The stratus was my first car I had purchased, I loved it when I first sat in it, I had ordered it from another State, it travels nice long distances and flies up hill! The only thing that did something really weird is that it would accelerate on its own, almost had me cause an accident! It's done that several times, and the problems with the engine light going on and off, something to do with an oxygen sensor, and whenever you turn the wheel sharp it would make a clicking sound, brakes may need to be replaced already!
Bought a program car in 2005. 28-31 mpg hwy. Driven for 82,000 miles of its 100,800 and only put money into oil changes and tires. Problem just arose with engine stutter. Probably bad plug wires from the auto store since I replaced plugs and coil assembly already. Body has held up and interior looks great. Not a quiet car at 75 mph. Lots of road noise. The 4 cylinder engine is weak with full load, but fine for 2 people and luggage.
Simplicity of 4 cyl and SE model. Lots of room in engine compartment.
I liked this car at first. But I wish I would have bought something different. It's been an okay car, but when it shifts into different gears, you can literally feel the whole car shift as it is not very smooth. Also, recently I had to take it in because the back strut went bad and they said when they hoisted the car up on the lift it was so rusted that it had disconnected from the car itself. My brother-in-law who is a very honest car repairman said he didn't feel safe driving that "tin can" around. Also, it's shocks aren't very good compared to my husband's Ford Taurus.
Very comfortable to sit in for long rides. Spacious interior. Nice looking interior and exterior.
Move cup holders closer to armrest. Improve on shifting ease.
I got my Stratus as a graduation/wedding gift from my parents, and it was great for 3 years. Then, this year, I've spent more than $2000 in repairs, including transmission work. The brakes were replaced three months ago, and they're already showing moderate wear even with a gentle touch. The bleeder hose on the coolant system just "wore out" and my car overheated. I'm considering dumping the car before it costs more money.
Good acceleration, especially on California freeways.
Too many issues with "design flaw." Brakes go bad too fast and parts break too early in the cars' life.