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Saturn S-Series



  • I have seen this car but cannot remember it's name. The styling is bland and it blends in with so many of the Japanese/American cars that it's hard to tell one from another. The chasis is European (Opel I think). About the size of the Chevrolet Malibu and to me looks toooooo much like it. Does have V6 power if you don't mind paying right up against 20k for it.
    I'm not impressed - there are a lot more cars out there in that range that impress me more.
    And I still STRONGLY DISLIKE Saturns no hassle price policy. Around here the dealers pack added worthless "dealer added" items on and still will not come off their inflated price.
  • Before I would think Saturn I would drive a new Toyota Corolla. It's just my opinion but I am impressed for the money.
  • As a former Toyota owner, I was not impressed with Toyota. My Celica GT started leaking oil at around 55,000 miles, a friend of mine had a Corrolla which started leaking oil after 5 years of ownership. Is this value, I think not. For the number one [non-permissible content removed] maker of automobiles, I was very disapointed. So I moved to Saturn, and it has been the best car I have ever had. The service is second to none, and when I ask for something from the dealer, not only do I expect to get it, they deliver, Saturn has met all promises they made at the time of the sale, and I plan on buying another Saturn.
  • Alas, the end is near for my trusty 94 SL. It is now past 230,000 miles with only a clutch and one alternator ever being replaced. Mind you it still runs great, however, a one ton Ford E-350 van just had to rear end me in Atlanta traffic last Friday. The damage is estimated to be near $3000. Much more than it is worth. I fear my poor Saturn has finally met its match. If the insurance company has their way, it will be totaled and I will have a small down payment for my next one.
  • You just might want to check on what all the auto test magazines say about these two. The Saturn usually comes out last for noisy engine, poor road isolation, poor ergonomics. I follow this stuff pretty closly and there really is not much of a contest between the two.
    And many people are put off with Saturn dealers who tag on "dealer extras" and act as if they are a part of the non-negotiable sticker price. The non-negotiable sticker price should be a big turn off to most of us. Using that logic I would have paid $27,283 for my last car instead of the $24,283 that I paid. No thanks, if I can't negotiate then I won't consider the car no matter how good it is.
  • To each his own, you say potato, I say potata........................... Every consumer has the right to their own choice. More power to you.
  • For a good overview of customer satisfaction on Saturn quality just review all of the 67 entries before this one. Then make up your own mind. Sure the dealers treat you right, they made $2500-$3000 profit when they sold you the car, they can afford to give you good service.
  • I assume since your shopping for a buick le sabre as posted in your file that your from an older generation so you can understand that your attacks on Saturn mean nothing. Your not going to hurt loyal Saturn owners, the company, their reputation by using this forum as a sounding board for your opinions, which is what they barely sum up to. So why don't you leave. IF you have nothing positive to say , and all you do is verbally bash Saturn, Saturn owners, you have no reason nor right being here.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Just checked out the 2000 SL models at the Toronto Auto Show. I love how they have changed the interior which is clearly better then most small cars I sat in. Much better than the Civic.
  • Glad to hear it dindak, spread the word :-)
  • Although I bought a 99 SL2, looked at the 2K models and the interior is much better in style and ease of use of the controls (radio and heater ac controls don't look like an afterthought). Still will drive my 99 for at least more than 150k miles.Currently have just over 18k and no minor or major problems.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I'm looking to replace our second car (a 89 Honda Accord) with a 2000 Saturn SL. I was thinking of a bigger car but given gas prices and the fact it's a second car, I think the SL will do just fine. I was quite impressed with the entire Saturn line I saw at the show.
  • Dindak, there is no time like the present to buy your SL. Have you driven one yet?? The Saturn SL has consistantly had the lowest maintenance costs in its class, rated by and they earned the highest rating possible for frontal crash tests for both driver and passenger by Plus the service cannot be beat. Good luck.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Saturnboy: Ya, I've seen that before. They actually put 3.9% finance/lease rates on the SLs a in December here in Ontario. Not a bad incentive. Now I just have to wait and see about my new job prospect.
  • Sound like a Saturn salesperson to me. Sad you have to sell your product in a public forum.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I am a financial advisor, not a car salesman. Even if I was, aren't Saturn employees suppose to be a salaried???

    Might want to think before you make comments like that about another person Saturnboy!
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Sorry... thought that was aimed at me. I think Saturnboy is just keen about Saturns. Don't knock him macarthur.
  • I don't feel the need to defend myself against faceless people in this forum, I am not a Saturn Salesman, althou the only thing I have to say to Macarthur2, is in a Saturn friendly way, I am sorry that you do not realize all that Saturn has to offer to smart consumers, but have a nice day. Enjoy your buick, hope it doesn't let you down. May the sun shine on you
  • Thanks, after all this is a Town Hall meeting place and people are allowed to express their own opinions whether others agree or not. It's the simplist form of Democracy. I cruise the web a lot and especially into cars - kind of a hobby studing these things. We get way too excited over these things. Hey, after all it's only made of metal, glass and plastic. We don't live through the machine, and it is not our personality, and it can't help us be a better person, it is there to serve us. Buy what you want but research first. Read the roadtests etc.. Good luck
  • If I go looking for a house I don't just buy one from one builder without comparing it to others first. I still think that anyone shopping in any car catagory should narrow the search to three different vehicles, say for instance Saturn, Toyota Corolla, and Nissan Altima then go drive them. Don't blindly go on something as vapor like as brand loyalty. Dad drove a Pontiac, Grandpa did too - so Pontiac must be the only car for me. (That is just an example so as not to offend Pontiac owners) But that kind of mindset prevails in many instances. You personally drive the car, at least 15 miles on several kinds of pavement, without the radio on and listen to it for noise and get a feel for its structural rigidity. This is probably going to be the second biggest expenditure of your life.
  • Here are the items we have had fixed on my wife's '96 SL (with A/C). It now has 43K miles and all of these items were repaired when it was under warranty.

