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Old 08-18-2003, 04:01 AM   #1
Jaseball
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Default Review Bias - Saturn vs. Honda

It's been interesting over the past year reading reviews from auto mags, online sites, owners, etc., of the Saturn Ion.

It just strikes me that if the Saturn Ion were the Honda Ion or whatever we would have had a very different set of reviews.


Saturn/Honda

"Ugly Interior" would have been "Modern and Futuristic."

"Panel Gaps," would have been "Polymer panels offer great protection against daily mishaps."

"Slow 0-60 acceleration," would have been "Peppy, quiet and smooth 4 cylinder engine."

"Misplaced center console," would have been "Takes a few seconds to get used to and works well with drivers left to right scanning and lends another distinctive feature."

"We waited 11 years for this?" would have been "An incredible new entry in the small car segment at a bargain basement price."

"Uncomfortable seats," would have been "Superior back support with height adjustment."

"Electrical Problems," would be "Onboard diagnostics/LAN monitors all systems and would be something you would expect in cars in much more expensive classes."

"What was Saturn/GM thinking?" would be "Honda does it again and shows us what innovation and forward thinking is all about."

These same reviewers would also have spent a great deal more time on the handling, ride, low noise, low cost, etc., of the Ion.

Of course I am preaching to people who own Ions, but anyone who has been around knows the average person out there will look at brand, how much something costs, subjective things, what their peers are doing, etc., and come to their conclusions based off these things vs. actual knowledge or experience.

The Ion isn't the best thing since sliced bread, but you get so much car for so little. My only concern is how well everything holds up many years and miles down the road, but so far I am having a blast.

I've had my Ion mistaken for a low end BMW, a Saab, an Audi, and not only have friends complimented the car inside and out, but co-workers and people I don't know well who have been along for a ride seem to really enjoy the Ion.

It's just sad they are amazed to find out it is a Saturn, as if that is a bad thing.

I really wondered how my Ion would grow on me and as a long time SL2 owner I thought I may never like my Ion more than my old car. I also wondered if I should have paid $5-20K more for the BMW, Mercedes, Saab, Audi, Acura, Subaru, etc., and so far I really feel comfortable with my Ion and don't think the added costs for a different make/model would have given me any more joy than this little car.
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Old 08-18-2003, 05:29 AM   #2
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Ive gotten use to the bias that the auto review industy has against american cars. Some of their points are true but a lot of it is pure..........well we know the word.

I take auto reviews very lightly they would in no way ever influence my buying decision.
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Old 08-18-2003, 06:37 AM   #3
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Default Re: Review Bias - Saturn vs. Honda

Quote:
Originally posted by Jaseball
*snip*

Of course I am preaching to people who own Ions, but anyone who has been around knows the average person out there will look at brand, how much something costs, subjective things, what their peers are doing, etc., and come to their conclusions based off these things vs. actual knowledge or experience.
You've summed it up very nicely! I think the best thing happy Saturn owners can do is respond to those "user polls" at places like MSN, where those us who actually know these cars can post our own reviews. I do that every chance I get.

I propose we pool our resouces, get a list of sites together, and blitz 'em!
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Old 08-18-2003, 09:35 AM   #4
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I think the worst offender on the Honda vs American bias is that lady who does car reviews for MSN. The lowest review she's given any Honda has been a 7 and that was for the Element, huh lowest review she's given any current Honda, doesn't that say something about the Element. Well, she's given the CTS and 2004 Grand Prix like 6s in her reviews.
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Old 08-18-2003, 09:39 AM   #5
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Default Re: Review Bias - Saturn vs. Honda

Quote:
Originally posted by Jaseball
I've had my Ion mistaken for a low end BMW, a Saab, an Audi...
My Ion was mistaken for a Saab too!

I came out of work and a middle-aged man was looking at my car with his wife. I walked over and he asked me it it was a Turbo...etc...I'm thinking, Saturns don't come with turbos? Anyway, he asked me how I liked it, and I said it was unbelievable for a cheap car. He gave me a weird look when I said cheap. Anyway, they left and when they were walking away, the man turned to his wife and said, "honey, that's the new Saab, isn't it gorgeous"...lol
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Old 08-18-2003, 10:53 AM   #6
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I had given up on reviews a long time ago.

I really gave up when I read how "poorly designed" the 2004 Grand Prix is. I saw two over the weekend, and I would do anything for one of those things. The body alone is just amazing on that car.

I also remember reading about the Mazda 6. I still like that car, but it is just a Ford with a Ford engine (I think), but they were saying how awesome it was over it's domestic competitors-- um, it more-or-less *is* a domestic!

I expected the ION to get bad reviews, well, because it isn't a boring Civic. Recently, a friend was congratulating another friend on her Civic purchase saying, "wow, I read that is a good car," and it took ALL my might to bite my tongue!
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Old 08-18-2003, 11:18 AM   #7
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I read the reviews but don't take them to heart anymore. They (some reviewers) have been pretty much downing the Ion since it's release. I guess that's why the Ion was a slow start at getting into people's garages and driveways. I am a very loyal Saturn owner and have been so for the past 7 years. I have read the reviews on each Saturn I owned. It's a machine for crying out loud, of course it's going to have problems. IMHO, I think most reviewers do very well at pointing out the negative instead of focusing on the positive.

I have had my Ion for almost a year now, and I still look out at my car at night before I go to bed and say, "D***, that is still one hot looking car". I guess what I am trying to say is that no matter what negative press the Ion is getting, it is not going to make me second guess my Ion purchase. I am just as happy with it today as I was when I drove it off the lot.
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Old 08-18-2003, 12:02 PM   #8
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i personally think it's a good thing that people are so dumb and sheep-like.

