PT Cruiser

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PT Cruiser
PT Cruiser Custom
PT Cruiser Custom
PT Cruiser Custom
PT Cruiser Custom
PT Cruiser Hearse

Background:

1997 Plymouth Pronto Concept Car
1998 Plymouth Pronto Cruiser Concept Car

The PT Cruiser is a retro-styled compact car that was first released by Chrysler as a sedan/hatchback as a 2000 model in the late 1999. It was then released as a coupe/convertible in early 2005 as a 2005 model.

The PT Cruiser is a FWD 5-passenger vehicle, classified as a truck in the U.S. by the NHTSA for the purpose of CAFE fuel economy calculations, and as a car by most other classifications. The reason for Chrysler to specifically design the PT Cruiser to fit the NHTSA criteria for a light truck, was in order to bring the average fuel efficiency of the company's light truck fleet, and into compliance with CAFE standards.

The PT Cruiser is manufactured at Toluca Car Assembly in Toluca, Mexico.

Originally developed to be a Plymouth, the PT Cruiser became a Chrysler on introduction — in anticipation of the 2001 discontinuation of the Plymouth brand. The PT Cruiser was designed by Bryan Nesbitt, who later designed the very similar looking HHR for Chevrolet. The initials PT in PT Cruiser stands for the designation of the car's platform (Body Style) as well as production code. The name recalls the 1930s line of Plymouth Trucks that also went by the "PT" moniker. Other rumors on the PT Moniker include "Personal Transportation" and "Platform Tall" as opposed to Plymouth's and Dodge's Neon PL Platform -- AKA "Platform Low".

The PT Cruiser actually was an evolution of the 1997 Plymouth Pronto[1], and 1998 Plymouth Pronto Cruiser[2], which were "retro" concept cars designed on the K-Car platform.

When initially introduced, demand for the car was, in many cases, much higher than dealer supply, seeing customers put on waiting lists. Anticipation of the car was high, making for a debut that was among the most successful in company history. Almost immediately after its introduction, many PT Cruiser car clubs sprouted across the US, as did PT Cruiser specific parts vendors -- and the PT Cruiser became one of the most customized new cars ever.

While the body style remained consistent throughout its entire life span, there were actually multiple models of the PT Cruiser, identified by their unique badges on the rear lift-gate. Models included the Classic Edition, Limited Edition, Touring Edition, "Dream Cruiser", "Street Cruiser", "Pacific Coast Highway Edition" and PT Cruiser GT. Turbo edition models are identified by a "2.4L Turbo" badge on the lower right hand corner of the rear lift-gate. The GT model has a badge on the right hand corner of the lift-gate says "2.4L Turbo High Output" (indicating it is the 220/230 hp engine version).

It is believed that the 2010 model year will be the PT Cruiser's last.


Model Predecessor

Export Versions

The PT Cruiser was also assembled in Graz, Austria, for global markets (outside North America) in 2002, using the production code PG. European PT Cruisers built in 2001 or from 2003 onwards are built in Mexico under the PT production code. The American version features a 2.4 L four-cylinder gasoline engine. In addition to this standard model, and prior to the reorganization of the New Chrysler, a 2.2 L four-cylinder diesel engine built by Mercedes Benz was also available in Europe, Asia, and South Africa. A 2 liter engine (D4RE) was available outside the U.S. It produced 140 hp (100 kW) SAE at 6500 rpm with 130 ft·lbf (180 N·m) of torque at 4800 rpm.

While the Export versions are grossly underpowered when compared to the US models -- they outsold the US models in most years[3].

Related Models

Technically none.

Competition

  • Chevrolet HHR

Specifications

The below are the specifications for the 2010 PT Cruiser, and generally the specifications for the entire 10-year span -- unless otherwise notated in the year-by-year history.

Year by Year Changes, Production Numbers, and Cost:

The below is the year by year history of the PT Cruiser.


2000

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2001

In 2001 Car and Driver acknowledged the PT Cruiser on its Ten Best list and the PT Cruiser also won the North American Car of the Year.

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2002

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2003

A turbocharged GT model was introduced for the 2003 model year.

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2004

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2005

2006 PT Cruiser Convertible

A four-seat convertible model was added for 2005. It is a two-door car with an integrated "sport bar" for added rigidity and rollover protection. It was discovered that the sport bar also caused air to flow over the rear passengers, resulting in a less drafty ride for those in the rear seats.

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2006

2006 Route 66


In 2006, the PT Cruiser received an update to include scalloped headlights, a restyled chrome grille, new lower front fascia which eliminated the brake cooling ducts, available round fog lamps and redesigned taillights. Interior updates included an updated dash. The turbocharged 2.4 L four-cylinder engine was available in 180 hp or "High-Output" 230 hp versions.

