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Old 05-20-2008, 11:42 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Saturn Aura rental

I got stuck in Dallas today so I rent a Saturn Aura (3.6l) to get home. It was a very comfortable ride. Had all the bells and whistles. About 15 minutes into it my seat get hot and I noticed that I accidentally turn the seat warmer on.

I left Dallas and the cars outside temperature gauge was showing 100 degrees with a NE wind of 10 kts. I set the AC at 83 degrees and using the manual paddle shifts for the auto transmission headed to Austin. This is an impressive car for FE being so heavy. I don't think the rpm ever got over 1700. At 60 mph the rpm was 1600. At 43 in 6th gear the rpm was 1100. and at 50 it was around 1250.

I think with some work this would make a great FE platform. I drove 228 miles and put 6.2 gallons in. That's just short of 37 mpg. This is probably pessimistic because they are never really full when you pick up a rental and they left it idling outside for 10 minutes to cool down as I was filling out the paper work. I think 40 would be do able if not just a gridlock commute.

I did get a little help from some NASCAR want-a-be's as looking into the rear view mirror.




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Old 05-21-2008, 10:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Nice writeup -- complete with pics of tailgaters!

BTW, what was your cruising speed and did you use technique? 37 blows away my usual 28-29 in this car (3.6). This was with the 4-speed auto. How did you like the 6-speed?

I've rented the Aura a few times and it felt like the steering was heavy and the brake pedal made creaking noises. Comfortable, though.

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Last edited by RH77; 05-21-2008 at 10:15 AM.. Reason: 6-speed requestion revised
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Old 05-21-2008, 10:56 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RH77 View Post
Nice writeup -- complete with pics of tailgaters!

BTW, what was your cruising speed and did you use technique? 37 blows away my usual 28-29 in this car (3.6). This was with the 4-speed auto. How did you like the 6-speed?

I've rented the Aura a few times and it felt like the steering was heavy and the brake pedal made creaking noises. Comfortable, though.

RH77
Yes you can tell it is bloated with features it really does not need. The whole thing felt sluggish but hey it a cruiser. The six speed really is awsome. I was crusing 60 mph at 1600 rpm. In traffic I was around 11-1200 rpm. It looks like 43 mph was the sweet spot(rpm wise) 1100 rpm. This was with the AC set at 83 degrees also. Who knows maybe the rent car place slammed it fuel of fuel messing up the results so take it with a grain of salt. I think being able to turn those kind of RPM at speed you just ought to be able to pull down some big numbers even for a 6 cylinder.
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Old 05-21-2008, 05:13 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazarus View Post
Yes you can tell it is bloated with features it really does not need. The whole thing felt sluggish but hey it a cruiser. The six speed really is awsome. I was crusing 60 mph at 1600 rpm. In traffic I was around 11-1200 rpm. It looks like 43 mph was the sweet spot(rpm wise) 1100 rpm. This was with the AC set at 83 degrees also. Who knows maybe the rent car place slammed it fuel of fuel messing up the results so take it with a grain of salt. I think being able to turn those kind of RPM at speed you just ought to be able to pull down some big numbers even for a 6 cylinder.
I'm glad to hear the 6-speed works well in the sedan. The Vue (small SUV) also has the same transmission and didn't work well in city driving.

The Malibu is the twin to the Aura. After the strike is over (both cars are assembled here in Kansas City), the 6-speed should be installed in the 4-cylinder, LTZ. So far they left it for V6's only, but really could help the city numbers with the additionally available gears.

This is HUGE for GM to try something other than the old 4-speed auto -- which was the only option for most cars.

But you're right -- they have it figured out to drop RPMs at cruise, which is a good for any engine size.

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Old 05-21-2008, 05:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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This was a brilliant car, there is a reason it was the car of the rear. nice to see you blew away the fuel mileage!
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Old 05-28-2008, 05:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I had a G6, which is the same platform as the Auro with the same motor and achieved 37 mpg on a trip from Detroit, MI to Canton, OH. I took some cell phone picks, but I don't know how to get them on the computer. Some great ones of trucks just LINED up in the middle lane passing me on a 6 lane interstate.
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Old 06-05-2008, 09:59 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Lazarus -

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lazarus View Post
I got stuck in Dallas today so I rent a Saturn Aura (3.6l) to get home. It was a very comfortable ride. Had all the bells and whistles. About 15 minutes into it my seat get hot and I noticed that I accidentally turn the seat warmer on.

I left Dallas and the cars outside temperature gauge was showing 100 degrees with a NE wind of 10 kts. I set the AC at 83 degrees and using the manual paddle shifts for the auto transmission headed to Austin. This is an impressive car for FE being so heavy. I don't think the rpm ever got over 1700. At 60 mph the rpm was 1600. At 43 in 6th gear the rpm was 1100. and at 50 it was around 1250.

I think with some work this would make a great FE platform. I drove 228 miles and put 6.2 gallons in. That's just short of 37 mpg. This is probably pessimistic because they are never really full when you pick up a rental and they left it idling outside for 10 minutes to cool down as I was filling out the paper work. I think 40 would be do able if not just a gridlock commute.

...
It would be neat if this became a "standard" goodie over time. It seems the best compromise for auto-transmission drivers.

Since the Saturn Aura is the Opel Vectra in Europe, I suspect that the ECU/PCM has some thrifty driving modes.

It appears that the new Aura/Vectra will be very nice :

NEW: First clear pics of 2010 Opel Vectra/Saturn Aura - May 12, 2008
http://www.leftlanenews.com/opel-vec...ra-future.html

A CGI Rendering I think
Quote:
New spy shots have captured a 2008 Opel Vectra out testing in Europe in much lighter camouflage. The car is expected to makes its international debut at the Frankfurt Auto Show this September. The latest round of images provide much better idea as to what the next Opel Vectra/Saturn Aura will look like.
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Old 06-06-2008, 07:02 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfg83 View Post
Lazarus -



It would be neat if this became a "standard" goodie over time. It seems the best compromise for auto-transmission drivers.

Since the Saturn Aura is the Opel Vectra in Europe, I suspect that the ECU/PCM has some thrifty driving modes.

It appears that the new Aura/Vectra will be very nice :

NEW: First clear pics of 2010 Opel Vectra/Saturn Aura - May 12, 2008
http://www.leftlanenews.com/opel-vec...ra-future.html

A CGI Rendering I think


CarloSW2
I always wonder how these photos get out. I work with these camo'd vehicles everyday and if I were to take pictures I'd never see the light of day. You would think people would be to scared to let this happen.

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