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Buying a Stealth

Dodge Stealth The car that can still draw looks from auto enthusiasts everywhere, the Dodge Stealth. From the Naturally Aspirated version to the Twin Turbo, the Dodge Stealth has a little something for everyone.

Buying a Stealth

  #1  
Old 05-04-2006, 04:38 PM
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thestealth
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Default Buying a Stealth

Buying a used car is always a tricky proposition, Stealths are no different.

First off, I'll list some of the common issues prevelant to all the models.

1. Capacitors. Mitsubishi used subpar capacitors in the control boards. These capacitors will start leaking, damaging the circuit board they are on causing all sorts of malfunctions or board failure. They can be replaced for a minimal cost in comparison to the price of a new unit.
These capacitors are in the ECU (engine controller), TCU (Auto tranny controller), ECS (Electronic Controlled Suspension), and the Digital Climate Control. When I had them replaced on my car, I used ECM to go. They had a fair price and a car on site to test their work.
Edit: Upon further research, this is only an issue with the 1st gen cars, 91-93.

2. Cracked dash vents. Purely a cosmetic problem, but very common. To replace them requires the removal of the dash. I personally am just living with it.

3. Bubbling of the interior door panels. The outer "skin" of the door panel becomes seperated, making bubbles appear in the door panels. Another cosmetic issue, no known cure other than to replace the entire door panel.

4. Worn seat bolster on drivers seat.

5. Lifter tick. Very common among the DOHC engines, I'm not sure if the SOHC has this problem or not. More of an annoyance than anything, as it is not detrimental to the engine. Keeping the oil changed with Synthetic oil will lesson the ticking, but even then it will happen. I change the oil on my Stealths around 3000 miles and both of them have very minimal lifter tick.

Those are the main problem areas of all the models, base, ES, RT, RT/TT. When looking at used cars (any used car), always check the fluid levels and conditions and ask for maintenance records. This is a good indicator of how well the previous owner cared for the vehicle. Kick all the tires, don't be afraid to crawl all over and under the vehicle looking for rust, overspray from a repaint, missing nuts/bolts, hidden damage, etc. Run a carfax report. Not all accidents will show on a carfax, but it will at the minimum give you an idea of how many owners the car had and whether of not the mileage on the odometer is correct. Don't be afraid to ask the owner questions; Why are you selling it? How long have you had it? Any known problems? Etc. Test drive it. Don't turn on the radio while test driving, listen for any unusual clunks or sounds. Drive on varied pavements to listen for any suspension issues. Punch it a time or too (I am not advocating ragging out someones car) to make sure it runs like it should.

The truth is, these cars are starting to get old(er). There will be things that will break or just plain wear out. Struts, seals, hoses, belts, misc. electronic items, chassis and suspension bushings. This is common on all vehicle when they age.



Maintenance

The DOHC and TT engines require a little more thorough maintenance than their SOCH brethren. Every 60K miles the timing belt, water pump, pullies and tensioners, spark plugs should be changed. At 180K miles, the oil pump should be changed, it is not a bad idea to have the mechanic check the bearings while he is there.



That is all I can think of at the moment. Please feel free to add anything I might have missed, or correct anything in error.
 
  #2  
Old 06-30-2006, 10:37 PM
rhinotsh
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Default RE: Buying a Stealth

I'D LIKE TO ADD ,
PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION TO THE LOWER BALL JOINTS , RIGHT UNDER WHERE THE CV JOINT GOES THRU THE BRAKE ROTOR . YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE THE BALL JOINT IS IN GOOD CONDITION BECAUSE IF YOU NEED TO REPLACE THEM YOU HAVE TO BUY THE WHOLE "A " ARM AND I'M TOLD BY THE LOCAL STEALERSHIP THAT THEY START AT $575.00 !
 
