23rd Aug 2007, 06:22

I own a 1997 Saturn SL1 that currently has 225,000 miles. Besides a starter, water pump ($30.00 at the parts store for NEW) and a radiator ($77.00 on-line) this car has been a gem.

The previous statements are correct. Maintenance, maintenance, maintenance. The older the car gets the more adamant you must be in maintaining the car. Can't just put the key in start it and go. Check your oil. Change it regularly. Keep on top of your maintenance and you'll be fine. By the way I bought my car used with 55,000 miles. My brother also owns an 1998 SL-1 with 289,000 miles and his is the same. A inexpensive, economical, reliable car.

29th Nov 2007, 22:09

I own a 1997 Saturn sl2 since new. Everything works, have had to replace alternator twice, power steering pump twice, belt tensioner, brakes, tires. Now have 150,000 miles on the car, quite happy overall, only complaint is oil consumption, around 1 quart per 1000 miles. No replacement engines out there because engine not designed to be rebuilt, not enough material to machine. Want to try a Honda, but have been a gm person forever.

25th May 2008, 12:07

I purchased a 1997 Saturn SW2 used from the original owner in 2000 with 24,000 miles. It now has 142,000 miles and is still going strong.

I have had to do the obvious repairs over the years and miles, but have not had anything out of the ordinary. Change oil and filter every 3000 miles with high quality oil and the engine will give you back many extra miles of lifetime. Sure it may use some oil but just keep track of it, don't let it go below 1/2 quarts, then top it off.

I have used two sets of tires, three sets of brakes, new hoses, new cooling fan, alternator, one set of spark plugs, changed air filters regularly.

If you do the routine maintenance, the car will give you many miles of trouble free driving. Those that have had unusual problems, have you considered the fact that some cars are lemons and that whatever brand you buy, it is possible that you could receive one of those “problem” cars. I would have no problem purchasing another Saturn, providing that they sell a Hybrid model and is tow-able with my RV.

22nd Jun 2008, 13:13

I found this site because my boyfriend needed to know where the water pump was located in the car so he could replace it, and in the process of looking it up I found this site.

One guy on here said when one thing goes wrong, EVERYTHING goes wrong, and that is soooo correct. The past 3 months have been hell for me.

I own a 1997 Saturn SL1, and I bought it used from some friends of a family member, and it had about 85,000 miles on it when I bought it.

I have had this thing for about 6 years now, and I have been very proud of this car. I will say that I have not taken very good care of it. I never really had to replace anything before until recently.

I was driving to work one day, and my car wouldn't go up the hill on the main road. My RPM's were jumping back and forth like crazy, and the thing that shows how much gas you have was jumping back and forth, and there was this awful squealing noise that definitely did not sound like a belt problem, considering I just had the thing replaced 2 months prior.

I just parked it in a parking lot, and got someone with a trailer a week later, cos the thing wouldn't crank back up, and would only crank when I jumped it off... knowing that I just had the battery replaced about 3 months prior as well. And when I did jump it off, it wouldn't stay cranked for more than 2 minutes.

Anyway, I took it to a shop and the guy told me I needed my alternator replaced, a new belt tensioner and a new belt. So I said OK. Picked it up 3 days later and got on the interstate about 5 minutes down the road and it started overheating really bad... it was in the red... and so I pulled over. Got someone to bring me some water, cos when I checked it there was absolutely no water in it at all. It took the water, and it was totally fine for about another week, and then it started doing it again, and I checked the water, and it needed more water.

So for the past 2 weeks, I've been having to put water in it twice a day, and for the past 3 days it's been more like every 5 minutes. So I asked a few people what could be wrong, and of course they said the water pump... as soon as I put the water in it... it pours right back out.

My air conditioner stopped working suddenly, and only comes on a little bit when I am driving, and turns back off when I come to a stop. So anyway he is outside right now trying to get the thing off... Hopefully this saves me about $250 bucks.

My check engine light has been on since I bought the car; I have to put oil it in constantly as well... but I will have to say that as bad as gas prices are right now... I freakin love my car cos it has very very good gas mileage.

I can't really complain about my car... It has been a great car, and if I had taken care of it like I should have, then I probably wouldn't be having these problems right now.

Whenever I buy a NEW car... it will definitely be another Saturn, and I will definitely take care of the next one... what can I say, It was my first car and I am proud of it. :)

Christy in B'ham, Al.

10th Aug 2008, 13:02

I just checked the air cleaner on Lynett's car, (a friend of mine). Hours later she phones me raging mad (at me) because her 1997 Saturn won't even crank over. Like symptoms of a COMPLETELY dead battery. Of course she maintains it's a problem I caused. (While just checking the air filter for oil residue?) Now I find these cars are very prone to un-explained electrical problems. Matt.

11th Aug 2008, 09:52

I bought my 97 Saturn SL2 2 years ago and it only had 81K miles on it. Since then I have not had to replace 1 thing on the car. The only thing that I absolutely hate about this car is the windows. In the winter they don't want to go down I have to keep hitting the button back and forth to get it to work. Now I have 1 fully functioning window. The 2 on the drivers side came off the track last week and the back passenger side window needs a new regulator. My husband is bringing my car to a friend of ours today to get it fixed. He works for a repair shop and says that he see's this problem all the time with Saturns. Has anyone else had this problem???

10th Nov 2008, 06:01

Where does the water go in a 97 Saturn?