Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

NHTSA — Electrical System: Wiring: Interior/Under Dash Problems Notes: The 2005 Ion still had power steering issues and a defective ignition switch leftover from previous model years, but hey – at least Saturn improved some of its safety rating to marginal, right? Baby steps.

If you had to buy a Saturn Ion – and I would question why anyone would even consider it – I suppose the 2005 could be considered the best of a bad bunch? I mean, GM did finally get rid of that awful VTi transmission, and both the power steering problems and ignition switch defect that plagued owners were recalled. The problem is they waited 10 years to recall the ignition and let over 30,000 warranty claims get filed before they bothered to fix the power steering. So you kind of have to wonder, is GM making these fixes to keep owners safe or just to keep government lawyers from taking all their money? You be the judge.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
330 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Saturn Ion electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Saturn Ion Owner Comments

problem #3

Mar 112005


  • Automatic transmission
  • 500 miles


Consumer complained about electrical problems. While driving and looking at the dashboard all the gauges shined, indicating that nothing was operating normally. The gas gauge/ speedometer, and battery meter, etc.

- Valley Park, MO, USA

problem #2

Mar 112005

Ion 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 490 miles
All dash gauges failed, including gas gauge, speedometer, odometer, etc. On at least two separate occaisions. Car was two weeks old to the day. My son (the owner/lessee) was attempting to take it from his work to the dealer less than a half mile away for "advice" when he was involved in accident that probably didn't contribute to the accident. However, it's important to note that when I called the dealer and let them know the situation with the dash was the reason he was returning the car, the salesman then informed me that "oh, yeah, those cars sometimes have a software problem in them, and while we had to wait a while to get a "fix", we now have one." So if they knew there was a problem, why didn't they fix it during the "dealer prep" stage" or at least warn the consumer of this problem" we now have a 2 week old car with body damage and are awaiting word from our insurance on which body shop it should go to. But, in the meantime, we still have a car in need of a "software upgrade" even after it's fixed. I will be horrified to ever set foot in that car again, let alone know that this car is the primary transportation for my college-age son. The car has approx 500 miles on it now, less the mileage it had on it when we purchased it.

- Valley Park , MO, USA

problem #1

Jan 102005

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
Upon driving the indicator lights illuminated the dashboard. Consumer stated that the fuel gauge did not indicate how much gas was in the vehicle. The speedometer failed. Consumer contacted Saturn, they checked the vehicle three times but the problem recurred.

- Cobb Island, MD, USA

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