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 — Power Train: Automatic Transmission Problems

2003 Saturn Vue (Page 5 of 10)

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,313 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.

2003 Saturn Vue transmission problems

transmission problem

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2003 Saturn Vue Owner Comments (Page 5 of 10)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #120

Sep 202003

Vue

  • 10,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I purchased my new 2003 Saturn Vue from york pa Saturn (sutliff group) and they have patched up my 2003 Vue by replacing valves, sensors etc. On the vti transmission/transaxles 5 or 6 different times, which they well know will not fix the problem. I still experience transmission failure during extended periods of driving or times of traffic stop situations. I have experienced transmission problems from the 10,000 mile point on until this time. Does not shift properly into higher gear, still makes grinding noises while turning and accelerating and otherwise fails to operate properly. Transmission was looked at by dealer 5 times avoiding the issue of transmission replacement. Several close calls have invoked me to start a major campaign against the Saturn Corp. ! all I ask is for Saturn to replace my faulty drive train (engine and transmission) free of all labor and parts with the new type drive train that is in the new 2008-09 Vue or replace with a new vehicle!!! its that simple Saturn! and until this happens this transmittal will continue on to websites, public posts, flyers, in front of Saturn dealers etc. Etc... ps. I have posted this warning on every new car buyers site just to warn prospective buyers of the failed responsibility of Saturn and GM. Also I have copied just about every person and business that has exposure to intersections shopping malls etc. So tell all your friends, working colleagues, etc. Get the word out about Saturn.

- Littlestown, PA, USA

problem #119

Feb 112009

Vue

  • 102,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Saturn Vue. While driving approximately 45 mph, the transmission failed without warning. The engine still managed to function properly. Roadside assistance was called and the vehicle was towed to an authorized dealer for diagnostic testing. The failure was contributed to the transmission and the technician recommended that it be replaced. The vehicle is currently inoperable and has not been repaired. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were 102,000.

- Tuckerton, NJ, USA

problem #118

Jun 052009

Vue

  • 80,000 miles
I had driven my 2003 Saturn Vue to work the previous night with no problems. Upon driving it the next morning, in busy traffic, it would not transfer out of first gear easily. I practically had to press the gas pedal all the way to the floor to even get it up to 30 mph. I have not had the problem diagnosed but have had quotes if it is the transmission and it is totally ridiculous that we as consumers have to pay more for someone's bad judgment on transmissions. I have read many forums where the complaints are numerous on the Saturn transmissions and now as consumers we are up the creek without a paddle now that GM has filed bankruptcy. This is a safety issue and should of been addressed before bankruptcy before not only are the consumer's wallets empty but the risk increases for our safety as well as others.

- Reston, VA, USA

problem #117

May 262009

Vue

  • 89,405 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I have a 2003 Saturn Vue and the transmission went on May 5 went to the shop to be repaired on May 20 got vehicle back on the 23 and on May 25 the transmission went again took it back to Saturn of albany N.Y. and they told me it was the catalytic converter picked it up on May 27 got about 5 miles away from Saturn tried to cross a 4 lane intersection and vehicle would barely move due to transmission problems again it is a good thing there was very little traffic.

- Palatine Bridge , NY, USA

problem #116

May 102009

Vue

  • 105,000 miles
I am the second owner of a 2003 Saturn Vue. I purchased this car in June of 2008 because I knew Saturn had a good reputation and made very reliable and safe cars. On May 10, 2009 my husband, myself, and our 2 year old daughter were leaving a gas station parking lot. My husband put the car in drive and pulled out into the road to begin our trip home. As he pulled out into the road and pressed the gas the car's rpms revved up but the car did not move. We checked to see if one of us had accidentally hit it into neutral, but it was in fact in drive. We had enough force to coast back into another entrance of the gas station parking lot and get out of the road before being hit. The vehicle would not move at all (not in drive or reverse). We had it towed to a transmission shop. They sent it to a local Saturn dealer. The Saturn dealer contacted us and said indeed the transmission had failed. Saturn gave us a quote for repairs which we cannot afford to pay. We were told we would also get a discount as this vti transmission was now the cause of a class action lawsuit. Even if we could afford it, the faulty vti transmission can only be replaced with another faulty vti transmission which could go out at any time with absolutely no warning. Fortunately when our transmission did go out we were safe. However we have a 2 year old daughter and are expecting our second child in a few weeks and it is absolutely unsafe for us to put ourselves, and especially not our children, in such a situation. It is a tragedy waiting to happen. We have contacted local Saturn reps, district reps, and Saturn assistance. All are unwilling to help in any way. The local Saturn representative told us he would not buy the car himself and that the dealership would not even want to purchase it from us if we fixed it. They know it is unsafe and still they will not help. We are left with a parked car in our yard that we still owe $5000 on. We do not feel it is safe enough put our children in or anyone else.

