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Saturn VUE



  • drivvendrivven Posts: 54
    Believe it or not, we've gotten some results from our dealership. About a month ago I took it in and gave one of their technicians a ride to witness the problem. As always happens, nothing happened!!! But finally, and just barely, as we rounded an uphill bend and the tranny was just upshifting it did its little magic thing only for an instant, but it was enough for the technician to feel it.

    As luck would have it, the dealership was being moved in the next couple of days and we were headed out of town for 2 weeks so the response was not immediate. When we got back, I called the dealership and they said things had been hectic with their move (caused by the eminent domain issue) and they'd not gotten to the issue. Then out of the blue I got a call 2 days ago from the parts department saying the torque converter for the VUE had arrived and we needed to set up an appointment for the replacement!!! How about that, some action from the dealership. And they said everything is covered including a rental car.

    I must tell you people tho, this is a 2004 VUE V6 FWD only and we have an extended drivetrain warrenty to 60K miles. Luckily for us we're at 58.4K miles right now.

    So, our story supposedly ends happily. I can only hope that most of you will have the same result.
  • rocketbobrocketbob Posts: 23
    I had a similar creaking noise in my 2003 fwd Vue . I had 64000 km and no other
    repairs to date. It was loudest when I turned to the right. With great trepidation, I
    took it to the dealer with visions of several thousand dollars for struts,front end
    power steering etc.

    Turns out the dealer replaced two tie-rods for $290. Said they were loose(guess you don't just tighten them. Bottom line :the noise is gone and the wife is happy.
  • I own a 2005 Saturn VUE with the V6 and a 5-speed automatic transmission. It is an All-Wheel-Drive model. I want to tow this vehicle behind my motor home. The owner's manual says all but vehicles with the VTi transaxle are towable. How do I know whether or not I have the VTi transaxle?
  • drivvendrivven Posts: 54
    I believe the VTi transaxle you refer to was only available in the four cylinder version of the VUE. At the time we bought our 04 VUE I queried Saturn about towing the vehicle behind the motorhome. They sent me (or I got one from my dealer) an addendum to the manual that referred to towing. Strange as it may sound, the restriction is that you can tow the vehicle but only for 512 miles at which time you have to unhook it and drive it around for a few miles, probably to get the tranny fluid where it needs to be. Then you can re-hook the vehicle behind the motorhome and be on your merry way. There is something else you have to do when you tow but right now that process escapes me. If I find the supplemental sheet I'll put it into words for you.

    In the meantime you might ask your dealership if they have specific instructions for the towing issue.
  • Thanks for the feedback. I have the supplement you refer to. Just wanted tommake sure I didn't have the VTi transaxle. Thanks again.
  • tomme12tomme12 Posts: 11
    We are thinking of buying a used Vue AWD 3.5l with 70k on it. Anything we should be looking for? Purchase a warranty plan or?

  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    While waiting for specifics about the Vue, you may want to review the Used Car Buying Checklist.
  • drivvendrivven Posts: 54
    I would say just peruse this forum and you'll find a lot of issues that you might encounter.
  • We have a 2005 Vue with 3.5 V6, AWD with 34K miles that exhibits this occasional shudder at low speeds.

    Has this problem been previously reported on 2005 model year vehicles?

  • drivvendrivven Posts: 54
    I'm not sure if the AWD versions had the same problem but ours has been "fixed". It was diagnosed as a faulty torque converter and our extended warranty covered it. So far no problems.

    We're in the middle of a fairly long trip into Minnesota and we just checked our mileage for two tanks of fuel - 24.6 and 28.7!! The 24.6 was affected by some long waits in traffice getting out of our metro area. This is on the V-6 FWD only version of the '04 model. No tail wind to speak of but I held it to a pretty steady 65mph even though the limit was 70mph for most of the journey and even in South Dakota where the limit is 75 I still held it to 65. I have a feeling it really makes a difference.

