2008 Saturn Outlook SUV Review | Edmunds.com

2008 Saturn Outlook SUV

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Saturn Outlook Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 3.6 L V 6-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 6-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 270 hp @ 6600 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 16/24 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2008 Saturn Outlook

  • With its pleasant ride, comfortable seating in all three rows and spacious cargo hold, the 2008 Saturn Outlook offers a mix of comfort and versatility rarely found in SUVs.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Smooth ride, easy access to all seats, plenty of room for people or cargo, above-average towing capacity.

  • Cons

    Small dashboard buttons aren't user-friendly, transmission can be slow to downshift.

  • What's New for 2008

    Following its debut last year, the 2008 Saturn Outlook simply gains satellite radio as standard equipment. New options include a 115-volt power outlet, a second-row floor console for seven-passenger models and a rearview back-up camera.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (25 total reviews)  |  Write a Review

Horrible car - do not

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Vehicle: 2008 Saturn Outlook XE 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

I previously owned a (used) 2002 Nissa Altima that gave me all kinds of hell. I decided to buy American and thought Saturn made good cars. This car has proven me wrong. In the 4 years I've had it, (purchased in 2008 - original owner), the car has overheated twice. Check engine light came on 3x. I've had to replace an engine solenoid valve, temp sensor and H20 pump and fix a leaking transaxle. This morning I received a stability trak DIC. So off to the dealer I go again. This car is a big piece of junk! Pre-own buyers beware!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Best car we have owned...highly

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Vehicle: 2008 Saturn Outlook XE 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

1st of all...we highly recommend buying your next car at CARMAX [violative content deleted] What a great, fun car buying experience! As for the car, easily the best car we have owned! We have/had Honda Civic, Nissan 300 Z twin turbo, Jeep Grand Cherokee, GMC Sierra Truck. This car drives like a dream! Safe, quiet, responsive, functional controls, kid friendly, seats reconfigure effortlessly...what more can I say?...we got it at a great price at CARMAX too! If you are looking for a SUV/mini van capacity, with performance like a sports sedan...then look no further...this is it! Satur Outlook will be less expensive than GMC Acadia (even though they are both the same car)!

2008 saturn outlook xe

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Vehicle: 2008 Saturn Outlook XE 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

Wow! I have 95,000 miles on it and never had any problems. Great car! Best car for the money.

Still doing great

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Vehicle: 2008 Saturn Outlook XE 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

I've had the car for none months now. The mileage is getting better as the car wears in. We started off getting around 17 MPG, but we're now averaging around 20. We have the FWD, so that makes a difference. I still think this is a great vehicle and I'd recommend it.

Water leaks, bad strut mounts

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Vehicle: 2008 Saturn Outlook XE 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

At first we loved this car, then the problems started. I've had it in twice for doors leaking from sunroof drain tubes, going to take it again soon. Seats are ruined from water damage. Have had the strut mounts replaced, windshield wiper blades recalled, can't seem to get the popping noises fixed underneath. We are very upset, also the car won't even make it up our driveway because of the gravels. It stinks for a front wheel drive! wish we never traded. I feel like we have been cheated. This car is a lemon!!

Great value

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Vehicle: 2008 Saturn Outlook XE 4dr SUV (3.6L 6cyl 6A)

We were looking for a lot of vehicle at a reasonable price, and we found it with the Outlook. The vehicle is not getting the great mileage we desired (around 19), but the interior space more than makes up for it. We fit five adults and two child seats in the car and everybody had enough room. It handles well in rain, but high winds will surprise the new SUV driver.

Full 2008 Saturn Outlook Review

What's New for 2008

Following its debut last year, the 2008 Saturn Outlook simply gains satellite radio as standard equipment. New options include a 115-volt power outlet, a second-row floor console for seven-passenger models and a rearview back-up camera.


Upon its debut last year, the Saturn Outlook immediately stood out as something to pay attention to, at least in the world of crossover SUVs. Here was a multi-passenger Saturn that was appealing on the basis of its own virtues and not reliant on the old gimmicks like dent-resistant panels or no-haggle pricing. Like many SUVs today, the Outlook is a fully modern, car-based crossover that's designed to blend the friendly driving traits of a car with the stylish shell of a sport-utility. What's more, the Outlook's sizable dimensions place it at the large end of the crossover spectrum, and that means it can potentially serve as a minivan replacement as well.

