The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
or had one of the 2008 t&c's or grand caravans.or the ghost voyagers DOH ! i want to know if there were many problems with the change in models. and what about the transmissions ? are they as troublesome as the ones they put in my 94 ? did they make any improvement as i'm thinking of getting one ? or should i just get forget the 08 ? thanks-
 

·
Registered
2009 GCV SE
Joined
·
737 Posts
So here's my recommendation. 2008 was the first year of the new redesigned 5'th gen dodge caravan, Chrysler T&C and Voyager models.

I'd suggest go for a 09 model if you're choosing an early 5'th gen, they redesigned the vans in 2011 for the later 5'th gen vans, so in that case 2012 or newer is better (especially since the first year is what usually has the common issues and mistakes, 2'nd year usually have most of those patched in the production line)

Lots of people say to avoid 2010, my personal experience was with a 2010 was a radio swap for the one in my 09, the wiring connectors were the same but it flipped the speaker polarity, so definitely different. And if that's different, who knows what else is different too.

In terms of transmission and engine issues, if the van was well taken care of, maintenance kept up to date, not driven aggressively, and the van starts up well, sounds well, drives and shifts well without any hints that the tranny is having issues then it should last you at least a few years.

My 09 GCV SE has the 3.3L and 4 speed with 170K kilometers (had it since new), never left me stranded, never had a no start issue, and all original parts from the factory. The main downside to the engine and tranny is the lack of power in the mountains, the 4.0L and 6 speed would definitely get rid of that issue.
 

·
3rd gen > all others
Joined
·
2,949 Posts
The 6 speed is again a new transmission, so you take chances with that.

Yes, the 4 speed was improved since 1994. In 2000 the differential retaining pin was upgraded to help fix the issue of the transmission grenading when the pin would come out. Likely other revisions as well. Keep them clean and cool and use only ATF+4 and it does well.

A family friend has an 08 Grand Caravan that I've worked on, with the 3.3 and 4 speed. Only needed the usual, spark plugs and wires, leaking oil pan gasket and oil changes. The one common problem on 5th gens with a rear heater are the plastic Y pipes in the heater hoses. They crack and can lead to overheating and stranding you. Replace them with aluminum ones with hose clamps (or new hoses too) and they'll last a lifetime. The factory plastic breaks down in 5 years. I also replaced the struts with Gabriel units, and front wheel bearings and brakes.

The brakes on the early 5th gens were too small, and either required shorter replacement intervals or warped the rotors. Later years had the heavy duty brakes with the big dual piston calipers and 17" wheels. Those are the brakes to have.

Other issues are a certain year the front headrests suddenly "release" (it's a safety feature they're supposed to do during a front/rear crash to prevent whiplash). It's a somewhat costly replacement of something you wouldn't normally think of replacing. Last I read on here, the revised replacements were in short supply and had a wait time to get them - this was before covid shut down everything. Another issue pertaining only to the 2011-newer 3.6 engine is the oil filter housing breaking during an oil change and being another costly replacement (time-wise for shop labor). The rear disk brakes have an exposed linkage for the parking brake on the rear calipers, and those rust up and hang up easily.

We had a 2011 DGC crew for a couple of years, until it was totalled the day we got the clear title after paying it off. Only problems we had were the tires wearing down quickly, the front right brake sticking (replaced caliper, rotor and pads;fixed) and a cruise control button in the steering wheel breaking and causing the high beams not to work, the wipers to stay on and the horn to sound after reconnecting the battery. That one took a dealership to fix, while they were doing the air bag recall. My wife didn't like the last row upper seat belt mount being so far ahead that it didn't really do anything (safety hazard) so we replaced it with a 2011 Toyota Sienna. We both loved the color of that van though (deepwater blue metallic). It was nicely equipped with the crew package and leather seats.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Michalb

·
--UNKNOWN MEMBER--
Joined
·
12,674 Posts
or had one of the 2008 t&c's or grand caravans.or the ghost voyagers DOH ! i want to know if there were many problems with the change in models. and what about the transmissions ? are they as troublesome as the ones they put in my 94 ? did they make any improvement as i'm thinking of getting one ? or should i just get forget the 08 ? thanks-
If you find a nice 2008 in good mechanical condition, I'll say go for it. That vehicle is already 12+ years old. Any problems regarding model change should've fixed by now.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top