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2004 Chrysler Pacifica / rusted subframe

1 United States Review updated:

A car that is 6 years old with 92, 000 miles has a subframe that is completed rusted through. I was told that it is unsafe to drive, and that I should consider myself lucky that nothing happened while I was driving it because it could fall apart at any moment. It will be thousands to repairs. Chrysler claims that it is out of warranty, and there is nothing that can be done. I have filed a complaint with the NHTSC. This is unacceptable, and I urge other Pacifica owners to check because a number of people have posted the exact same problem! Chrysler should look into this, because it is a MAJOR safety concern!

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  • Kh
      4th of May, 2010
    0 Votes

    What state? In a state with highly salted roads or by the ocean it is possible...salt kills a car

  • Sc
      5th of May, 2010
    -1 Votes

    MA and RI. This is not an isolated incident though. Currently engaged with another 2004 owner here in the US with the same problem. There have been a number of complaints in Canada, and Chrysler is replacing the subframe, even on cars that are over the 5 year warranty. Transport Canada got involved, and were investigating a number of incidents with 2004 Pacificas with front subframes that were rusted through. This has apparently prompted Chrysler to quickly and quietly deal with the issue (there is a discussion of "silent recall"), at least in Canada. One person responded today, saying that he took it to a dealer 2 weeks ago and Chrysler is replacing it for free, even though it is over 5 years old, without any hesitation. I have contacted a dealer here, and will follow up with my complaint with the NHTSA here in the USA.

  • Vo
      2nd of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes

    I also learned that our 2004 Pacifica has a rusted front sub-frame. The vehicle has just under 60, 000 miles. We were putting new tires on the car last month and the Goodyear dealer alerted me to the problem. We are in NJ by the way and exposure to salt should not be the cause in such a short amount of time. I have not taken it to our local dealer but plan to do so in the next few days.

  • Mo
      9th of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes

    Just found the rusted front subframe today (6/9/10), 2004 Pac in MA...

  • Dm
      10th of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes

    Samу thing in NY. Visited local dealer, said "not covered by warranty"...

  • Ri
      14th of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes

    My car is in at the dealer today due to the same subframe rust. The dealer had it a month ago and told me i needed to replace the rack and pinion. I took it to another garage for a second estimate and they stopped immediately as there is a 3"x6" rust hole through the subframe immediately adjacent to a connecting bolt for the rack and pinion.

    If the dealer had really inspected the car and diagnosed the rack as bad, I think they would have noticed the frame issue. My problem... Car is 5 years 9 months old and 127, 000 miles. I fear there going to want thousands to repair.

    Has anyone had luck with their dealer on a repair?

  • Sc
      14th of Jun, 2010
    -1 Votes

    I originally posted about my Pacifica in MA.

    I took it to a dealership in MA, and they got Chrysler to replace the subframe (even though it was beyond the 5 year warranty).

    Chrysler Corperation was NOT helpful at all, when I tried to deal with them directly. I was able to get it taken care of through the dealership though.

    PLEASE FILE COMPLAINTS WITH THE NHTSA. They need to know that this is an important, growing problem!

    Press to have Chrysler fix your cars. This is not right! DO NOT GIVE UP AFTER YOU ARE TOLD NO ONCE. KEEP PUSHING. IT TAKES PERSISTANCE.

  • Cm
      3rd of Aug, 2010
    0 Votes

    I too just learned that my front sub frame is rusted through. I have been calling chrysler about this same problem. They haven't responded to my complaint yet. I can't wait to hear what they have to say. If I don't get a positive response from them I will call my local news to air it for all to hear. As well as report it to the NHTSA. Thanks for that info. (this is the reason why we buy foreign cars)

  • Ma
      11th of Aug, 2010
    0 Votes

    I also have that our 2004 Pacifica has a rusted front sub-frame. The vehicle has just under 60, 000 miles. We were change the oil on the car last month and they guys alerted me to the problem. We are in ohio by the way and exposure to salt should not be the cause in such a short amount of time. is any think i can do .. GUYS WE SHOUD DO SOME MY EMAIL MAHMMOUD79@HOTMAIL.COM

  • Dh
      8th of Sep, 2010
    +1 Votes

    I just had the same issue - while servicing (oil) the mechanic told me i should have my 2004 pacifica towed as it is unsafe. Amazing that the body doesn't have any holes but the sub frame could be so completely degraded. I'm in Toronto and yes, there is salt, but many other vehicles older than mine are still held together.

  • Dh
      14th of Sep, 2010
    0 Votes

    Tried calling Chrysler - just got the warranty run around. Contacted corporate direct and at least a response but nothing resolved.
    Contacted Transport Canada and provided with other similar cases and very very supportive with recommendations and action plan
    Contact Chrysler again to see if they will now help - will keep you updated

  • Ca
      9th of Dec, 2011
    0 Votes

    Just purchased a 2004 Pacifica and was having a "clunk" in the front end when hitting bumps in the road. Had the struts, strut mounts, tie rod ends, and sway bar linkages replaced (all of which needed to be done). But still had the "clunk". The mechanic hooked up some gizmo to the chassis to find the source of the noise and found the subframe to be rusted away from the body. Can someone who was successful in getting this fixed please advise me on how to handle it. Thanks Carl,

