2000 Saturn SL Reviews - Page 6 of 8

2000 Saturn SL SL2 1.9L inline four from North America

Year of manufacture2000
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.9L inline four Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired210 miles
Most recent distance195000 miles
Previous carSaturn SL

Summary:

Excellent daily-driver

Faults:

No major issues. When I had the serpentine belt replaced at 110,000 miles (100,000 recommended replacement), the Saturn tech noted a coolant leak at the intake manifold gasket. Replaced gasket. No issues with the engine otherwise. Suspension components take a beating on Michigan's pot-hole laden roads. Replaced tie-rods, wheel alignment. Unless you drive like a little ol' lady, you're going to have to get the brake rotors machined or replaced frequently. Replaced front disc pads at 140,000 miles. Original rear drum shoes good. Burns 1.5 to 2 quarts oil every 4,500 miles. Not bothered by that too much since it doesn't leak or blow visible smoke after warm-up.

General Comments:

Overall a good buy. Most of my driving is in the freeway. I get 36MPG and better. Aside from adding oil between oil changes and $2.00+ a gallon for gas, this is an inexpensive car to drive.

When I trade it in after a couple more years, it should make for a nice used car for somebody.

One thing lacking is comfortable seats for my 6'1" frame. And higher head rests too. They could stand to be another 2 to 3 inches higher as a whiplash concern in the event of the car getting rear-ended. That's the end of my complaints list.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st June, 2004

2000 Saturn SL SL1 1.9 from North America

Year of manufacture2000
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.9 Automatic
Performance marks 3 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 4 / 10
Dealer Service marks 1 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
3.6 / 10
Distance when acquired80000 kilometres
Most recent distance87000 kilometres

Summary:

Buyer beware

Faults:

Cracked intake gasket at 83000, very expensive to replace.

At 85000 ignition wires and spark plugs replaced.

At 87000 was getting random cylinder misfires resulting in replacing a fuel injector, again expensive.

General Comments:

I bought this car as I was under the impression that it was economical. The original price was fair however I have put over 2000.00 Canadian into this vehicle in repairs in the last year.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 30th March, 2004

2000 Saturn SL 2 1.9 DOHC from North America

Year of manufacture2000
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.9 DOHC Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 0 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.0 / 10
Distance when acquired35000 miles
Most recent distance59000 miles
Previous carChevrolet Lumina

Summary:

The Saturn is a car you will do better without

Faults:

Intake gasket water leak at 38K.

Brake pulsation and bad design carried from GM for the last 25 years.

Front wheel bearing squeak.

Defective automatic transmission casing. Cracks, causing gears and fluid to come out. Totally replaced with used unit at 58k.

Transmission clunking into reverse.

Engine idle speed erratic and vibrations.

Defective coolant temperature sensor caused overheating.

Noisy heater fan motor.

Leaking heater core.

Plastic interior panels falling off under my feet.

Outside rear view mirror rattle.

Drivers power window switch intermittent.

Engine oil seal leak.

Exterior panels changed color shade using regular car washing soap.

The dash retainer clips around the instrument panel are flimsy and break when taken apart, even when under warranty they weren't replaced.

Gas filler door frozen during winter rain snow mix day and wouldn't open, no emergency release in the trunk, or anywhere I could find.

General Comments:

This car was very much unreliable constant servicing was needed.

There was poor visibility out the back while backing specially at night. The back of the car sits much higher then the front. Trying to see anything close out the rear window was next to impossible. The back-up lights are a joke, you'll do better with pen lights duck taped to the rear fenders.

The car did get fairly good fuel economy, 38 mpg when driven easy on the highway. Around town in a little hurry it got around 27 mpg.

I'm 5'11" tall and was cramped for leg room. Forget about adults seating in the back seat.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 20th March, 2004

7th Jun 2007, 05:15

All good suggestions, but let's be honest - should a car require us to add all sorts of extra stuff, and/or treat things which should already be durable by default build quality with extra care?

The kick panels are a great example - my mom's 2000 SL2 simply doesn't have them anymore. We stopped bothering to try and put them back.

The dashboard on our car is just a rattling mess.

Overall I can't believe how poorly designed the car is in relation to how much research and development went into it. GM promised that Saturn would be a car you could compare with a Toyota or a Honda, but time has proven that this is far from the case.

I will say that our 1994 SL2 ran so well that mom bought the 2000. And that has been mechanically above average as far as the reliable factor goes - but as far as the durability and the integrity, my 1984 Honda Accord (I owned it from 1997-2000) was infinitely more solid both in and out even though it was 13-16 years old. Not a buzz or a rattle anywhere in the interior, all power options worked flawlessly. This cannot be said for even the most recent Saturns.

Average review marks: 7.6 / 10, based on 31 reviews