Used 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid

2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid
List Price Estimate
$2,455 - $4,185

Pros & Cons

  • Attractive design inside and out, quiet cabin, comfortable ride, top safety scores.
  • Unimpressive fuel economy for a hybrid, lackluster acceleration, subpar interior materials, no rear center armrest.
Saturn Aura Hybrid years
2009
Saturn Aura Hybrid for Sale

Edmunds' Expert Review

The 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid is only slightly cheaper than its hybrid-powered Japanese rivals, yet its fuel economy and acceleration are notably off the pace. Unless your heart is set on a GM hybrid sedan, we'd advise passing on this one.

Vehicle overview

The 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid frankly leaves us scratching our heads. Its fuel economy numbers -- 26 mpg city/34 highway and 29 combined -- are respectable independent of the competition, but pale in comparison to numbers from its principal rivals, the Nissan Altima Hybrid and the Toyota Camry Hybrid. Moreover, there's no payoff when you mat the accelerator -- the Aura Hybrid is a veritable slug compared with the surprisingly quick Nissan and Toyota. All right, so the Saturn must be a lot cheaper than the others, right? Wrong. At a base price of almost $25,000, it'll save you a paltry $700 over the Camry and about $1,700 vis-à-vis the Altima. The Aura Hybrid looks sharp enough, but that's pretty much the only compliment we can come up with for this undercooked hybrid.

The Aura Hybrid's main problem is that's not a true "two-mode" hybrid, meaning that the electric motor basically isn't powerful enough to run the car on its own. You can technically putter around on electric power only at speeds of 3 mph or less, but that's not very useful outside of a golf course -- and most of the courses we play don't allow Saturns on their fairways. In real-world driving, the Aura Hybrid's paltry four-kilowatt electric motor is employed simply to restart the engine from a stop when the accelerator is depressed. Conversely, the Camry and Altima Hybrids, which share Toyota's hybrid technology, feature a 30-kilowatt electric motor that can run on its own in light-throttle applications up to almost 30 mph. This bumps up their city fuel economy drastically -- to 35 mpg in the Altima's case, 33 for the Camry -- while the Aura Hybrid's city rating is only on par with gas-powered economy cars.

We'd heard rumors that the Aura would be switching to two-mode technology, but for now, that's reserved for the upcoming Saturn Vue Two-Mode Hybrid. Thus the 2009 Aura Hybrid soldiers on with a 164-horsepower four-cylinder engine that benefits only minimally from the electric motor's assistance. The result is an abysmal 11-second 0-60 sprint -- that's 2.5 and 3.5 seconds slower than the Camry and Altima, respectively. It's like the opposite of having your cake and eating it too: Not only is the Aura Hybrid less fuel-efficient than its rivals, it also makes them look like sports cars at the drag strip.

There are other shortcomings as well. Though the Aura is a sharply styled family sedan that provides plenty of space and features, its interior quality is somewhat inconsistent. And unfortunately, the non-hybrid Aura's above-average handling capabilities have been edited out of the Hybrid, thanks largely to its low-rolling-resistance tires. It corners about as well as the Camry, but that's really not saying much, as the Toyota's a certifiable land yacht -- and the Altima handily out-handles both.

If buying a hybrid on the cheap is a priority, a flimsy case could be made for the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid based on its slightly lower base price. However, Toyota's Prius is even more affordable than the Aura, and in addition to trouncing virtually every car on the road in terms of fuel economy, the Prius offers an unparalleled amount of passenger and interior space inside its midsize hatchback body. There just isn't much to be said for the Aura Hybrid when the competition is taken into account. Unless you can find one at a steep discount, we'd recommend looking elsewhere -- or waiting for GM's two-mode technology to find its way under the Aura's hood.

Saturn Aura Hybrid models

The 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid midsize family sedan is available in a single trim level. Standard equipment includes 17-inch wheels with low-rolling-resistance tires, automatic climate control, cloth upholstery, full power accessories, a trip computer and a CD stereo with satellite radio and an auxiliary audio jack. The optional Preferred Package adds an eight-way power driver seat, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, Bluetooth connectivity and heated mirrors, while the Premium Trim Package tacks on leather upholstery and heated front seats. A sunroof is a stand-alone option.

2009 Highlights

The 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid (the previous "Green Line" tag has been dropped) now offers Bluetooth connectivity as part of the optional Preferred Package.

Performance & mpg

The Aura Hybrid features a small electric motor that starts the 2.4-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine and adds a modicum of power under heavy throttle application. The gasoline engine produces 164 hp by itself and up to 169 hp when aided by the electric motor. It is mated to a four-speed automatic transmission.

EPA fuel economy ratings are 26 mpg city/34 highway and 29 combined. Interestingly, the far cheaper four-cylinder Aura XE returns 22 mpg city/33 highway with its new-for-2009 six-speed automatic transmission.

Safety

Standard safety features for the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid include antilock disc brakes, stability control and the OnStar emergency communications system. Front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags are also included. In frontal- and side-impact crash tests conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Aura earned a perfect five stars across the board. The independent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the regular Aura similarly high marks, with a top rating of "Good" for both frontal-offset and side-impact safety.

Driving

The 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid's economy-minded tires and uncommunicative electric-assist power steering conspire to take most of the fun out of the driving experience, and its punchless power plant makes freeway merging more of an adventure than it should be. Happily, the Aura Hybrid's cabin remains hushed at speed, and its ride is pleasingly compliant.