  • Sw
      8th of Feb, 2012
    +2 Votes

    I found a post on Edmonds discussion forum ( that say Chrysler had offered an extended warranty specifically for the rusted subframe for 10 years or 150K miles. I called Chrysler and they said my VIN did not qualify. But that is BS because my 2004 Pacifica was a real early one made in March of 03 and it is indeed rusted out. I called again a couple times and finally one rep issued me a case number and sent me to my local dealer for an inspection. The dealer confirmed the problem but then a different Chrysler rep on the phone at the dealer said my claim was denied. I kept probing how could this be and they finally told me it was because of where I live, not the condition of the car. They said cars from NJ, DC, and Iowa are not eligible for the extended warranty. This is outragious!! I want to set up a class action suit for 2004 Pacifica owners who are getting screwed by Chrysler. They clearly recognize the danger in their faulty design and manufacturing yet are discriminating against owners in only a few geographical areas. PA, NY and everyone north of us gets the same salting on the roads! Anyone interested in ganging up on them can send me an email:

  • Xu
      1st of Apr, 2012
    +1 Votes

    Thanks for all the valuable information everyone! I was able to call them and tell them about it and they said they will do an inspection.

    Hopefully once they do that all will be fine! I also got a letter and the letter does state that one of the main reasons the warranty was extended was because of high salt areas.

  • Od
      15th of Apr, 2012
    0 Votes

    I discovered that I have been driving around with a cradle, subframe, that was rusted and cracked completely in two!!!
    This is complete negligence. Worse, I am still $5, 000 in negative equity.

    I also have the passenger door-open signal binging at me while i drive, but also while the car is parked, and I come back to a dead car. My gas gauge is mostly on empty, regardless of how full it is.

    Some box inside the transmission has been clicking for two years. found out that's about a $3, 000 fix. I just keep driving it because I can't afford it.

    I bought this car 4 years ago thinking it would be less problem than my 97 Bonneville. Yeah I was wrong.

    My front wheels rattle like a bag of spoons.

    The cloth on the third seat literally peeled off. I mean, a seat that's hardly ever used just falls apart. I have to put two towels over it - that's classy.

    cruise control dead.

    I burn through headlights every two months! Same with brake lights and blinkers.

    Oil is constantly low, but no drips anywhere to be found.

    I couldn't put a trailer hitch on because the back frame is too rusted. This car is 8 years old!! I have never seen a frame rot out from underneath the car before. The Links had to be welded to stop a rattling, which returned anyway.

    I had to break my tail light, because the clamp/nut on the other side of the screw had rusted and was just spinning inside. I mean - a 2 cent clamp/nut make me break a $120 item...

    Strangely enough, I actually the love the way the car handles... it's just falling apart whenever I use it.

  • Ed
      21st of Aug, 2012
    0 Votes

    I am in Ontario Canada and have the same issue with my 2004 Pacifica. Only 145.000Km on it and I was under warranty until 110.000Km. My subframe is also rusted out and will not pass the ontario inspection as it is deemed unsave. The car is 8 years old. I have a 95 Pontiac and it has seen its share of salt.. No issues at all with respect to rusting out subframes. Not sure were to go from here as the story is no warrany sorry... Bull.. The company should be doing something about this issue..

  • Ji
      3rd of Sep, 2012
    0 Votes

    I have a 2004 Pacifica with 94, 000 miles. The subframe is rusted through and the motor mounts are bad. I called Chrysler to ask about extended warranty. They told me to take it to the my local Chrysler dealership to have it diagnosed. The dealership confirmed the problem and sent the report to my case manager I was dealing with at Chrysler.
    She told me the warranty is for 04-05 pacifica's 10 years or 150, 000 and live in a state that uses salt on the roads. I live in Illinois. I met all of the qualifications, so I thought... they said my car was built in Nov. 03 and the extended warranty is for pacifica's built after Feb. 04. and there is nothing they can do.

  • Ed
      5th of Sep, 2012
    0 Votes

    The same thing here with me. I contacted the dealer and they were helpfull in requards to my complaint. I was given a number to contact Customer Service to open a file on my vehicle. How many files need to be started for the Company to do something about this. I was also informed by my dealer that there was in fact recalls on SOME Pacifica for this very reason.. What do they mean by some?? They are deemed to be the fastest growing Automotive Company?? I just do not understand that a Company like Chrysler would just ignore the complaint.. Not sure where to go from here as you all know the vehicles look very good but they are falling apart under the pretty outside.. They got a bail out ! Why do the customers always end up wearing there mistakes.

  • Ma
      30th of Sep, 2012
    0 Votes

    I live in Belfast, Maine and have a 2004 Pacifica with 165000 miles on it. Took it to have the oil changed and when it was on the lift the mechanic told me I had some rust going on. I looked under the car and could put my hand up into the sub-frame through the rusty metal. I've never seen anything like this on any vehicle. Thanks for these posts... I'm going to call my dealer tomorrow. Good luck to you all, I've really loved this car until now!

  • Sm
      4th of Dec, 2012
    0 Votes

    I live in Biddeford, ME; I took my car into for an annual sticker inspection and the mechanic showed me a rusted out sub-frame on the passenger side frame. The car has 145K miles, but in excellent condition. The mechanic stated that he had never seen it before. I purchased the car new and have always had it serviced at my local Chrysler dealership. I immediately called my local dealership and they diagnosed it free of charge, took pictures to send off to their Chrysler rep. I had a call back with an hour stating that Chrysler would pay for the parts and I have to pay for labor; which I thought was fair, its going to end up being only a few hundred dollars instead of a couple thousand! My advise to you is to work closely with your dealer for resolution, heck they even gave me a loaner car to use while my car is being repaired!

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