On your 97 the antenna is automatic. It completely descends into the fender when the radio is turned off (or a CD or ignition off) and it extends when the radio is turned on. The up/down buttons give manual control and set the desired height of the mast. For daily use, you never touch the buttons on a 97.
Does this describe the way yours works? If not, then the problem is probably the plastic gear in the motor, not the buttons.
Exactly. Works fine doing everything else its supposed to, but have no manual control over it via the button. A real PITA when going through the car wash.
Although, it doesn't go down when I turn the radio off. Only when I turn the ignition off. ? Normal?