Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Saturn ION

teoteo Posts: 2,508
Does anyone has any pictures, info or other details regarding the '03 Saturn ION sedan that will replace the current aging Saturn S series cars sometime later this year?


  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    That's the only picture I've seen so far. I'm sure you will see something at one of the auto shows this winter. Many people (especially current Saturn owners) are really waiting and wanting to see it.
  • tomekktomekk Posts: 310
    I think it is the same platform:,1518,174904,00.html

    (it is the 3rd picture in this article)


  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    The Vectra uses GM's new mid size Epsilon platform, while the Saturn Ion uses GM's new compact Delta platform.

    That picture of the Vectra may give a hint regarding the 2004 Chevrolet Malibu or 2005 Saturn S series, which will also use the Epsilon platform.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I wouldn't be surprised if some of the styling cues on that Vectra make it to the ION. Seems to me, Saturn is borrowing a lot from it's European division for it's cars which is not a bad thing so long as they are well adapted to North American tastes. The L-series is nice, but too narrow and bland for my tastes which is why I bought an Intrigue instead.
  • tomekktomekk Posts: 310
    Thanks for the clarification.
    So, which platform is bigger?
    Is Ion FWD?
    And what platform is the Cadillac CTS based on?

    This platform sharing thing gets awfully confusing... you have to watch out now so you don't buy Ford Mondeo (about $20K in Europe) disguised as $44K AWD Jaguar with loosely attached exhaust system (vide Edmunds Jaguar X-type test).

  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    Both delta and epsilon platforms will be FWD. There is a new RWD platform coming out too for new caddies, etc. Can't remember the RWD platform's name though.

    The Ion will supposedly be built on the smaller epsilon platform, along with the new Astra; Cavalier was supposed to be too but now I've heard rumours ranging from "won't be built on that platform" to "will simply be a re-badged Astra".

    The 2005 Saturn L-series (new 3-letter name, perhaps?) will supposedly be built on the new Epsilon platform, along with the Vectra and perhaps Grand Am, Malibu, Alero, Saab 9-3 and/or 9-5, etc.

    You're right about watching the global platforms as you'll probably be able to buy a 20K Chev or Saturn or a 40K Saab with essentially the same chassis. But this is already essentially true today with the Saturn L and Saab 9-5 and most would say there is quite a difference so hopefully GM won't reproduce the 80's carbon copy Chev/Pontiac/Olds/Buick lineup.

    Deltas and epsilons will mostly have NA and SC/TC versions of the 1.8, 2.0, 2.2L and other versions of the ECOTEC. I have an 2.2L 9.5:1 ECOTEC in my LW200 and find it to be very nice. Owners of 2002 Alero, Cavalier and Sunfire owners are also raving about their slightly more powerful 2.2L 10.0:1 engines, being very smooth with twin-balance shafts, but having a nice wide flat high-torque band.

    My small commuter car is getting long in the tooth so I hope that one of the delta cars will be good by the time my current commuter dies. I like poly panels so if the ION is decent, I'll get one. I hope there is a hatch or small wagon version somewhere in the line (GM card makes it likely I'll stick with this company). I would take a hatch or small wagon over poly panels but Saturn is the only GM division with wagons at the moment so hopefully I can get both.
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    The Cadillac rwd platform is called sigma.

    Toyota and Honda have been sharing platforms between luxo and mainstream autos in the Us since the mid-80s. VW has been doing the same in Europe for years. Ford is doing the same with Jaguar and Volvo. It is the wave of the future, the consumer's concern should be with execution.

    There are rumors the ION will have a hatch version. I have sent an e-mail to Saturn telling them I thought it is a good idea. If you are interested, you should e-mail them as well. Saturn tends to pay attention to the consumers.
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    Logic, what is the email address you've used to send suggestions to Saturn?
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    Maybe the new L-Series can be called the "Lion"?
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    That's a good one, Tomcat!

    I hope I don't need a new L sized vehicle until 2011 but we'll see.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I like them! VUE and ION are much more appropriate than L/S-series.

    I wonder if they really are going to do all 3 letter names?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    What would they name the L Series if they did all 3 letter names?
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    I do not have it with me, but you can access through the website at I will try to remember to get it off my home computer tonight.
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    I think the name "L-Series" has hurt it. First it was called "LS" at the same time as a new Lincoln LS. Thus, it was seen as the same as an SL series car. It needs a real name pronto!

