1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan - Consumer Reviews

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Average Consumer Rating 67 Total Reviews
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Base 3.0L V6 4-speed Automatic - (67 reviews )
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Worst Car I Ever Owned
By nestornajwa on 01/16/13 23:54 PM (PST)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

I bought a new 97 Catera in late 1997, thinking I was getting a good deal with discounts/rebates. Catera was not without its virtues. It handled very well, had a fun sport suspension setting and was pretty comfortable. I overlooked the bland styling. None of these things mattered when the car began falling apart within weeks. First, the gas tank was removed to fix a broken sensor. Soon after, a gasket blew. Then the fuel pump died. The most persistent problem was with the door locks, which malfunctioned often and prevented the doors from closing. Lindsay Cadillac service (VA) was terrible, with many return visits for door locks. All of this happened within about 16 months of purchase.
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Cadillac Catera 97
By _catera97_ on 04/18/12 09:10 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

This is an amazing car. Yes it has a few problems we are going to have to work on. But my dads psycho ex girlfriend parked it in the grass and took the chip out of the key. That's the reason for most of the problems. It is a 15 year old car, so yes it's going to have other problems to. But before it was taken off the road because of the crazy psycho it was running fine. The ride is smooth just like a Cadillac should ride, the Bose stereo system is beyond amazing and the speed and look of the car fits my personallity to a key. This car is one of the most amazing cars I have ever seen.
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Reliable, but can have costly repairs
By map64 on 10/21/11 15:54 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

Bought in '02 with 36K miles for $7K ($32K new in '97. 136K miles/9+ years later, can't complain. Spent $800 on leaking oil cooler, timing belt/tensioner warranty replacement, $300 on timing belt replacement at 106K miles, $70 twice to replace heater control valve and $100 on oxygen sensor. Got climate control module for $25 to replace defect. Serviced spark plugs, trans fluid and brake pads. The timing belt is due to be changed in the next 10K or so. The only annoying thing to me is the electrical gremlins like the TC/ABS lights and the radio shutting off if the volume is too loud. If you do the work yourself, this can be a fun car to own because it has never left me on the side of the road
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Must have got the one diamond amongst the broken glass.
By jlblack on 06/18/11 01:14 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

While everybody else hates this car, I love it! I bought last year for $2000. I immediately had to buy a new radiator for it for $200 that I installed. I was quoted up to $750 for one, so call around when buying parts. I abuse this car! The sport button is on half the time, I take corners at above twice the recommended speed. This car is glued to the road. It sails at 90 mph with no problem. If you can work on cars yourself and want cheap luxury then this is the car for you. For what I paid for it if a major repair comes up then its off to the junk yard, but until then, get out of my way! You can buy a Haynes repair manual for an Opel Omega from the UK. Same car. I did.
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Paying for the name only
By mary on 09/09/10 00:00 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

This car is a great ride. That's it. I can not find anyone to fix whatever is wrong. Dealers laugh at the cost to fix it. It runs for a week and then quits. Over and over again. I feel like driving it through a dealer window, but bought it privately. I will stick to Toyota from past experience. I thought since the motor was made in Germany that it would be a good car. I was wrong! This car needs to have permanent retirement in a junk yard. I would feel guilty selling it to anyone as gullible as I was. I should have known better (what was I thinking not buying a Toyota?).
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Too much fixing
By Nash on 12/16/09 17:11 PM (PST)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

I recently to have a look at a used car it turned out 2 be a 1997 catera. I fell in love with this car the moment i saw it..it was so beautiful inside out and in great condition 4 a 1997. The owner was selling it 4 $3500 and he was sad..so sad because he kept repeating how much money he spent on it to keep it running. I am sorry for him and glad i didn't buy it.
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This car could kill you
By Garrie on 08/30/09 16:15 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

This car almost killed me when the engine literally blew up on the highway(It stopped dead and I was in the middle lane with a huge truck on my tail.) It had 62,000 miles on it and was regularly serviced. Like a fool I replaced the engine. At 92,000, just after it had been serviced, the motor froze and stopped dead again. Rather than get a new engine, I gave it to a charity and watched my beautiful car being dragged away.
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I hate this car
By Cory Bouton on 07/31/09 09:35 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

I bought this car from a private seller, and it worked fine for a few years then when one thing broke and it was just down hill from there. Currently the AC and heat don't work because of electrical problem I can't even afford to have diagnosed professionally, I have a major radiator leak that won't be worth the repair cause when I do fix it, something worse will just come up. So now I just carry extra fluid with me. The tranny failed, twice, thank goodness for warranty, and now that the tranny is fixed I got smoke coming out the exhaust. So I don't drive it unless I have to. The Sunroof was working until I brought it back from tranny shop, now it don't work, again. I hate this car.
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Excellent Machine
By Luxury Dream Machine on 08/23/08 23:04 PM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

Although, the interior has mechanical issues those who are complaining about cost do not buy a Mercedes Benz or BMW after all it's German made. Foreign parts are expensive but I love it & I don't care how much I have to pay. My motto is if you treat it right. It will treat you right. IF you hate this you will hate a 98 ford Contour. I have 181,000 miles on it & it does not drive or sound smooth like the catera. My wife & I are spoiled with the catera. So do not buy this car for looks. Buy it for responsibility. Don't worry about what people say form your own opinions. I would rather have a German machine than an American made machine. They tend to fall apart after it reaches 180,000 miles.
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The Money Pit
By Charlie on 07/18/08 11:08 AM (PDT)

Vehicle

1997 Cadillac Catera Sedan 4dr Sedan

Review

Since the purchase, this car has broken down once a month. Each time we take it to the dealer (usually via tow truck) the repair costs range between $1500.00 & $2000.00 We bought it for $22,000.00 in 2000 and have spent $16,300.00 in repairs since. GM will not even talk to us about this car, and parts are now hard to get. This is by far the worst car we have ever owned. We looked around to see what they are selling for now, and see that top dollar is $3000.00. We are donating it to the Kidney Foundation, and the tax receipt deduction for our income tax will be more than what we can sell the car for!
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