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Saturn Outlook Problems

shillelaghshillelagh Posts: 17
I have an 08 Outlook XR with 4800 miles. Took in for 1st service and the dealer found a problem with the cam timing. After 12 days in shop with a left cylinder head and twin camshaft replacement, the vehicle now has a "harmonic" roar at 40 and 60 mph. I've had it in the shop on 5 separate occasions for the roar. The service dept says they can't hear it or duplicate it. I notified Saturn Customer Satisfaction in Tn. and they literally told me it's my imagination. The dealer says there were 263 Outlooks throughout the U.S. with the defective heads. Has anyone else had the problem?


  • bdymentbdyment Posts: 573
    Yes. Check the Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia boards. Lots of cam shaft problems. Same engine as the Outlook.
  • bikerider5bikerider5 Posts: 3
    I just pulled into my driveway, put my 2007 Outlook with 20M miles in park,, and the key will not go to the off position- it is stuck in the ACC position, leaving the dash lights on and the key in the ignition. I called Onstar, they connected me to Saturn and no one can figure out the problem. My right turn signal is "fast" flashing now, leading me to believe there is some electrical anomaly, but nobody can figure it out. The car still runs fine - but I can't safely park it. Made triple sure it was in park - but no luck on moving the key - I'm afraid to force it and bust the key off in the ignition. My Saturn dealer is closed today and I can't figure out where the battery connections are to keep the battery from croaking. Would love some help from anybody!
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    My right turn signal is "fast" flashing now, leading me to believe there is some electrical anomaly...

    That would be due to a weak battery or a defective capacitor in the flashing circuitry.

    I take it you have already tried pulling the key while nudging the steering wheel left and right?

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • bikerider5bikerider5 Posts: 3
    Thanks for the idea - the wheel freely moves a both ways - no wheel lock engaged when I am trying to move the wheel- and no give in the key either.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Try the same thing again but this time hold the brake pedal down.

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • svishsvish Posts: 1
    What was the resolution? i am dealing with same problem
  • fkarasfkaras Posts: 14
    mine juat did same senario , what is solution to this
  • I had a trailer hitch and electronics installed. the technician trashed the electrical punch block when installing the electrical connections for my trailer and this problem caused the key to lock in the ignition. The dealer fixed it $500 and 10 days later by repairing the technician's botched work. Good luck. :shades:
  • fkarasfkaras Posts: 14
    did they keep traler hitch wiring or take it out.,,,,. feels like all negatve grounds malfunction in cabin area
  • maryt3maryt3 Posts: 1
    my o7 did it in july, 37 manhours at the dealer, plus a $600 bcm, did it again about 4 weeks later, same issues, key stuck, window wont work, moonroof, right falsher, left headlight,remote starter, etc all non working again, been at the dealer for 5 days, now they cant get it to run!!!! And, GM says since I went over the warrany( by 600 miles) since the previous repair, they wont give me a rental and are considering whether to pay for the repairs!!! no wonder they went bankrupt, I just want it back so I can trade it in for a toyota!
  • slamb09slamb09 Posts: 2
    To make a long story very short, we purchased an 08 Outlook back in Oct of 08 new. The next day I noticed little orange spots all over the car. I told the dealer about it and they said it was road grime and would take care of it. Needless to say it still has not been taken care of and after Satuns closings, I have also been told it was an old type of tire shine they used. Buffing, and an alleged wet sand was done with the spots still there. Now I take my Outlook to a local Chevy dealer for a recall on the heated wiper fluid and find out that the spots are from the brakes. The metallic shavings and dust attach themselves to the paint and will not come off. Goo gone wouldn't even take it off. They Clayed my entire car and it took their body shop 1 full day and another morning to get it all off. They said it is on all Outlooks but the white (what we have) and silver show the spots best. The spots are also going to come back again within months but the dealer won't do it again since this is a " 1 time customer satisfaction." My Outlook has only 14k on it and I told Saturn of the shaking in the front end before they went under and they said that there was no problem. Chevy saw the problem right away and took care of it. My rotors were warped already. So what do I do with this? I spend the money on a vehicle new like this and I have to spend money out of my pocket now because of their brakes. Not to mention the metallic from the brakes is probably not good for the clear coat/ paint over time. Any ideas are welcome.
  • onefunkaronefunkar Posts: 113
    its rail dust and was very common on those. my 08 outlook (diamond white) also had this. they have a clay bar they rub it with to remove the metal filing from the rail. once done properly it wont come back.
  • onefunkaronefunkar Posts: 113
    f or what its worth im pretty sure outlooks didnt have steering wheel locks so wiggling steering wheel wouldnt help. most gm cars no longer have this feature as anti theft is done n a different way.
  • slamb09slamb09 Posts: 2
    Saturn told me it was road grime, then the said it was tire dressing, and now the chevy dealer who I am taking it to for GM work say it is the metallic brakes causing this. They did a "one time" customer satisfaction claying which the Outlook looks beautiful now, but they said it will return. They said it is on all Acadia's and Outlooks, but only the white, pearl white (which I have), and silver show it best.
  • sal21rsal21r Posts: 1
    I am starting to think that buying a saturn was the worst thing I could have ever done. I am currentley in germany and have been having issue after issue with my vehicle. I had an issue right before I left with half cocking the key and then pulling it out, the car would start up even though the key was being pulled out. The US Saturn dealer said it was my fault for installing a dvd player. The german mechanic fixed it and said it was a defect with the ignition system, 700 EUR later turns out he was right.

