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Old 09-06-2020, 11:48 AM   #1
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2000 L-Series 3.0L Sedan
Default What's with all these L200's lately?

Are there no V6 Saturn's left out there? I know I've seen a few Saturn's around, but when I got up close I realized they were 4 cylinder Saturns. Our 2000 V6 equipped Saturn is 20 years old this year. Time to slap collector plates on or what?
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Old 09-06-2020, 11:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

hi rj- thats an interesting question. have discussed it with local Lseries owners and various answers came out. some said the v6 was made in smaller numbers than the 4. others said the 4 was more economical on mpg. some mechanics told me since the v6 had the timing belt not the chain like in the 4, more of them were junked when the belts broke and the engine guts crashed. having worked on both, the 4 is much easier to work on. probably much more sticker shock with the v6 when youre slapped with exhorbitant dealer repair costs. regards bob f
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Old 09-07-2020, 11:14 AM   #3
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

Yeah, ours was the top of the line Saturn with the V6, fake leather, sun roof, power everything... it cost us 25K. After I replaced the rusted brake lines... it will be back on the road again.
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Old 09-15-2020, 11:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

In my opinion, the V6's were more troublesome. The 4's are proving to be the cars that lasted longer.

Want an 01 V6 sedan? My neighbor is about to junk his. He has half the miles on it as I have on my LW200. Hasn't been inspected in a year because it would never pass due to the plethora of codes it's throwing.
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Old 09-15-2020, 05:01 PM   #5
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

Whilst I cannot offer any individual data on L300 V6 and L200 4pot, I found the following sales date for the US and Canada on the L series.

2002: US: 81,172. Canada: n/a
2003: US: 64,957. Canada: n/a
2004: US: 19,453. Canada: 1091
2005: US: 5,036. Canada: 256
2006: US: 20 Canada: 1
2007: US: 2 Canada: 1

As you can see it was never a big seller and I guess the 2006 and 2007 cars were leftover stock.
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Old 09-15-2020, 06:03 PM   #6
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

So going by the numbers... We should slap a Collector's plate on our 2,000 LS2 V6!!! LOL
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Old 09-15-2020, 06:27 PM   #7
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

I guess if there is any that have collector value, it's gotta be the 2007's, the 2 in the US and the one in Canada. I guess there is some way of tracing them?

Another collector car is the Saab 94X. Based on the Cadillac SRX, they only made just over 600 units globally in its short production life. It is more scarce than the Ferrari F40! They are seriously nice cars as well.
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Old 09-15-2020, 08:35 PM   #8
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

Quote:
Originally Posted by floridasl22002 View Post
I guess if there is any that have collector value, it's gotta be the 2007's, the 2 in the US and the one in Canada. I guess there is some way of tracing them?
Those are just dealer leftovers that got titled very late.

From Wikipedia: "The last Saturn L-series model (the L300.2 sedan) rolled off the assembly line on June 17, 2004."

So if that's true, in reality, there are no 2005's, 2006's or 2007's.

Aura production kicked in for the 2006 model year. Must have been pretty hard to sell an L when the "all new Aura" was on the lot.
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Old 09-16-2020, 04:14 PM   #9
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulGraz View Post
Those are just dealer leftovers that got titled very late.

From Wikipedia: "The last Saturn L-series model (the L300.2 sedan) rolled off the assembly line on June 17, 2004."

So if that's true, in reality, there are no 2005's, 2006's or 2007's.

Aura production kicked in for the 2006 model year. Must have been pretty hard to sell an L when the "all new Aura" was on the lot.
Your post intrigued me so I checked my 2005 L300 and sure enough it mas made in 05/04.

Title says 2005, Emissions decal says 2005
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Old 09-16-2020, 05:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

I think where we've had a cross purpose is that the date I found (from two sources that said the same numbers) was on L series SOLD. That means first registered. Mr Graz's post quote Manufacture numbers by year. Two different things.

Most manufacturers know which of their models sell well and which don't. They keep data on the time it takes to sell a vehicle from the date it was manufactured. Some outgoing discontinued models or models being replaced by newer version will usually take longer to sell than one that is in demand.

Take for example the famed $400,000.00 Toyota LFA supercar. Toyota made 500 units of which 178 came to the USA. The last model rolled off the production line in December 2012 and came onto US soil in February 2013. In August 2017 there were 12 models unsold in the US and in 2019 3 were sold. There are still 5 new and unregistered LFA's in the US, that were built in 2012!!
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:59 PM   #11
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

All I'm saying that is "normally" a car built in June or July would be at the end of that year's production run, so that they can retool for the next model year. Saturn stopped the run in June.

