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Saturn VUE

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Comments

  • whuestonwhueston Posts: 3
    After reading these forums for four years because I owned a '99 Olds. Alero GLS sedan and knowing it would be time to get rid of, I went through the pain this weekend of shopping for a new car.

    Tried the new Chevy Equinox, hated it. Like the Rendezvous, underpowered, interior was all plastic and looked it, and the steering was etrocious. Would have bought a Malibu Maxx instead of it.

    Tried the FWD V6 VUE - WOW. I haven't punched it yet, but 180 degrees different than the Equinox for power, and RPM's at 70 MPH. I know they are similar, but I actually like the interior in the VUE better. Maybe it is because of the two-tone, instead of being all gray.

    Will report on the MPG once I get the stats. Just put 2.1 gallons in now, so I know it is full.

    Oh, one more thing, It looks like the oil and filter are easily accessible for the DIY without even jacking it up. I am in VUE heaven.
  • johnbjohnb Posts: 32
    So, I finally made a commitment. If you read my other posts, you'll see I've been in the fence here for a while. I had been eyeing the Black '04 VUEs but after taking a weekend trip out of town a couple weeks ago, my wife and I saw a White and a Yellow one (yellow not available in 2004 though) and liked the looks of both of those as well.

    So about a week ago I went down to the Saturn Dealership to look over a Polar White VUE. They had one with tan interior (my prefered color). It was a 4cyl 5speed which was also my pick for minimizing cost and maximizing fuel mileage. Finally, it was equipped with the Sport Plus II package ($1300) that includes the Power Package, 6 speaker CD, sunroof, larger wheels and tires, etc.

    My wife and I both test drove it and it drove as nice as the Black VUE we tried earlier in the month. After a little talking with the salesperson and confirming the rebates, we decided to take the plunge.

    All in all, I managed to get $5500 in rebates. That was the $2500 in lieu of 0% financing, $1000 April Truck Fest, 4 x $250 Saturn Flex vouchers, and the special QVC $1000 Saturn Gift Certificate. The QVC thing was ran early in April and you could call in and get a Saturn Gift Certificate valid through April 30th for any new lease or purchase of a new Saturn.

    Final cost was a little over $14,200 for a 4cyl 5sp Polar White VUE with Sport Plus II, Pin Stripe, and Floor Mats. I wish I could have gotten the $1500 in Flex Vouchers instead of just $1000 but I am still happy with the deal I got.

    As far as the VUE, it is a great little "truck". My only complaint (and this is very minor) is that the 5sp shifter does not seem very ergonomic to me. When you are in 1st, 3rd, or 5th, the shifter is pretty much straight up (about 95 degrees above horizontal). This means that when you are in 2nd, 4th or Reverse, the shift lever is pointed almost straight at the rear of the vehicle (about 20 degrees above horizontal). This puts the shifter at about 50-60 degrees above horizontal when in neutral. I don't know of this can be adjusted via some linkage adjustment. Functionally, it works fine, but I have long arms so I really notice how far I am having to thrust my arm rearward to get into 2nd or reverse, etc.

    My wife's two complaints are that it doesn't have "Oh crap" handles (can I say that here?) and it doesn't have any teather to pull on when the rear hatch is up in the air (she doesn't have such long arms).

    Other wise, we love the VUE so far. The sunroof is a real pleasure (a first for us). The baby car seat fits easily. There is way more leg room than our SL2. I really, really like the huge side mirrors. They provide great visibility. The ride is quiet. A lot of people complain about the 4cyl engine noise, but I hasn't bothered me yet.

    I thought it was a bit gimmicky at first but, surprisingly, I really like the grocery "box" in the rear of the VUE. We went plant shopping shortly after we picked up the VUE and that "box" was great for keeping the plants from dumping over and spilling potting soil all in our new VUE.

