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Old 06-11-2014, 12:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Is this a good deal/good car? (1997 Saturn 5-speed - $950)

I don't know much about the saturns, but I found this on CL last night, texted the guy, and he still has it. IF it's as good as he says it is, what kind of mpg figures am I looking at with a little bit of modding?

1997 Saturn

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Old 06-11-2014, 02:34 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Great for mpg. In the right hands it can be worth as much as the civics. But, I hear there's a head gasket or oil burning problem with some of them. Research that and double check this one first.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by PaleMelanesian View Post
Great for mpg. In the right hands it can be worth as much as the civics. But, I hear there's a head gasket or oil burning problem with some of them. Research that and double check this one first.
Will do. I'm going to offer 700 to the guy and see if he takes it, I plan on driving it around for at least 20 minutes, if there is an oil burning or head gasket problem I should notice it within that time frame.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Looks like a decent deal depending on the miles on it. I've been looking for a 'new' car lately too and the S-series Saturns were definitely on my list of cars to look at that get good mileage. They get great mileage. There is some info on them in my thread here:

http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...0-a-29156.html

I'm secretly a little disappointed I didn't find one, but I couldn't pass up the deal I got.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:22 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Looks like a decent deal depending on the miles on it. I've been looking for a 'new' car lately too and the S-series Saturns were definitely on my list of cars to look at that get good mileage. They get great mileage. There is some info on them in my thread here:

http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...0-a-29156.html

I'm secretly a little disappointed I didn't find one, but I couldn't pass up the deal I got.
Yea the deal you got is really, really good. And I don't really care about mileage tbh. As long as it's under 400k and it's manual I'm cool with it. Especially for 700$.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baltothewolf View Post
I don't know much about the saturns, but I found this on CL last night, texted the guy, and he still has it. IF it's as good as he says it is, what kind of mpg figures am I looking at with a little bit of modding?

1997 Saturn
Looks like a decent deal depending on mileage and condition.

Saturns tend to use oil (no puddles or smoke, but will go through a quart every 3000-4000 miles) but are otherwise durable little cars. Just keep the oil topped off or you will be buying a new engine.

Not much info in the ad, but the aluminum wheels and spoiler lead me to believe it's an SL2 instead of an SL1. (Also may have painted mirrors and door handles, it's hard to tell in the pics). The SL2 has more power and dual overhead cams, but is less efficient.

.gov says you should get 23/33 mpg.. An SL1 would be 24/36 mpg.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:50 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darcane View Post
Looks like a decent deal depending on mileage and condition.

Saturns tend to use oil (no puddles or smoke, but will go through a quart every 3000-4000 miles) but are otherwise durable little cars. Just keep the oil topped off or you will be buying a new engine.

Not much info in the ad, but the aluminum wheels and spoiler lead me to believe it's an SL2 instead of an SL1. (Also may have painted mirrors and door handles, it's hard to tell in the pics). The SL2 has more power and dual overhead cams, but is less efficient.

.gov says you should get 23/33 mpg.. An SL1 would be 24/36 mpg.
Well I'm not in any hurry to get a car, so if it is the SL2 I'll just walk away. I already went and looked at a couple that turned out to be and SL2, so I just thanked the gentlemen for their time and walked away.
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Old 06-11-2014, 03:55 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Keep feeding it oil and it will keep on running. Most important when buying a used Saturn is how it was treated by the previous owner. If you ever look at one and the owner says that it doesn't burn oil; run because it's probably a time bomb. ALL S-series Saturns burn oil unless they have been rebuilt and had upgraded pistons installed or had the factory ones modded for better oil control. Mine burns about 2.5quarts in 3,000 miles which is why my OCI is whenever I find time after I hit 5,000.

Agreed that it's probably a DOHC (like mine) which puts you at a MPG disadvantage but they still do well. I swear when I first got my car at 145K I got 38mpg doing 70mph. Now I have to drive 60mph with over inflated tires to get just north of 40mpg. Oh well, another 100k in the clock will do that I guess lol.

Also, the SOHC were famous for cracking heads. No one can find a reason for it but it seems some crack and some don't. The mpg advantage may come at a price if you are one of the unlucky ones
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Old 06-11-2014, 04:32 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I found one with a cracked head for 500 actually
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Sounds like a pretty decent deal depending on how many miles are on the clock. Every Saturn dohc I've ever looked at burned oil as well. Not really a huge deal as long as you make sure to check occasionally and top off as needed.

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