Based on the sales stats you posted, 2004 was not a good sales year for the L series. So again - I'm guessing - that the last batch of cars built (a bit over 5000) were set aside and labeled as 2005 cars. But I am willing to bet if you find someone with a car titled as a 2006 or 2007, it's just because the dealer titled it that way because of local DMV regs - and that emissions decal says 2004 or 2005.

Is there any difference between a 2004 and a 2005? Again - I'm guessing not.

I've seen similar things with other cars I've owned. I guess I have a habit of buying cars that aren't popular.
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Old 09-19-2020, 01:26 PM   #12
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

I had mine valves for the L300 v6 done twice. One was of reaching timing replacement and after that something caused the valve issue replace. The second time fix was because I suspect it was valve cover seals failed and the oil leaked causing oil loss resulting in valve being damaged and fixed now. But beyond the regular maintenance one must do *This everyone owning any Vehicles should do* NO Excuses beyond seals or engine failures out of their control. I had good experiences with our V6 Saturn from a 02 LS2 to current 03 L300 and my parents 02 L300 have been very good to us. So let's be clear here if you don't do regular maintenance and tire checks and oil changes, cabin air/engine air replacements expect to have problems resulting from this. Also places with high A/C home use having a functional v6 working A/C is a god send giving you power when you need it. So unless the L200 states V6 decal they will be only I4 engine only.

Last edited by Russet; 09-19-2020 at 01:27 PM. Reason: revise
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Old 09-20-2020, 04:28 PM   #13
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately? do stats lie?

hi sages- good discussion. so the last L model was manufactured in 2004 but some are labeled a 2005 out of the factory and were sold in 2005 to empty the inventory. doesnt the vin near the lower left windshield state the date of manufacture? have noticed many differences with cars of one year but with different manufacture years . this is important where there has been a part change during the year or where you try to get a dealer repair done under a recall without going to the cleaners. i inquired about a dealer recall on stinko timing chains on my 01 L100, but according to the manufacture date on the L the improvement had already been done at the factory. thought the dealer was lying and checked with the nhtsa who verified it. shocked, shocked to hell. any of you ever been so shocked? the 00 and early 01s had a plethora of problems with blown engines due to bad timing chains. bet some dealers had a big pay day for replacing engines before the nhtsa stopped them. pity the po folks who were faked into shelling out 5k for another engine. some will pat you on the back with one hand and pick your pocket with the other. regards bob f
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Old 09-20-2020, 07:19 PM   #14
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately? do stats lie?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
hi sages- good discussion. so the last L model was manufactured in 2004 but some are labeled a 2005 out of the factory and were sold in 2005 to empty the inventory.
June of '04 was the last month of production for the L Series signaling a truncated run with a low number of vehicles. Apparently May of '04 would've started the production run of the 2005 model year's cars. As I was reading up on Saturn's sales history and the failure of the L Series cars to truly catch on in the market place (plenty of bad press and poor customer experience reported), I cannot deny the reality that Saturn wouldn't have survived even if GM's BK hadn't taken place.

"...Saturn was pushing incentives harder than ever, including zero-percent financing with GM's market-priming "Keep America Rolling" promotion in the wake of 9/11. Yet neither that nor later lures could spark buyer interest in the mid-size Saturn, and orders plunged a whopping 70 percent in calendar '04 to less than 19,500.

All were L300s with standard ABS/traction control reinstated and no manual shift offered. Not surprisingly, the unloved L-Series faded away during model-year '05, when only an unchanged V-6 sedan was available with far fewer options. Just over 5000 were sold.
"

(^That's really sad for a car that has done very well by me.)

The quote above is taken from the article appearing in the link below.
https://auto.howstuffworks.com/saturn-cars.htm

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
the vin near the lower left windshield state the date of manufacture?
No, it does not. The date of manufacture is found at the sticker in the driver's door along with the vehicle weight ratings - GVWR & GAWR. I believe that I've also seen it on the sticker in the trunk under the spare tire. (Since the last six digits is the assigned number of that particular vehicle in its model year, I'd suspect that an enterprising GM related parts person could eventually deduce the month of production based on that information...Of course, I could be wrong...)
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Old 09-20-2020, 09:27 PM   #15
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

IMHO - The L-series (which was highly anticipated by Saturn S-series owners), was a sales failure for a few reasons:

-HoHum styling. I own one, but the exterior body styling just wasn't exciting. The mid-cycle redesign of the nose didn't really accomplish a fix for this.
-The L-series did not have the same use of the polymer panels. Want to see the rust on my rear quarter panel?
-Limited option choices. GM historically allowed people to order options individually, but that was being phased out as too expensive. If you bought a 4-cyl, it was going to be a "basic" car. If you wanted niceties, you needed to buy the V6. Personally, I wanted some of those niceties, but I wasn't willing to take the MPG drop of the V6.
-As with ANY car, you have to look at what other cars were available at the time (from any company) and how they compared. Not everyone is brand loyal like us Saturn-nuts!
-No haggle pricing. I considered this a big plus, but the majority hated it. And in the end it hurt sales.

When I bought my LW200, we were replacing an SW2. I had a young daughter (13) and we were starting to drive her and her friends around to all those typical teenage activities. Honestly, I wanted another SW, but the wife said we should get something a little bigger. We both hate SUVs, and wagon choices were limited. The Passat wagon was close in price, but I just wasn't impressed. That Saab wagon was super-nice - but much more expensive. So the LW fit the bill for us. Almost 20 years later - no regrets.

BTW - rfisher - our 01 was included in the recall for the timing chain.
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Old 09-21-2020, 09:27 AM   #16
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

hi paul g and pierrot- interesting comments. checked my vin and my door of the 01 L for build date. couldnt decipher the vin but the door sticker did say the vehicle was manufactured august of 2000. bet for a fee the dealer would decode it. did not take delivery of the new car until october 00 and had to order it b/c i wanted 3 floor pedals. annoying enemies, higher mpg , sportiness and more longevity/cheaper repair costs were my motives. dealer called me every few days to persuade me to switch to 2 floor pedals which could be delivered right away(for a 2k price increase). told me 2 outright lies: these days auto trans and manual trans get the same mileage and repair price is same for autos as manuals. quoted his own mpg figures and actual repair cost to rebuild an automatic saturn and he spoke in a foreign language saying duh ibbita bibbita(non comprende ola). do you habla those ponderous words? L has 187k and has been a good car. internet says it has a sale value of $160. keep up the good work. bob f
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Old 09-21-2020, 09:38 AM   #17
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

wow paul g- used to go to a yard in howell (blewetts on 9 ) for parts for my old dodges. originally from nj (ap on the shore) . your 01 LW must have been made before mine if your chain was replaced under recall. mine didnt have to be and wore out much later around 150k. made noise and caught it in time before it toasted the engine. did you avoid getting soaked when dealer replaced your chain? thanks tons bob f
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Old 09-21-2020, 09:42 AM   #18
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

I believe the 10th digit in the VIN is the year of the car. But not the date of manufacture. As is shown by my 2005 L300. VIN says its a 05, but door sticker says it was made 05/04
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Old 09-21-2020, 10:52 AM   #19
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

Trying to remember our recall in 2001-03 on our 2000 V6. It has a timing belt not a timing chain. I believe the recall had something to do with the heads. We dropped it off and it took several days to complete. My Mother had bought a 2000 V6 without any bells and whistles. She had the same repair done under warranty.

Other than repairing almost everything on our Saturn and soon brake lines due to rust driving in Wisconsin, our 135K mile Saturn is still drive-able. My Mom's Saturn got ate by the rust demons and died in 2016. She sold it to a junk yard before I could pull parts from it. I still regret that!
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Old 09-21-2020, 01:38 PM   #20
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Default Re: What's with all these L200's lately?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rfisher View Post
wow paul g- used to go to a yard in howell (blewetts on 9 ) for parts for my old dodges. originally from nj (ap on the shore) . your 01 LW must have been made before mine if your chain was replaced under recall. mine didnt have to be and wore out much later around 150k. made noise and caught it in time before it toasted the engine. did you avoid getting soaked when dealer replaced your chain? thanks tons bob f
My neighbor is about to take his 01 SL2 to Blewetts for scrap. :-(

We moved here in 96 with 2 Saturns and I quickly learned that Saturn of Freehold was ripoff central. Starting taking my cars to Saturn of Toms River where we were treated great. That's where I bought my LW200 - but it actually was sitting on the lot at a dealer on Rt 1 for while. I've never tried to determine the build date. (EDIT: it's 12/00)

Saturn of Toms River did the timing chain under warranty no questions asked, no hassles. They also did the tail light recall.

Have you ever tried this VIN decoder: https://vpic.nhtsa.dot.gov/decoder/
...
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