    I will report back later when I have some mileage data, but for now, all is good with my Polar White 2004 Saturn VUE with Sport Plus II.
  • strnsctstrnsct Posts: 3
    I just traded in my 1992 Saturn SL2 with 205,000 + miles to purchase the FWD V6 VUE. All in all, she was a pretty good car....
    So far am very pleased with the new wheels - it is a bit different being so much higher up on the road. I did some research and based on my experience with the old Saturn and how/where I drive, I could not justify the extra $ for the AWD. Never in my snowy days here in MI have I had problems getting to work even when we had official snow closings.
    Additionally, AWD is ~$1800 option on a $25,000 vehicle (~7% of vehicle cost). I opted to purchase the 6 yr/75K warranty for $1800 instead. What surprised me was that the warranty jumped to ~$2400 for the AWD vs the FWD (~25% of warranty cost for ~7% of VUE total cost). Another reason on top of the gas savings why I chose not to get the AWD.
    So far so good - I will stay tuned here to be aware of the good and the bad (hopefully never the ugly).
    Incentives 0% financing + (6 x $250 certificates) + College grad $750 + QVC $1000 + $1000 April Truck Fest).

    My wife first noticed the lack of "Oh God" handles as well :)
  • vuefor2vuefor2 Posts: 490
    Welcome to the new owners. Have not been here in a while but it's nice to see things active again.

    The Vue is a great little SUV! Enjoy!
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    Can any one explain a little bit more about "QVC Rebate". What is this? Is it for anyone?

    Thanks
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    Johnb

    what is the QVC rebate? How can I get it?
  • johnbjohnb Posts: 32
    stmsct,

    Out of curiosity, how much did the dealership give you for trade on your 1992 SL2 with 205k miles?

    We considered trading in our 1996 SL2 with 140k, but the car was worth way more to us than the $1500 they offered.

    Thanks.
  • johnbjohnb Posts: 32
    winter55,

    The QVC offer was a two day special thing on QVC back in the first weeks of April. QVC had partnered with Saturn and ran a couple one-hour Saturn specials where they showed off a few of the base model Saturn vehicles (VUE, ION, etc), basically touting how cheaply you could be driving one of them with all the current incentives. If you called in during that time, you could get the additional $1000 QVC voucher, but it had to be used by April 30th.

    At the time, none of the Saturn Flex Vouchers where showing up (to my knowledge, at least). Even though the QVC thing is over, it still sounds like you can get $4500-$5000 off with all the current rebates and vouchers...

    Hope this helps.
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,925
    2004 New Crash Test Results (NHTSA)

    Steve, Host

    Moderator
    Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me - stever@edmunds.com.

  • strnsctstrnsct Posts: 3
    John - not too much actually (a few hundred). But with the mileage and the condition of the car, it had a few leaks one of which was the rack and pinion which is a very costly fix. Muffler needed to be replaced, power steering pump leaking, r & p, ignition switch was sticking occasionally, and starting to consume oil. The car was not in perfect shape - I was just no longer willing to "deal" with some of the issues. I did not have a car payment for several years and put little $ into the car the last three years or so.

    If they offered you $1500, you could probably get a few hundred more selling yourself. My mom sold her 1998 SC2 with 170,000 for just over $2K. There certainly is a market for reliable cheap cars - but it is probably worth more to you. Mine was until we had a recent addition to the mix that truly prompted a vehicle change. I could have cleaned the garage floor for a few more months :)
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    I got the FWD, silver, V6 yesteday, $3,5 K rebate and incentive plus 6 vouchers of $250 each, total of 5K off the sticker price.

    I wished that I can use my GM card earning with this purchase. I had over 3K in my GMcard.

    Well may be in next GM car....
  • ironiron Posts: 4
    so what are these vouchers that everyone is talking about? How, or where do I get them. Thanks!