    The rest of the trip will tell if I've made a wise choice. Since we're on vacation we don't have to be at point B at any specific time we can travel "leisurely".
  • I also bought a 2008 Vue in June 2008. I bought mine at Saturn of Macon, GA. Three days after I bought it, I noticed a very loud sqeaking noise as we were loading the trunk for vacation. I noticed that the car squeaks when you get in or out of it, and when you rock it. While I was on vacation (drove from Ga to Maine or I would have returned it within the 1500 miles) the salesman called and asked how everything was. I told him about the squeak and he said bring it in when you return and we will be glad to fix it for you. Yeah right. (this is my 3rd Saturn, and the 2nd Vue, all bought from the same dealership) My husband took the car up when we returned from vacation and they couldn't get it to squeak. The car squeaked EVERY DAY!! It did it when he brought it back. The car has been up there FOUR time--the second time they lubed it and tightened bolts....squeaked when I got it home. The third time the sales manager and a mechanic heard the squeak, but they could not duplicate it. This past week the service manager heard it when I took it in. They lubed MORE parts--every time they'd call and say "we've driven it and can't hear anything". From day one I told them it didn't do it when I drove it. Nobody listened. After the second time of taking it in, I called Corporate Customer Service. They worked with me until I was so pissed off they got another person hire up involved. (I am sure I was called a [non-permissible content removed], too!)
    Anyway, this last time I picked it up, it was squeaking, so the service manager called a mechanic over and he got under the car. He determined it was the EMERGECNY BRAKE!! Those idiots couldn't duplicate the noise because it only does it when the brake is ON and they never had the brake on when they worked on it, and I use it everytime I turn the car off. Which explains why it would do it again as soon as I got home. Corporate told me today it wasn't anything they could fix. So, I asked them what they planned to do about the DEFECT and she said it wasn't a DEFECT since it was in the DESIGN. What???? I plan to contact someone higher than her and get something done.
    I am looking into the lemon law, and you should, too. With yours since it is a safety issue, you should be able to file a claim right away. I did a search online for "lemon law" and it gives you all the info you need to file a claim. You have to do it within so many miles.
    Oh, and the salesman got mad at me because I only gave him satisfactory ratings on the survey they send---he was fined $200 and reprimanded! Then he has the balls to tell my husband I filled out the survey WRONG!!
    Saturn is a different kind of company, alright. I've about had it with them.
    Good luck, and get started on the lemon law paperwork!
  • nortsr1nortsr1 Posts: 1,060
    If it only squeaks when the "Emergency Brake" is on....What's the problem!!!! What do you do, shake the car so it squeaks. If the E. Brake is ON on how can it squeak unless you are moving the vehicle. Good luck on your Lemon law on that complaint!!!
  • A brand new car shouldn't squeak at ALL! They are saying it's the ways the E brake is designed. I view it as a DEFECT. If it is on (as it ALWAYS is when my car is off and in park) and you get in it, it squeaks. Saturn is not willing to take the blame for....or do anything about.
  • tsabtsab Posts: 2
    Iam looking at buying a 2003 Saturn Vue, V4 Manual with 160,thousand miles as my first car? What your honest opinion? I need to know everything as I am scared to waste my money!
  • I read a good bit about the Vue before I bought my 2005 one. Consumer Reports stated there were a lot of problems with the 2005 that were taken care of by the time the 2005 came out. I have a friend who has a 2003 Vue and she had transmission problems from the start. Saturn eventually replaced the transmission for her. I would suggest taking it to a reputable mechanic and have it checked out before you buy it. Hopefully if this was one of the ones with a lot of problems, they were corrected.
    I loved my 2005 Vue, never had one problem with it. I don't care for some of the interior design changes in the 2008, but it's still a good car, except for the emergency brake defect. I'm still trying to deal with that.
    Good luck!
  • This is a great day. Today I finally got rid of my 2003 Saturn Vue. This vehicle has been trouble since day 1. The Saturn team promotes that they do things differently, and they do, they just don’t do most things better.

    A few examples of things that have gone wrong: The front suspension sounds like it is falling out of the car and has been to Saturn several times for tightening of bolts…which has NOT fixed the issue. The transmission gives you whiplash every time you put it into DRIVE. The valve covers LEAK like Niagra Falls and the muffler has a hole in it.

    Now I am somewhat capable of working on a vehicle – I am an Electrical Engineer that auto races as a hobby. I have fixed wrecked cars, and even built my own motors so I am not afraid to dig in and do the work. However, the design of this vehicle is ridiculous and frustrates even the somewhat mechanically capable customers.

    In reference to the valve covers, the valve covers were leaking and upon initial investigation I thought oh I will just pull the valve cover off and clean the gaskets and re-install. Upon investigating the issue, I found each of the bolts in the valve cover (which I think is plastic) were loose and ready to fall out. I thought oh this must be why they are leaking and snugged them up (did not over tighten). Well the leak was less but still fairly bad. So I went back to investigate removing the valve cover to clean up and re-install. Well much to my surprise YOU HAVE TO TAKE THE INTAKE MANIFOLD OFF TO REPLACE THE VALVE COVER AND THE SPARK PLUGS…..Who approved this design – some idiot that never got their hands dirty and has NO knowledge of what customer satisfaction is…..$500 - $600 to replace these parts – WHAT A JOKE……….