    The vehicle is a Saturn Outlook and the steering wheel does lock. Thought you might want to know.
  • We bought our Outlook new in April 2007. We take care of our cars and properly service them. The problem is that the Outlook is unreliable and I don't know what to expect from GM now that I have made a claim through the BBB.

    First the list of problems, failed water pump, leaking A/C compressor, brake booster failure, headlight failure, transmission sensor failure (while on vacation), steering wheel column replacement, steering rack replacement, oil cooler failure, timing cover failure, both rear lamp assemblies corroded (we live in Southern California) and a few I'm sure I'm forgetting.

    That is all in the first 51,000 miles. Does anyone have any experience with GM customer service? I'm hoping they will do something for me so I don't have to hire a lawyer.
  • hlcole2hlcole2 Posts: 1
    I have a saturn 07 outlook with 92,000 miles. I've had it in for the timing recall a few years ago (when the recall first came out) all they did was reprogrem my computer. I just received a letter a couple weeks ago saying the problem hasn't been fixed. When I brought it to the dealership they told me it was just an informational letter and I just need to keep it "incase" I have an issue down the road. But reading the posts, it sounds like if I have an issue, it will happen while I'm driving. I don't see why they can't replace the timing chain now to prevent major engine work needed later?

    I also have been noticing that my vehicle seems to feel like it's going to stall and not really wanting to accelerate. This issue just started within the last couple of weeks. This isn't all the time, just every so often. I also have been noticing when the car is turned on and in park the engine running has a very different sound than it used to have. Not sure if these two things are related or not. The thing that really concerns me is that today when I went to start my vehicle, it started very hard and when it did end up starting it smelt like either exhaust or gas afterwards, inside and outside of the vehicle. Tonight I went to go somewhere and my vehicle started ok but again I smelt either gas or exhaust. Has anyone experience these problems with their outlook?
  • onefunkaronefunkar Posts: 113
    letter says warranty on timing chains has been extended past 5 yr 100k miles if you have a problem.
  • GM made me an offer today....$3,000.00 toward the purchase of a new GM vehicle. I was both surprised and insulted how they could treat a loyal long term customer. The GM representative freely admits that the vehicle has not lived up to its express warranty but basically, that's too bad for me. Why do I have to hire a lawyer when a car manufacturer sells a clearly defective vehicle. Our Saturn has had a multitude of problems and has little resale value even with low miles. I'm very disappointed in GM, maybe I should be buying German Japemese or Korean vehicles next time. What happened to made in the USA? :mad:
  • My 2007 Outlook has been babied. Just replaced my second Rack and Pinion on the steering system. first at 29,000 second at 48,000. Whats next. Thank God I had an extended warranty.

    slickrick1735 :mad:
  • gmcustsvcsarahgmcustsvcsarah Posts: 1,964
    I'm sorry to read that you had to have the rack and pinion assembly replaced twice, slickrick1735. How has everything been running since the most recent repair?