    BTW I test drove a VUE V6 and it was pretty cool. The power was good, and the size perfect for my needs. My dislikes are the so so interior and very loose steering feel. Also it kind of felt a little bouncey. I bet the redline would solve these issues, but its a little out of my price range.
  • jollycj1jollycj1 Posts: 1
    Hi,

    I'm considering purchasing a 2004 Saturn and say some comments on the flex vouchers. However, I couldn't seem to find out how you get them or use them. Any help on this subject would be appreciated.

    thanks
    Chris
  • sib715sib715 Posts: 15
    When we purchased our AWD V6 Vue last week, I too had read about the vouchers in this group. Prior to closing the deal I asked the sales manager about them, the salesman didn't have a clue :-) and without batting an eye, they offered 6 $250 vouchers as an additional discount on top of the $3500 and $1000 demo discount. Best deal I have ever negotiated and Saturn doesn't negotiate!
  • mtenamtena Posts: 58
    My 2003 VUE is my third Saturn in 12 years (I've had six new cars overall) and I'm a big believer in the polymer side panels. Maybe it's because I buy new cars relatively often, but I hate door dings! Anyone know if other GM divisions are going to use the polymer panels? I might be interested at some point...
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    Talk to the sale manager. Sib75 is right, some saleperson has no clue what is this.

    The voucher is a type of "coupons" from Saturn issued to its dealer network . It worth $250 each. The dealers can offer up to max number of 6 vouchers per car to speed up their sales.

    If you don't ask, they never volunteeer this information.

    Depends on the value of the vehicle, and the availibity of the voucher , the dealer will offer you 1,2,3,4,5 or 6 vouchers. They in turn collect the money back from Saturn.

    YOU MUST ASK FOR IT, and try to get the max (6). That a cool $1500 cash....
  • carguy1234carguy1234 Posts: 233
    Yeah, I like not having them as well. However, it sounds like Saturn will start going away from the polymer panels. I believe the new minivan will have traditional sides.
  • scanrmanscanrman Posts: 7
    I've been getting conflicting statements from 2 consumer electronics/superstores in the area about their ability to add an overhead DVD monitor to my '04 FWD V6 Vue w/ Sunroof. One says they can do it (removing the rear dome lights and mounting the overhead display unit in its place) and the other says they can't do it.

    My question is... has anyone attempted this on their Vue and what, if any, problems did you have? I'd like to have this done because at the time I purchased my Vue (12/03) the DVD option was not available and even if it were it could not be combined with the Sunroof option.

    Thanks.
  • redbirchredbirch Posts: 5
    got a price quote for a FWD V6 VUE with head curtain air bags, roof rack and floor mats for $20,028 which includs everything(tax & fees). This price is after the $3500 rebate and 6 vouchers that everybody is talking about. Do you guys think this deal is good enough to pull the triger?
    The salsman mentioned another $500 rebate for recent colloge graduates while I was test driving. But after I asked about the 6 vouchers thing, he was reluctant to give me the $500.(my wife just got her MS.) But I don't see anybody mentioning the $500 here in the forums. What I am asking is did anybody really get the extra $500 off recently?
    The other confusion is about how they charge the tax. The MSRP of this VUE is $23,684.95. After $5000 off, it is going to be $18,684.95. Which price are they supposed to calculate the tax on? I am not sure but it is about $300 difference.
    Any comment would be appreciated,

    -redbirch
  • drzooomdrzooom Posts: 4
    redbirch, for what it's worth, I would pull the trigger if offered $5k off on a model with the options I "need". It is a hassle to search Saturn dealers inventories...they do not seem to have all the sticker info that the GMBuyingPower site has.

    Also, I see no reason for the dealer to not also offer the $500 college grad rebate in addition to the rebates.

    Let us know what you do...
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    Tax before all rebates and discount... That the way the uncle SAM makes his money.
    I paid $20,129 for the similar options: curtain airbag, floormat and MP3 . So looks like you getting a better deal ( price for installed crossbars $400 while the MP3 is $150 ).

