The Saturn 96 SC2 has been my first car and I plan to keep her until she dies. I have had her for around 8 months now and she hasn't brought me any real problems except from conditions left from the previous owners. It's a small car so it's recommended for single or a couple. She has great gas mileage and gas is pretty easy on her. I have her on 139,000 from 133,000 when I got her. One thing I've noticed is she is very fragile for the snow, but she is very agile in the spring, summer, and fall.
I have never had mechanical problems with this car! It was given to me Christmas of 2002 as my first car with only 36,000 mi. I've driven the heck out of this car and it's on 120,000 mi at this point. Only problem to worry about is the oil, car the burns it like nobody's business. As long as the oil is refilled and changed regularly this car will run for over 200,000 miles without a problem. My friend has a 97 and drove it from New York to Arizona and back without issues and the car has about 230,000 mi on it. Great beginner car, very highly recommended!
When I bought my Saturn Iloved it, great pickup and go, realiabilitly. Then after it hit 100,000 miles everything started to go wrong. My car has constently been in the shop for one reason or another, never costing less than $500. I will never again by a Saturn or an American made car again. Nothing but problems. The dealership would not help me due to the fact that I bought the car private party and not though them, very very bad serivce department.
Sold on the car from the minute I drove it, I have found that the car just seems to fit around me perfectly. (Mind you, I'm only 5' 7") You get that feeling of being close to the road when behind the wheel. It's easy at the pump, but gives you the extra umph when you want it and it has kept that umph over time.