The Saturn VUE is a compact SUV that was sold and built by Saturn, and it was Saturn's best-selling model. It was the first vehicle to use the GM Theta platform when it was introduced in 2001 for the 2002 model year. The VUE was later facelifted for the 2006 model year. A second generation model was launched in 2007 for the 2008 model year as a rebadged Opel Antara. The VUE production in North America ended as GM wound down the Saturn brand during its 2009 reorganization.
Saturn Corporation (2002-2007)|
Opel (General Motors) (2008-2010)
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||4-door SUV|
|Layout||Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive / all-wheel drive|
Isuzu Rodeo (Canada)|
Chevrolet Captiva Sport|
First generation (2002–2007)Edit
|Assembly||Spring Hill, Tennessee, United States (Spring Hill Manufacturing)|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||5-door SUV|
|Platform||GM Theta platform|
|Wheelbase||106.6 in (2,710 mm)|
|Length||181.3 in (4,610 mm)|
71.5 in (1,820 mm)|
Hybrid: 71.6 in (1,820 mm)
66.5 in (1,690 mm)|
Hybrid: 66.3 in (1,680 mm)
The Vue was introduced for the 2002 model year and was designed by Saturn. It was manufactured at the Spring Hill GM plant. Its unibody platform is shared with the Chevrolet Equinox, Pontiac Torrent and the European Opel Antara. The first generation ran from model year 2002-2007.
Four-cylinder VUE's use the Ecotec I4. The L81 V6 from the L-Series and five-speed Aisin AF33 automatic transmission were initially offered, but starting in 2004, all six-cylinder Vues were equipped with Honda's 250-horsepower (190 kW) J35A3 engine and a Honda transmission. The four-cylinder Vue was available with the VTi continuously variable transmission (CVT) until GM canceled it for 2005 due to dependability issues.
The VUE received a facelift for the 2006 model year. Upgrades included a redesigned interior with higher-quality materials, a new bumper and grille, and some minor cosmetic pieces to the exterior. OnStar is now standard as well as cruise control and automatic headlights. However, GM badges were not added to the side of the vehicle until GM took over production from Saturn for the second generation VUE.
Model year changesEdit
- The VUE Red Line was released
- V6 models received Honda's J35A3 engine and Honda transmission. This 3.5 liter engine and 5 speed transmission boosted performance over the prior V-6. It was an important selling point at the time. This V-6 engine was used in the Saturn VUE's 2004 to 2007 model years.
- 5- and 4-speed automatic transmissions return for 2005, and the CVT is dropped.
- All VUE's get a redesigned interior critique with new air vents, new steering wheel, and a new radio faceplate which contributes noise, vibration, and harshness.
- Facelift with new interior, cosmetic changes to the exterior.
Saturn introduced a special high-performance line of vehicles in 2004 under the name, "Red Line". The VUE Red Line includes the same 250 hp (186 kW) Honda J35A3 V6 as the regular model, but with sportier suspension tuning, lowered 1 inch, and unique power steering calibration for performance, 18 in alloy wheels, ground-effect front and rear bumpers, unique rocker panel trim, chrome exhaust tip, special black leather and suede seats (optional for 2005, standard for 2006 and 2007), footwell lighting (included with leather and suede seats package, not available with optional full-leather (heated front) seats), and a special gauge cluster complete the visual updates. It also includes some special interior features as well, such as a higher quality audio system.
The high-performance VUE Red Line was joined for 2007 by an environmentally oriented Green Line model. The Vue is a mild hybrid, or "assist hybrid", using what GM calls a "belt alternator starter" BAS Hybrid system. A large electric motor is connected to the crankshaft via a special accessory drive belt, with a modified automatic transmission fitted.
It automatically stops the engine when the vehicle comes to a halt and instantly restarts it when the vehicle must move again. Not to be confused as just a "start-stop" system, the electric motor also assists somewhat during initial launch, during torque smoothing and when under heavy acceleration. A 36-volt nickel metal hydride (NiMH) battery pack, located under the load floor, powers the motor/generator unit and also stores regenerative braking energy. The regenerative charging and electric motor assist functions are shown to the driver via an analog gauge on the dash board, and real-time fuel-economy feedback is accomplished via an "eco" light that glows when the instantaneous fuel economy is beating the window sticker fuel economy values.
The fuel savings are 20 percent up from the base vehicle's 22 mpg‑US (11 L/100 km)/27 mpg‑US (8.7 L/100 km) city/highway EPA sticker to 27 mpg‑US (8.7 L/100 km)/32 mpg‑US (7.4 L/100 km), the highest highway fuel economy of any 2007 model SUV sold in the US market. In Canada, according to Saturn, the Vue gets an estimated 8.8 L/100 km (32 mpg‑imp; 27 mpg‑US) city and 6.7 L/100 km (42 mpg‑imp; 35 mpg‑US) highway.
