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USA Today article
By James R. Healey


Chrysler began developing the PT Cruiser intending to use the platform of the Neon small car, a so-so seller, to create a vehicle with ''got-to-have'' appeal. So many changes to Neon underpinnings were necessary to create the original, 2001 Cruiser that it's not much Neon underneath. So, Chrysler got less bang for its sharing bucks than hoped.

But the idea's still alive on a smaller scale. Chrysler's in-house hot-rod group developed a rip-snorting four-cylinder engine just begging for high-performance applications. That 2.4-liter, 215-horsepower, turbocharged, four-cylinder now sits beneath the bonnets of two dissimilar machines with opposing personalities: Neon SRT-4 (Test Drive, Feb. 7) and the PT Cruiser GT Turbo, our victim this week.

Beyond the obvious difference in looks, the distinction is that SRT-4 is a high-spirited party animal that has the bright paint and bold airfoil to look the part. PT Turbo (Chrysler's preferred moniker) is the soul of refinement, at least as that description is applied to economy vehicles. The engine that snaps and cackles in the Neon is a distant but major presence in the Cruiser.

Floor the PT Turbo's gas pedal and you get about the same result as in the Neon: stirring acceleration. The great thing about the engine is that it is able to deliver usable power at lower speed, unlike many turbocharged engines. That's partly because it displaces a fairly hefty 2.4 liters, and partly because the tuning favors power at common-sense speeds.

The test Cruiser was a color that Chrysler calls inferno red tinted pearl coat (c'mon). And the tester had chromed alloy wheels. Those two cosmetic tricks made the Cruiser a treat for the eyes.

Inside, leather upholstery, a sunroof, fancy stereo and other coddling features made the Cruiser GT Turbo a luxury vehicle. The styling, by the way, is what modern designers think a customized, 1930s Ford delivery sedan would look like.

PT Turbo uses a German Getrag five-speed manual, pricier and smoother than the New Venture Gear transmission in the Neon SRT-4, which grinds gears now and then. The Getrag's a robust box, used with diesel-power Cruisers sold overseas.

The PT Turbo's optional automatic comes with Auto Stick manual-shift mode, which isn't included on lesser Cruisers.

One very happy upgrade is handling. PT Turbo's sport suspension minimizes the tendency of the Cruiser's rear end to suddenly hike up and over in tight corners. Unfortunately, the big tires boost the turning circle to an unwieldy 42 feet, about like a full-size pickup's.

The Cruiser is designed to be spacious and practical -- sort of a mini-minivan (it even uses some Chrysler minivan parts) -- so it's easy to get into and out of, and fairly comfortable inside. Headroom and legroom are adequate to generous. But the back seat's not terrifically comfortable for long-legged grown-ups. The middle rear seating slot has a proper lap-shoulder safety belt, but no safety headrest.

Rear seats flip-fold and remove fairly easily, to open a yawning 64 cubic feet of cargo room. The back of the front passenger's seat folds flat forward, opening room inside for a ladder or lumber.

Leather feels a bit thin, but that could be an illusion. Controls are convenient but not classy.

Cruiser enjoys multiple identities. You probably look at it and see a car. The great tally masters who record vehicle sales and must categorize everything as something call Cruiser a sport-utility vehicle, even though four-wheel drive isn't available (a major disappointment and a bigger drawback during winter storms like those that socked the Atlantic coast recently). The government classifies it as a light truck, because of the removable seats and SUV-like stubby front and rear body overhangs.

In addition to the strong engine and smooth transmission, the fuel economy's decent, the quality score's good and so are the crash-test results for the '03 model.

If you like the look and don't need four-wheel drive, it's pretty hard to find a reason not to buy the GT Turbo.

[phatyo]


http://www.usatoday.com/usatonline/20030221/4888426s.htm
 

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Sorry but I am NOT a fan of the PT cruiser AT ALL. I'm not sure I would include the word SPEED ANYWHERE regarding this vehicle. 215HP you think of speed??? Haha its a turbo-charged 4-banger only making 215HP which is less than 200 to the wheels...LOL[lol]

'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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The PT Cruiser is the ugliest piece of shit on the roads today.

2003 G35 Coupe (on order)
6-speed
Black Obsidian / Graphite
 

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Extend the nose out quite a bit, throw in a big block V8, put some serious meat on the tires and you have a modern interpretation of the Hot Rod that would totally capture men.

