1996 Saturn SC SC1 from North America - Comments

21st May 2001, 22:39

The very same incident happened with me when I hit 110,000 miles! My engine head cracked and oil was mixing in my overflow reservoir and through my radiator. You are lucky to get away with only $1,000 for the repairs. My repairs cost $1,800! I do have a lot of miles on my car and for the most part it had treated me well. I like my car, but was very upset when I asked the dealer how something like this could happen. He of course had no answer. I lose approximately 2 qts. of oil every 2000 miles. I was told by the dealer this was NORMAL. Hmmmmmm. I wonder how many others out there have the exact same problem...

14th Jun 2001, 12:46

I am a one and a half year owner of a second hand '96 SC2 and am fortunate to not have the oil leakage problem many are experiencing. However, a co-worker of mine owns a '94 Saturn Wagon and had a similar problem. He simply added a sealant in the crankcase and no longer experiences oil leakage.

6th Sep 2001, 16:16

I have a Saturn 96 SC2. I like it and it runs great, but the speed is slow for the sporty look of the car.

1st Nov 2001, 12:52

I also had a cracked head at 65,000 kilometers and my oil leaked into the radiator etc. Saturn fixed the problem free of charge since there is a bulletin about this problem. However, the car has never run properly since, and I now have a bad ping in the motor with only 78,000 kilometers on it. I have also had many problems with oil pressure since then. I would never, ever buy a Saturn again. They are a good company selling really bad cars. I have heard of numerous other Saturn owners who have had problems with oil levels and leakage.

7th May 2002, 23:34

I HAD the same exact problem with my oil!! I am getting more angry the more people I hear this from. One asked for advice. Here it is: get rid of the Saturn immediately. Listen to what happened to me.

Among all the other problems mine had, I will only talk of the oil problems. My oil also seemed to be completely gone all the time after about 1000 miles after an oil change. Yet, there was never any spots on the ground. I ALSO learn that it has leaked into my coolant. They call it a recall and fix it for free. When the same problems arise again a month later, they won't fix it for free anymore, saying it will cost me over 1000 to find where the oil is going.

Last week, while driving on the interstate to work, my engine finally blew. The cause... low oil that I was continually told was normal for me being a commuter. They kindly offer me a new Saturn engine for nearly $6000. You can imagine what I would've liked to have said to them at this point, but I'm not allowed to write it! I ordered this car brand new in 96 and it is now worth $50-100 to the junk yard that I will have to get it towed to.

After learning that this is not a UNIQUE problem to me like my dealer suggested to me, I am even more angry. The oil was only one of many. I'd have to write you a book to tell of all the problems. I know you always hear great things of Saturn. That is what hooked me in the first place. I now think they are selling cheaply made pieces of junk. I'm now looking for a Honda.

30th May 2002, 23:10

May 28 2002.

I just purchased a 96 Saturn 5 days ago the head gasket is already has a crack in it and there is oil in my overflow also I still owe $5,600 on the car and I have no warranty I really need some advice please e-mail me back with any suggestions I will never own a Saturn again I'm going back to Honda E-Mail me at mark57jen@yahoo.com.

12th Jun 2002, 10:31

I bought a '96 Saturn SC-1 back in January of 2002. About 2 months later the head gasket blew, that cost about $1,000. Now the piston rings, seals and the gasket blew again. I am replacing the engine in the car because I am tired of sending my car to the repair shop every several months.

18th Jul 2002, 12:00

1996 SC-2 Problems: I am the original owner of this wonderful purple charmer. The problems I have encountered have been amazing. For starters, the driver-side mirror was replaced 4 times due to vibrations (not allowing you to see other cars) and the tachometer was replaced by Saturn (at no cost) at 21 K and 53K miles. The OIL leaks? Well, here's the deal... The valve cover gasket is one culprit. I have replaced this myself after having Saturn charge me $120 6 times. The design flaw is with the way the engine block is mounted. When facing your car's engine, look in the left rear corner of the gasket cover... right next to the belt. You should see oil there. Saturn tells me this is normal.?!? I am perplexed at where my oil disappears to. It always seems to be empty, but there is never a spot on the driveway. The other problem with this car is the brakes and the wheel bearings. After 110 K miles, the rotors warp due to continual brake system pressure problems. Here is word to the wise: check your motor mount brackets on the top left side of the motor. If the rubber is cracked, (according to the local Saturn dealer), you have to get it replaced... they say it is standard to pay $750 to get it replaced.

I like my car, but the problems continue to occur making me convinced I bought a lemon. Have you ever noticed that Saturn never has product recalls and such a friendly customer service program???

29th Aug 2002, 20:47

I recently bought a 1994 SL1 with 100,000 miles on it. I THOUGHT I was getting a good deal. About two weeks later as I was sitting at a stop light it suddenly stopped running. I cannot afford dealership prices so I took it apart myself. The timing chain tensioner had come apart due to the chain guides disintegrating. The guides are made of plastic and according to the parts guy are "designed to wear out". Well this $30 part has turned into over a $1000 problem... does does this mean that the valves were "designed" to get bent and ruin the head too? After all the repairs I have done I still am having problems, as there is no oil pressure now.

If you ever hear a slight rattle coming from the motor of your Saturn, get it checked right away, it could save you big bucks.

I wish I would have bought the Volkswagen.

14th Oct 2002, 15:24

I bought my Saturn new a 96 Sl1. took it to get the oil change every three thousands miles to the dealership (what a joke). Any problem that they would say that I had we would let them fix it. Christmas Eve 2001 the car check engine light came on. Guess what, the head was cracked. I had oil in my coolant system and had to get it fixed. Not two weeks later same thing. I myself would not recommend a Saturn to my worse enemy. They told me it would cost about seven thousand to get it fixed. give me a Nissan.

Pierce