Had a similar problem; started fine but lost power under acceleration and would stall. I changed the fuel sensor relay in the fuse box located on passenger side of interior fuse box. Ran fine after that.
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This model car has a "permanent" Fuel filter/pump combination. It is not meant to be changed. The filter/pump combo is in the fuel tank and can be accessed from under the back seat. I am highly doubtful that the filter is the malfunction you are experiencing. When your vehicle has low power and runs rough rough at low RPM's and then starts misfiring at 3500 RPM, it sounds like your timing belt has stripped some cogs and is in the process of shredding. THIS IS AN ENGINE EMERGENCY!!! IF THE BELT FAILS COMPLETELY AT HIGH RPM IT WILL DESTROY YOUR ENGINE!!! Do not fool around with changing sensors until you have had this checked out. If your DTC is saying that the MAP (Manifold Absolute Pressure) sensor or TDC (Top Dead Center) sensor is bad, check the timing belt.
Are you sure it's bad gas causing the problem? It could be a faulty idle sensor or more than likely the coolant sensor near the thermostat housing malfunctioning. It could be sending the wrong signal to the pcm(power control module) causing the timing to be too far advanced thus causing the low speed chugging & hard starting. Good luck!
You should be illuminating the check engine light. If so, rent a scanner, read the codes and pursue to repairs. You should replace the fuel filter and check the air cleaner. The fuel pump may be on it's last legs--check fuel pressure at the fuel rail over the injectors (a tire-valve looking test port). The pressure should be ~45 to 55 PSI with the engine running.
This can be a number of things but you can try process of elimination.
It could be:
1. Bad spark plugs, wires or rotor
2. Fuel pump ,not getting enough fuel, check and replace fuel filter
3. Not getting enough air, check filter or clog 4. Try getting a fuel injection cleaning.
Without seeing it or hands on it could be a number of things.
try checking those to start to narrow it down. And it always could be something else as well such as timing etc..