As is, adding a whiny turbo charger to a scaled down mini-van hardly constitutes a threat to the import market.
 

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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Originally posted by Semi On



As is, adding a whiny turbo charger to a scaled down mini-van hardly constitutes a threat to the import market.
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

My thoughts exactly...


'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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Honda Accord Lookalike?

The G35 is a rebadged Skyline which has a pedigree outside the US far beyond most cars on the planet.
 

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Honda Accord look-a-like? Hahaha yeah right man. Like Semi said the G35 is based from the Skyline...a very nice state of the art car not even offered in the U.S.

Your also talking about a Car&Driver Top10 and Motor Trend car of the year...ALSO not to mention the sedan and the coupe could run rings around your little turbo charged PT junk!

Didn't they recall like thousands of these as well???



'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Originally posted by Chaz

Didn't they recall like thousands of these as well???
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

http://www.safetyalerts.com/recall/a/02/v00358.htm


You were saying.... [bigmouth]




Almost every car has some sort of minor recall. It's the major safety recalls that you have to watch for.
 

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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Originally posted by jrenee2112

The PT Cruiser is the ugliest piece of shit on the roads today.

2003 G35 Coupe (on order)
6-speed
Black Obsidian / Graphite
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

BEGS THE QUESTION: Is your mom still on the streets?

-------------------------------

Moderator: Easy now jrenee2112. Let's not include parental attacks in this board please. What do you say?
 

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Come on guys. Be nice now.

I've had my 2003 Infinity G35 for almost 2 months. I love my car, BUT, it's time to move on.
I really LOVE the PT Cruiser. I love it so much that, tomorrow morning, I am driving to the Chrysler Dealership and buying myself a NEW PT Turbo.

Don't get me wrong. The G35 has been a Blast but I feel that I will get a better blast with the Turbo. Besides, the PT Cruiser has won so many awards, more than any other car to date. That, I feel good about buying one.
Sure, it looks different but that is what attracts me to it. Look at our G35's...they all look like any other car on the road these days. You can't say that about the Cruiser.

Thanks Dude, for posting the above write up. It made my decision easier. Thumbs up to ya.

Anyone here want to buy my G35? Slightly used. Make me an offer. I'm easy.
Thanks

Oops. Forgot to attach photo of my beloved G35....

 

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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Originally posted by Louis St. Marc

Come on guys. Be nice now.

I've had my 2003 Infinity G35 for almost 2 months. i love my car, BUT, it's time to move on.
II really LOVE the PT Cruiser. I love it so much that, tomorrow morning, I am driving to the Chrysler Dealership and buying myself a NEW PT Turbo.

Don't get me wrong. The G35 has been a Blast but I feel that I will get a better blast with the Turbo. Besides, the PT Cruiser has won so many awards, more than any other car to date that I feel good about buying one.
Sure, it looks different but that is what attracts me to it. Look at our G35's...they all look like any other car on the road these days. you can't say that about the Cruiser.

Thanks Dude, for posting the above write up. It made my decision easier. Thumbs up to ya.

Anyone here want to buy my G35? Slightly used. Make me an offer. I'm easy.
Thanks
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Be a fucking man.

Get a Bruiser. At least then you aren't some pussy American trying to trail on the asian import scene. You'd at least be pushing the American thang. You'd be rolling in a light as hell American style V8 loving bitch eater.

As is, you're just a wannabe.
 

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<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Originally posted by Chaz

Sorry but I am NOT a fan of the PT cruiser AT ALL. I'm not sure I would include the word SPEED ANYWHERE regarding this vehicle. 215HP you think of speed??? Haha its a turbo-charged 4-banger only making 215HP which is less than 200 to the wheels...LOL[lol]

'03 G35 Sedan.
<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Actually, Chrysler measured the HP at the wheels on this car......so actual HP is about 235 or 240 at the drivetrain......

Has anyone ever seen your car parked in a parking lot, gone back to their car to get their camera, and taken a picture of of it? I think not. It doesn't happen to but a few cars.....Ferrari, Lamborghini, and my PT Cruiser!

Before ya bash, drive it! I'll bet you might even like it.....maybe not the body style for everyone, but at least its not everybody's body style.....

