2003 Pontiac Grand Am

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Key Specs

of the 2003 Pontiac Grand Am. Base trim shown.

2003 Pontiac Grand Am Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview
A new SE2 sedan joins the lineup of Pontiac’s popular front-wheel-drive (FWD) compact series for the 2003 model year. This new four-door delivers more power and contains more standard equipment than its SE companions. All SE sedans get a freshened exterior. An XM Satellite Radio is newly available, and GM’s OnStar communication system is now standard on all models except the base SE. The SE coupe has been discontinued.

Last restyled for the 1999 model year, Grand Am coupes and sedans come with a four-cylinder or 3.4-liter V-6 engine. The V-6 power plant is offered only with an automatic transmission. Built from the same basic design as the Oldsmobile Alero, but with sportier styling, the Grand Am uses the same engines and FWD chassis. Five Grand Am versions are available: SE, SE1, SE2, GT and GT1.

Exterior
Aggressive styling has long been a Grand Am hallmark. Both the coupe and sedan feature a low nose and high tail with a pronounced wedge profile. Traditional Pontiac styling cues include ribbed body cladding and a twin-port grille. Coupes and sedans ride the same 107.2-inch wheelbase and measure 186.3 inches long overall.

All models have a four-wheel-independent suspension. The GT has unique front and rear fascias, color-keyed side cladding, twin-post mirrors and a deck lid spoiler.

Interior
The Grand Am’s front buckets and a three-place rear seat accommodate five occupants. Like many two-door vehicles, the coupe’s narrow rear seat is ...
Vehicle Overview
A new SE2 sedan joins the lineup of Pontiac’s popular front-wheel-drive (FWD) compact series for the 2003 model year. This new four-door delivers more power and contains more standard equipment than its SE companions. All SE sedans get a freshened exterior. An XM Satellite Radio is newly available, and GM’s OnStar communication system is now standard on all models except the base SE. The SE coupe has been discontinued.

Last restyled for the 1999 model year, Grand Am coupes and sedans come with a four-cylinder or 3.4-liter V-6 engine. The V-6 power plant is offered only with an automatic transmission. Built from the same basic design as the Oldsmobile Alero, but with sportier styling, the Grand Am uses the same engines and FWD chassis. Five Grand Am versions are available: SE, SE1, SE2, GT and GT1.

Exterior
Aggressive styling has long been a Grand Am hallmark. Both the coupe and sedan feature a low nose and high tail with a pronounced wedge profile. Traditional Pontiac styling cues include ribbed body cladding and a twin-port grille. Coupes and sedans ride the same 107.2-inch wheelbase and measure 186.3 inches long overall.

All models have a four-wheel-independent suspension. The GT has unique front and rear fascias, color-keyed side cladding, twin-post mirrors and a deck lid spoiler.

Interior
The Grand Am’s front buckets and a three-place rear seat accommodate five occupants. Like many two-door vehicles, the coupe’s narrow rear seat is better suited for two people than three. All models except the base SE have a split, folding rear seatback that adds storage space beyond the 14.6-cubic-foot trunk.

Standard SE equipment includes air conditioning, programmable door locks with lockout protection, a CD player, a PassLock II theft-deterrent system and illuminated entry. The SE1 adds power windows and a remote keyless entry system.

Under the Hood
Pontiac’s base Ecotec 2.2-liter four-cylinder engine is rated at 140 horsepower and mates with either a four-speed automatic or a five-speed-manual transmission. A 170-hp, 3.4-liter V-6 engine is optional in the SE1. A 175-hp Ram Air V-6 with cold-air induction and a lower-restriction exhaust system goes into the GT and GT1 and teams only with the automatic transmission.

Safety
Antilock brakes are standard on the SE2 and optional on the SE and SE1. All-disc antilock brakes are standard on GT models.

Driving Impressions
The Grand Am is easy to drive; this car has established a reputation for commendable performance and handling. Both body styles retain their mildly aggressive appearance even if they’re not the most refined models on the market.

Acceleration is smooth and rather energetic with the Ecotec four-cylinder engine except when trying to go up steep hills. GM’s automatic transmissions rank among the smoothest around, and the one in the Grand Am is no exception; but drivers may notice an occasional bit of uncertainty. The Grand Am is also pleasantly quiet inside.

The GT is well controlled and stable, but its tauter suspension produces a fair amount of tossing. Performance is satisfying and energetic, especially at passing speeds. The seats are excellent in the driver-oriented cockpit. Small audio controls on the cluttered dashboard are difficult to use.

 
Reported by Jim Flammang  for cars.com
From the cars.com 2003 Buying Guide
Posted on 2/10/03

Latest 2003 Grand Am Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.3)
Performance
(4.3)
Interior Design
(4.0)
Comfort
(4.0)
Reliability
(4.2)
Value For The Money
(4.2)

What Drivers Are Saying

(4.0)

Most reliable car I?ve owned

by Cassia from Holiday, fl on July 21, 2018

This car was my first car I ever got. I got it three years old of the lot. It never had any huge issues more than maintenance. When I traded it in it was 15 years old with 300,000 miles on it. It was ... Read full review

(5.0)

Great Little Car

by HappyGrandAm from Dallas Tx on April 25, 2018

I got my Grand Am GT in 2008 and have not had it for 10 years! I have only had one serious problem where it has left me stranded once, the only thing is that the dash is shrinking and warping really ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2003 Pontiac Grand Am currently has 0 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2003 Pontiac Grand Am has not been tested.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Grand Am received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker