23rd Oct 2008, 21:44

I have a Saturn Ion 2. Got it new with 6 miles, yes 6. I went 2 winters sitting in a cold piece of junk plastic that would not start, so after reading online I got the ignition switch fixed, no problems, yet because it was when winter was ending, I'm getting nerves that it will do it this year, and to think 20,000 dollars for a piece of CRAP. Saturn sucks, they will not get another cent from me. I will take it to the junk yard before I put any more money in this car. Oh, and at the junk yard, a whole dollar since it plastic tupperware.

24th Oct 2008, 13:12

I have the same non-starting problem with my Ion 2. I purchased the car second hand last November and when the car failed to start in cold weather, I assumed the problem was the battery, since the car was originally purchased in Florida. I assumed that the original battery was a 'warm' weather one. This morning, with the temperature 40F, the car didn't start. I went to get a new battery and was told the only battery for the car would cost $215!!! No way. I got on-line looking for a more reasonably priced battery when I stumbled onto this site. I'll try the warm key trick to see if this solves my problem. Thanks to all for their info.

30th Oct 2008, 19:11

My wife bought a second hand Saturn 2004 Ion as a grocery getter, and we are having the same type problem described by so many early comments. Has anyone tried putting a remote starter on the car to let it warm up before putting the key in? I was hoping someone has tried this and been successful, before I spend the money to install one. Thanks for your input on this issue.

9th Nov 2008, 22:05

I own a 2005 Ion, and I am having the cold weather problem as well. It only happens if the car has been sitting over 6-8 hours in the cold. I have researched and read tons of message boards on this topic, and the most common fix seems to be the ignition switch. I am curious about the security issue, though. Just like others have said, it will usually start if I let it sit for 10 minutes after my first attempt.

Otherwise, I'm fairly happy with the car. It's my first Saturn. The seats do stain pretty easily, but I don't bring many food or drinks in there, so I haven't had a big issue with that yet.

I will try warming up the key, but I have a hard time believing that will help much. One thing I've been doing is starting my car up right before I go to bed at night. That way the car only sits for 8 hours or so. That seems to help so far.

15th Nov 2008, 06:52

I also have an 04 Saturn Ion and its rpms bounce. Has any one else had this problem? It does it randomly, and I have had it tested 3 times and they say it is because of bad fuel. It's supercharged so I use premium gas.

16th Nov 2008, 10:53

I do have the rpm bouncing issue as well - but never had it checked since it is so random and cannot be replicated when someone is working on the car. Sometimes, when idle, the rpms will shoot up for no reason - usually on cold or rainy days. I also have the problem starting my car on cold days - but wait 10 minutes or so and it work.

I've never been so disappointed with a car.

19th Nov 2008, 14:55

I too own a 2004 Saturn Ion. We have been experiencing the problems of the car not starting whenever. It can be warm, it can be cold it doesn't matter. We bought the car brand new and we are very disappointed. We have had to rent a car twice because of this one being so unreliable. We have replaced the starter twice, and the battery terminals. The repair shop has refused to work on it because he doesn't know what's wrong. Maybe it's time for a class action suit. I just wrote a letter to Saturn complaining. Sadly this car was to replace the first Lemon that I bought from them... looks like another lemon.

20th Nov 2008, 11:26

I too have a starting issue with the 2004 Saturn ION 2. I am up in the interior of Canada so I see cold weather about 5 months of the year. I have tried the key warming idea and it did not work for me. I have also been able to make it start if I just wait 10 min and try again. The odd thing to me is that if I just boost it I don't have to worry about waiting 10 min. This seems very odd to me, how does having more power added change the fact. I am going in to Saturn today and I will update on if they try to help or just give me the run around. Thanks for the help so far.

21st Nov 2008, 10:03

2004 ION 3 quad coupe, 5 speed I've purchased this car new, 1st winter no issue, 2nd winter happened a couple times, had ignition replaced... anyways it happened 3 out of 5 work days this week!! I was going to try and get a new battery, but will wait, I too have to go out early to try it, yup doesn't start 10 minutes... sometime 20 minute, but it goes, other than that the car has been good to me (I have been late to work a few time for this stupid issue)... I was so angry last week I was going around looking to trade it. It has 82000 miles (147000 km), I'm in Canada so yes I have another 5 mth of winter ahead of me, usually this happens when it's extremely cold, not just a heavy frost... I too will try the key warming...

So some recommendations I've seen;

Key Warming

Remote starter?


Replacement of ignition

Something about 'HEAT'

Heater in care (remote timer? or something)

Blow dryer to ignition (that'd have the neighbor looking :-)

OK, well I'm looking forward to trying the key warming.

I'll keep checking back for more updates... what's that they say about misery and company!

21st Nov 2008, 17:46

Wow! I was just looking at purchasing a 2004 Ion 2, 33,xxx miles and $2,9xx.xx. Heck of a deal so that threw up a read flag right away!! After reading all of the comments - mostly on the starting issues in cold weather I think I'll pass. Although it does sound challenging... no, I'm just too old on that. Remembering my VW Beetle when I was in my 20's and I don't want to go back to that, although I wouldn't mind being in my 20's again - at least for a week or two. :~D Good Luck you Ioner's, I think you should start a club like the corvetter's have.

Thanks again for the insight.

22nd Nov 2008, 17:43

I too have a 2004 Saturn Ion that I bought at about 27,000 on it. The car worked fine the entire summer. As soon as the temp would drop outside my car wouldn't start. Then I would go outside 10 minutes later and it would start fine.

I hate this car so much. I have spent so much money on this car trying different things. I think we all should file a class action law suite on Saturn. I will never purchase another Saturn car ever!!!