I currently own an SUV and a sports sedan. The gas mileage is horrible on the SUV and I was tired of it getting wrecked while parked on the streets downtown . (How can a yellow SUV be hit 3 times? Twice while parked.) We began looking for a 3rd car "beater" to commute in. $5300 got me a loaded SC2 3 door with every option, new tires, an after market CD player with only 66,000 miles. The car was covered it scuffs and thanks to the polymer panels every mark came out. Just minor rock chip touch up and a coat of wax and this car looks like it rolled off the showroom floor. I've had the car for 5 weeks and it's flawless. I even made room for it in my garage next to my other rides.
I've had my Saturn for 6 years now, and am just now considering selling it because I need a bigger car. I have literally driven this car across the country and back, in the summer and winter, through mountains and desert and never had a problem. This car has been my baby and I've taken very good care of it. At around 125,000 miles I had the brakes replaced, and about 1000 miles later had to replace the heater core and thermostat. It has about 130,000 miles on it now and it needs a new front wheel bearing. The engine, transmission, clutch and exhaust have never given me any problems and still have no signs of wearing out. This has been a fun but reliable car for me, and I'll miss driving it.
Got My Saturn in March 2003 and its one of the Best Cars I have ever ownned. In the 6 1/2 Years I owned this car I only had to Put two new tires on it and got it with 30'000 Miles. While stopped for a turn my 6 month Pregnant wife was rear ended by a van doing 50 mph and pushed into oncoming traffic where she was hit Head on again by a Mercury Grand doing 50. She and the Baby were fine. Bumps, and cuts thats All. I know this car saved her and the Babies Life. This car was a Miracle. I wanted to keep this car forever.
Bought this car used in 08/99 with 5K miles on it and modified the car (exhaust system, muffler, air intake, ignition system, brakes, suspension, wheels and tires). This reduced the mileage a little bit, but living in a city, I routinely get about 25 MPG. Only things I ever had replaced were a falty crank rotation sensor at 30K which only cost $50, and the radiator went at 85K, which cost $400. Other than that, the AC light doesn't come on anymore. Everything else is in tip top shape and I've never had another problem. It still idles under 1K RPM and I only change the oil. I bought it for $10K in '99 and it has more than paid for itself. I don't think there is an American car more reliable.
Originally purchased for affordable price, gas mileage, reasonable insurance costs associated (especially for a coupe), and reputed low maintenance. All true. Low cost car that lasted 10 years well. Body stills looks stylish and paint looks good. Repairs were genenerally the normal wear and tear, excepting 2 components. 1) the front license plate holder would constantly be knocked off by even the slightest tap of someone parking in a major metropolitan area. I had to have the dealership reattach it 5x before I finally convinced that that the clips were a poor design. 2) the slightest barometric change leads to the engine light going on. Saturn never finds a problem-but inconvenient to me.