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Old 02-28-2016, 01:12 PM   #1
kaylan87
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Idea Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

I've been lurking and lightly posting here for a few years. Ive wanted a Saturn for some time now because of the dent resistant body panels, less worry about rust in my northeast state, and the affordable maintenance of these vehicle. However, twice in the last few years I pulled the trigger on vehicles other than a Saturn.

I got an old Cavalier that served me well for 18 months given the little I paid for it. But recently I bought a Ford Escort for $1k that ended up not being able to pass inspection due to frame rust that I missed when looking over the car myself. The mechanic and I were both surprised considering the low miles, and how clean the body and interior were. Live and learn though...especially with a car that lives in the Salt Belt. It sucks, but that'll teach me to always have a car inspected prior to purchase...and not putting it off for weeks.

Anyways I finally got my Saturn yesterday after spending a couple weeks online looking for a good used car, preferably from a good dealer. This way I get at least the NYS lemon law warranty depending on the miles of the vehicle...as well as some piece of mind that the car has been inspected all right. I found a GM dealership with a 2005 Ion 1 with 84k miles advertised for $3999.

The dealer had some really good reviews online, and some bad ones as well...but I figured Id give them a shot since I was having a hard time finding any big dealer in the area with a spotless 5 star review record across several sites.

I drove up to them, looked over the car, test drove it, liked it...and then tried to haggle with them. I was able to get it them down to $3700...but I feel like I could have push more and got them into the low or mid $3000s. After sales tax, doc fee, plate transfer, etc I got out the door spending $4156. That said, every other clean Ion ive seen online or in person with similar mileage was advertised at the least $4300.

But since I don't have much experience with Saturns, I thought I would see what the community thinks. Its only been a day, but I do dig the car. It looks nice, and was well maintained by its previous owners. And actually, this is the second time that the dealership I went to has sold this particular vehicle. The previous owner had it for 2 years, and traded it back in to them to buy a pickup.

So far Im happy, but Im still going to have my local mechanic give it a look over to make sure everything's good with the inspection the dealership gave it. Better safe than sorry.

Please chime in.

PS - If this experience goes well, Im thinking about getting a backup Saturn. Cannot decide if I want to get an S or L series from the early 2000s....or another newer sedan from the mid 2000s.

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Old 02-29-2016, 02:32 PM   #2
Citation84
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2005 ION-1 Sedan
Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

Congratulations. I have an 05 Ion 1 as well with 64,000 miles on it from new. You might want to check a Saturn Authorized Service Provider [usually Chevrolet] and run the VIN to see if all recalls have been completed.

I just had the sway bar links done for the second time [first time under warranty less than 30,000 miles ago.

As preventive maintenance: trans fluid done at 50,000 miles or so, @ 10 years all belts, hoses and new plugs and boots [?]. I'm a little OCD when it comes to maintenance.

I'd say that was a good price. So many 05 anythings out there with well over 100,ooo miles and even higher prices. That the Saturn brand is no longer offered helps depress resale values, but it makes a great deal for a buyer willing to take a chance on a defunct make.

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Old 03-27-2016, 02:36 PM   #3
kaylan87
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Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

Thanks for posting.

Anyone else care to chime in? Its been a good little car so far.

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Old 03-28-2016, 08:19 AM   #4
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2004 ION-3 Sedan
Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

Congrats on your purchase.

I bought my 2003 Ion Level 3 on March 13th for $1000 which was in good shape but needed a couple of things done before I can get the safety inspection done.
It was owned by an older couple and it look new. Since I used to own a 2002 SC1 that was pretty reliable, sold it with 320,000Kms. I thought I'd try the Ion.

So I bought it, spent $550 to change a few things including the rear shocks and off I go. Last Saturday, I spent $90 to get a drain and fill on my 5 Speed automatic.

In any event, it drives very well now and hopefully it last as long as my old SC1.

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Old 03-28-2016, 11:02 AM   #5
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2003 ION-2 Sedan
Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

Congrats on the purchase. Not sure what fair price is. I guess mostly depends on the condition. I bought 03 in fair condition but 135,000 miles for about $1100 over a year ago. But I spent about the same to fix various issues (parts only, my labour). These are clearly cars for DIYers.

Any suspension clunks yet?

...
fixed/replaced so far: side mirror, window trims x4, trunk floor, radiator bushing, alternator, starter, LCA x2, sway bar bushings x2, end links x2, timing chain tensioner, O2 sensor.

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Old 04-07-2016, 11:29 AM   #6
twsmith7
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2007 ION-3 Quad Coupe
Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

I just bought an 07 ion 3 quad coupe with around 100,000 miles for $3400 Canadian (he was asking $3800). But I bought it privately so there was no dealer markup.

I also had to put new tires on it so it's closer to $4000 now.

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Old 04-21-2016, 12:14 AM   #7
Notaredline
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Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

I just bought a 2007 Ion 2 5 spd for $3000 through a private owner,its in real good shape with 75k and all new timing components(car jumped time,but did not damaged the engine)its a great driving car

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Old 04-21-2016, 11:55 AM   #8
ebackhus
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Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

Bought an '04 3 Quad Coupe last year for $2,100 all-in. I need to replace the problematic windshield wiper transmission and the sway bar bushing. That's an afternoon job and will only put me out about $90.

...
2004 Ion Coupe 3 Quad - Wife's
2004 Jeep Liberty Sport - Mine

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Old 04-22-2016, 04:40 PM   #9
kevin.st56
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2003 ION-2 Sedan
Default Re: Finally bought my first Saturn. Did I get a decent deal?

the ions are a great and reliable car.
as long as you keep up with the regular maintenance, itll last you.
the price you paided for it, being it came from a GM dealership, isnt bad.

few common repairs needed will be swaybar bushing, swaybar endlinks, and maybe the balljoints. replace them with moog parts, and you should be set.

there isnt a lot of aftermarket mods for the ions, but a lot of the mods and upgrades usually come from ions with the 2.4l engine, and the redline.
the 2.4 intake manifold and it, or the LSJs, complete exhaust (manifold to tailpipe)is a good place to start. since you have an 05, you wont have to worry about getting the adapter plate needed for us 03 and 04 ioners to mount our throttle body.

...
03 ion-2 Sedan 5sp
94 Honda civic automatic "VTEC yo"
05 Santa Fe 2.7L (Fefe) {Wrecked}

"A problem clearly stated, is a problem half solved."

♕KCCO

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