Chrysler Introduces Lifetime Powertrain Warranty

Effective immediately, Chyrsler is upgrading its three-year, 36,000 mile powertrain warranty to a lifetime warranty. The warranty only applies to original owners and lessees, and specifically excludes rental companies and corporate fleets. Still, it’s a good news, right? The car experts at Jalopnik think it could be better:

You must have your vehicle inspected after five-years of ownership by an “authorized” Chrysler dealer. And check out this nugget, “The inspection must be made within 60 days of each 5-year anniversary of the warranty start date of the vehicle. ” So, you void your lifetime warranty if you forget about leap year.

Somehow, the AP’s coverage managed to omit that important little caveat.

Chrysler offers a lifetime warranty [Boston Globe]
Chrysler to Offer Lifetime Powertrain Warranty; Covers Most Cars and Trucks [AP]
(Photo: kerinin)

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  1. gibsonic says:

    sorry, still not buying a chrysler product…ever.

  2. randombob says:

    hey. I find it rather enticing. Just don’t forget the dates!

  3. HeyThereKiller says:

    Um, pardon my ignorance… but I was pretty certain that during a leap year you add an extra day to February. Not skip an entire year. So wouldn’t your warranty only be void if you bought your car 60 days before March 1st?

  4. supra606 says:

    Lifetime powertrain – really? What are the conditions that would void the warranty? They’re certainly not going to cover a fifteen year old car with over 200,000 miles on it for example. Unless they think they’re not going to be around as a company long enough for that to happen…

  5. joeblevins says:

    Only on newly purchased, not good if you already bought yours.

  6. missdona says:

    @supra606:

    I imagine it will start with the upcoming model year.

  7. JustAGuy2 says:

    @supra606:

    They might well cover that car, since it only applies to the first owner. Since VERY few people keep the car that long, the PR benefit of offering this plan to a bunch of people who will never make use of it could easily outstrip the modest cost of having to service that tiny %age of the customer base.

  8. nweaver says:

    ACtually, its a very good deal, for DC:

    a) Its easy to void, if you forget that 5 year inspection bit, and most peopl don’t keep their cars for 200,000 miles.

    b) MOST of the times, its not the drivetrain that fails, but everything else slowly breaking. In the Hamstermobile, the only “engine” fixes have been coolant/temperature sensors, thermostat, and alternator.

    c) DC will be bankrupt in 5 years, so they’ll never have to pay for repairs. :)

    But it also may be good for consumers. DC minivans have notoriously bad transmissions in the past. The only way I’d buy one is if the transmission had a lifetime warrantee.

  9. Coder4Life says:

    Um, this is a JOKE!

    Ok, most people dont buy a new car and keep it for long enough to have the transmission go out on it. Seriously, if it were for the first 2 owners or something I could see it worth some $$$.

    But then again I guess it’s a chrysler so the tranny might go out at 40k or 70k or 200k. Those dependeable POS..

  10. LatherRinseRepeat says:

    Offering generous warranties can go two ways:

    1) It instills confidence in the customer and gives them the feeling that the car company will stand by their product.

    or

    2) It will create a sense of suspicion. Customers will think the cars are crappy to need such a long warranty.


    Either way, I guess it doesn’t matter. Chrysler, like most American car companies, are in trouble. Lack of innovation, boring and unreliable cars, poor management.. all these things are leading to their demise.


    I mean, if Hyundai comes in third place behind Lexus and Porsche in initial quality, then you really know American car companies are in trouble!

  11. raybury says:

    “Lifetime” warranties for other consumer goods normally don’t cover normal wear, even though that eventually leads to the end of the product’s “life.” Said “lifetime” is rarely spelled out in the warranty, but usually the company chooses it’s own definition, and for Chrysler that might mean n miles or m years.

  12. @JustAGuy2: Beat me to it: the non-transferable nature of the warranty does nothing for me.

    Might be nice if you bought the car for yourself and then gave it to your kid to run into the ground.

    Also: haven’t American automakers learned not to defer expenses far off into the future? I.e. pensions?

  13. supra606 says:

    @missdona:
    Sorry for any confusion but I was talking about if someone were to buy a car today and keep it for that long.

  14. Nemesis_Enforcer says:

    @LatherRinseRepeat: Lol yeah I am on my 3rd Hyundai all bought new not 1 single problem…I sold the 2 previous ones to buy new ones. My wife has a PT cruiser she just HAD to have! Its 2 years old and I think its been in the shop…4 times so far, not counting the 3 recalls we had to take it in for. So yeah I fully support the Hyundai Quality assesment. Chrysler has some good product but it seems you have to really get the high end cars to get any quality.

