I have had one of these cars for 7 months now. Got it at 75K miles ran pretty good, now at 86K miles and well..it's not going to well. The engine burns oil already, the transmission shifts hard and slow(Checked the fluid, it's fine) The ride in this car is well..bad. You can feel every bump, it's loud, especially on the highway, expect to have to turn the radio up. The engine is very loud, and I have the 2.4L 4 cylinder engine and it's also very slow, it literally sounds and accelerates as if it had a big diesel engine in it. It averages 19 City, 25 Highway which is pretty bad for a car..especially considering it has a 4 cylinder engine...It's also not very comfortable...
Lights on all year long! My car is paid for and has been for some time. This is a good thing because it costs so much to keep it running! Wheel hubs, bearings, brakes, $$tires. I would tell anyone who asks not to buy an Alero, it is a complete lemon. I bought this car brand new, I have taken it to the Oldsmobile dealer for repair and no one can seem to fix my car. My dashboard lights are back on two weeks after it is "fixed." anti-lock, service vehicle soon, service engine soon, trac off always on!
I bought this car at 160K miles and right after I bought it and drove it home, problems started to arise. The check engine light went on right as I drove it home, I didn't think much of it because everything seemed fine. A week later, I went to O'reilly's and got the codes pulled from the computer. Some sort of emissions trouble code and a piston spark plug fire miss code came up. Not a big deal at all, but just troubling since it started on my first drive in it. After that, the A/C compressor bearing went out and it made a loud pinging noise. Since the A/C compressor was such a pain in the butt to get to, I never bothered to get it fixed and just lived without A/C. Next, the stud on the trailing arm in the passenger's rear cracked off which rendered it useless. It wasn't too much of a pain to replace that, but a new trailing arm is quite expensive. After that, the power steering lines rusted through and I had to replace those which was VERY difficult and pretty pricey. Next, the alternator went out and I had to replace that which wasn't too difficult but pricey. Finally, the head gasket blew and it was EXTREMELY difficult to tear apart the engine and replace all the gaskets. Altogether, I got a discount on the materials required which cost around $180 but it took about 3 days to get it all fixed. Took it for a test drive after that and learned that I needed new spark plugs and spark plug wires. I took it around the block twice just to be sure everything was working properly. The next day, the car caught on fire and was totaled. A tiny bit of gas turned out to be leaking out of the return rail and the rusted spark plug wires arced to the motor and sparked the fire which soon became very large and melted a good portion of the wire harness. Overall, I took great care of the car. I frequently checked my fluids and got my oil changed every 3K miles. I definitely got a nightmare car though, note that I only had the car between 160K miles and 168K miles which was only for about 10 months. This is my bad experience with this car, take it or leave it.
I have owned this car for almost 2 years now. I bought it with around 80,000 miles on it. It now has 110,000 miles. And I would not do it again. About a month after I bought it the front wheel bearings went out. I have also had problems with the drivers side window - had to replace the motor. The head gaskets have had to be replaced and the brakes react terrible if it rains or snows. Needless to say this has not been anything like what I thought. None of the repairs have been anything close to cheap or acceptable. I would not recommend it to anyone, especially for young driver. Alero's are very questionable cars, its a 50/50 chance - you either get a good one or a very rotten lemon.
My father paid $10,000 for the 2001 Alero with 12,000 miles for my brother and I in 2002 when we were in high school. I wasn't really crazy about it then because it seemed like EVERYONE had one but now I look back and see what a good car it was and still is. The only problem we have with it is the blinkers. They ALWAYS CLICK! It takes them a couple minutes to stop clicking even after they switch off. The car is now my brothers and he hasn't had a single problem with it since the battery died last year leaving him stranded in the mountains haha. Overall, great car for the money as long as it's taken care of.