    GM Customer Service
  • I am having the same issue with acceleration. I havent even started on this quest just yet. This vehicle has been nothing but trouble since about a month after I owned it. It spent more time at the dealership than with me the first year. After reading all of this I think I need to cry. I really hate this vehicle. Heading to the Better Business Bureau. Atleast they will listen other that hand me a bill then I'm actually going to have to figure out what I'm going to do about this :lemon:
  • bgin2lovebgin2love Posts: 2
    I have had my Saturn Outlook 2007 since 2010. I have had leaking of the roof since 6 months of the purchase. My transmission went! I had to replace my head lights 7 times beofre the recall came in! not to mention the tickets from the Police reminding me tha the light I just fixed NOLONGER is working a day or two later! (3) tickets! Not my power steering is messed up! what the hell is going on? I have a 5 year maint plan with my chevy dealer. I get my oil changed ON TIME! my tires are rotated regularly.. Have my tune-ups on time. what more am I to do. Are all these lemons??? so want to get rid of this vehicle. and I brought it cash... book value stinks!! GM pls help ME!!!! My car still leaks and chevolet of New Rochelle in NY says I have to pay 250 just to look at where the leak is coming from, when they know there is a problem with ALL these vehicles. Plus my power steering is an issue OUT OF THE BLUE!!!!!
  • onefunkaronefunkar Posts: 113
    i bought a new 08 outlook in july 2007. had it for 2 and a half years. 41k miles. i was getting power steering leak, engine sludge problem which leads to timing chains needing to be replaced (huge job), transmission leaking. i worked at the dealer and could see they were not good vehicles. traded for a 2011 sorento in march 2010. 2 and a half years later no problems at all with it. very unfortunate as the outlook is a nice vehicle just too many problems.
  • onefunkaronefunkar Posts: 113
    also had the headlight problam and luckily didnt have a sunroof. they look nice but leak and i dont think they can be fixed. they just leak.
  • I bought this car certified used in Sept. 2011 from a dealership with less than 34000 miles on it. Now the trough or channel in front inside where the sunroof is mounted is filling with water. It overflows into the headliner, runs down the windshield and drips in to the dashboard and floor. The dealership offer to leak test it for $105. I see there is a bulletin for a VIN range that my vehicle does not fall within. The repair is for replacment of drain tubes. Other forums have owners complaining that the fix doesn't work. NHTSA has 16 cases of this for just this model year. Does anyone have more recent info on this? I hate to pay for a problem caused by poor engineering.
  • msgranmsgran Posts: 3
    My daughter bought a used 2008 Saturn Outlook from the dealership just before they left for Hawaii. They are in the Army. They have been having a world of problems with the battery since they got there. First thing was their external temp kept showing 130-140 degrees (not likely) and their fans were running when the car was off. They were told to replace the temp gauge that is located in the front. Did that. Still happening. Next they were having to be jumped off all the time. Were told it was a bad battery....replaced the battery. Still happening. Now, the car completely dies and they are getting a message that the battery charging system needs attention. I'm sorry, but they are in the army. They have no money to continue taking this car in only to have the same thing keep happening. My daughter's husband is fixing to be deployed over seas AGAIN, and she has 2 small children. She can't be stranded somewhere with these babies. This CANNOT CONTINUE. She has no one there to help her. Any ideas?????
  • gmcustsvcsarahgmcustsvcsarah Posts: 1,964
    Is this work being done at one of our dealerships out in Hawaii? If so, and if you daughter would like for us to look into this further, please have her send the following information to us at [email protected]: her name, address and phone, the last 8 digits of the vehicle's VIN and current mileage, and the name of her involved dealership.