John

ps I have no knowledge of Infiniti, so I can't say anything but I hope ya'll enjoy your cars as much as I enjoy mine......

http://bugdude21.ptenthusiasts.net
 

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Actually, Chrysler measured the HP at the wheels on this car......so actual HP is about 235 or 240 at the drivetrain......

Has anyone ever seen your car parked in a parking lot, gone back to their car to get their camera, and taken a picture of of it? I think not. It doesn't happen to but a few cars.....Ferrari, Lamborghini, and my PT Cruiser!

Before ya bash, drive it! I'll bet you might even like it.....maybe not the body style for everyone, but at least its not everybody's body style.....

John

ps I have no knowledge of Infiniti, so I can't say anything but I hope ya'll enjoy your cars as much as I enjoy mine......

http://bugdude21.ptenthusiasts.net
[/quote]

John...YES I HAVE driven one and I'm sorry to say I think they are a piece of sh*t. MY original quote was just laughing at the fact that you people think that new turbo is fast? Get the f*ck out of here man...you must not know what fast is. As far as Dodge measuring that HP figure AT the drivetrain I will believe it when I see it...show me the dyno. NOT too many cars are UNDER-rated for HP...

I am happy you die-hard PT cruiser fans love your ride and I love my new G35. Fact of the matter is they are in totally different classes of car...one for the avid soccer mom and one for the upper scale sport sedan enthusiast...don't take this the wrong way I am not in anyway trying to sit here and bash the PT...I just don't like it.

What did dude go to the PT cruiser boards and say we are bashing on PT cruisers now or something to get all these new PT fans on here...well he CAME to OUR board to promote the new Turbo piece of crap...which is fine but when we state our opinion on it don't start getting all defensive...[boxing] AS far as I am concerned this shouldn't even be a discussion...the G35 is in a whole UPPER class than the PT...

Oh and as far as the going back to the car to take a pic of it...HAHAHA LOL...its sad you even mention cars like ferrari's in the same category as a PT...LOL [lol]

'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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I appreciate your two cents Cruisin...well put my man. First, I have YET to run across a PT thats worthy of noting on how fast it is? I would like to see what you have done with your 10K on making it fast and see how fast it REALLY is? Please prove me wrong here Cruisin...I have yet to see but would like to see a modded fast PT. I too enjoy cars and if the PT is someone elses thing then more power to them. I assume your last post was directed at me so let me say that I am not trying to make a fashion statement or anything near that ballpark...I am just stating from personal experiences on what I have seen with the PT cruiser...nothing more!

I agree with you in that most people do buy them for the unique styling...I really don't like it but AGAIN its my personal OPINION! This is a forum, everyone is ENTITLED to their personal opinions.

Oh and someone once said..."People who are offended by profanity should pull the 10 foot pole out of their ass." [:D]

JUST my two cents though! [:D]



'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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Agreed Cruisin...good point on the profanity. Like you said though, different strokes for different folks.

Checked out the site and yeah that does seem to be a relatively fast PT. I mean I had a 98GT stang for over 5 yrs and did a few mods to it...never a blower though. My best time I ran at the track was a 14.48 @ 98. So with the over 12lbs of boost from a turboed out PT it only ran a 14.6 I mean come on Cruisin...I see your point but for a car thats turbo charged vs say the new G35 would still beat that...even the sedan would give it a run for its money...sorry Cruisin but still need to see a FAST PT??? [:D]

Oh and JoeMom how old are you? VERY mature post man let me tell you...so nice to see all these PT fans come on our site and start doggin and trash talkin...could you please explain to me how you percieved myself to be a wannabe???

'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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Not bad PT...I like the rims alot with that blue color although I hate the racing stripe and wing at the back. Looks a little ricey to me! So it has NOS and some other mods...well what are HP figures and track times here??? Can it actually move FAST??? [:D]

'03 G35 Sedan.
 

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Any car can be made fast, just spend the money and it will happen. I have seen a fast Yugo at an Autocross once. The question is, "Just because it is fast does that make it alright?" I think most people buy a car based on looks, price or family requirements. The PT Cruiser is roomy, based on a Neon making it inexpensive and has a different style. For some people it fits the bill, not for me. I buy a car for pure speed, it must handle like a bobsled or accelerate like a slingshot. Give me a Pinto that runs 9's on street tires and I will happy!

2003.5 Blue Sedan
 
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