- Lexington, SC, USA

problem #115

Sep 272006

Vue

  • 75,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Saturn Vue. The contact bought the vehicle with 55,000 miles. At 75,000 miles, the transmission had to be replaced. The vehicle would not move when in right gear. The vehicle was towed to the Saturn dealer and they replaced the transmission with a new one, which included a 18,000 mile/one year warranty. On a separate occasion, while driving at an unknown speed uphill, the vehicle failed to accelerate. The contact depressed the brake pedal, but after a few minutes, she released the pedal and allowed the vehicle to slide back into a driveway. The vehicle was towed to a private auto body shop. The mechanic searched for a new transmission. The dealer stated that the transmission failed again. The dealer stated that they will install a new transmission at the contact's expense with the same warranty. The vehicle is still at the auto body shop being repaired. The failure mileage was 75,000 and current mileage was 124,000.

- Highland, NY, USA

problem #114

May 032009

Vue

  • 89,250 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

First I had to replace three of four wheel bearings on the vehicle in June of 2006 four months after I got the vehicle. Then just two months ago a sway bar link broke and broke a strut so I had to replace them. Now I am stuck with a 2003 Saturn Vue in my driveway still paying for it with a bad transmission. Everything was going good after the struts I thought I had it all fixed but then my girlfriend went to leave the driveway and there is no reverse in the vehicle.

- Palatine Bridge, NY, USA

problem #113

May 012009

Vue

  • 137,000 miles
2003 Saturn Vue w/ vti purchased July 30, 2003. Reported problems with transmission to dealer on 12/14/05. Dealer replaced original transmission at that time. Mileage was 59,721 at time transmission was replaced. On 5/1/09 when exiting the freeway, the engine started to shudder and jerk as if not getting power. I was able to pull into a parking lot and put the car in park. When I tried to put the car back into gear, it would no longer engage the drive or rear gears. After having the car towed and checked out, I have been advised must get a new transmission. This current transmission only has 78,000 miles on it.

- Reno, NV, USA

problem #112

Mar 302009

Vue

  • 76,909 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Saturn Vue. The contact stated that the transmission fails to slip into gear. The dealer stated that there were no failures with the vehicle. A mechanic examined the vehicle and stated that the dealer should perform the repairs. The failure mileage was 76,909 and current mileage was 77,900.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #111

Apr 092009

Vue

  • 13,000 miles
Own a 2003 Saturn Vue and have had nothing but problems with the transmission. We took it in for a recall in 2005 and they claimed they fixed it. A year later we had to take it back in to have the same problem fixed and paid for it since it was not under warranty. Currently we are unable to drive the Vue due to the same problem the trans is completely out and Saturn will not replace it, instead they want $9000 to repair the trans. The only sympathy we get is "oh 2003 Vues have bad trans in them". so we are now stuck with a car that does not run in our driveway wondering what to do with it. Every auto shop we take it to does not want to fix it because of the type of trans that it is or they tell us we have to take it to the dealer because it is "dealer trademarked" for the parts. I used to love Saturn and tell everyone they were the best and I will always own and buy Saturn products. Since all the problems and the lack of help from Saturn I no longer talk them up, but tell everyone I know to never buy Saturn because you will get junk and they will not help you in anyway.

- Dearborn Heights, MI, USA

problem #110

Apr 142009

Vue

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

This is a continuation of the complaint that I filed yesterday (# 10265132). I am the guy who lives in las vegas. I got my car back from Saturn last Thursday with a brand new transmission in it. When I started my car and was about to leave the dealership I heard a grinding noise that was never present before so I told Saturn to take it back and fix it again. They were not able to hear the sound and gave the car back to me the next day (Friday 04/10/09). I drove the car home (about 4 miles) and did not drive it until I went to work on Monday (04/13/09). Work is 15 miles away. When I left work I was sitting at a stop light with my car in drive and my foot on the brake only! without warning the car lunged forward like as if I were to push the gas pedal all the way to the floor. I was inches from hitting the car in front of me. I put the car into neutral and the engine temp went dead cold. Then I put it back into drive and the temp when back to where it was before. This happened once more before the light turned green. I got on the freeway and my car did not feel right (very sluggish). I had to push the gas pedal about 3/4 of the way to the floor for the car to move more than just a little. The engine noise was back even louder than before. I made it to the dealer but they were closed for the day so I left my car over night. The next day my wife dropped me off at the dealership. I needed to pull my car into the service bay so I started my car but just turning the key but not pressing on the gas pedal and the engine revved to over 3000 RPM. I put the car in reverse and the car did not move. I noticed that my daytime running lights were flashing. The more gas I gave the car the faster the daytime lights would flash on and off. The Saturn mechanic test drove my car and used some instrument plugged under the dash. He came back from the drive and told me that it was my transmission again! this is my 4th transmission in the last 1 1/2 year.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #109

