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Old 02-09-2022, 03:03 PM   #1
BuyingOldIon
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Default Buying a used Ion

Hey all,

I was looking for an used car these crazy days and I came across a 2007 Saturn Ion 3 Quad Coupe in my local area.

Car looks fine, single owner, with 121k miles. No mechanical issue according to the owner. Only problem he said was an issue with the button that locks the shifter, which needs a straw or stick to be pushed.

I am meeting her tomorrow. Price is around $2500. What should I pay the most attention to?

Is this car likely to be reliable for at least 2 years or 20k miles? I mean, obviously it is old so it will need some occasional maintenance, but I am trying to avoid something that will require going to a mechanic shop more often than every 3 months or so.
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Old 02-09-2022, 03:19 PM   #2
Bill Murray
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2007 ION-2 Quad Coupe
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

One owner cars with high miles tend to reflect good maintenance.
I always ask why they're selling, sometimes you even get a straight answer. Sometimes even a list of parts that have been replaced.

If you're in a rust prone climate, give it a good look underneath if you can.

In today's inflated market, it sounds like a decent buy.
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Old 02-09-2022, 03:29 PM   #3
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Murray View Post
One owner cars with high miles tend to reflect good maintenance.
I always ask why they're selling, sometimes you even get a straight answer. Sometimes even a list of parts that have been replaced.

If you're in a rust prone climate, give it a good look underneath if you can.

In today's inflated market, it sounds like a decent buy.
What would be a rust prone climate? I am in central NC.

According to the owner, it has only had oil, tires and breaks changed.
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Old 02-10-2022, 02:34 PM   #4
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

I'd think in North Carolina, rust shouldn't be much of an issue.

Parts that might need work in the future: front struts, stabilizer bar links, rear shocks, rear springs, clutch assy. None of these is very expensive if you do your own work.
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Old 02-10-2022, 04:57 PM   #5
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

Thanks for the heads up. The car was in great condition, so I ended up purchasing it. I had a professional mechanic inspecting it and it he did not find anything major. Although he said that the valve gasket cover should be replaced.

I think it is also having the shifter lock issue, which some people posted here that seems to be related to the BTSI.

Since it is an old car, I think it would be nice to get one of these bluetooth OBD2 scanners to watch for any possible issues. Do you guys know some specific type that works better for this Saturn ?
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Old 02-11-2022, 04:54 PM   #6
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

I use the Blue Driver which can read air bag and abs codes in addition to the Pcodes for the drivetrain. They also maintain a database from their users which gives you a list of possible fixes listed by frequency.
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Old 02-11-2022, 10:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

Thanks for the suggestion! I will have a look.

After driving the first day with the car, I got a few questions

- I need to replace the passager side bottom window seal (exterior), looks like the part number is 15235721. $105 for this one sounds too crazy, anyone ever tried aftermarket pieces? Any recommendation?

- Is there a way to make the power windows go up when I lock the car from outside?

Last edited by BuyingOldIon; 02-11-2022 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 02-19-2022, 03:32 AM   #8
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Default Re: Buying a used Ion

Hi, i dont know if you can remote close the windows that way! ive owned my Ion since april 2011 and it didn't ever cross my mind !

From my (user im no tech!)experiance with it theres a few things to look/know
It's been pretty reliable, in the more than 10 years ive owned it it let me stranded like 3 times.

The first time it was the clutch and clutch bearing that failed and jammed the transmission in second gear, maybe it was partialy my fault for not always having the clutch pressed at the bottom when shifting a few times. Never put a "cool floormat" on top of another floormat...

Second time was the starter, probably around 2013

A few weeks ago ive changed my headlight assembly because they where almost opaque and couldn't see at night, right after that i had a starter issue again.

They had a few recalls, i know three of them impacted my car; one for the famous ignition switch https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a1...n-cars-in-u-s/

One that the car would loose the electrical power steering(not fun on a busy highway)

One for the fuel system.

And the rear spring are often broken without the person knowing; i went scavanging for parts in a junkyard and ive seen a lot of them broken like on 10+ cars, until i found a gem of a car, that was VERY clean probably kept in a garage it whole life.

For the rest, i had a few hiccups with the elecronic trottle body/pedal sensor ive changed the trottle body for a used one like 7 years ago and sometime its coming back since about 3 months ago, doing it only when it's rainy or very humid; the car barely makes any power and it's hard to get it going in first gear; if you try to rev and drop the clutch the car have like a violent shaking back and forth, it's easyer to start in second. It usually stop then the car rest for about 10 minutes after the situation start. Already have one spare if it worsens!

and lastly, i had a backup switch for light replaced this year

Then the rest is normal maintenance stuff like wheel bearing on 4 wheels, replaced front tab assembly( because rust), strut bar bushing, disk brakes and pad, and muffler(rust again!).

Sooo! Not that bad! Even if im in a rust prone area. The car slept outside for the most of it's life until 2 years ago.
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