    Dumping single letters makes them more in line with the mainstream Asians, with names for their cars. Save the alphabet soup for luxury brands.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I like names not letters. LS-100/200/300 makes it sounds like a luxury brand which it's not.
  • afk_xafk_x Posts: 393
    "I think people get upset when deep down they know one may be right but it really bothers them and they cant come to terms with it"

    I don't know what Dr. Phil would say, but with any vehicle a huge amount of what you do and don't like is subjective.

    Why the automotive press seems to hate the ION so much is beyond me. I can tell you this from dealing with the general public.

    1. People think the ION is attractive. Every time I take one out for a test drive it gets looks, people are checking it out. This never used to happen with the S series.

    2. People like the power of the ION. Most people don't give a squat about 0-60 times. They want to be able to merge and pass with ease. The ION may not be a 1/4 mile screamer but its power delivery is very smooth and brisk across the rpm range. Even with a couple passengers and the AC on you're not going to have any trouble making that 50-70 passing manuver on a 2 lane highway.

    3. The interior is a little more polorizing than the exterior but assuming you have an open mind the center IP is VERY easy to get used to.

    4. This is one quiet compact. Its right up there with the best in class (Jetta and Corolla) for low levels of noise. Both the Focus and the Protege are much much louder when cruising at 70 MPH.

    5. The handling at low speeds people absolutely LOVE. The ION has a very small turning radius and is extremely easy to manuver in a parking lot.

    Personally I think the ION could have been much better, but for the money I don't see how you can possibly beat it.

    Consider you can get an ION2 with CD and power everything for 13,900 after rebate. However you look at it this is an amazing value.

    I personally do not get upset when people disagree with me. Most likely they are ignorant. I am amused by the arm chair critics who think they know a lot only because they have read one or two reviews and know someone elses opinion.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    I read in the paper that only a sedan will be available in the fall. Coupe and hatch back won't come until 2003. Any know if this is true?
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    What paper?

    I heard something about other models not coming 'til later but just unsupported rumours. Now I have to decide if I just want to test drive this year's hatches (Matrix/Vibe, Aerio and the others already out) or if I want to wait and compare the ION next year.

    Oh well, my trusty '95 Geo Metro got me through the snow again this morning so unless I can find someone willing to offer me a decent amout for it, I may just drive it until it dies which probably won't be until after next year anyways... heck, it could last another few years. It is getting kind of uncomfortable with the seats and shocks warn out, but it seems silly to replace it when it still does its main job of A-B quite well.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Don't bet on getting much for that Metro. Those cars don't hold their value well at all. If yours is showing wear in the seats and feeling it in the shocks, you might get like $1000 or less for it, if that.
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    it isn't worth much, probably worth just laughs as a trade-in unless I drive to Buffalo where they show those funny Gambino Ford ads, "tow it in, drag it in, whatever your trade-in is, we'll give you $XXX for it!!!"

    Oh well, for fun I could turn it into an under 1500cc rally-car or something as I know they race Swift GT's there (with double the hp). If we had an autocross/solo course around here I'd love to drive it on one. Then I could justify getting a new car as the rally mods would probably make it road-illegal...
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    Love Gambino Ford ads. Very funny!

    Vibe is looking pretty good and I don't think the ION will be out until September. Our lease is up in July so unless it looks spectacular I don't think we can wait. Still going back and forth between a SUV and a car and Vibe. So many choice these days.
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    Go to to see pics of the SKY roadster and the 2003 L-series reskin. The SKY isn't awful but for the nose, but what have they done to the L series? Ewwww... If the ION resembles the reskinned L in any way then there is no reason at all for me to wait. The Vibe's styling is different but in a nice way compared to these beasts.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    ION will be unveiled at the New York Auto Show next month. No details from Saturn/GM till then.
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    For those of you who were worried, links an article today that says the Ion will not resemble the Saturn L. The most marked difference stated in the article is that it will have a center console, a la the Toyota Echo. I did not see where it will offer a heads-up display option. Doubtful given the cost of the Ion.

    Apparently the interior will be larger and the safety ratings should improve. Given that Ion will have the ecotech engine, reliability should also make a huge jump forward.

    I am looking forward to the March debut.
  • I can't wait to see it, it's been way overdue!

    The SL's styling is nearly 6 years old, and the platform is 12!
  • logic1logic1 Posts: 2,433
    Yeah, I am pretty curious. So far Edmunds does not have a NY autoshow link up. I really hope the Delta platform lives up to its advance reviews.
  • dindakdindak Posts: 6,632
    There is a piece at on what to expect next month. Sounds good!
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    4 and a half weeks till the NY show opens.
Sign In or Register to comment.