2000 SL2 New Car Test Drive
Saturn's S-Series sedans, the SL, SL1 and SL2, are redesigned for 2000. Changes include a restyled exterior, an all-new interior, extensive updates to the electronics and a new anti-lock braking system.
But before making all these changes, Saturn says it listened closely to what its customers were saying they wanted. Since Saturn's launch just one decade ago, GM's newest division has focused on maintaining a close relationship with its customers. So when it came time to redesign its core product, the S-Series sedans, Saturn listened. Every time a change was considered, the company asked itself whether it would add value for the customer.
These cars do indeed offer value. Saturn has been winning accolades for high resale values and its cars are regarded for low maintenance and repair costs. Prices for the S-Series sedans range from $11,000 to $16,000. Buying one brings the owner into the Saturn family. You are treated well during the buying process; Saturn has been named best overall nameplate in sales satisfaction by the J.D. Power research firm for four consecutive years. But that's only the beginning. When it's time for service, you are welcomed back warmly. There are even picnics and other family gatherings.
The only thing diluting all this good value is that, in the past, the cars have been perceived to be unrefined. To address this, Saturn completely redesigned its S-Series engines for 1999 to make them smoother and quieter. Coupled with this year's refinements, the 2000 S-Series sedans have much to offer people who are seeking value and a pleasant ownership experience.
Saturn's S-series consists of a coupe, a sedan, and a wagon, all based on the same platform. Each body style is distinguished by a base model and a more-powerful model. It is useful to think of the number in the model designation as standing for the number of camshafts in the engine: The SL1 sedan comes with a single-cam engine (sohc), while the SL2 is powered by a more powerful twin-cam (dohc). It works the same way with the SC1 and SC2 coupes. The wagon, however, only comes as an SW2.
Saturn's sedan lineup consists of the $10,685 SL, $11,485 SL1, $12,895 SL2. An automatic transmission adds $860. Anti-lock brakes are $695.
Prices for options have risen and can drive up the SL's bottom line. A $1,480 Option Package 2 for the SL2 adds cruise control, power windows, power door locks, remote keyless entry and security system, dual power mirrors and aluminum alloy wheels. A similar package for the SL1 goes for $2,090. Air conditioning is standard on SL2, but adds $960 to the SL and SL1. Sunroofs, spoilers, CD stereos, fog lamps and leather drove our SL2 to $18,550.