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Old 09-26-2000, 03:49 AM   #1
Yuty
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Default Older SC2s vs. Newer SC2s...advice please?

A few years ago ('97, to be exact) I borrowed a friend's '93 SC2 for a quick trip to town. I'd never driven a Saturn before, though I'd heard nothing but good things about them, and to my pleasant surprise I fell in love with that car in an instant. OK, it was a bit loud, a tad on the rough side, and maybe not exceedingly zippy, but I've never had a car SPEAK to me like that before ("you need me, you need me!"). I've wanted one ever since.

I've been in college for the last seven years and have not yet had the opportunity (or should I say, the money) to buy myself an SC2, mostly because three years ago when I bought my first car, the used SC2s I saw retained their value so well that they were a bit out of my price range. I'm hoping that within the next year I'll finally be able to get the car I want, but I'm in a bit of a quandary and I'm hoping you guys can help me out. (By the way, I just spent about two hours reading through old posts and poking around on this board--you all seem like nice, intelligent, and highly enthusiastic Saturn supporters!! It's wonderful!!)

The problem I have is actually picking out WHICH car I want, or at least which cars I should look into. Three years have passed since I drove that '93 (still the only Saturn I've driven), which obviously makes that model three years older. My current car is an '84 and I'm anxious to have something much newer and more reliable. The crux of the problem is that I don't really like the body style of the newer SC's (which started in what, 1997?), but I'm not sure I want a car as old as the '93 that I loved. My questions to all of you are: What do you think/know/have heard about the '95 or '96 SC2s? Are there any major problems to watch out for? Any horror stories? Any stories of triumph and glory? And after this many years, how reliable are the older models--should I not yet discount the '94s or '93s? Finally, has anyone heard any rumblings from the powers-that-be at Saturn about possibly changing the exterior back to the older type, or is the present configuration here to stay for a while yet? (Yeah, yeah, wishful thinking, I know....)

And by the way, am I the only one who likes the old body style better than today's? I highly dislike the fact that in looking at the car from the side, the line where the body panels meet the windows is now completely straight from the top of the hood back to the tip of the trunk. I think the older SCs are the most beautiful cars I've ever seen in side view--the graceful curve of that line as it progressed from the hood, along the door, and finally to the trunk was so much more pleasing to the eye. Well, MY eye, at least. Anyone else agree?

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Old 09-26-2000, 07:41 AM   #2
BobL
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Many people do like the earlier SC styling. However, the engines since 1999 are much quieter.

One weak point is the sunroof. Unless you don't mind spending $700+ when it goes south, you may want to avoid this option on a car without warranty coverage.

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Old 09-26-2000, 09:20 AM   #3
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i agree with you and bob, im a fan of the first generation sc's also, i think saturn realy had a sweet body with that model.
i would find a nice clean low mileage first gen and have it checked by a competent mechanic verses buying the newer body style, nothing against the newer style ones, i just think the earlier ones had better lines.
the new olds alero two door looks strikingly similar to the first generation sc2's when i come up behind them, i like that body style also.

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Old 09-26-2000, 09:39 AM   #4
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I agree with Joey. I would look for a 94+- with low miles. I like the SC1 better, but usually it does not have a lot of extra features that most people want. If you located an older model with low mileage, you could save yourself some money.97 & up SC's really go for a premium around here.Best of luck!

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Old 09-26-2000, 10:00 AM   #5
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I agree that the early SC/SC2 styling was great.... but I do have to say that the 2001 styling rocks too (which is different from the 1997-2000 styling). I liked the intermediate styles too, but I think the 2001 is my favorite. Have you seen any of these, Yuti?

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Old 09-26-2000, 10:39 AM   #6
eRic 02sc2
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well i used to have a 92 SC and in 1999 when it was totaled i decided to get a 96 SC2 insted of a 97-99 becuase i like the old body style with pop up lights better. plus the 91-96 weighs less, is smaller with a shorter wheelbase and doesn't have stupid drl on them them. i'd say get the lowest mileage 95-96 you can find. 96's have obd-ii so they are more up-to-date than 95's even though they look the same inside and outside but slightly different under the hood.