    If you can get another 500 buck then that is perfect.
  • redbirchredbirch Posts: 5
    Thanks for the replies.
    I just called the 800 # of Saturn and found out the $500 is only on ION not on the VUE. So the price I got seems to be the current bottom.

    winter55, probably your tax rate is a little bit higher.
  • rampedramped Posts: 358
    I test drove a Redline couple of months ago and was surprised by how much I liked the Vue.

    The Redline, though I love how it looks, probably wouldn't be the smart option for me (a 50ish goober with a couple of kids), especially with the 18" wheels and tires which probably aren't destined to last long.

    What I probably would select would be a FWD V-6, maybe with the upgraded alloys and a sunroof.

    Anyway, my questions are, have you been satisfied with yours? What is the MPG in real world driving? Has it been reasonably reliable (I know the new V-6 comes from Honda and is in its first year with the Vue)? I believe you can only get a handshaker (manual shift) on the 4, is that correct?

    Also, does anyone know how long Saturn will be handing out those $250 vouchers?

    Thanx for your help.
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    The 3.5 Honda engine and 5 speed auto trans has been used on Pilot, Odyssey and Acura MDX a long time ago. I heard that Honda had some problems with 2002, 2003 trans. I don't know about 2004 trans.

    IMHO, Saturn will handling out the voucher as long as they want to sell their cars, but I am not sure about 3.5 K rebate, specially 1K from GM Truckfest
  • rysterryster Posts: 528
    You pay sales tax on the final purchase price after rebates and discounts (but before any down payment you may be leaving).

    If your price after rebates, vouchers, and any other discounts is $18,684.95, then that is what you should pay sales tax on. They should not be making you pay sales tax on the full sticker price.

    Now in the event a consumer elects not to assign the rebates to the dealer and actually wants a check back from the manufacturer, the buyer would be required to pay tax on the price before rebates.
  • nortsr1nortsr1 Posts: 1,060
    You pay the tax on the sale price on the top of the sheet, then they tax that amount, then they subtract the rebates, etc./ if you have a trade-in, thatis subtracted from the original sale price, then the tax is computed on that difference and then they subtract the rebates, etc.
      That's the way it is done in every state where I have purchased cars.
      Ryster, I don't know where you live that the coputation is the way you explain it. What state???
  • rampedramped Posts: 358
    Thanx for the response. It isn't the drive train that I was concerned about since it is Honda pieces, but rather the accessories (AC, alternator, etc.) and the interior pieces that I was concerned about. We have a Jimmy that has been surprisingly reliable over the past five years, but it has chewed up a head gasket, an alternator, idler arms and a water pump over its first 50K miles and I am hoping for better luck with the VUE.
  • winter55winter55 Posts: 11
    The rebate,incentive or any voucher are considered as "down payment".

    The only thing isn't count as down payment is your trade in old car.

    Therefore,as nortsr1 said, tax before rebates not... after.

    Ramped: If it is not the Honda drive train then you should not worry about other stuffs. They are the "ordinary" GMparts and like million of other of Ford, Chrysler, perhaps they come from the same small manufacturing house...
  • rysterryster Posts: 528
    Live in PA.

    Just this past October, I bought an '03 Durango. Sticker price was approx. $30K, but with rebates and discounts the purchase price was $24K. The dealer charged me sales tax on the $24K, not the $30K.

    Historically here it has been:
    Sticker
    minus discounts
    minus rebates
    Final purchase price
    plus tax on final purchase price
    plus registration
    minus downpayment
    Amount left to finance

    It must vary by state.
  • redbirchredbirch Posts: 5
    Actually, I found the tax computation method varies from dealer to dealer.
    The Hyundai dealer calculated the tax on the price after negotiation and rebate when I test drive the Santa Fe the other day.
    What really surprised me was the tax rates they used were different!! Saturn dealer used 5.4% while Hyundai used 6%.(in KY)
    It seems the easiest way is just to put eyes on the out of door price.
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