The Green Line has a 170 hp (127 kW) 2.4-liter Ecotec DOHC-phaser engine which replaces the standard 144-horsepower (107 kW) 2.2-liter inline-four engine, resulting in the improvement of 0–60 mph (0–97 km/h) acceleration time by 1.0 second. Pricing for the hybrid is about US$2,000 more than a similarly equipped Vue, and debuted in production form on January 8, 2006 at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The Green Line went on sale in the third quarter of 2006.
|2002–2007||2.2 L Ecotec L61 I4||143 hp (107 kW)||152 lb·ft (206 N·m)|
|2002–2003||3.0 L 54-Degree V6||181 hp (135 kW)||195 lb·ft (264 N·m)|
|2004–2007||3.5 L GM L66 (J35A3) V6||250 hp (186 kW)||242 lb·ft (328 N·m)|
|2007-2010||2.4 L Ecotec LE5 I4||170 hp (127 kW)||163 lb·ft (220 N·m)|
|2008-2010||3.6 L LY7 V6||257 hp (192 kW)||248 lb·ft (336 N·m)|
In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) crash tests the Vue receives a Good overall rating in the frontal offset crash test. In 2008 models came equipped with standard front and rear head side curtain airbags and front seat-mounted torso airbags. These models were given an acceptable overall rating in side impacts. Models without side airbags were given an overall poor rating.
Second generation (2008–2010)Edit
|Manufacturer||Opel (General Motors)|
Holden Captiva 5
GMC Terrain (Middle East)
Daewoo Winstorm MaXX
Chevrolet Captiva Sport
|Assembly||Ramos Arizpe, Mexico|
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||5-door SUV|
|Platform||GM Theta platform|
|Related||Chevrolet Captiva Sport|
Saturn introduced the second generation VUE in 2007 for the 2008 model year, manufactured in Mexico as a rebranded version of the German-designed Opel Antara. Saturn offered four trim levels: base "XE", classier, up-level "XR", top of the line sporty "Red Line" and a "Green Line" hybrid trim. Available engines include a 2.4L inline 4 cylinder, as well as 3.5L and a 3.6L V6 options. A hybrid powertrain version of the 2.4-liter model was also available. GM badges were now added to the front doors. The Mexican-manufactured VUE was also retailed in Mexico and South America as the Chevrolet Captiva Sport, with only badges changed and a new grille insert fitted.
Following the demise of the Saturn brand in 2009 for the 2010 model year, the VUE was discontinued. However, GM continued to produce the Chevrolet Captiva Sport, for the Mexican and South American markets. The Chevrolet Captiva Sport was introduced for the US commercial and fleet markets in late 2011 for the 2012 model year.
|Calendar Year||United States|
- "Saturn Vue Green Line Hybrid Delivers Great Fuel Economy Through New, Lower-Cost Hybrid System". General Motors press release. Archived from the original on February 3, 2006. Retrieved January 9, 2006.
- "2007 Saturn Vue Roadtest". Retrieved December 6, 2006.[permanent dead link]
- "Saturn Vue". Advertisement brochure. Canada: General Motors Corporation and General Motors of Canada Limited, 2006, p.21 of 32.
- "GM - GMability Advanced Technology: GM's Belt Alternator Starter... - www.gm.com/company/gmability/adv_tech/300_hybrids". 2003-11-11. Archived from the original on October 29, 2006. Retrieved 2007-06-14.
- 2007 model EPA Highway rating of 32 mpg.
- "Saturn Vue". Advertisement brochure. Canada: General Motors Corporation and General Motors of Canada Limited, 2006, p.8 of 32.
- "Saturn Vue". Iihs.org. Archived from the original on 2009-06-07. Retrieved 2009-05-21.
- Johnson, Kimberly; Krisher, Tom (1 October 2009). "GM to phase out Saturn division". The Boston Globe. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-03-12.
- Lassa, Todd (11 March 2011). "Chevy's Vue-Like Captiva Sport is for Fleets Only". Motor Trend. Source Interlink Media. Retrieved 2010-10-12.
- "mediaOnline". Media.gm.com. 2003-01-03. Archived from the original on April 23, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-21.
- "GM Media Online". Media.gm.com. 2006-01-04. Archived from the original on March 1, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-21.
- "GM Media Online". Media.gm.com. 2007-01-03. Archived from the original on April 23, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-21.
- "GM Media Online". Media.gm.com. 2009-01-05. Archived from the original on February 21, 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-21.
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