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Old 09-26-2000, 12:12 PM   #7
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I totally agree with Eric...I used to have a gold 96 SC2 and it was sooooo beautiful...I'm not really a "car girl" but that Saturn turned me into one!!! The styling is great...I loved the pop-up lights (damn those DRL's!!), I never had a problem with the pop-ups either. I would always see a Ford Probe or a Pontiac Firebird with one eye opened and one closed, I've only seen Saturns like that if they were in an accident. To me, the engine doesn't sound that much louder than my current Saturn, which has a very LOUD engine noise after 2 years of having the car. This is when the SC2 actually looked like a "sports car" IMO.

Why don't I have in any more? Well, my lease was up and it cost way too much to pay the lease. So now I have a Dark Blue 99SC2-pre-RAD. I do love this car, but it took awhile to. I got GTS blackouts for the headlights because I think the DRL's are too bright, plus it makes my Saturn look mean. I have tried to trade it in for the new 2001 SC2 (It's a beaut. to look at too), but because I have "the older styling" they were only going to give me $9,000 for trade, when it's valued at $12,000...I went to Ford to see if I could trade it for an Explorer Sport-Trac (correct spelling) and they gave me $10,000 for it. Oh well, I still have it. Any who, that has nothing to do with what you wanted to know...oops.

So, yeah I would look for a 96 SC2.

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Old 09-27-2000, 02:08 AM   #8
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I have a gold '94 SC-2 that I bought from Saturn of Daytona last year at this time. It was "certified" by Saturn, which means it was brought up to original factory specs in many different areas. In 17000 miles, including a 3000+ mile road trip in August, other than expense for gas and oil, I have had a leaking valve cover gasket - period! Check with your local Saturn dealer to see if they have a certified used model.
I also like the earlier styling versus the newer one, and I ended up with a cream puff.
I hope you have as much luck as I have had.

Dave R

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Old 09-27-2000, 10:34 PM   #9
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I have a '95 and I absolutely adore it. The styling just can't be beaten. My car has had 89,000 miles put on it some hard, some easy. The only troubles that I have had with this car is that the cam cover leaked (easy fix) and now it seems that the CV axles will be needing replaced. I think the latter is a result of the modifications I have made to the car.

Anyway my advice; Get a low mileage certified '95-'96 SC2 with the Saturn extended coverage warranty.

Abe.

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Old 09-28-2000, 03:15 PM   #10
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I've got a 97 SC2....fairly happy with it. If anybody wants to know how to disconnect the DRL's on any 97 or newer saturns just respond here or drop me an e-mail.

KABOZ18@aol.com

THE GREENSKEEPER

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Old 09-28-2000, 03:24 PM   #11
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I actually prefer the 97 - 99 style, though I think the older coupes are nice looking also. I'm not too thrilled with the 2001 coupe, though it's not bad. I really don't like the RAD, though, and I think it should be optional. (Yeah, I know, much higher production costs if they built the couple both ways...)

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Old 09-30-2000, 07:59 PM   #12
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I guess I'm really torn on this from a number of angles...there's some things I liked better about the 1st generation coupes and some I liked better about the 2nd generation.

Actually, I'd divide 'em into more generations, as follows: '91-'92 SC, '93-'94 SC1/2, '95-'96 SC1/2 (after the new dash/dual airbags, and "freshening" of the chin spoiler and taillights), and the '97-'98 SC1/2; then the '99-2000 Pre-RAD SC1/2, the RAD SC1/2, and finally the restyled 2001 RAD SC1/2.

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Old 10-02-2000, 12:42 AM   #13
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I have a red 94 modified SC2 and must say that i like the body styling much more. It was just more aggressive. My mom bought a 99 sc2 with the third door, while i like the door, i am not sure i like the rest of the body styling. I have been researching how to put a third door on my car But as far as problems, i bought mine three years ago, and besides regular maintenance i have not had to do any major repairs, despite having 100,000 miles on it, and doing performance mods to it. The only real thing is the sunroof, as several people mentioned above, the metal pieces tend to rust quiet easily, and its about 700 to replace it. Other than that i think you would be happier with a 94-96 model. Oh and dont forget to make sure its a manual tranny, their way more fun happy hunting.

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Old 10-02-2000, 02:44 AM   #14
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I can't vouch for the newer SC models, but, as the original owner of '91 SC, I can say that old cars were/are great. Heck, my car is 9.33 years old, and I can count on one hand the repairs that I've had (transmission fluid leak, alternator, fuel pump), and have fingers to spare.
Looking forward to 5+ more years of this car,
Mike T

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