Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.
Pros: The appearance, has a unique style
Cons: The optional side step bars
Advice: No pressure sales people make it easy to test driveI test drove the V6 (181 hp) AWD model. It had decent power, not like a V8 or a sports car but decent for what it is. I found the side step bars (option) annoying. The vehicle is only 8 inches off the ground. Don't see a need for step bars other than appearance. Wind noise is important to me. This vehicle was quiet, there was a little wind noise but not bad. The ride was comfortable not stiff like some 4 wheel drive vehicles. I really liked the appearance, the back looks somewhat like the Mercedes, and the front looks a little like the Lexus.
Pros: The cabin is very quiet and auto trans very smooth compared to previous Saturns.
Cons: Still lacks sufficient legroom for total comfort on long drives. Left foot rests on 'hump' about 4 inches off floorboard (At 6'5' I could use the extra room)
Advice: Tall buyers beware of legroom (although headroom is more than adequate). You can't get a better sales experience than you get at a Saturn dealership - first class buying experience all the way (the same as it was when I bought my 92).What a difference 10 years makes. Trading up from my 1992 SL2 to the 2002 was really a positive experience. Many of the things I disliked about the 92 (engine noise in cabin, vibration, automatic trans shifting hesitation) have been solved. It looks much sportier, is very smooth and fast, and a pleasure to drive. It has the same tight turning and handling that the 92 had. Although its 0-60 time is rated longer than the 92 was, the 02 seems to have better pickup (probably the result of no auto trans hesitation vice the 92).
Pros: ease of entry and exit
Cons: lack of availability
Advice: I thought road noise was a bit loud for the automatic V6I drove the 5 speed 2WD 4 cylinder VUE. I loved it. It is very comfortable for getting in and out. It is very zippy. It is comfortable for large people.
Cons: Poor acceleration for a 6 cyclinder
Advice: Compare investment: When you ask the dealer does this have good resale value? He shrugs his shoulder and said does any Saturn have a good resale value?With the excellent service that all Saturn dealerships offers, the VUE is a new invention that should place the Saturn division way in front. Its ride was comfortable but not plushy comfortable. You can tell where the cost reduction for such an SUV is located. Lots of light weight plastic in areas like the cargo section. Especially around the grocery containment. Its accelerates slow for a six cylinder with a slight jerkiness in the transmission (180hp). Its body is the best for those moments with those mindless grocery carts running into it. Remember its on a car chassie, so not good for those who want to pack a lot of weight into it. It's a very good buy for $23,000 base. $25,000 totally dress. You just becareful of GM products! Don't last.