    2nd Issue – Oil Filter Cover. Went to change the oil and found that the car doesn’t have a standard oil filter can. The motor is designed so that you only have to replace the element which is contained in a housing on the front of the motor. So instead of the $2 oil filter it cost you $6 for the element (remember it’s different – but it’s not better). So after a few oil filter changes I go to remove the oil filter cover and while removing it the cover breaks into 3 pieces. I call Saturn and they say they have plenty of these in stock and they get calls about them all the time. When I show up at the parts department they charge me some outrageous price (~30.00) for a replacement cover. I say to them that don’t you think you should give me the cover for free since it had a design issue (that I noticed was fixed on the new cover) and the attendant just laughs….and says NO……

    3rd Issue – Tranny Clunks Into Drive. This issue started very early in the vehicles life and was defined by the dealer as STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE. It’s funny because we were going to trade the vehicle in on a Nissan that was at a Saturn Dealer and the person that evaluated it for trade in said this vehicle has a tranny issue and we said well that’s funny because your staff told us that is standard operating procedure…..Funny that the Saturn Dealer couldn’t get their stories straight (is it a problem or is it Standard Op.) Needless to say we didn’t trade it in their…..

    4th, 5th, 6th issue……………….I better stop or I may end up with a book…………..

    In closing, all I have to say is it is a great day – BYE BYE VUE and YOU WILL NEVER EVER FIND ME AT A SATURN DEALERSHIP AGAIN.

    And then GM wonders why they are hurting so bad --- I’m not….
  • I too have an 04 FWD V6 Vue. Sounds identical - tires @ 55k, brakes @58, same creaking sounds! Do you hear any rattle while driving? These are notorious for the front linkages disintegrating at 70-90k and front bearing going around 70K. Cost me about $300 to repair linkages and Saturn parts were surpisingly cheap - only about $20 per. Your engine bolts may also be loose or broken - that's been reported on this forum before.
  • jleitnerjleitner Posts: 2
    I have a 2005 2.2 FWD 5 Speed and the engine light is on. The ODB II says it has an evaporative system failure. Where is this? Can I fix it? How?
  • kenwrenchkenwrench Posts: 14
    We have an '08 AWD. I don't find the factory Bridgestone Duelers to be particularly impressive. Does anybody have any thoughts on replacement tires? I was looking at the Goodyear Assurance Triple Tread, or Michelin Hydro Edge, but they aren't made in the correct size.
  • unhappyvueunhappyvue Posts: 5
    I have an 04 FWD Vue and went into sticker shock when I had to put my second set on @ 58k. I put on Hankook as they were the best I can afford, and currently have 50k on those Not great traction in snow but OK.
  • 442dude442dude Posts: 373
    Make sure your gas cap is tight - its likely that it failed the gas tank pressure test last time it ran it. There have been some issues with the gas caps on these Vues. Some have actually needed to be replaced to correct the problem.

    Also, if you post the actual code that you got its easier to help you than if you just tell us just the generic description - for some generic descriptions there are dozens of codes, each leading you to a different component.
  • dkoakiedkoakie Posts: 4
    Considering buying a 2009 Saturn VUE XE. I think I prefer the XR but trying to stay within budget. Does anyone have any advice as to whether there is a really big difference between the two other than power?

    Any advice/comments/suggestions is helpful.

    Thank you.
  • jleitnerjleitner Posts: 2
    Yes, I have some advice. Buy a Hyundai or KIA! At least they are trying to sell cars that don't fall apart right after 36000 miles is up. I researched my 2005 Saturn Vue 4 cyl 5 speed pretty much B4 buying. At the time, it had good reviews. At a point in my life where I swore I'd never buy another American made car. But I understood the mfg process and thought GM had turned around. Perhaps my disappointment is not entirely the car, rather a suck [non-permissible content removed] dealership that wouldn't stand behind the AC line going out after 37,000 miles. I understand things can go wrong but after the way I was treated in that dealership... I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER SATURN.... EVER! The attitude must cascade down from corporate to the dealers who now find themselves trying to maintain a failing corporation and their own livelyhood now depends on what they can provide to the end customers from what's left of the dismanteled failure to steer the ship away from the rocks.

    In a nutshell GM doesn't have the lamest clue about customer service and support. Selling a car that has 36,000 mile obsolesence built in will never impress me. Buying a Hyundia with 10 year 100,000 mile warranty says a lot about how they stand behind what they make. No matter where it is made. I don't care anymore. I hope the entire US Automotive and banking industry falls into the gutter and drowns. Then they can continue to wonder what they did wrong, never do anything to fix it and continue to be mediocre in the delivery of excellence. Be smart! Buy Hyundai or Kia! At least someone who will stand behind a part put on the car a little while after you drive it off the lot!
  • dkoakiedkoakie Posts: 4
    Thanks for your input. I will most certainly research the other models. May I ask what year model you have?
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    My wife and I own a 2008 VUE (XR AWD) and we love it. It is our second VUE (first was an '05 V6 AWD) and the family has 3 other Saturns (L300, L200 and ION). We have been very happy with the service we've received from our local Saturn dealer and the cars have been reasonably reliable.