I hope more and more people drive Hondas. Because that means companies like Saturn have to keep getting better and better. They're already at least on par in almost all respects, and far ahead of things like the Civic in other ways. Let the masses wander blindly off the cliff. I'll continue buying and driving superior machines with underdog competitive pricing and features.

I know when I see 20 civics on the way to work that my car is better than theirs in every way that matters. Makes me have a good morning and it's very fun to blast them on the interstate. Little Si boys who think 90 on the interstate in fast, whining and squealing at 5,000 rpms when i'm rolling by comfortably under 4K...
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Old 08-18-2003, 03:06 PM   #9
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I hate car magazines specifically because they cater to the Japanese way too much. They find all kinds of problems with the domestic cars--especially GM--and act like Honda is the most perfect machine the world has ever seen. Who gives a ****** if my door panels have a gap? I don't. These foreign cars are NOT what people say they are--we all know that.
What's interesting is to talk to a Toyota or Honda owner about repairs or reliability. They leave out repairs such as air conditioning, power steering, tranny work, alternators, and more saying that those items are "just maintinence" and "nothing is perfect". Then they'll turn around and bash Saturn for repairs like brake rotors and EGR valves! I once was talking to a co-worker and told him that in 103,000 miles I replaced an alternator, a battery, an EGR valve, and a tranny valve body. That's only like $800 or so in repairs. He told me "Well, remind me never to buy a Saturn". CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT!!!!!!!!!!!! REALLY
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Old 08-18-2003, 09:29 PM   #10
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I'm all for the owner review writing - I'll have to look some places up to write. I'm still looking for that pant-snagging knife-like sharp edge that C&D (?) was talking about...
Mine hasn't been mistaken for a Saab, yet. A Nissan, yes, though an Altima at that. Though I would prefer people to recognize her as a Saturn and an ION, otherwise it makes the car seem to have an identity crisis.
The people I know are always bashing my Saturn, and cannot comprehend why I would like my car. The cars to buy are Hondas and VW's and Toyotas... Yeah, whatever!
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Old 08-18-2003, 09:45 PM   #11
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When I took my new ION to work for the first time, I couldn;t get out of the parking lot, for all the co-workers (motor heads as well) looking at the car, and wanting me to pop the hood, etc.

This went on for a wee or two until everyone had a chnace to take a look at it. Everyone was impressed, and those who got to take a ride was surprised to see it was a 4-cylinder running the show.

The Saturn ION is one of the best cars on the road, hands down. This is my first Saturn, and definately not my last!

Look at your car review magazines....look at the advertisers....do you think a magazine who has Honda/Ford/etc. for an advertiser would have the b*lls to give a bad review?

Saturn.....for the driver who knows what they want, not what the reviewers tell them what they want!
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Old 08-18-2003, 10:10 PM   #12
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Center mounted instruments have drawn almost universal criticism; they expressed their distaste for it in the new Nissan Quest as well.
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Old 08-19-2003, 12:49 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Saturnmeister
Center mounted instruments have drawn almost universal criticism; they expressed their distaste for it in the new Nissan Quest as well.
it took me a day to get used to it. its not hard to get unused to it either, i dont have a problem switching between my car and any other in my driveway. i think that its just the fact that it is a saturna dn something they dont think everyone will like, so they take that and multiply it by 10.


HEY AUTO REVIEWERS..............SUCK IT UP AND ACCEPT SATURN
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Old 08-19-2003, 01:17 AM   #14
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HUH! people are finally figuring out media bias
About time
there is an agenda in this country to "Blame America", or "Foreign First"
These media types are the same people who justified what happened on September 11, 2001 by using the argument that America has oppressed the people into hating us and becoming terrorists.

That is a brief overanaylization, but bias always starts small, and then when people are snowed into thinking non-objectively, the media can get away with substantial bias
The small bias in this example is Foreign First, Honda before Saturn, no matter what Saturn builds.
Thanks for reading my frustration
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Old 08-19-2003, 01:29 AM   #15
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i just wanted to second an opinion mentioned earlier about the 04 Grand Prix.

I saw one, white (my least fav. car color), base model (rent-a-car) on the road last month, and my jaw dropped in amazement. They fixed almost every external nit-picking problem i had with last year's version....that thing is smokin'

i just wish GM would put a 6 speed manual to their SC 3.8...jerks.
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Old 08-19-2003, 03:18 AM   #16
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I've never been influenced by a critic to purchase something. All they do is give their own opinion of something, just like anyone else would. The only deference is they are payed to do so. I do listen to others opinions, but it ultimatly boils down to what I want.

I want an Ion.
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Old 08-19-2003, 10:48 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by SpiderWebb
I do listen to others opinions, but it ultimatly boils down to what I want.

I want an Ion.
I got what I wanted....
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Old 08-19-2003, 12:00 PM   #18
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I've come to the point where I suspect that money changes hands between the Japanese and magazines like Edmunds and Consumer Reports. Maybe not bribes, but perhaps there are foreign interests or funding involved. The bias is getting worse and worse. You'd think GM was building cars out of Elmer's glue and cardboard the way they rag on the interiors.
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Old 08-19-2003, 04:13 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by tightsaturn96
You'd think GM was building cars out of Elmer's glue and cardboard the way they rag on the interiors.
GM'S new structural platform - Popsicle sticks
I figure it would go along nicely with the Elmer's glue and cardboard interiors. I hope at least someone gets a laugh because it is by no means offending GM one bit. Just poking some fun that these reviewers.
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Old 08-19-2003, 04:35 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by PAGuy77
GM'S new structural platform - Popsicle sticks
I figure it would go along nicely with the Elmer's glue and cardboard interiors. I hope at least someone gets a laugh because it is by no means offending GM one bit. Just poking some fun that these reviewers.
Ha ha

Making fun of their reviews is just about the best thing we can do .
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