Apr 102009

Vue

  • miles
I own a 2003 Saturn Vue that I bought new from the dealer in October of 2002. I just got my car back from the dealer last Friday with the 3rd transmission that has been installed in the car in the last 1 1/2 years. This is due to the issue that everyone has been reporting with the vti transmissions. Since the car is on it's 4th transmission (I am counting the one that came with it when I got it new) I am concerned that I will be out of luck when my mileage reaches 100,000 miles. Saturn said they would not cover any issues with the transmission after 100,000 miles even though I bought the car new. I was left stranded the 1st time, my wife and 3 kids were stranded the 2nd time (we live in las vegas and this was in the summer when it was about 115 degrees). The last time (this last week) the service engine light soon came on and I was able to get to the dealership before I broke down. You can image how happy I was when I found out that the reason for the service light was my transmission! I am honestly very easy on this car, I have never floored it or driven at really high RPM's. I want this on record so that when the day comes (and I believe that it will) when Saturn completely turns it back on me and I have to sue them in order to get my car fixed that I am a good car owner (as I am sure most of you are) who took really good care of my car and only had it serviced at the dealer. Saturn should make this right and fix these transmissions. Why am I now on my 4th transmission? why did they not fix this issue. I really hope that someone from the NHTSA investigates this issue!

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #108

Apr 082009

Vue

  • 75,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Saturn Vue. While driving less than 45 mph, the vehicle stalled. The contact was able to restart the vehicle and depressed the accelerator pedal, but the vehicle failed to respond. There were no warning indicators illuminated on the instrument panel. The manufacturer could not assist because there were no recalls listed for the failure. The contact found numerous complaints online that were similar to her failure. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were less than 75,000.

- Woodstock, GA, USA

problem #107

Mar 212003

Vue

  • 10,000 miles
I purchased my new 2003 Saturn Vue from york pa Saturn (sutliff group) and they have patched up my 2003 Vue by replacing valves, sensors etc. On the vti transmission/transaxles 5 or 6 different times, which they well know will not fix the problem. I still experience transmission failure during extended periods of driving or times of traffic stop situations. I have experienced transmission problems from the 10,000 mile point on until this time. Does not shift properly into higher gear, still makes grinding noises while turning and accelerating and otherwise fails to operate properly. Transmission was looked at by dealer 5 times avoiding the issue of transmission replacement. Several close calls have invoked me to start a major campaign against the Saturn Corp. Saturn is now being decided in the court system (cas) the final decision should be in the next few weeks so keep checking back on this and other sites that attract lemon vehicles! all I ask is for GM/Saturn to replace my faulty drive train (engine and transmission) free of all labor and parts with the new type drive train that is in the new 2007-08 Vue or replace with a new vehicle!!! its that simple Saturn! and until this happens this transmittal will continue on to websites, public posts, flyers, in front of Saturn dealers etc. Etc... ps. I have copied just about every person and business that has exposure to intersections shopping malls etc. So tell all your friends, working colleagues, etc. Get the word out about GM/Saturn.

- Littlestown, PA, USA

problem #106

Feb 132003

Vue

  • 10,000 miles
I purchased my new 2003 Saturn Vue from york pa Saturn (sutliff group) and they have patched up my 2003 Vue by replacing valves, sensors etc. On the vti transmission/transaxle 4 or 5 different times, which they well know will not fix the problem. I still experience transmission failure during extended periods of driving or times of traffic jam situations. I have experienced transmission problems from the 10,000 mile point transmission was looked at by dealer 5 times avoiding the issue of transmission replacement. Several close calls have invoked me to start a major campaign against the Saturn Corp. GM/Saturn needs to have a replacement transmission - consumers can't afford all of these repairs for what is clearly a faulty transmission that has been discontinued! note to every owner of these Saturn Vues? a decision on the existing class action suit will be made next month! at the very least owners may get a few dollars back for all the hassle we have been through. I am continuing my quest to have GM reimburse me in full for the cost of my vehicle (new cost) or a 2009 Vue to replace mine. I suggest all other consumers of the faulty 02-03 Vue and have these same problems to tell all your friends, working colleagues, etc. Get the word out about GM / Saturn GM wonders why they are in the situation they are in financially now well this is just part of the reason for there downfall!