    Specific to the VUE, the big issues for us were the smoothness of the 3.6L V6 in our XR versus the 3.5L in the XE. Also, we liked the body colored bumpers of the XR (our '05 had the black bumpers, and I wasn't so fond of them).

    You are welcome to PM me off-line - click on my user ID and my email will show up in the profile box.

    Here is a picture of our XR:

    imageSee more Car Pictures at
  • dkoakiedkoakie Posts: 4
    Thanks for your post. The VUE is a really nice looking vehicle.

    Yeah...a positive response. I guess you either love or hate Saturn. I test drove the VUE XE (4cyl) and of course it didn't have immediate pick up, but the vehicle drove remarkably comfortable and smooth. The salesman made me, and I mean made me, take a u-turn without slowing down to show how stable the vehicle handled on quick turns. I truly was impressed. I had just come from driving a CR-V and walked away unimpressed but was still considering until I test drove the Saturn VUE

    The main reason I'm sold on a Saturn VUE is because we have a Class C RV and occasionally we will have to dinghy tow and Saturn pretty much gets the nod in the RV'ing community.

    I'm pretty convinced that I will purchase a 2009 VUE but can't decide if its worth the $3500 to go to a XR (6cyl). Any thoughts?

    Also, did you get a specific package that you think is worth the extra $'s? Living in Houston where temps have been in the 100's for the past 10-12 days, I really like the remote vehicle starter system.

    Thanks for your reply and I welcome further comments.
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    I would think that the 4 cyl VUE would be a bit of a dog, performance wise - the VUE is pretty heavy, compared to similar vehicles.

    Our VUE has the remote start system, though I think we've used it less than a dozen times in the two years we've had the car. Living in Colorado, it would come in handy in both summer and winter, but for some reason my wife just doesn't remember to utilize it.

    Ours was a pretty early production model, so we couldn't get leather - which our '05 VUE had - but we did get the heated seats, which we love. Ours also has the auto-shift option for the automatic transmission, where you flick the lever to the left then go up or down to manually shift gears,. In Colorado, this is handy to engine brake on hills in bad weather - not sure how much use it would be in Houston, where it's flat.

    6-CD system? Have it, but wife loves XM so we've kept the subscription current.

    Towing package? Have it, but never used it - though it's nice to know we can drag around 3500 pounds of whatever if need be.

    Navigation? Don't have it, but we do have the OnStar "Directions and Connections", so wife can use that to get to an address if necessary. Also, we own a handheld GPS system, which works just as well. I'd probably pass on the nav option.

    Sunroof? Our '05 had it, the '08 doesn't, and the wife does miss it. That's more of a judgment call, however.

    I'm guessing that you're looking at 2WD, living in Houston. We've got AWD, which, again, is nice in the winter. My wife feels more "in control" with the '08 than she did in the '05, especially in really bad weather. She's a native of Wyoming, so she's driven in lousy weather her whole life.

    I imagine that there are some pretty good deals going on at the moment, given the uncertainty of Saturn in particular and the car industry as a whole.

    Good luck!
  • agentbobagentbob Posts: 1
    I have an 03, 2.2 liter 5 speed and the reduced power light has gone on twice recently. Both times the power was resumed when I turned the ignition off then back on again. The last time, after the power was resumed, the engine became very loud. I drove it in my garage and since, I am unable to start it. I changed the oil, and the plugs. The engine turns over, however, it doesn't seem to fire. I smell the gas, and the belts are turning, but no fire. Any suggestions?
  • donneydonney Posts: 1
    :sick: i have a problem with my 2003 saturn vue i was driving all the sudden the car died and it wont start again i have no idea what is going on its not the battery its getting gas any suggestions
    Let me help you with this one. First thing you need to consider is performance vs economy, then options. If your're the kind of person that has a lead foot than the 4cly is not for you. If your're the kind of person that likes to pass on the highway, than a 4cyl is not for you. If you like options such as leather, nav system and a sunroof, than a 4cyl is not for you. Simply put, you'd be better off getting the 6cyl. I work at a Saturn facility as a service consultant and can't tell you how many times a customer comes in complaining about how sluggish their 4cyl Vue is. I try to explain to them without sounding rude that all the 4cyl perform this way and it's simply because that engine is being overworked from the weight of the vehicle. Getting a 6cyl isn't that much a of difference fuel economy wise. So if you can afford it, do yourself a favor and get the 6cyl. You'll be happy you did.
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