On March 8, 2006, DaimlerChrysler announced that it had built 1,000,000 PT Cruisers at the Toluca plant since February 14, 2000.

Street Cruiser Route 66 Edition was added in 2006. The car featured Solar Yellow paint, Solar Yellow brake calipers, body-color grille, solar-tinted sunscreen glass, a liftgate mounted spoiler, 17-inch all-season performance tires, four-wheel anti-lock brakes with low-speed traction control, speed control and a sport suspension. Brightwork accents include chrome body-side moldings, a chrome exhaust tip and 17-inch (430 mm), chrome-plated, five-spoke Empire aluminum wheels. A unique 'Street Cruiser' badge, complete with Solar Yellow accents, is featured on the liftgate and complemented by 'Route 66' Edition badges on the front doors. The MSRPs were $19,185 for the manual transaxle version and $20,020 for the automatic transaxle model.

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2007

2007 Pacific Coast Highway edition

A Mopar cruise control unit became available as a dealer installed after market unit on the 2007 models.

Street Cruiser Pacific Coast Highway Edition was added in 2007. Based on the 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser Touring model, this version included Pacific Blue Pearl paint, 4-Wheel disc anti-lock brakes, bright front door sill scuff pads, front bright accent ring cupholders, silver shift knob, chrome lock knobs, chrome bodyside molding, "Street Cruiser" badge, Pacific Coast Highway Edition badge, rear body-color spoiler, bright exhaust tip, leather steering wheel with bright spokes, sport suspension, supplemental side air bags, 6-way power driver's seat, Sirius satellite radio, 17" x 6.0" aluminum platinum clad wheels with 205/50R17XL 93H BSW all-season performance tires, cloth seats with blue insert. The MSRPs were $20,735 for the manual transaxle version and $21,570 for the automatic transaxle model.

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The convertible officially ceased production December 21, 2007, with the last marketed as 2008 models. On January 12, 2009, Chrysler LLC, the Chrysler company under the private equity Cerberus Capital Management investor, announced the gradual discontinuation of the main model.

2008

2008 Street Cruiser Sunset Blvd

For 2008, the very limited (500 Units) Street Cruiser Sunset Boulevard Edition. It is based on PT Cruiser LX. It includes "Sunset Crystal" paint accented with various chrome body-trim pieces, deep-tint glass, 16-inch chrome wheels with all-season touring tires. The MSRPs were $16,650 for the manual transaxle version, $17,475 for the automatic transaxle model (both include $640 destination charge).

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2009

2009 Dream Cruiser Series 5

In 2009, the Dream Cruiser Series 5 is released. It is a limited (1750 units) version of PT Cruiser. Engine choices include 2.4L I4 engine rated 150 bhp and 160 lb·ft or if a turbocharged 2.4L I4, the engine is rated at 180 bhp and 210 lb·ft. It includes 4-speed automatic transmission, pearl white paint (although 1 unit was made in inferno red and another unit made in bright silver) with a black roof and spoiler, gray interior with leather and chrome trim, upper and lower billet aluminum cross-hatch pattern grilles, chromed door handles and body-side moldings, chromed stainless steel exhaust tip (on turbo), 17 in SRT Design wheels with all-season performance tires, unique 'PT' door badging, PT Dream Cruiser Series 5 tailgate badge, fog lamps and a Brilliant Black Crystal Pearl hoop spoiler. It has a MSRP of US$22,700 (includes $670 for destination).

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2010

With Obama's 2009 planned reorganization of the New Chrysler to be jointly owned by the US Government, Fiat, and the Union, the only 2010 PT Cruiser model is the 4-door PT Cruiser Classic

On Chrysler's web site for 2010, it described the PT Cruiser as: Easily one of the most unique vehicles on the road, PT Cruiser Classic has an incredibly distinctive design. It's bold, retro exterior gives way to a strikingly contemporary interior.

From the moment you step inside this five-seat vehicle, the PT Cruiser Classic's retro-inspired interior begins to resonate. While the design is retro, the cabin's look and feel is anything but. Satin Silver accents highlight the instrument panel and center stack.

Production Numbers by Body Style

The 4-door PT Cruiser Classic, was the only model offered in 2010.

Engines

PT Cruiser Classic's 2.4L 4-cyl. engine produces 150 horsepower and gives PT Cruiser Classic 26 mpg highway

Transmissions

For 2010, the only transmission offered is the 4-Speed Automatic VLP Transmission


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External Links



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