23rd Sep 2007, 13:31
I have a 2003 saturn ion level 3 and in one day my batter light came on, then my air bag came on and then the car lost power, but the engine kept going for a few blocks. The batter has some power because things come on when you turn the key, but the car won't start.. Probably 15 times last winter my car would not start.
27th Oct 2007, 10:42
I have a 2003 Ion 3 and it's horrible! There's only 45,000 on it, but it's a possessed car. The windows intermittently won't work and then will. It will start one day and then not the next, like it forgot how to.. I too had to replace the ignition switch just like everyone else. It on occasion stalls on inclines and hates to accelerate.
I cannot wait to get rid of this vehicle.
The only positive thing I have to say about it is that it hasn't broken down and the plastic sides are good for when people decide to smash into you.
19th Jan 2008, 22:32
I can't believe these posts now I'm scared. I bought my Saturn Ion 2003 used 2 years ago and have already put into it 500.00 and yes they tell be the ignition switch needs to be replaced now and that's another $250. And I have already replace both right and left turn signals and brakes. I hope the weather warms up fast or I'm going to be broke!!!
16th Aug 2008, 07:31
I have a '99 SL and bought it at 42000 miles. It currently has 99565 miles on it, and had it not been totaled in a wreck this week, it would still be going strong and doing 40mpg. I'm purchasing a '03 Ion and have no trepidations about it. I had one for over a year (traded it for a Vue, BEST SUV I've ever driven, 32mpg) -- Where I live, we don't have a Saturn dealership, we have a GM dealership that does that work and seems like we are getting much better service than y'all are getting.
'99 Saturn - replaced on wheeling bearing and a set of tires.
'02 Vue - tires and brakes
03 Saturn - (previously a wreck and traded for Vue) Radiator.
We test drove a ton of cars and for the price, the Saturn was still our best buy, hopefully we'll stay away from the problems :)
23rd Feb 2009, 10:51
I own a 2003 Saturn Ion. I have 96,000 miles on it. I like the car but it definitely has its flaws.
I have had similar ignition problems, the electric steering went out for about a month, to just start working one day as if nothing was wrong.
I change the oil myself and have a little car knowledge. So when I saw the oil had some bubble floating at the top when I looked into the drain pan, I knew that it could only be antifreeze. Lo and behold, I just got back from the mechanic and he found the cylinder head to be cracked. The car has never overheated, the oil is changed regularly, and it has been running fine. If I wouldn't have caught it, my engine would have blown soon enough and I'd be without a car.
Saturn was my last hope of continuing to buy American, but I think I am going to go and break a lifelong tradition. I have never heard my friends with Hondas ever complain about problems like this.
13th Mar 2009, 16:54
I have a 2003 Saturn Ion that has all of these issues. My car acts like it doesn't want to start, my power windows don't want to work anymore, the key does get stuck in the ignition, once the car went crazy and my power steering wouldn't work and all these other things were going crazy. I will never buy another Saturn they have truly lost me as a customer for life!!
27th Oct 2009, 00:53
Dear Saturn trusters,
I, too, have experienced the ignition switch replacement on my 2003 Ion. I, too, have had the front anti-sway bar replaced on the 2003 Ion.
The 2005 Ion (level 1) that I own is also afflicted with the front anti-sway bar noises at only 29,000 miles, but I'm going to try and live with it.
Because I don't want to blow anymore dollars to try and make it perfect.
Any car with problems after a lesser mileage than that of the warranty expiration is hopeless, in my mind.
Yet, I still won't give up on the car, even though I got it super cheap from a used car dealer.
I still can't afford to give up on this car. Why? Because the A/C is truly awesome. It blows cold, real hard.
I hope I don't jinx myself. I still have another 2005 Ion, level 2, that lost its A/C 36 days after it was bought from a different used car dealer.
Granted, a used car dealer like these guys (I won't mention the name, because it's a small town we live in) could not be blamed for simply recharging a leaking A/C system (thank god we no longer use R-12 in cars) and calling it "good".
But, I just think that if some car that's made in America after the year 2000 and has less than 100,000 miles on it, that car should have a solid A/C system.
I realize, however, that I just got screwed by a desperate car dealer. There is a LOT of them out there.
We all need to make a sale these days.
Back to the 2005 Ion, level 2: The factory stereo CD player works great when it wants to. Sometimes it acts like the only hope would be the exorcist... I no longer bother to risk putting a CD in there.
I just hope the 2005 Ion model year has benefited from design improvements since the 2003...
So far, so good -on the ignition switch, that is.
The Saturn is like a Trabant (the East German Car from a Communist Era). Just plan on keeping it and working on it yourself, because it's highway robbery out on the open parts market for a Saturn Ion.