2001 Saturn L300 from North America


Good ride


When you start the car, it runs fine, but when you have been driving it for awhile and shut it off, it smells like gas.

The check engine light comes on and off. I took it somewhere to have the codes read; they say it was running rich. Any solution to my problem?

General Comments:

Overall the car is very reliable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 24th July, 2008

2001 Saturn L300 from North America


Worst car ever made


Right rear tail light system is bad, it has been recalled. The lights don't work at all. I thought it was the bulbs and replaced them a couple times before finding out it was an electrical problem. The sockets look like they have caught on fire.

Battery went out during the first year I owned it while at a gas station.

I have had the tires replaced three times in three years. The wear is very odd and it goes fast.

The brakes don't wear evenly on each side of the rotors.

I noticed a wet/greasy substance on the passenger floor board and it turns out the O-Rings on the heater core went bad and caused coolant to leak into my car. It ruined the carpet.

While accelerating from a red light one day my engine lost power in the middle of the road, luckily I was able to pull over. A "reduced power" light came on, I re-started the engine and it seemed fine, except a service engine light stayed on. A couple months later while leaving a store my car wouldn't start. The engine just kept turning over but not starting. It was not a battery problem either. After about 30 minutes it finally started. I went to drive home and less than a mile up the road the engine died at a red light. I had it towed home and it magically started up again. Did a bunch of maintenance to it over the weekend and it seemed to be running great. Drove to work Monday and it was still running great. While on my lunch break it died at another red light. I had it towed to a mechanic's shop where it took them two weeks to figure out what the problem was since it was intermittent. Turns out the crank sensor and the mass air flow sensor's were both bad. The parts alone cost $400.00 and labor was added on top of that.

I had my car back for no more than a month before another service engine light came on. I took it to my mechanic and the code came up as a lean fuel distribution. He let me keep my car so he can do some research on causes, saying this problem would not cause I break down. Two days ago I was driving to work and a second service light came on and the car started shifting very hard. This has happened a couple times in the past but it normally goes away as soon as the car gets re-started. This time it is not going away. I fear that I may need a new transmission. Unless this is related to the fuel problem.

About one month after my sensor's were replaced yet another service engine light came on.

General Comments:

I am only 21 years old, I got ripped off when I bought this car at the age of 18. Putting myself through college, and living on my own at low income has given me a limited amount of money and this car has made my life so much more stressful than it really needs to be. As soon as something gets fixed another thing breaks. I know two people who own the same year and model. One of them has already had the computer replaced. I often makes jokes about how we ended up with the worst car in Saturn history. I don't recommend this car to anyone. It's nothing but problems.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 8th June, 2008

9th Jun 2008, 10:08

Hey, feel flattered. Honda thought enough of your Saturn's design to copy it almost verbatim for the new 2008 Accord!!

11th Jan 2011, 17:35

Well don't feel bad, I've had multiple problems with my 2002 Saturn L300 also.. I am a single mom, and this car has really taken all the little savings and more.. Been through 2 fuel pumps, O2 sensor, catalytic converter, $300 brake job, water leaking on the passenger floor board all the way to the back seat.. this car has died in the middle of 5 o'clock traffic twice and once at night, too much more to name. This car is just a disappointment in my life. I'm afraid to buy another used car after this tragedy :(

8th Mar 2011, 16:03

Well I was considering buying a 2001 l300 V6. It has 94,000 miles leather, woodgrain and all power. I've read a few great reviews, but after reading this one, it is very disheartening. I'm a single dad and looking for a reliable yet inexpensive car. The last thing I want is a bunch of headaches. This one I was looking at looks immaculate and the price is great: $2,100... It also says "pampered" miles, regular servicing etc.

What should I do...?

18th Mar 2011, 20:37

Don't buy it. Since January my Saturn has cost me over 2500 in repairs, and now there are still issues with it, and the Saturn dealerships nor mechanics can figure out what's wrong. It's an awful car.

8th Feb 2012, 22:10

Run!!! It is not a reliable car; I have one.