    My sister in law has a Charger SRT and has already racked up like 70,000 miles in a little more than 18 months with zero issues. This after she traded in a Neon that could barely make it out of the driveway if you pushed it..

  15. Phildawg says:

    The problem with this warranty is the same with the Kia 10year/100,000 mile power train warranty. They never have to pay out on it because the avg. new car buyer keeps a new car for 3 year, according to internal car manufacturer’s figures.

    So Chrysler knows the PR they will get from a ‘lifetime warranty’ when most cars a junked by even the longest term owners for all the other costly repairs, not the engine breaking. It’s always been about all the other items falling apart, not the drive train.

  16. Amiga_500 says:

    Good point RAYBURY. I would be interested to know if if covers you for unlimited miles/time.

    I might actually be interested in this. I put 215,000 miles on a 88 Buick Regal.

  17. iMike says:

    No workee for diesel engine.

  18. Sudonum says:

    I’m sure that in a couple years you’ll be able to buy a used “certified” Chrysler and still get this warranty. But yeah, the only people who are going to take advantage of Chrysler on this one are the people who don’t drive much and buy a car once every 10 years or so and take good care of them while they own them

  19. gibsonic says:

    @iMike:

    really?!? doh! i was thinking…ya know, it might be worth it if you could buy a nice heavy duty truck…

    although historically dodge trucks aren’t that bad mechanically but the bodies rust and fall apart long before the engine and drive train do. My brother-in-law is a farmer and he and all his farming buddies are always looking for dodge trucks that have been wrecked or otherwise body damage and take the engines out to run the water pumps for their fields.

    still never buying a dodge/chrysler…sorry…i might accept a free Plymouth Prowler…but that’s about it.

  20. gamble says:

    @nweaver: Daimler Chrysler is no more. Its now just Chrysler. Also, the transmission is part of the powertrain.


    Even with this warranty, I would never buy a Chrysler. Even if powertrain problems are covered, its still no fun having your car in the shop, waiting for repairs to be done. And given the history of Chrysler, problems are likely to be numerous.

  21. balthisar says:

    Really, I’d have to wait and see how their quality figures have improved. GM and in particular Ford have already demonstrated great improvements in quality, but that hasn’t been shown to be the case for Chrysler yet.

    Given that Chrysler’s biggest long-term quality problem in terms of repair costs have been transmission problems, then this is either (1) a sign that they have decent transmissions, or (2) that they don’t mind spending their things-gone-wrong dollars on transmission problems. I actually have hope that it’s the former, in that contrary to the above opinions, Chrysler’s designs are their only endearing characteristic otherwise! (Not saying I like them personally, but I appreciate how they’re 100% different compared to boring Accords and Camries).

  22. antonio311 says:

    Your all full of it! Chrysler engines are the most reliable engines and transmissions on the road! They’re much more reliable then any toyota or honda in the long term. I’ve had numerous chrysler vehicles with over 100,000 miles on them and never a problem. Their transmissions are very very reliable. Remember Chrysler was the 1st company to introduce electronically controlled transmissions, not GM, Ford, Toyota, or Honda! They have always made the most reliable domestic engines and transmissions. And With their lifetime warrenty thousands of people will purchase a Chrysler vehicle with the peace of mind a lifetime warrenty comes with. Chrysler will be around for another 100 years, and probably longer than Toyota! Chrysler is a leader in the automotive industry, they make the absolute best vehicles, and anyone that doesn’t even bother to shop at a chrysler, dodge or Jeep showroom is just plain ignorant! As for the SUPPOSED problems with the PT cruiser, i own a 2005 turbo with over 40,000 miles in two and a half years and i’ve never had any problems whatsoever or any recalls. If you don’t take care of your car Don’t blame the manufacturer for YOUR neglect!!! And the PT cruisers style still turns more heads then almost anything else on the road!! Cheers chrysler. Keep up the good work!

  23. Sudonum says:

    @antonio311:
    “And the PT cruisers style still turns more heads then almost anything else on the road!”

    Where in the hell do you drive?

  24. shades_of_blue says:

    Talk about rubbing salt in my eyes, I drive a Japanese car and the biggest complaint I have about most Japanese cars is their standard 3year/30000mile warranty. I have to pay extra for 6year/60000, and even more for a further extended warranty that in most cases is either pointless or not cost effective.