- Littlestown, PA, USA

problem #105

Dec 042008

Vue

  • 95,000 miles
I have bought a 2003 Saturn Vue from ebay on July the 3rd, 2008 and was delivered to me on the 21st of July, when I received the vehicle it had a grinding noise, I did not know what that was until it broke down, the vehicle had no warning of this problem. I had a mechanic to look at it and stated it was a transmission failure vehicle VIN # 2.2 liter with a cvt-I transmission which can only be purchased by the manufacturer can not be rebuilt with an outrageous price the vehicle has 95,000 miles on which no longer has warranty. As I was driving the vehicle which no sign of prior problem started to make a knocking and grinding noise as the vehicle was struggling upon the hill, I pulled over to safety on the side of the road prior to the stop. The engine was still running but the vehicle would not move. Someone helped me push it to the side and stated there may be a transmission problem with it. I got it towed to aamco where the mechanic confirm that this transmission was hard to find only through its manufacturer and the cost of $4,000. Now, I am unemployed, single mother how could something like this be possible to top it off an additional $2500 service charge that vehicle is a piece of trash I need help. The warranty is only to 75K miles on it. Please help me get some type of satisfaction to a running vehicle to help me find a job.

- Fredericksburg, VA, USA

problem #104

Nov 202008

Vue

  • 95,000 miles
Saturn Vue 2003 transmission cvt transaxle 2.2 motor trans. Quit with no warning luck being I was not in heavy traffic is there a recall on this year please help!

- Fortworth, TX, USA

problem #103

Nov 122008

Vue

  • 100,800 miles
Transmission/axle failed suddenly. Driving at 65mph on interstate at night when car suddenly quit moving as if it went into neutral. Engine continued to run but car would not move. Coasted to a stop on interstate after nearly getting hit several times. State trooper came by and car was towed away. I had 4 year child in car and our safety, and others, was in doubt because of this sudden failure. Saturn said transaxle was bad and repair is over $5000! but cannot get a new one or parts since GM has quit making the transaxle! this is same model that had an extended warranty on transaxle because of numerous complaints on transaxle that I was not notified of. Saturn will not repair or anything because car is over 6 years old. Same car that had numerous complaints on rear wheel bearings that I had replaced that Saturn wouldn't repair. Also never received recall notices of something with the rear axle or any notices after I purchased car new. Car is unsafe to drive on highway and GM won't repair it because the transaxle is defective. Car is a 2003 Saturn Vue.

- Prattville, AL, USA

problem #102

Oct 192008

Vue

  • 73,298 miles
The car was running fine with no issues for the past 2 years. My pregnant wife was driving me to work on Sunday October 19th with my 2 year old daughter in the rear seat of the car. We stopped at a stop light, when she hit the gas to go once the light turned green the car traveled about 30 feet without a problem, then with no warning the car stopped and the engine revved, we were almost rear ended by the line of cars behind us. And me and my family were left sitting in the middle of the intersection during rush hour. I had to get out of the car and push it to the side of the road. I feel this is a very unsafe problem. I brought the car to Saturn dealership, they are willing to replace the transmission with a rebuilt unit with the vti. I am concerned that these transmission are so unreliable that the next time this issue happens my family or myself may be hurt.

- East Syracuse, NY, USA

problem #101

Mar 262004

Vue

  • 10,000 miles
I purchased my new 2003 Saturn Vue from york pa Saturn (sutliff group) and they have patched up my 2003 Vue by replacing valves, sensors etc. On the vti transmission/transaxles 4 or 5 different times, which they well know will not fix the problem. I still experience transmission failure during extended periods of driving or times of traffic jam situations. I have experienced transmission problems from the 10,000 mile point on until this time. Does not shift properly into higher gear, still makes grinding noises while turning and accelerating and otherwise fails to operate properly. Transmission was looked at by dealer 5 times avoiding the issue of transmission replacement. Several close calls have invoked me to start a major campaign against the Saturn Corp. Saturn needs to have a replacement transmission - consumers can't afford all of these repairs for what is clearly a faulty transmission that has been discontinued! next step is class action suit by owners!!!! all I ask is for GM/Saturn to replace my faulty drive train (engine and transmission) free of all labor and parts with the new type drive train that is in the new 2007-08 Vue !!! its that simple Saturn! and until this happens this transmittal will continue on to websites, public posts, flyers, in front of Saturn dealers etc. Etc... ps. I have copied the consumer product safety, the government recall bureau, astm, and other sites to let them know of this hazard/safety problem. I suggest all other consumers of the faulty 02-03 Vue and have these same problems to tell all your friends, working colleagues, etc. Get the word out about Saturn.

- Littlestown, PA, USA

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