Consumer Reports: Stay Away From Saturn

Edward Niedermeyer
by Edward Niedermeyer

“Should I buy a Saturn car?” asks Consumer Reports’ blog of itself in the wake of Penske’s takeover interruptus. “In a word,” comes the answer, “no.” Though other GM dealers will be able to honor warranties and service Saturns, CR worries that there are “practical limitations to parts inventory and technician training.” Normal servicing shouldn’t be a problem, but major repairs could take more time and money, particularly for low-volume Saturns like the Sky and Astra. And of course there’s the unavoidable fact that reliability studies indicate that many Saturn models will be in for repair on a fairly regular basis. Though they conclude that it’s difficult to predict exactly what the Saturn ownership experience will be like over the next decade, “there are simply better alternatives that are more reliable, have lower owner costs, and do not carry undue risks.” We would agree.

Edward Niedermeyer
Edward Niedermeyer

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  • DweezilSFV DweezilSFV on Oct 15, 2009

    It doesn't matter to me if they drop the price $10,000 on any of their products. It's still GM.I am already subsidizing them as a tax payer. No further interaction with GM is required. I have two Saturns currently. The 05 ION I bought new. There was a good car in there somewhere, before GM screwed it. And this is after the 800 improvements they made in it for 05. The engine and trans and the ride are the best aspects of it. And the polymer. Never again. Not ever, not even at a discount with my own [and my neighbor's] tax money. Not even if GM were to pay back those "loans". Not even used.

  • Bryanska Bryanska on Oct 15, 2009

    Consumer Reports assumes none of their readers lift a finger for anything but the purchase. Look at their reviews of appliances - they assume repairmen will be called for every little thing, the homeowner can do no diagnostics, swap out any parts, etc. They also assume lawnmower blades wont be sharpened at home and that a Whitman's chocolate sampler needs to be rated. CR assumes brands still generally mean something. After I started fixing all my home appliances, for example, I learned there are 2 basic designs for dryers and about 15 manufacturers, so brand didn't matter. But somehow the same dryer from 2 different manufacturers get rated differently. Any situation where Kenmore is rated lower is suspect to me; they buy their appliances from other major manufacturers and they REALLY are the same in most major respects. CR also removed the explanations behind most of their ratings. So when a model not "top rated" the reader receives no details why. In other words, the magazine is for drooling idiots.

  • CarPerson CarPerson on Oct 15, 2009

    Consumer Reports is a good source of information. Use it as part of your due diligence, not as a sole source. Five different brands of a product can be concurrently going down an assembly line. How each is built is determined by the Build Sheet. Small and large appliances, electronic gear, furnaces, and photo equipment come to mind. How yours was assembled was determined by what price point or marketing features the seller was trying to hit and the Build Sheet generated to hit that goal. You must compare the Build Sheets (or parts lists), not the location of the assembly line, to determine if the items are indeed identical.

  • Bryanska Bryanska on Oct 16, 2009

    Yeah, sorry for my flamebait. I was given a 5-year subscription to CR as a gift. Over the years as I have learned more, and they've decontented the magazine, I've been just laughing more and more.