NHTSA — Electrical System: Battery Problems

CarComplaints.com Seal Of This Might Hurt

CarComplaints.com Notes: Ahh, the 2004 Saturn Ion: defective transmission, deadly ignition switch, temperamental power steering and a cheap plastic exterior that won’t protect you in a crash. What more could you want?

The 2004 Ion was part of GM’s massive ignition switch recall where it was revealed they waited 10 years – and let 13 people die – before doing anything about it. It also features GM’s now infamous VTi continuously variable transmission. Let me tell you, the only thing the VTi did continuously was fail on its owners. GM scrapped it after only two model years.


fairly significant
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
16,667 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.

2004 Saturn Ion electrical problems

electrical problem

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2004 Saturn Ion Owner Comments

problem #3

Mar 172008

Ion 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles


On several occassion while it has been cold out, my vehicle would not start. As a matter of fact the vehicle would not even attempt to roll over. The only way I could seem to resolve the situation was by "jump starting" my Saturn with another vehicle. This has happened so many times in the winter that I finally got sick of it and parked the Saturn and drove a different vehicle. I am so sick of my car that I am ready to sell it. I recently found out about this site. After reading the first 20 some results and seen that everyone was having the same issue I was. I can not believe that there is not a recall on this part. I read other complaints too and am glad that I have not ran into their problem yet. If Saturn does not fix this problem really soon, I will sell my car and I will never buy a Saturn again. They are really making a bad product that they will eventually never sell again. After all these complaints, why has nothing been done to recall the problem. To anyone who reads this, never buy a Saturn. It is not just the Ion. I have heard several other issues with other vehicles.

- Eau Claire, WI, USA

problem #2

Feb 012008

Ion 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
On several different occasions, there have been times where my vehicle would not start. It is usually when it is cold outside. The vehicle will not even attempt to roll over. It will act like the battery is completely dead. I have attempted replacing the battery and the same incidents occur when it gets cold out. I have talked to other people who have had similar incidents and they stated that it was something to do with the ignition switch. From what the mechanics told them, and that it was around a $500 part to replace.

- Eau Claire, WI, USA

problem #1

Mar 202007

Ion 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 40,000 miles
My trunk has started to get water in it. This caused my battery to fail on several occasions. Now that it is winter I had to replace my battery because it froze. The entire inside of my trunk is damaged.

- Independence, WI, USA

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