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Old 08-24-2019, 09:34 AM   #1
Bill Rod
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Default 2006 Saturn Ion with Cobalt Engine

So, I bought my daughter a 2006 Saturn Ion 2.2 L DOHC when she turned 16. I have had 3 Saturns, all L series and they have been great cars.

So the jerk that sold me the car sold it to me with a bad engine. Developed a severe rod knock within 200 miles. The PO put thicker oil in the engine and a few other shady things that i noticed when a pulled and disassembled the engine.Instead of rebuilding the engine I purchased a used engine (2006 Cobalt 2.2 117K) from the salvage yard and installed it.

The engine started right up and ran great, after a few months I started to get a P0301 code. So after some research I tried the typical stuff: replaced the gas cap, new spark plugs, checked fuel pressure, checked engine compression, new vapor canister purge valve, checked for vacuum leak, and finally replaced the injector on #1. Code still comes up and the car seems to be running a little rougher than before. I decided I was just going to replace the intake manifold.

I was preparing to replace the intake last night when my wife reminded me that the engine is a cobalt engine and asked if the intake was the same as the Ion.

After doing some reading here, it seems as even though the engines are both 2.2 GM engines there are some differences. Fuel Injectors seem to be one item (the injector I replaced was for a Saturn and it fit fine, but it seems there is a different injector for the cobalt).

So, I have questions:
1. will the Saturn intake manifold fit the Cobalt engine?
2. I assume I should replace the new injector in #1 (that I already replaced from above) with a cobalt injector?
3. Should I replace the coil pack and ignition module on the cobalt engine with one from a Saturn engine?
4. Anything else I should do/check if I continue to get the P0301 code?

I appreciate any help or advice that I can get.

Thanks, Bill

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Old 08-24-2019, 02:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2006 Saturn Ion with Cobalt Engine

P0301 indicates that cylinder number 1 is experiencing misfires. The associated items related to misfiring in one cylinder; fuel, spark plug, ignition coil (pack?), ignition control module, low compression and injector. You can try swapping injectors around to see if the problem moves. There may be slightly different fuel pressures between a Cobalt 2.2L and Ion 2.2L Ion engine. You'll need to find out pressure specs for each. Fuel filter replaced before/after engine replacement?

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Old 08-24-2019, 04:52 PM   #3
Bill Rod
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Default Re: 2006 Saturn Ion with Cobalt Engine

Thank you for the reply.

Tried swapping injectors around - still P0301 - bought new injector for Ion installed in #1 - Still P0301- Now P0301 pops up within a mile of driving and more of a rough idle and a couple of stalls since new injector.
So thought maybe since it's a cobalt engine I should put in a cobalt injector?
Are they different?


Fuel Pressure - 50 - I believe that's good?

Compression - I don't remember that read I got but it was good and all less than 10 psi apart.

Spark plugs - All new (Twice now)

Ignition pack and Module - Have one from ion and one from cobalt, tried both - Still P0301

Fuel Filter - Not yet, but will get one this evening

I had read that the intake manifold tends to leak around #1. So I was going to replace it. Ordered one for Ion wife reminded me that the engine is a cobalt.
Will the Ion intake fit the cobalt engine?

I also noticed that the ion fuel rail is more of a flat rail and the cobalt is round.
Is this correct or am I mistaken?
Would it matter if cobalt rail was on ion or vice versa?


Thanks, Bill

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Old 08-24-2019, 07:00 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2006 Saturn Ion with Cobalt Engine

The 2.2L intake manifolds are identical for all 2003-2006 GM Delta cars (Ion, Cobalt, G5, HHR). Sames goes for all mechanical parts, ignition coil pack, and ignition module. Swapping any of these parts is pointless if they are all known-good parts.

According to parts catalogs, the fuel rail (p/n 12596245) is the same for 2005-2007 Ion and 2006-2007 Cobalt 2.2L engines. However, if you see a visible difference, I would trust that more than the GM parts catalog. GM's parts/application info is far from perfect.

You didn't indicate if you tried swapping fuel rails or which one you have installed, but I would try swapping fuel rails with the matching injectors. Cylinder #1 is farthest from the fuel supply line so that could certainly be the difference - especially if the injectors are different. The fuel filter could also be partially clogged. The filter also has a pressure regulator built into it.

Was the fuel pressure 50 PSI with engine running or engine off?

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2007 Ion 2 Quad Coupe 5-speed manual 181K miles
2007 Chevy Equinox LT 193K miles
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Old 08-25-2019, 10:14 AM   #5
Bill Rod
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Default Re: 2006 Saturn Ion with Cobalt Engine

Thank you.

Fuel Pressure was 50-52 Psi with engine off / Ignition turned to the on position. The pressure held pretty steady for about one minute.
Watched a few videos and read that this was correct on how to check fuel pressure?

I have tried both fuel rails. Both were the same on fuel pressure. The code still comes up.
Currently the cobalt fuel rail is installed.

I did find out that the fuel pressure is the same for both cobalt and Ion (55 PSI)
Also the fuel pump is the same for both.

As for the intake. I have already removed the old intake that came with the cobalt engine. Yes they are identical.

So my plan is:

To proceed with installing the new intake which I purchased for an Ion.
since they are both the same intake and I already have the old one removed and a new one waiting to be installed. I figured why not install the new.

Replace the injector that I purchased for an Ion with the one I purchased last night for a Cobalt.
All the injectors will be the same. Cobalt injectors / Cobalt fuel rail.

As for the coil pack and module. I have both, Cobalt and Ion. I will probably just leave the Cobalt coil/ ign. module in place. I have swapped these and still get the same code. If they are the same it shouldn't matter. I guess there's a chance that both could be bad as they were both "used parts".
I have not performed any type of diagnostic test on either of these coil packs/ign. modules. Not really sure how to check these so any help with that would be great. I'm sure I can find it on Saturn Forums or somewhere on the web.

I will also be replacing the fuel filter today.

I have checked for vacuum leaks with the car running of course.
(just spraying carb cleaner / brake parts cleaner and listening for any differences in the idle.
I have done this around the engine compartment as well as under the rear of the car where the charcoal canister is located.

So I will proceed with those items today and see what happens.

Thanks, Bill

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