    Kind regards,
    GM Customer Service
  • kmanzikmanzi Posts: 7
    I have a 2008 Outlook with 51k, which I really love, but unfortunately has given me so many problems. I have been reading these message boards for years, and I have found so much good information on them. I've finally decided to join in on this discussion so I can share my experiences and hopefully help others with similar problems. I have created a spreadsheet with every single fix or maintenance performed on the car, with mileage, date, service notes and grouped by category to I can quickly see the repeat issues that arise. I have also been tracking my fuel consumption for the last 6 months accurately, because I am nearly going broke filling the tank up 2x a week. The results are pretty on.

    The following list is in date order of everything that has been replaced in my car, most covered under warranty or recall, but this is a long list to have these things fixed. With no warranty, I had to pay for the power steering pump that went driving on the highway. So far, the following have been replaced: Sensor Camshaft, Cylinder Head Gasket,Dead Battery, Windshield Wiper Motor, Transmission Software Update (after multiple complaints),Airbag Wire Harness, Power Steering Rack & Gear, Front Pads and Rotors (1st time), Gasket for Intake Manifold, Gasket for Rear Valve Cover, Right Front Strut, Both Strut Mounts, Engine Mounts,Front Pads and Rotors (2nd time), Left Front Stabilizer Link, Front Pads and Rotors (3rd Time), Headlight Harness, Airbag Connector Kit, Engine Front Cover Crank Seal, Timing Cover Seal, Broken Bolts in Cylinder Head & Valve Cover, Exhaust Stud Broken Bolts, Power Steering Pump, Hose & Clamp.

    More interesting is the fuel economy I have accurately documented, resulting in the finding out I get an estimated average of 11.85 MPG combined City/HWY AFTER the Transmission Software and Calibration Update was made in 2009 (orig.released on May 2008). For tracking data, I used a 6 month period from January - June 2012. (For those who don't know, the original transmission software had a hesitation when accelerating (providing a flat spot b/w 35-50 mpg). GM will not advertise this update, you must ask for it and be firm. However, the negative impact will be the fuel economy, which obviously GM did not research properly. A GM service rep told me that the software is an "option" and I should be glad to hear they offer that "option", my sales person should have review all of my options such as engine size, etc. It is a trade off between performance and fuel economy and if I wanted performance I should have bough a sports car. I responded, and quickly corrected him to say, no this is not an option, it is a manufacturers defect and I want it fixed. Here are the results of my findings...believe me, this took time to pull it all together, but it is accurate: Average MPG is 11.85 Combined City/Hwy from Jan - June 2012
    Lowest MPG Recorded was 8.90, Highest MPG Recorded was 14.80
    Total Miles from January - June 2012 is 6330 miles, using 587 gallons at an expense of $2170.
    • TOTAL Cost of Excess Fuel Consumption Due to Software Update Since 2009: $5069.00
    • TOTAL Cost of Excess Fuel Consumption Due to Software Update This Year : $768
    Monthly unnecessary expense for gas is ~$152.00, that is a lot of extra money to spend each month that doesn't have to be wasted.
    So I am in limbo until I get a response based on my data I provided (with back up documentation)....I guess we will see how this ends up....

    Currently, GM has offered $3k towards a new GM vehicle, but to be honest, I cannot afford a new GM car right now, I am still paying off my excessive gas bill. $3k towards a new car really doesnt go too far. I have already contacted the National Highway Safety Admin, Better Business Bureau, and next steps are CT Attorney General, Possible EPA and perhaps small claims court for the $5000 refunded to me from gas.

    Average Tank Filled was 18.3 gallons, which got about 204 miles for an estimated cost of $68.00
  • travis49travis49 Posts: 1
    I believe my 2008 Saturn Outlook is having timing chain problems. When I accelerate,I hear a loud clicking noise. Any thoughts?

    Also, does anyone know if there are GM authorized service centers in Germany? I'm in the Army and was just stationed here.

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