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Used 1999 Oldsmobile Alero Sedan Consumer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
66 reviews
List Price Estimate
$1,492 - $2,479

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1.38 out of 5 stars

My brake pedal kept going to the floor failing me!

Sherri Bett, 06/16/2005
updated 04/22/2021
GL 4dr Sedan
5 of 5 people found this review helpful

My brake pedal went to the floor a lot, so many times and I almost got seriously hurt and died in 2000 with this thing. The mechanics kept fixing the brakes and a month later I'd be back at the shop due to my foot suddenly feeling no response as I pressed on my brake pedal then ending up on the floor as I stomped on it trying to maintain control! The constant fear of not knowing if my brakes would work every time I touched them was truly torture. I checked under my Alero every week for puddles of brake fluid, so depressing. Every day I got in my Alero before I did anything I put my foot on my brake pedal and pushed to see if there were brakes. Driving on the interstate was almost impossible as I couldn't be sure if my brake pedal would work when I pressed on it at such a high rate of speed. If I had to slam on my brake pedal quickly to stop I held my breath! When I had to drive on the interstate I constantly would touch or press or pump my brake pedal every few miles just for my peace of mind. I still have issues driving to this day as I constantly find my foot either pushing on my brake pedal or hovering over it, then tapping it for reassurance, not to mention I constantly pump my brake pedal when slowing down fearing that I may not have brakes!!! So many times I was told I was low on or out of brake fluid. That's not normal! I truly thought someone was trying to kill me. New brake lines, calipers, so many brake fluid refills and a master cylinder was just too much to process. I had this horrific image in my mind of brake fluid shooting out of my brake lines every time I tried to use my brake pedal! Driving along and then going to slow down and feeling your foot slinking towards the floor as I watched my foot pushing on air was terrifying!! If my foot didn't feel something the moment I touched my brake pedal I got scared. The moment I came to a stop light I began lightly pumping my brake pedal to see if there was a response. When I came upon a hill my heart would race as I took my foot off the gas and gently began to brake hoping I would feel something and be able to stop!! Driving down a hill I rarely if ever took my foot off my brake pedal. I just couldn't and wouldn't despite knowing it wasn't the thing to do. I was that scared every time I touched my brake pedal. I had to feel like I had some kind of control of my car. I either pumped it non stop, short quick pumps, tapped it or just rode it as I went to the bottom of the hill. I was too scared that if I took my foot off my brake pedal the brake would fail! The last time almost killed me. I still remember it so vividly. There's a stop light before this hill I had to turn down, as I noticed the light was red, I began to pump my brake to stop. The pedal didn't respond to my foot immediately but then I felt the pedal working and pumped the car to a stop. As I waited for the light to change I noticed my foot slipping off my brake pedal!! I thought at first it was my stockings sliding on the pedal but as I tried to get a grip I felt the brake pedal sinking under my foot and I was not pressing it down!! My foot was all over the brake pedal trying to get a grip and then I put my foot under my brake pedal to keep it from going to the floor!! Then the light changed so I had to make a choice. I took my foot off and to my relief the pedal came up. The car didn't move so I just decided to go on so I turned down that steep hill, began lightly pumping my brake pedal, felt a little something so I took my foot back off, then a second after, I put my foot back on and pushed on my brake pedal confident my foot would feel something as I pushed, I felt nothing!! My heart fell to my stomach! I literally gasped for air!! One of the steepest hills and I could feel nothing but my foot getting closer to the floor and no braking was happening! When my foot hit the floor I screamed! I quickly released my brake pedal and began to gently pump again hoping I was having a nightmare, but no it went straight to the floor and my Alero was speeding up! It felt like in slow motion as I watched my foot and brake pedal go to the floor and was desperate to feel anything but nothing would happen and my foot was almost on the floor!! I frantically kept pumping my brake pedal, I was stomping it through the floor but nothing would happen! I still have the image in my mind of my foot and brake pedal on the floor and my Alero gaining more speed and my pedal being so loose!! My life was going to flash before my eyes and all I could see in my mind was brake fluid shooting out of my lines and me having no fluid left!! I feather pumped my brake pedal, I slammed on it, I tried everything I could think of to make it work but nothing happened! I saw the guardrail coming I was literally standing on my brake pedal, pushing it as hard as I could and as far as I could when all of a sudden the brakes came back and I didn't die. Worst car ever.

Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Interior
2 out of 5 stars
Comfort
1 out of 5 stars
Reliability
1 out of 5 stars
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4.63 out of 5 stars

I like my Olds

edin77, 02/14/2009
GLS 4dr Sedan
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

I bought my Alero with 143 000 miles. It has been fairly abused and I bought it very cheap. After I washed it, changed oil and filter, replaced power steering pump(reason for sale), cleaned interior, and replaced thermostat and antifreeze among with spark plugs this car runs awesome. It has quite a bit of miles on it, but the 3.4l engine seems to perform very well. I like the fact that is fully loaded. Everything works electrically, and I like the fact that parts are very cheap. Brake pads online run for about $20, for example. Also, I think that this car will run for another 100,000 miles. No signs of giving up. Transmission runs very smooth. I think this might be one of the better GM cars. Thanks

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2.75 out of 5 stars

Do Not Buy

deeprig9, 10/16/2011
GLS 4dr Sedan
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

I bought in 2002 with 38k m and now (2011) has 214k. Pwr Windows break constantly. Intake and Head gaskets go constantly, can limp it along 10k miles at a time with sealer additives, if you are poor and don't mind being stranded constantly. Clearcoat starts peeling all over car around 90k. CD/tape stop working at about 70k. Any work that involves the belt must be done by mech, due to motor mount running through the belt = drop engine ;( The performance on the V-6 is actually really good, when it's running correctly. Security feature will disable your ignition constantly. These complaints apply also to Grand Ams and Aleros from 99-2002. "Dex-Cool" systems= stay away.

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4.25 out of 5 stars

Just bought my 1999 Alero

riker93, 07/15/2013
GL 4dr Sedan
4 of 6 people found this review helpful

I just bought my 1999 Alero GL, with only 105,000 miles on it. Got a good deal at a local dealership. The car is in great shape, and so far in the month that I've had it, there's been no problems, and I hope it stays that way. Too early to tell though. It gets excellent gas mileage, and with the hot weather we're currently having, the a/c puts out very cold air. So, as long as it keeps running the way it does, I'll be happy. Keeping my fingers crossed.

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4.63 out of 5 stars

Long term owner / teen driven

Dean, 05/31/2008
GX 4dr Sedan
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

This car was bought for my carpool use. I put 60K miles on it in 3 years, mostly highway. Typical hwy 29 mpg (4 cyl) typical city 21-24 mpg. At 64K miles I turned it over to my then teenage druggie Daughter who thrashed it and abused it with her druggie friends for 4 more years. It became a transportation car and lets go to a rave car. I was overseas. The car was trashed. Now she is grownup and wised up and is fine. Car has 146K miles on it and the only thing that has gone wrong is the manual remote drivers mirror cable broke and the ignition switch broke. Other than that, just the usual brake work, fluid changes, (inc auto trans) and tires. Daughter is still driving it.

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