Interior

The cabin layout is attractive, with a pleasing mix of metallic accents and available simulated wood. However, some plastics seem overly cheap for a car in this price range. Passengers front and rear should be equally content with their accommodations, as the Aura offers ample room all around. But rear-seat passengers must make do without a center armrest -- an odd omission in a family sedan. Trunk capacity measures 13.1 cubic feet, a few cubes larger than the Altima Hybrid and Camry Hybrid, which are saddled with intrusive rear-mounted battery packs.

Scorecard

Overallundefined / 5

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid.

5 star reviews: 50%
4 star reviews: 25%
3 star reviews: 25%
2 star reviews: 0%
1 star reviews: 0%
Average user rating: 4.3 stars based on 4 total reviews

Trending topics in reviews

  • comfort
  • road noise
  • acceleration
  • brakes
  • fuel efficiency
  • lights

Most helpful consumer reviews

3.375 out of 5 stars, Biggest Car Mistake of my Life
Miami Resident,

Bought this car a few weeks ago. Really excited. Sticker claims 26MPG City, 34 HWY, 29 Combined. It gets 18 MPG in the city. No better under any circumstances. No matter how hard I try to improve the mpg, it does get better in the city. Both the dealer and GM say there is nothing wrong with the car. It is 3 MPG less than the lowest MPG range stated on the sticker. I have never felt more deceived by a car manufacturer in my life. Most gas only vehicles in this class would produce better mileage. I could not possibly recommend this vehicle to anyone. GM/Satun claims that you need to drive the car at least 5000 miles to see any increase in fuel economy.

4.875 out of 5 stars, 30 in town, 37 on highway
Francis,

Bought this last September and it has been a blast to drive. I am getting around 37 on the freeway and 30 in town without doing anything special. I do try to keep the "Eco" light on. I expect better next few months as I have been driving "no brake" when possible. Comfortable and quiet, yet plenty of power with four adults on trip to Chicago. Most driving is city with weekend runs to Chicago from St. Louis.

5 out of 5 stars, Car is fun to drive
Kandy L Moore,
4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 4A)

This is a GM vehicle so parts are available if needed-it is comparable to Chevrolet models. It has all the bells & whistles and great gas mileage. Sold it and the new owner is beating it to death - so sad!

3.875 out of 5 stars, It's OK
JRWSacto,

The best I can say about my 2009 Saturn Aura hybrid is that "it's OK." Frankly, as a four-time Saturn buyer, I am disappointed. As most reviews have suggested, it has mediocre acceleration, and not very impressive miles per gallon. I get about 25 mpg on average, even though its rating is 28/33. It certainly gets better mileage than my former VUE suv, but that's to be expected, and I liked the VUE's styling and power much better. I look forward to the Chevrolet Volt, once the bugs are worked out. Good mileage and low "carbon footprint" is what I want, and I simply don't have it with the Saturn hybrid.

Write a review

See all 4 reviews




Features & Specs

4dr Sedan features & specs
4dr Sedan
2.4L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 4A
MPG 26 city / 34 hwy
Seats 5
4-speed automatic
Hybrid
164 hp @ 6400 rpm

See all Used 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.

Frontal Barrier Crash RatingRating
OverallNot Rated
Driver5 / 5
Passenger5 / 5
Side Crash RatingRating
OverallNot Rated
Side Barrier RatingRating
OverallNot Rated
Driver5 / 5
Passenger5 / 5
Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsRating
Front SeatNot Rated
Back SeatNot Rated
RolloverRating
Rollover4 / 5
Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
Risk Of RolloverNot Rated

FAQ

Is the Saturn Aura Hybrid a good car?
The Edmunds experts tested the 2009 Aura Hybrid both on the road and at the track. You probably care about Saturn Aura Hybrid fuel economy, so it's important to know that the Aura Hybrid gets an EPA-estimated 29 mpg. What about cargo capacity? When you're thinking about carrying stuff in your new car, keep in mind that the Aura Hybrid has 13.1 cubic feet of trunk space. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a Saturn Aura Hybrid. Learn more
Is the Saturn Aura Hybrid reliable?
To determine whether the Saturn Aura Hybrid is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the Aura Hybrid. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the Aura Hybrid's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more
Is the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid a good car?
There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid is a good car. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2009 Aura Hybrid is a good car for you. Check back soon for the official Edmunds Rating from our expert testing team Learn more
How much should I pay for a 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid?

The least-expensive 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid is the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 4A). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $26,325.

Other versions include:

  • 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 4A) which starts at $26,325
Learn more
What are the different models of Saturn Aura Hybrid?
If you're interested in the Saturn Aura Hybrid, the next question is, which Aura Hybrid model is right for you? Aura Hybrid variants include 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 4A). For a full list of Aura Hybrid models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

More about the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid

Used 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid Overview

The Used 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid is offered in the following submodels: Aura Hybrid Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl gas/electric hybrid 4A).

What do people think of the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2009 Aura Hybrid 4.3 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2009 Aura Hybrid.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2009 Aura Hybrid featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid?

Which 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrids are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid.

Can't find a new 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrids you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a new Saturn Aura Hybrid for sale - 9 great deals out of 15 listings starting at $24,384.

Find a new Saturn for sale - 7 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $12,849.

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including rich, trim-level features and specs information like: MSRP, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, heated seating, cooled seating, cruise control, parking assistance, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats ,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, wheel tire, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, engine torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy (city, highway, combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (length, width, seating capacity, cargo space), car safety, true cost to own. Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, fuel economy, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2009 Saturn Aura Hybrid?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Saturn lease specials