In fact, the 2008 Saturn Outlook might be the best hope for minivan-averse families. The Outlook seats up to eight people, and there's enough room for the ones in the rearmost row to be full-grown adults. The space advantage also extends to cargo carrying, where the Outlook's 117 cubic feet of maximum volume dwarfs the 90-something found in most competitors. If that's not enough, the Outlook also trumps the competition in regards to maximum towing capacity.

Thankfully, all that utility doesn't result in an unpleasant daily drive. While the Outlook is far from exciting to pilot, there's enough performance to get the job done. GM's 270-horsepower V6 engine gives decent pickup (0-60 mph in 8.2 seconds) and its six-speed automatic shifts smoothly. The steering is numb, but the Outlook handles with ease and delivers a comfortable ride on its fully independent suspension. Additionally, buyers living in less friendly climates have the option of ordering all-wheel drive.

Before settling on the Outlook, be mindful that it's up against some tough competition. The recently introduced Mazda CX-9, redesigned Toyota Highlander and well-regarded Honda Pilot are highly competent all-around picks in this class, and the value-priced Ford Taurus X rivals the Outlook for interior comfort. Additionally, style-conscious shoppers should also be aware of this Saturn's two closely related siblings, the slightly pricier GMC Acadia and the more upscale Buick Enclave. Even alongside its highly qualified peers, the 2008 Saturn Outlook is a prime choice, especially for bigger families or those with lots of gear to haul.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2008 Saturn Outlook is a large crossover SUV with seating for seven or eight passengers. There are two trim lines: XE and XR. The base XE offers standard features like 18-inch wheels, full power accessories, heated exterior mirrors, cruise control, air-conditioning with rear controls, GM's OnStar service, an MP3-compatible CD player and satellite radio. The XR adds roof rails, foglights, variable-effort power steering, a power driver seat, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with remote audio controls, wood-grain interior trim, dual-zone climate control, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a trip computer and a garage door opener.

Options, depending on the trim level, include 19-inch wheels, xenon headlights, a dual-pane sunroof, a power liftgate, remote engine start, rear parking sensors, premium audio systems, a rear DVD entertainment system and a navigation system with a back-up camera. Comfort features include leather first- and second-row seats (with a vinyl third row), front seat heaters, a power passenger seat and driver memory positioning. If you order second-row captain's chairs, seating capacity drops to seven but you gain an optional center console between the seats.

Powertrains and Performance

The standard power plant on the Outlook XE is a 3.6-liter V6 rated at 270 hp and 248 pound-feet of torque. The XR model's dual rear exhaust boosts those numbers to 275 hp and 251 lb-ft of torque. Power is sent through a standard six-speed automatic transmission, and both trims are available as either front-wheel or all-wheel drive. Properly equipped, the Outlook is capable of towing up to 4,500 pounds.


Standard safety features include antilock brakes, rollover-sensing stability control, front-seat side airbags, full-length side-curtain airbags and GM's OnStar service. In crash tests, the 2008 Saturn Outlook scored an optimal five out of five stars in both front- and side-impact evaluations conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Outlook's cabin is both functional and pleasing to the eye. The faux wood in XR models is convincing enough, and the overall quality of interior materials is impressive. However, many of the buttons on the dashboard are a bit too small and similar-looking, making them hard to find and operate.

The first- and second-row seats should be comfortable for almost anyone. The third row may not match the best minivans, but it still offers enough space for most adults to fit fine -- more than can be said of the third rows in other crossover SUVs. Additionally, access is easy thanks to the second row's "Smart Slide" feature, which flips the cushions up as the seatback slides forward, creating a wide path of entry. Luggage capacity is 19.7 cubic feet with all seats up and a class-leading 117 cubic feet with all rear seats down.

Driving Impressions

While the 2008 Saturn Outlook doesn't fall anywhere near the fun-to-drive camp, it's easy and pleasant to drive, especially considering the vehicle's size and 4,700-pound curb weight. Ride quality is forgiving without being wallowy. The economy-minded six-speed automatic transmission can be sluggish with downshifts, but the V6's 275 hp is sufficient for dealing with nearly all performance demands.

Talk About The 2008 Outlook

Read more about the 2008 Saturn Outlook

Gas Mileage


  • 16
  • cty
  • 24
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs