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The Truth About Saturn: A Different Kind of Car Company | WheelHouse

Published on May 28, 2018 835,925 views

Saturn was GM’s chance to change the game, but only lasted 20 years. Why did it fail?

GM needed small cars in their lineup, but was hesitant to build them under their already existing brands. So they started Saturn, and gave them free reign to design an entirely new car. But somewhere along the way, they failed.

WheelHouse answers all the questions about the automotive world you never thought to ask. Nolan Sykes looks at the history, sociology and psychology behind the cars you love, and the features you might overlook.

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Comments
  • Curtis Campbell
    Curtis Campbell 10 месяцев назад Driving a Saturn always felt like driving flying Tupperware
  • jude telesz
    jude telesz 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell yea. Basically
  • ramari cover
    ramari cover 10 месяцев назад Yup, you ain’t lying lol
  • Chouun Shiryu
    Chouun Shiryu 10 месяцев назад I been to America before , wats a Saturn ( not the planet i mean )
  • really dude
    really dude 10 месяцев назад Charlotte Dunois it's an epic anime. Ya gotta see it, home slice
  • Chouun Shiryu
    Chouun Shiryu 10 месяцев назад Very funny , wat kind of car is this that called Saturn , looks like a retarded Nissan Sentra
  • Ben W
    Ben W 10 месяцев назад Charlotte Dunois g o o g l e . C o m or just watch the video doofus, you sound like a retarded Corolla
  • Chouun Shiryu
    Chouun Shiryu 10 месяцев назад Kkkkk Corrolla are way better than that
  • André Fontes
    André Fontes 10 месяцев назад (изменено) Charlotte Dunois a car subpar to what the Japanese market was making for decades in every single aspect (safety, technology, fuel efficiency and build quality), marketed and sold solely based on patriotism, but also did pioneered the US industry in a design and engineering process that didn't suck, similar to what is done, you know, everywhere else, yet the typical US corporation mentality of 'let's make easy money, the costumers are too dumb to care' drained it all and ultimately failed. Now come, butthurt 'Murican comments :')
  • Why Justin Y.
    Why Justin Y. 10 месяцев назад André Fontes My Saturn came from factory with high squality sound system. Sounds better then the 2015 equinox we have, and the 2009 Altima.
  • Ben W
    Ben W 10 месяцев назад Bruce Wilson lol
  • Степан Лукашин
    Степан Лукашин 10 месяцев назад Charlotte Dunois corolla is shit on wheels. Dats worse.
  • DaSovietPotato
    DaSovietPotato 10 месяцев назад a Saturn is lighter than a corolla and better looking.
  • DaSovietPotato
    DaSovietPotato 10 месяцев назад But it was a very unreliable car, but at least everything broke at the same time.
  • Big D Fitness
    Big D Fitness 10 месяцев назад DaSovietPotato it's only unreliable if you don't take care of it. Mine is just about to hit 200,000 miles and I'd trust it to drive it across the country and back.
  • Why Justin Y.
    Why Justin Y. 10 месяцев назад Ben W yeah everything else is shit you can hear the road like its amped up through a subwoofer.
  • Ben W
    Ben W 10 месяцев назад Bruce Wilson hahaha I see, that’s why the factory audio was such an stand out!
  • Dima.
    Dima. 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell 🤣🤣🤣
  • Ser Lawrence Harlem
    Ser Lawrence Harlem 10 месяцев назад When I was a kid in Chicago we would go out early on snowdays to make money. We all knew a Saturn was the easiest to push out of the snow.
  • Matt Wolf
    Matt Wolf 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell True but someone slammed their car door in my Saturn once and the plastic just bounced back, it didn't dent or even scratch it.
  • Aesthetic White Saturn
    Aesthetic White Saturn 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell yeah I can relate 👀
  • DraxTrac
    DraxTrac 10 месяцев назад Your comment 😂 😂 😂 😂
  • sxncere
    sxncere 10 месяцев назад Very very accurate statement.
  • Puzzle
    Puzzle 10 месяцев назад exept you never lost the panels
  • William D.
    William D. 10 месяцев назад As someone who has driven a Saturn, I can confirm your statement is true.
  • Built Not Bought
    Built Not Bought 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell QQQQQQQQ
  • tyrant1384
    tyrant1384 10 месяцев назад Saturn's don't roll they bounce
  • LoneWanderer360
    LoneWanderer360 10 месяцев назад You aren't kidding. My friend had an accident in his saturn and half the panels fell off.
  • Big D Fitness
    Big D Fitness 10 месяцев назад David McKirchy yeah, the curb weight on my Saturn is 2,396lbs
  • Aric Snyder
    Aric Snyder 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell I still have my Saturn SW2 it does the 1/4 mile @ 12.4 I call her the plastic torpedo
  • Angra
    Angra 10 месяцев назад Curtis Campbell Drove a stick shift 1996 SL. Absolutely loved it. It was a really fun car. Enjoyed it much more than my '99 Neon and my Aunt's '97 Impreza. I like it the most of all the small cars I've driven
  • Nolan Is Innocent
    Nolan Is Innocent 10 месяцев назад So....do you drive it, or fly it? ;-)
  • Aric Snyder
    Aric Snyder 10 месяцев назад Bruce Wilson it was the Delco with the 4 ohm speakers
  • Maker Archive
    Maker Archive 10 месяцев назад Driving my fully loaded, factory all black leather interior 97 sc2 feels the complete opposite.
  • ganymedeIV4
    ganymedeIV4 10 месяцев назад That's because a 2015 equinox and 2009 altima are just as garbage as a Saturn.... they're literally the same exact vehicle in some instances.
  • Aric Snyder
    Aric Snyder 10 месяцев назад Big D Fitness had two that had over 300k ... Yes I was a Saturn certified ASC tech.. I've seen the 1st and second gen s series. Everything was extremely easy to maintain.. Unlike Toyota...
  • ganymedeIV4
    ganymedeIV4 10 месяцев назад "Saturn Certified ASC" Doesn't make sense there; Aric.
  • Aric Snyder
    Aric Snyder 10 месяцев назад (изменено) ganymedeIV4 Saturn techs were sent to Spring Hill paid by dealers to ✌️Saturn Certified techs ✌️ASE IS Automotive Service Excellence.. I'm sorry typo with C
  • Maker Archive
    Maker Archive 10 месяцев назад (изменено) i'm pretty sure ganymedeIV4 never owned a saturn. The only people who talk so much shit about saturns are usually people whom never owned one.
  • Big D Fitness
    Big D Fitness 10 месяцев назад Maker Archive I know what you mean. I used to trash talk Saturns, but now that I've owned one for 3 years that I only paid $1,300 for, I gotta say that they are pretty solid cars. I just wish my SL2 had disk brakes in the rear.
  • Big D Fitness
    Big D Fitness 10 месяцев назад (изменено) Aric Snyder only downside is, almost nobody makes aftermarket parts for them. All I have found is some decent brakes from EBC and a set of coilovers from AMR Engineering... I have considered the idea of swapping a K20/K24 into my SL2, but the amount of custom work that would be involved just gives me a headache thinking about it. But something with over 200whp and under 2400lbs really peaks my interest 🤔
  • Big D Fitness
    Big D Fitness 10 месяцев назад Syd Moran 3,000 is a little excessive. I change it every 5,000-6,000 miles with Mobil One full synthetic.
  • jude telesz
    jude telesz 10 месяцев назад Nolan Is Innocent both
  • Whats the frequency Kenneth
    Whats the frequency Kenneth 10 месяцев назад Idiot.
  • EleMP EleMP
    EleMP EleMP 10 месяцев назад As an SL2 owner.... I completely agree
  • Drakulian Thomasson
    Drakulian Thomasson 10 месяцев назад David McKirchy, yes Saturns were easier to push out of the snow, they got stuck easier in the snow due to their light weight and they handled for shit on Minnesota roads in the winter. [see earlier Tupperware comments as reference]
  • Drakulian Thomasson
    Drakulian Thomasson 10 месяцев назад Maker Archive, I personally owned two Saturn cars brand new, a 1995 SL1 and a 1997 SC2, and both were complete piles of cheap plastic shit. Worst cars by far I ever personally owned, especially new.
  • Whats the frequency Kenneth
    Whats the frequency Kenneth 10 месяцев назад Yeah, no. They handle fine in the winter.
  • I made this username really long on purpose
    I made this username really long on purpose 10 месяцев назад tupperware = innovative, recognized name brand
  • Drakulian Thomasson
    Drakulian Thomasson 10 месяцев назад Whats the frequency Kenneth, yeah no, they handle for shit in the winter.
  • Whats the frequency Kenneth
    Whats the frequency Kenneth 10 месяцев назад @Drak Thomasson, yeah no, you don't know what the fuck you're talking about. I've owned them for over 25 years, and driven them in Colorado for most of those.
  • guitarplayergeek
    guitarplayergeek 9 месяцев назад Lot's of plastic.yes. The driving EXPERIENCE(at the time) in my 94 sl2 was always spirited. It wasn't a speed demon , but it was fun to drive. Really fun. Power matched handling. You always knew where the car was gonna go. Sold mine with well over 500k miles and only 800 bucks in needed repairs.
  • potatochobit
    potatochobit 9 месяцев назад long lasting tupperware that you can microwave, good for any occasion. at least, the original models.
  • Al Butcher
    Al Butcher 7 месяцев назад That Tupperware was solid at 130mph though.
  • Al Butcher
    Al Butcher 7 месяцев назад They really aren't. Saturn went out of business in 2009. By 2015, the Equinox had nothing in common with a Saturn. and the Altima is made by Nissan and they have no common parts with a GM car.
  • Cracked Emerald
    Cracked Emerald 6 месяцев назад @DaSovietPotato "but at least everything brokw at the same time" That's too funny
  • tom johns
    tom johns 5 месяцев назад curtis=my saturn had 324,876 miles before i sold it===!
  • Samantha Franke
    Samantha Franke 5 месяцев назад Except tupperware is still in business lol
  • krayzie191
    krayzie191 5 месяцев назад i had a 1996 Saturn SL with the single cam engine. it rattled so much and the interior smelled weird haha
  • Tylenol PM
    Tylenol PM 5 месяцев назад my friend drives.an.07 io and it was weird
  • Tylenol PM
    Tylenol PM 5 месяцев назад the instrument panel is.in.the middle of the dash not in.front of.the driver
  • Callum Castle
    Callum Castle 4 месяца назад Curtis Campbell nnnkkmj. N
  • Frank Patek
    Frank Patek 3 месяца назад Agreed
  • Carlton Harris
    Carlton Harris 3 месяца назад go kart with doors lol
  • Thetruth Thelife
    Thetruth Thelife 3 месяца назад Big D Fitness 5w 30??
  • Crusty Sock
    Crusty Sock 2 месяца назад Степан Лукашин it’ll tun longer than just about anything
  • colin schlicker
    colin schlicker 2 месяца назад I have decals on my SW2 that say "body by TupperWare"
  • Commodorefan64
    Commodorefan64 2 месяца назад (изменено) My ex had a 99 blue 4 door Saturm SL1, and I've never heard it put that like that, but that's a good way to describe it. Although outside of some redneck in a lifted Ford F-150 backing up over her hood in a Walmart parking lot, and regular maintenance we had very little issues with the thing, but it was just a basic car that went from point A to point B, and back, nothing special that by that point did not warrant GM needing a different company to sell the cars.
  • jdslyman
    jdslyman 2 месяца назад @colin schlicker LOL! Old GM- "Body by Fisher", Saturn- "Body by Tupperware"😂
  • The PinCushionMan
    The PinCushionMan 2 месяца назад Best race car ever! After the e46 and e36.
  • ryan hall
    ryan hall 2 месяца назад Drive a 98 Saturn sw2 manual transmission love the car wish I could get a new one now sucks that they don't make them
  • Edward Martinez
    Edward Martinez 2 месяца назад @Chouun Shiryu A new car gm made it was junk .
  • Edward Martinez
    Edward Martinez 2 месяца назад @Why Justin Y. That's good you can play music while you wait for the tow truck.
  • Why Justin Y.
    Why Justin Y. 2 месяца назад @Edward Martinez Funny, but the Saturn is the most reliable vehicle I've owned; but I guess that was before that started building them to break down. Mines a 2005
  • Robert Bell
    Robert Bell 2 месяца назад My kid had a 1995 SL2 boy that thing was built cheap. Leaked oil like crazy too from the rear main seal.
  • Dr. Elvis H. Christ
    Dr. Elvis H. Christ 2 месяца назад Not driving plastic cars.
  • sand0decker
    sand0decker 2 месяца назад @André Fontes I drive a Saturn and you are right. The only upside to driving a Saturn over a Japanese car in North America is that they are more reliable and easier to fix than other North American cars and the parts are cheaper than Japanese cars. If you do your own repairs. Mileage, the Ion really aren't bad
  • HeartofTacoma
    HeartofTacoma 2 месяца назад There's just so much more options out there for the same, if not lower price. Saturn is garbage. Change my mind.
  • Razeru
    Razeru 3 недели назад HeartofTacoma man the Vue 2007 and older have a factory 250 hp Honda motor and transmission, on the same light plastic panel car. Those cars are some crazy sleepers, they are really really fast for they looks, and hey Honda reliability
  • mocking intercessor
    mocking intercessor 10 месяцев назад I've got a 1996 that still runs like new. It's a race to see which of us lives longer
  • pollyisagoodbird
    pollyisagoodbird 7 месяцев назад I've got an '04 with only 70k on it, but so many structural issues since the previous owner failed to care for it, so the underside is a Frankenstein monster. At least there's no rust on the body, though!