    @18K Fluid leaks under car - replaced right transaxle seal, replaced end cover transaxle gasket

    @30K Accelerator sticking - replaced throttle body gasket

    @30K Passenger A/C vent broke - replaced deflector outlet

    @30K Driver side mirror stuck - replaced driver side mirror

    Everything else has been routine maintenance. It still has the original brakes too. They seem to last forever. Original tires are nearing the end of their life.
  • I bought my saturn sl2 new in April 99, and I have close to 19k miles. Have changed oil about every 3k miles and rotated tires about every 6k miles. It runs fine and at times I get above the epa highway mileage of 36 mpg. It is a nice riding car and is relatively quit at 65 on the highway. You can hear the backseat passenger without yelling to each other. Possibly tires play a big role in noise as I have true snow tires on front and they do hum compared to the original firestones.
    I did drive a sentra, cavaliar, escort and a neon besides the saturn. In my opinion, the cavaliar was the only one that was similar in quietness and acceleration as the saturn. I was careful to drive comparably equiped cars, 4 cylinder, automatic,air,pspb etc.
    I bought the saturn because when I compared all given costs and used the epa mpg figures driving the car for 150k miles the saturn was no more expensive than the cavaliar even though the price was about 1100 more than the cavaliar.
  • I dropped by this discussion while I was trying to get an estimated value of my 94 SL1. There seems to be a lot of positive feelings toward saturn, but I guess I am the unlucky one. I have 65k miles and although I have meticulously maintained my car at the local dealer, and used only major brand gasoline, I am loosing about a quart of oil every 500 miles. I am currently trying to figure out if I should spend a couple grand to repair the rings or whatever is wrong, or install a new engine. What bugs me is that it has been loosing oil since 45k and still under warranty, but the dealership (Austin, TX) chose to replace almost every external seal (without a difference in oil loss) but only after it was out of warranty did they choose to do the pressure test that showed that a major repair was needed. I would love to have the same enthusiasm for Saturn that I had when I first purchased the car, but, unfortunately, this car will be the last saturn I ever own.
  • sorry to hear that, my friends 94 Saturn uses 2 quarts every 3k, but it has 147,000 miles on it so I guess she has got her money's worth. Saturn's aren't perfect, but the shocker is , honda's aren't either/ ask owners of prelude's how they liked their electrical problems, and ask civic owners how they liked being taken advantadge of nearly every time they visited the dealer for routine maintenance. The grass isn't always greener.
  • Purchased a Saturn SL2, 94 in September 99 with 45000 miles on it. Was very happy that got a good deal, plus it sounded and drove great. In a month or so everything started to break.One of the few problems we had is a whining noise that makes me nuts. It was really quite when we got it, but after replacing an alternator, it's started to whine. Gets worse and worse every day, but the dealer said that it's normal. Looked at Saturn recalls, and indeed it is one of their problems- whining noise. Also shifts very hard which didn't do before. Not happy with the Saturn at all. Maybe expected too much out of it since it's " different kind of car". Looking at purchasing Toyota 4 runner. Maybe Japanese are more careful with building the car and putting "bad" parts in. The cost is much higher, but I think it's worth it.
    Last thing wanted to point out is that the dealers are not different from any others. I could even say they are worse( at least the one that we dealt with). They have an answer on every question you have, and the question are not the ones that we would like to hear. Almost like lawyers.
    Anyway... Tried it, didn't like it, moving on.
  • bunsen. The dealer may have wanted to only replace the internal seals, for obvious reasons, but you should have pushed and fought for a better diagnosis and to have the problem resolved. It's a P.O. that you were treated this way by the dealer, but you really have to be looking out for your own interest all of the time.

    It may not be too late. It might be worthwhile contacting the B.B.B., etc. to see what your options are.
  • Hey, it sounds like the Saturn Dealer we went to. Always saying we are crazy and that the problem is normal. I have no idea if it's normal or not, but I wouldn't buy it if it was there before. The mechanic even said that the noisier the sound, the better. His explanation was that it is an alternator charging the battery. Also he said that if there were no noise, we would have a major problem then ( yeah right). Anyway... that's all I can tell you.
  • claryclary Posts: 18
    I drive a 1997 SW2 w/five speed. Use syntheric oil (Quaker State Ultra Premium Synthetic) and have an Amsoil foam air filter. Get about 33.5 mpg and wonder if anyone has recommendations to milk another 1 or 2 miles per gallon out of the car. By the way, it has 51,800 miles and I have 35 lbs air in the tires.
  • sau1sau1 Posts: 10
    Someone wanted the name of Saturn's CEO so he can write to her to complain. Her name is Cynthia Trudell. Don't be too harsh on her, since she is struggling with sagging sales, increasing customer complaints, internal politics, etc. etc.
  • clary. Generally speaking, smooth gradual acceleration and not revving the engine will get you the best mileage. I don't know if that's your driving style or not. Depending on the car, reducing highway speeds can also make for better mileage - less likely with a 5spd though.

    The mileage you're getting seems pretty reasonable for stop-and-go driving, although 10mpg low if you have long, steady speed, highway stretches. Hope this helps.
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