I bought my '97 SW2 9 years ago with only 15K miles on it. I guess the original owner didn't like the car. Since then I have put on over 100,000 miles and the only major repair was replacing the AC compressor. Sure, the seats are only sightly more comfortable than sitting on a cardboard box, but this car has been one of the most reliable cars I've ever owned. Still looks good, too - thanks to the plastic body panels.
I put 109k miles on this car in 13yr. It survived in an accident at 45mph and nobody got hurt. Gas mileage has not changed since day 1. Some oil consumption since last year that needs to top off once between oil change. It has been very reliable otherwise. There was one major repair to replace the wobbling timing chain within the 7yr after market extended warranty. Other than regular oil changes and tune-up, I spent less than $3000 on this car including the cost of extended warranty, deductibles for repairs, 1 after warranty repair, and 3 brake jobs plus ~$900 on two sets of Michelin tires. Just sold it without working AC and rear wiper fluid spray today at 1/8 or original cost.
Traction control and ABS. Rust resistant body and flexible polymer body panels. Solid frame construction. Reasonable good gas mileage (23mpg local and 32 highway for me).
Larger gas tank. Better gas mileage. Higher seat position and more head room. Road noise insulation. Air conditioning.
We had to sell our truck when we found out we were going to be parents. We decided to look for a small car that would be good on gas and most important a reliable car. We took a look at this green saturn wagon and decided it was great so we bought it. It has been the best car we could have imagined. It now has 157,000 miles on it and still runs great. I have had to replace the ECT, crank posistion sensor, and just maintaince stuff which if pretty easy on this car. Even with the AT I get 38+ MPG on the highway, and highway driving is almost all I do. It was really nice when gas was 4 bucks a gallon to have this car. The brakes are the second set and still at 40%. I love it
gas mileage 38-40 MPG, How fun it is to drive, How cheap/easy to work on.
Lots of rattles as she gets older, need more screws in place of the plastic pins. Better seats, I can feel the busted disc in my back on long drives. A quieter ride.
I own a Saturn wagon I bought it when it had 75000 miles on it 3 weeks later the transmission actually exploded and I spent 3500 dollars on a brand new one and have been driving it for about a month and im having more problems with the new transmission it makes funny noises while slolwing down but overall its a good little car. It will soon be a manual transmission
The hard shift in the performance mode. No blind spots and dentless panels
Make the tranny stronger and more affordable on parts. The seats are horrible. It's like sitting on concrete and driving, not a very good travel car
My wife and I have really enjoyed owning our '97 Saturn SW2 wagon. Originally purchased for my wife, it has been a reliable and decent-looking family car. The 16V motor has been strong. It's tuned for more torque in the lower RPM range, so it's great for driving around town. We definitely enjoyed the wagon body style. It has hauled our family of 4 on extended vacations. I use it daily to haul either a mountain bike or surf board. It has held up really well for 11 years. Most people are shocked to hear that it actually that old.
Wagon body style, 16V DOHC motor, design isn't gimmicky, trendy, or overstated.
Too much road noise, ride quality has slowly deteriorated and is a bit harsh now.