  #3  
Old 07-18-2006, 01:31 AM
jakster
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Default RE: Buying a Stealth

The lower ball joints can be had from several sources. First off you don't need to replace the whole arm just the ***** $75.00-$125 each depending on the vendor. Tie rod ends about $45.00 each NAPA Auto.Look to www.3sxperformance.com for ball joints and you will have a good trip.
My old Stealth has 235.000 miles on the engine and just made a trip from Florida to Colorado / New Mexico and all over the place 3000 miles no problems not even with the rebuilt computer which I did myself for $20.00. This car is really high tech but if maintained will run for a very long time its all a learning curve don't trust the garage teach yourself what makes this beast tick they really have no idea at 99% of the garages.
The Jakster
 
  #4  
Old 03-06-2007, 05:54 AM
rrjii2000
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Default RE: Buying a Stealth

Lets not forget about the Defrost Vents deforming over time.On around the 10th aniversary of my Stealth the engine mounts were shot, and needed replaced. Also the exaust downpipe will rust out and break with no warning, turning your stealth into one mean noise machine. Mine sounded like a lawnmower, and I was several miles from home at the time

Rob
 
  #5  
Old 01-16-2008, 11:36 PM
car5car
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Default RE: Buying a Stealth

Price of motor mounts is about 120 doll each. I made 2 mounts, it cost me about 5 cents each! If you buy Stealth, check mounts. Not even necessary to check, they are bad! Timing belt, water pump, seals-$500
 
  #6  
Old 08-12-2008, 11:19 AM
Sturly
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I always thought about picking up one of these cars, but they have such a bad rep reliability wise I was always too afraid. picking up a tt car would be sick as hell though!
 
  #7  
Old 10-29-2008, 02:39 PM
materialman
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Do your homework and especially on the Twin Turbo's, make sure you have someone that knows what they are looking at check the car out carefully. These and not cheap cars to have worked on. If you can find a nice one, you will enjoy it!

92 Twin Turbo, original owner, Firestorm Red 15,000 miles, absolutely mint
07 Hummer H3
04 Lexus RX330
02 Dodge Dakota
92 Dodge Shadow
86 Ford Mustang GT Convertable
 
  #8  
Old 08-10-2009, 01:17 AM
abushr
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Default motor expectations

I'm looking at purchasing a 94 stealth with 108000 miles on the motor. How many miles can I expect from the motor with proper maintance?
 
  #9  
Old 07-23-2011, 08:15 PM
danielc.11084
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Default Thinking about buyin a 92 stealth twin turbo and need advice

I found a guy who has a white 92 dodge stealth twin turbo with about 180000 miles on it. The body is in pretty decent shape with no dents and no rust. The inside is also pretty good just needs new leather on seats and has a cracked dash. The headlights are stuck in the up position, i am not sure why. So here is the main problem. The rings are bad and the engine is in peices. I am no mechanic by far I just love this car. I have a buddy that does all my mechanic work for next to nothing. The guy still isnt sure he wants to sell it but told me he really didnt have the money to fix it and that if he hasnt done anything in the next month he would sell it to me. We didnt talk price but I was thinking like $800 because the body is in such good shape to be almost 20 years old. Any input would be nice. Like I said I am no mechanic and dont know much about the car.
 
  #10  
Old 02-13-2012, 07:11 AM
Lone136
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Tell me i'm wrong, but wasn't the Gt3000 the same car, but under a different name? THe reason I'm asking, a very good and dear friend of mine had one for years and he passed away just over a year ago. He has a GT3000 and I thought he had sold it long ago. After he passed away he wife told me I could get the old car if I wanted it. At some point he was hit just in front of the drivers door. So it may need a drivers door and fender. HE drove it home and parked it and thats where it sits to this day in the basement of his home. HE only had 79.000 on the car and he got it out of Florida.ALso he never had the title put in his name, but it came from a dealership, so I have the title.
I also now know the car has been parked atleast 6 years or more, but out of the weather.
I'm not sure what to do with the car at this point, but I know his wife is going to lose her home and I will have to move the car. At this point is it worth any thing as a whole or should I just part it out?
 

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