7th Dec 2006, 03:13
I have a 2003 Saturn Vue. The VTI tranny failed and was replaced/repaired twice at 21k and at 64k miles. I'm a first time Saturn buyer. I heard so much positive feedback about Saturn's excellent product and customer service reputation. I know that anything mechanical can break down. Instead ignoring the problem by putting a band-aid on the problem like extending the warranty to 75k miles, why don't Saturn just find the root cause of the problem and come up with a permanent fix? When Customer relations called me, she was very rude and went on the offensive against me. All the representative kept telling me was there's no problem with VTI. I'm very disappointed with Saturn's attitude. They produced a lousy product and customer service. I'll never buy another Saturn again. Please count me in on a class action.
2nd Jan 2007, 19:51
Bought a 2003 Vue AWD 4cyl with Vti in December 2002. We loved this vehicle. The way it drove and the smoothness of the transmission was really cool. We heard about problems from others, but never experienced ourselves. We felt a bit better once we got the letter extending the Vti warranty to 75k/5years. At that point we had 50,000 miles on the vehicle. So, we stuck our heads in the sand once again. No problems, but just as others warned us, about a week ago (12/26/06), it started grinding and bucking without prior warning. Had 84,500 miles on it (out of warranty - ouch!)
I took it to the dealer shop. I was expecting to have to pay for a brand new transmission. They said they thought a fluid flush and change would remedy the problem. But, with the shortage of the stuff, it sat in the shop for 3 days. They said I could take it home and wait for them to call when the fluid came in. I didn't want to chance driving it again and the transmission failing so I asked them to appraise what they would give me as a trade in as-is. They offered what I owed (they didn't know what I owed) and I took them up on it and bought a new Ion. SO GLAD to get this "time bomb" off my hands. I certainly was playing Russian Roulette with the powertrain.
I think they were generous with their trade-in offer given the problems. I think they know there are problems, but were willing to work with me since I was buying a new Ion.
22nd Jan 2007, 20:44
We bought our 2003 4cyl Saturn Vue in 2004 and until recently have had only to take it in to replace 2 anti-lock break sensors. Now, at 89K miles, I had the car just totally stop in the middle of traffic with my baby in the back seat. Turns out the transmission is shot, and I received an estimate to fix it at just over $7,000 (nearly what I still owe on it.)
I am very upset to see that this is a common problem which Saturn has failed to fix. And for now, until I figure out what I am going to do, I can at least say that I, nor anyone I know personally, will ever purchase a Saturn car again.
2nd Mar 2007, 17:16
I also have a 03 Saturn Vue. It was bought as a "rebuild" with 4000 miles on the drive train. It performed as new till 46k miles. It, as the other posters stated, also started to hesitate, lose power, and randomly stall. The problem is indeed the transmission (VTI). Buying it as a rebuild my warranty is long expired. I will be getting it fixed and offloading it as soon as possible. My wife drives the car with the kids in it and sudden transmission failures are unacceptable. Saturn should and eventually will address the issue. I also had a Saturn SL, I forget the year, but, the guy that drives it now takes long trips every week without fail. It had 150+K on it when I sold it. I kind of wish I still had it, at least it will run. I for one was a Saturn fan until now. Glad to know I'm not the only one in this sinking boat.
8th May 2007, 21:37
My 2003 Saturn Vue transmission failed AGAIN today. This is the third time. Each of the other two "repairs" lasted about 1200 miles.
The first time, I had taken it to Saturn of West Chester in Pennsylvania, stating that my regular mechanic suggested having it checked because the transmission was "slipping". They said that these transmissions don't "slip" and that there was nothing wrong with it. 800 miles later it completely failed. It was fixed by Saturn of Harrisburg, near the breakdown. 59,300 miles.
On my way to a funeral 2 weeks later, it happened again. This time I had to take it to West Chester. They "fixed" it, but it never seemed to work right. When I took it back they could not find anything wrong (although they did hear the noise it made at exactly 1700 RPM). They would not comment on, or acknowledge, the shaking upon acceleration. They added transmission fluid and sent me on my merry way, no doubt crossing their fingers that I would not be back.
Today, at 62,000 miles, it broke down again. I got about 1200 miles out of each of the rebuilt transmissions.
I will be contacting that number about the class action suit.
9th May 2007, 06:47
Are you aware that GM extended the warranty on the VTi transmission (if that's what you have--all 4-cylinder 2003 automatics were VTi's)? I believe it extended to 75,000 miles. You should be compensated for the transmission repairs.
My recommendation would be to have the transmission fixed once more so it is in working order by Saturn. At that point, get a different car. It's pointless to trade/sell a car with a broken trans, so while it's not on your dollar, have it fixed and get out from under it. The VTi was a disaster--it WILL break again.
It might be worth a look at the 2007 VUE. The new automatic is a tried-and-true 4-spd hydramatic that is very reliable. Saturn usually gives a good deal on Saturn trades, and the incentives now are good. Either way, DEFINITELY get rid of the VTi.
21st May 2007, 17:39
I own a 2003 and had taken the car in twice to have the transmission checked. They told me nothing was wrong. It felt it was slipping. But I received a recall on my transmission and had it replaced. You should check to make sure you are not due the same.
I have a different problem now. I am on my third set of tires and they are wearing unevenly. The last set only lasted about 30,000 miles. I have had them aligned and rotated, but we believe that there must be a problem with the car. Has anyone else had this problem?
7th Jun 2007, 11:27
June 7, 2007.
What can I say? My 2003 Saturn Vue left my family and me stranded on the highway due to total VTI failure. Saturn replaced the transmission only because of warranty. I told them that there was a problem with a vibration within a week of buying it new, but they said they couldn't find anything wrong.
After a new transmission was installed within a couple of weeks the same vibration was back.
Every time I get behind the wheel I wonder if the thing is going to fail again.
GMC should refund the total cost of these unreliable vehicles or replace them outright with the newest model and a regular transmission.
The service department told me that Saturn no longer uses this type of transmission. I wonder why!!!
I hope I can sign on with the class action suit to get some sort of justice. Billion dollar profits should not be at the expense of subpar product.