1994 Saturn SL 1.9 from North America


Cost-effective basic transportation


Clutch disk failure at 152,000 miles.

Seat padding was thinning by 130,000.

General Comments:

Very impressed with my first Saturn. Wanted an inexpensive transport and got more than I paid for. Purchased at 125,000 miles and replaced clutch at 130,000. Engine and body are solid as a rock, protective and gave 37+ MPH.

Note: My daughter was hit from rear while stopped by Lincoln doing 50mph. Both cars were totaled. My daughter had minimal injuries could still drive the car. The Lincoln driver had to climb into back seat to exit her car; front doors jammed. I recommend the Saturn SL series for good basic transport, especially for students or commuters.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th July, 2004

1994 Saturn SL SL2 from North America


Great car overall. Best investment I've ever made


Alternator/generator blew at 40,000 miles.

Valve cover gasket blew at 100,000 miles.

Clutch went out at 150,000 miles.

Drivers seat wore out at 180,000 miles.

Thermostat went out at 210,000 miles.

General Comments:

Outside of routine maintenance and general equipment wear, relatively trouble free. It does burn a considerable amount of oil, however and currently has coolant system problems. Both are to be expected in a 10 year old car with 210,000 miles.

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

Review Date: 6th July, 2004

1994 Saturn SL 1 from North America


Not a terrible car for the money, but you can probably do better over the long term.


The fuel pump went out at around 60,000 miles.

The alternator went out at around 120,000 miles.

The radiator sprung a large leak at 125,000 miles.

The driver's seat is in terrible shape and badly worn.

The headliner is peeling off and regularly sends little flakes floating around the car.

At around 50,000 miles the gas mileage dropped significantly and it started burning a lot of oil.

The ignition is faulty; my key is stuck in the ignition and the bell to remind me to pull the key out therefore dings whenever the door is open. This is true even on the (rare) occasions the key pops out. This first happened at around 115,000 miles.

The car overheats in traffic despite having plenty of coolant. This problem commenced at about 125,000 miles.

The odometer and trip meter are broken and froze at approximately 132,000 miles, though they were intermittent before that.

General Comments:

I loved this car until around 75,000 miles, and now I'm really fed up. I have taken excellent care of it, service every 3000 miles, and I don't feel that it has held up well at all, particularly by comparison with my previous car, a Mazda 626, which didnt' begin to experience similar problems until around 200,000 miles. I'm a big believer that cars should last 10 years with care, and this one isn't quite going to make it. I'm off to buy a Civic this weekend.

I have also been quite dissatisfied with the dealership for about the last 5 years. They were terrific for the first 5 years though.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 27th April, 2004

18th Apr 2009, 22:48

It's possible you are a victim of odometer tampering. All vehicles tend to have issues, but yours sounds excessive.

I bought my Saturn for $200 from Al that's Alcoholic. It now has 178,000. I use it for a oversize load escort car, I have been truly amazed at how well this SOHC 5 spd has held up. I would drive it anywhere in a second, and Al didn't maintain this car, it was filthy stinky, and neglected, but it still looks really good. Paint cleaned up well, motor uses at most a half a quart of oil in 3500 miles. A/C has not been touched an works really well, I wish it had cruise control, but I would seriously own another SL1 again and again.

1994 Saturn SL SL2 1.9L SOHC from North America


Surprisingly reliable, fun, rarely faulty, practical car!


2 Muffler replacements 145,000 and 160,000

Clutch replacement (understandable) at 139,000m

Tie Rods were replaced at 148,000 (I personally do not believe they even needed to be fixed)

Leaking sunroof and sides because of poor quality of sealing.

Very loud car for some reason.

Very sticky gas pedal with 5-speed manual.

General Comments:

I have been very surprised with my Saturn! Not knowing very much of the Saturn company, I was nervous buying the car with 130,000 miles. I'm so glad I did. Very reliable, cheap to keep on the road. Despite it's plastic sides, I feel safe. Transmission is great and smooth, but sticky sticky gas pedal for some reason. Great sounds system, excellent handling for tight turns. very slow acceleration. Seemed significantly less powerful with every 10,000 but still fun.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd April, 2004

27th Jun 2005, 23:24

A sticky throttle is usually a result of a dirty throttle body. You can clean the throttle body with some carb cleaner for less than $5. If that doesn't clean it out good enough, you may have to remove the TB and buy a new gasket, still under $20.