First Look: Tempted by the New-for-2010 Pearl White 33 MPG Saturn Aura

2010 Saturn Aura Painted White Diamond Tricoat

I've been a fan of pearl colored Saturns since the debut of the 1994 SL2 Homecoming Edition. Up until last year when White Diamond Tricoat was offered as regular option on the 2008 Saturn Outlook, the multi-layer color was limited to special edition or commemorative models. Later this year, Saturn will expand the availability of pearl white to its four-door Aura midsize car, according to a 2010 Ordering Guide obtained by SaturnFans.com.

Other changes in store for the '10 Aura include power-adjustable black folding outside mirrors on the XE-4, a tire inflation kit, and an updated 2.4L Ecotec variable valve timing DOHC 4-cylinder SFI engine (non-hybrid models only) that can run on either gasoline or E85 FlexFuel. Incidentally, the spec sheet included in the guide states that the new 2.4L powerplant generates 170hp while running on gasoline, and 175hp when the fuel tank is filled with E85.

In addition to the Aura XE-4, XR-4, and XR-v6 models that were offered last year, Saturn will be introducing three new Aura models for 2010: XE-4 Preferred, XR-4 Premium, and XR-V6 Premium, each with varying levels of standard, pre-packaged content. As a result, there will be very few standalone options. The Aura Hybrid is unchanged for 2010; the tire inflation kit is reportedly the only new feature offered.

Side marker repeater lamps will no longer be offered on any Aura model, and the Techno Gray, Ocean Mist, and Silver Moss exterior hues available on 2009 models have been deleted from the color pallette. In addition to the previously mentioned White Diamond Tricoat, 2010 Auras will be available in a new color called Tungsten. I'd still take my 33 MPG XR-4 with a sunroof, Advanced Audio System, and pearlescent White Diamond Tricoat paint. With our '05 Vue and '08 Outlook still going strong though, it makes it hard to justify a new car right now, but... it's okay to dream, right?

Pricing for the 2010 Saturn Aura is not yet available.

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Flashback Friday: 2000 Saturn CV1 Concept

Flashback Friday: 2000 Saturn CV1 Concept

The CV1 - so named because it was Saturn's first real concept vehicle - explored new vehicle packaging and design features, many of which would end up playing an important role as Saturn grew its product lineup. Notable features found on the CV1 that eventually made it into production on other Saturn vehicles were the center-mounted instrument cluster (Ion), continuously variable transmission (Ion and Vue), flat-folding passenger seat (Vue), all-wheel-drive (Vue and Outlook), and LED tail-lights (Aura).