    Take my car, for example. An 04 Subaru Impreza WRX, 3year/3000mile, optional 6year/6000mile and the final extra, a 9year/90000mile ‘turbo unit’ warranty. The ‘turbo unit’ warranty costs 2000bux, a huge ripoff as you can buy a takeoff turbo unit for 650bux online and anyone who is capable of installing their own exhaust system has the required knowledge to replace one. Guess which warranty option I passed on…yeah
    As if that wasn’t bad enough the extended 6year warranty does not cover everything the base warranty does. I learned that after a defective power window roller cost me 80bux, 10 for the part and 70 for the labor.

    Stupid Japanese automakers need to realize that Americans don’t require a ‘rigorous inspection’ every two years after the first three years of ownership, so we hold onto our cars longer. They really should stop basing our market on their own.

    As for Chrysler, I still would not buy one. I had the displeasure of driving a ‘newish’ Chrysler Sebring for a month [rental car] and IMO it was a box of shit, which somehow sprouted stubs called wheels. It was very perplexing, as I never imagined shit could roll up a hill. But had I, I’m sure it would have looked and felt like the Sebring.

    Although it’s a bit late, sorry if I offended anyone who actually bought one.

  25. shades_of_blue says:

    @antonio311:
    Only a 100,000 miles? I’ve seen VW Jettas with over 400,000 on the clock and Honda Accords too. Can’t say I’ve ever heard of a Chrysler lasting that long, did hear of a Neon making it past 60,000 miles without blowing it’s head gasket once.

  26. drjayphd says:

    @antonio311: So who exactly do you drive for Chrysler again?

  27. thunderstruck says:

    Good for the warranty. Maybe it’ll keep Chrysler afloat for a bit. But if they want to truly save the company, they need to address some core issues: first, build quality, even though it’s improved of late, still needs improvement; second, just try to get anything done at a dealership, warranty or not; and last, it would be nice if their sales farce would stop taking liberties with the truth. I was supposed to get a free loaner every time I took my ’06 Jeep in.

    I may be a dope, but I still think quality and honesty sells vehicles. A reasonable price doesn’t hurt, either.

  28. DadCooks says:

    The “whole” transmission is not part of the power train, neither is the “whole” engine. The exclusions in the Chrysler books that show exactly what is covered are many.

    I own a 1993 Dodge Grand Caravan with 140,000 miles and have gone through five transmissions. Four were replaced entirely on Chrysler’s dime, the 5th I had to pay 50% as the part that they say failed was “outside” the power train.

    BTW, as of today at least, it is still DaimlerChrysler AG. I figure when Daimler unloads Chrysler, Chrysler will not have the finances to honor the warranty and will say that they (Chrysler) are not responsible, it’s Daimler’s problem.

    When the 7-year/100,000 mile warranty ran out on my van I started to exclusively use an independent shop. When I used the dealer something was always wrong and of course it was an item that just happened to not be covered under the warranty.

  29. JayXJ says:

    I’ll consider a new T&C when we run the Windstar into the ground in another 5 years or so. We do run our cars to well over 200,000 miles, barring someone running into one and killing it. Or a lemon.

    This is the only way I’d consider dealing with Chrysler again. I had two Dodge trucks in a row that were absolute junk. I worked on both as much as I drove them. The first was sold at 165K miles when I realized I’d need a engine AND a transmission soon. The second was traded in disgust after about 115K miles and god knows how much money spent in repairs. Keep in mind that I’m very meticulous about maintenance and repairs.

  30. Havok154 says:

    Too bad they wouldn’t cover my mom’s 2.7L intrepid which is well known to be a defective engine.

  31. jrdnjstn78 says:

    Hahahahaha.

    PT Cruiser, a head turner????? Yeah if you’re to modernize an old hearst because that is what a PT Cruiser looks like.

  32. zsouthboy says:

    @antonio311:

    Nicely marketed. Can I hire you to shill for my company too?

  33. tedEbear says:

    “The car experts at Jalopnik think it could be better”

    Oh, please. Chrysler announces the best warranty in the industry and these guys whine about having to get a FREE powertrain inspection done every 5 years, within 60 days of the start of the warranty.

    Maybe Chrysler should also send out a valet to pick up your car, drive it to the dealership and furnish you with a loaner 08 Viper while the inspection is being performed.

    I recently purchased a Sebring Limited based in part on this fantastic warranty. I keep my cars for a long time and, although I hope I never have to use the warranty, this will give me fewer things to worry about as far as a major repair bill goes.