can the American public be made smart enough to stop wanting and buying all the crap that gets produced every seven months?

"Is there something unshakably wrong with US Car Manufacturers? Is it an industry we can afford to lose? "

I don’t think we can afford to prop it up any longer, that’s how capitalism works; just buy the best available products and let the dinosaurs die. These companies have been self-destructing for 30 years, no one is going to save them. DB tried and it cost them about $30B US to determine Chrysler was already dead.

By all accounts the ML is a nice car, but I would be reluctant to buy anything fabricated in the U.S., regardless of brand.

I don’t know how long yopu intend to keep this car, but a few caveats:

  1. As mentioned, Chrysler will likely discontinue producing parts that are unique to this car after 5 yaers. If they had sold millions, you could get used or aftermarket parts.

  2. This car was not a best seller, so it will end up an orphan. I similarly advised a friend against buying a 2 year old Oldsmobile Alero.

  3. My own experience with Chrysler was a Doge Colt (Mitsubishi made), for which the dealer was unable (unwilling) to supply parts after they stopped distributing them. On a trip overseas, I learned that for the Mitsubishi Colt parts were readily available for years afterwards.

  4. In addition to the problems mentioned by other posters, this is not a good buy. Besides, there is a 50/50 chance that the car may actually outlive Chrysler itself!

In spite of my lust for its looks, I am realizing that I will probably have to look at alternatives. Thanks to all who responded.