1999 Saturn SC SC2 1.9 gas from North America


Cheap and reliable transportation


The battery died a couple days after purchase, but the car was sitting in a lot for some time, so this is to be expected.

Annoying problem with starters. First started died shortly after purchase. The replacement started worked fine in the summer, but when temperatures dropped I had issues. In cold weather it would make this awful grinding noise after the engine caught. I brought this back to the garage for them to check the starter. They told me there was nothing wrong with the starter. Several winter months later, I brought it back for them to recheck since the problem was still persisting. At that point I needed a new starter and flywheel. Dealer agreed to pay for both.

The day I picked up the car an annoying metallic rattling was coming from the roof. They found a pop rivet had come loose in the sunroof. This was fixed for free.

General Comments:

This car was very reliable, but was plagued with all the little things.

The leather seats started to wear out fast. This was the three door model, so that area rattled a lot.

The whole time I had the car, first gear was very hard to get into at stop lights. I found this to be normal with many Saturns for that year.

I sold the car in 2004 but regret doing so. This was a very reliable car, but everything about it started to annoy me. If you don't mind a lot of minor defects, this is a great car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 11th March, 2007

18th Dec 2007, 14:27

I have a 1999 Saturn SC2, manual transmission, and have the same problems with getting into first gear at the stoplight.

This is the only thing that is bad about my car. I've had it for two years now, it has 120.000 miles (100.000 when I bought it) and has never failed me.

It's cheap, the original sound system was pretty good, it steers and drives very good, I pretty much love it.

But the transmission problem worries me.

Does anybody know what this is, and if it can be fixed?

The problem is especially when I come to a complete halt. As long as the car is still rolling, it is fairly easy to get into first gear. At a full stop, you never know if it will work or not. Sometimes it takes up to 5 or 6 "tries" (clutch up, clutch down, try again) to get it in, and sometimes it works smoothly as it should.

I feel like lately, it has become worse too.

Thanks for any answers!

24th Jun 2008, 18:58

I have a 1999 SC2 3-door as well and have had the exact same problem with 1st gear as you have. Aside from burning a quart of oil every 1,000 miles, it still runs fine and gets 32-33mpg. I know this is a near-impossibility, but if you can, try to find an honest mechanic and avoid taking it to a dealer to get it "serviced".

1999 Saturn SC from North America


It looks nice and handles well, but not reliable


The alternator went out twice and had to be replaced at 20000 and 50000.

The car vibrated when idle, and no matter what they did at the dealership, it never seemed to stop the vibrations.

The sunroof stopped working at 35000 miles. The dealership told me that I would have to pay $200 just for them to look at it (not to fix it).

The car would not start on numerous occasions and would need to be towed (lights working, but car not turning over). This happened at 80000 miles. The mechanics had no idea what was wrong with it because they would repair it, but it would not start a couple of days later. It was getting to the point that I was calling a towing service twice a week, so I got rid of the car.

General Comments:

The car is very low to the ground.

The car looks very nice and is designed nicely.

The car has a lot of speed to it---not what you would expect from such a small car.

The car has good gas mileage.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th September, 2005

26th Aug 2006, 10:06

Hi, I had the exact same problem with my Saturn SC1 not turning over and the lights, and other things inside working. It turned out to be the fuse box inside the car had melted in the back, due to my stero over heating it. I'm am currently trying to get rid of it and get a different car.