  • Amatheo Gonzalez
    Amatheo Gonzalez 7 месяцев назад I have a 97 sl1 that still runs like New. Saturn really was a good company
  • Salvador
    Salvador 7 месяцев назад Amatheo Gonzalez yeah, l bought Saturn in 2004 and still runs like new too, 170k and run fast never change any piece in the motor. Saturn is a very good car.
  • Jsalrulz
    Jsalrulz 6 месяцев назад I'm rooting for you.
  • eclecticmn
    eclecticmn 6 месяцев назад My first Satrun was a 96 SL2, bought used in 2010. I finally am getting rid of it. I loved it. I now drive a 2002 SC2 with only 250K miles on it. Love that car too. Easy to work on and simple. My son has a 2008 Dodge Avenger that you have to remove the tire to change thr battery. POS.
  • Nathan Biggs
    Nathan Biggs 5 месяцев назад (изменено) Mocking intercessor when you die I'll take your still running Saturn :p
  • carl l
    carl l 2 месяца назад My money is on the car. Sorry bud
  • David Chase
    David Chase 2 месяца назад I put 250 plus thousand miles on my 96 and I sold it for 650 bucks. It was just starting to show signs of needing auto transmission work done. I never had to do major work on that car. the most reliable car I ever owned and I owned a lot of shit cars. Best shit car Saturn S series.
  • Green Phantom
    Green Phantom 1 месяц назад mocking intercessor yeah but my bicycle is faster.
  • Green Phantom
    Green Phantom 1 месяц назад pollyisagoodbird because it’s made out of Tupperware
  • mpotokar7
    mpotokar7 2 недели назад @eclecticmn you bought your first car in 2010 and your son has a car by 2018?
  • Jacob Hall
    Jacob Hall Неделю назад My 2003 has 205k miles on it and still drives like new
  • Alex Duke
    Alex Duke Неделю назад Lol those old Saturns are tanks no matter what anyone says.. This is completely unrelated but. I've got a 2001 Ford explorer sport Trac with 313,000 on it and it's still going strong I think it came from up North though the body mounts are rusted out so it's pretty much just sitting on the frame... Had to replace the rear swing shackles bc one was rusted through and the other gave out when I was jacking it up, aanndd the fuel tank had a few pin holes develop in it lol I've done all the work myself so I only have like 200 in parts... I'm a Chevy guy but damn. I'm impressed! i got a deal on it I couldn't pass up.. Factory flip down TV in the back with a VCR hahaha the kids sure enjoy the old Disney movies riding around!
  • guitarplayergeek
    guitarplayergeek 9 месяцев назад (изменено) They didn't make money because the cars were too reliable. I had a Green 94 sl2. The odometer died at 332K miles, but I drove it for 3-4 years beyond that. The engine easily had over 500k on it. The only repair I ever did was an alternator and the timing chain. $800 at the dealer. Loved that car. Florida to Boston(and back) 4x a year for well over 15 years. Sold it to a desperate friend for $50. Wish car companies could be more unique and distinguishable. Cars are becoming more and more disposable. Average owner keeps it for three years then "trade up", passing upcoming burden's on to the next owner. Saturn was a good company in the beginning but profit margins always win...Sad!
  • Scott Ashley
    Scott Ashley 8 месяцев назад It's great to hear your story of longevity. I'm a loyal Saturn s car owner, driving a 2002 that has 235k miles on it... so far.
  • BMoney8600
    BMoney8600 8 месяцев назад Scott Ashley my father owned a white Saturn L300 and a Saturn Outlook I loved both of them because they looked different from every other car on the road. My aunt owned a black Saturn Ion and I loved it. It's a real shame that most cars are beginning to look similar to one another.
  • Scott Ashley
    Scott Ashley 8 месяцев назад +
  • —TheManInDboX —
    —TheManInDboX — 7 месяцев назад This isn't true, because if it were and reliablilty killed Saturn explain Toyota and Honda who outsell any American company every year.. What killed Saturn was simple.. those who loved GM bought a Saturn expecting a GM and getting a GM in import thinking.. These cars were inexpensive and built well.. when the second generation came around the typical import buyer bought into it, later finding out it was just a rebadged GM which fell apart and then no one bought another one..
  • guitarplayergeek
    guitarplayergeek 7 месяцев назад I kindly disagree. I have owned Accords, a Civic, and a Tercel. None of them came close to the 332k mark. They could have but it would cost me way more than $800 to get there. When a car is as reliable as the Saturn SL2 was, there is no reason to buy a new one. In the time it took me to get to 500k in the Saturn, I would have burned through a couple Toyotas...