NHTSA — Electrical System Problems

2005 Saturn Ion (Page 2 of 8)

CarComplaints.com 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:
4 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
49,434 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 (Page 2 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #140

Jun 012012

Ion 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


Started with the ignition switch, in the winter time the car wouldn't start when it was too cold. The security system icon would come on an I would have to wait for about 10 to 15 minutes so the car could start again. This went on for few years during winter time. No recalls back then. Then the power steering light started coming on, the steering wheel would lock making it very hard to turn or maneuver. Happened on highway or regular streets. Brought the car in to dealer on July 2013 and they replaced the power steering motor per their "special policy". the car got worst instead of better since then. The power steering light would come on an now the whole electrical system keep going crazy. The monitor would blink and show power steering words, the side lights would come on an blinked by itself. The dealer said we would have to replace the steering column which would cost me around $1000 to replace. I couldn't afford that and there were no recalls back then. Also the car would start to shake when I would press on the gas pedal an go from 10 to 20 to 30 miles. The monitor gauges would move by itself while driving. There was also a sound coming from the gear box as if the car was changing gears by itself. Brought to a private mechanic which didn't charge me to diagnose and he said beside power steering the cars computer may need to be replaced. That would cost me another $1000. I decided to stop driving the car altogether afraid I would get into an accident and could afford to pay for more repairs. A year later brought in the car to dealer to have the ignition switch be replaced with the recall and told them about the power steering problems had continued. They said there was no recall on my car for that. They said if I wanted they would charge me $119 or so to diagnose the car and any repairs I would have to pay out of pocket. Still safety issues they choose to ignore!!

- Mamaroneck, NY, USA

problem #139

Aug 222014


  • 88,000 miles
My car wouldn't start due to a related ignition switch issue that is also part of a general GM recall. The next day we went to give the car a jump start. It started up, but immediately I noticed the power steering was out making it very difficult to drive, especially at slower speeds!!!

- Maitland, FL, USA

problem #138

Apr 152007


  • 48,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact stated the key became lodged in the ignition switch after the vehicle was turned off. The failure recurred multiple times. The vehicle was taken to a dealer. The technician stated that the ignition switch needed to be replaced. The vehicle has not been repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 48,000.

- New Milford, NJ, USA

problem #137

Dec 242013


  • miles


The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact received a recall notification for NHTSA campaign number: 14V171000 (electrical system); however, the part needed for the repair was unavailable. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The contact had not experienced a failure.

- Scotch Plains, NJ, USA

problem #136

Aug 072014

Ion 4-cyl

  • 64,000 miles
My car loses power and the battery light comes on and the car stops. The radio and lights stay on. I must restart the car. It does this randomly. Reading is P0300 so anyone that is having this problem it may be a bad ignition module. The ignition switch was replaced on July 14, 2014 and made this problem worse.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #135

Jul 012014

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
Copy of email letter to Ms. Barra (General Motors) regarding frustration of being a Saturn owner. 2005 Saturn Ion. The consumer stated she never came close, to getting the gas mileage as advertised. She also experienced problems with the suspension, and for a little over a year, she had problems with the vehicle not starting. On one occasion, when she inserted the key into the trunk, the entire trunk lock fell into the car. The consumer received a recall notice, regarding the ignition. However, the parts were not available.

- Rancho Cucamonga, CA, USA

problem #134

Jul 072014

Ion 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact stated that while driving 30 mph, the power steering warning light illuminated. In addition, the steering wheel became difficult to turn and the vehicle veered to the left. The failure occurred on numerous occasions. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 60,000 and the current mileage was 60,998. Updated 8/28/14

- Glen Burnie, MD, USA

problem #133

Jul 012014

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
2005 Saturn Ion. Consumer writes in regards to vehicle theft remote for each key. The dealer informed the consumer, they would not replace the second remote for free, because it was not a part of the recall.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #132

Jun 272014


  • 119,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact stated that the key became lodged in the ignition preventing the vehicle from shutting off. The vehicle was driven until the fuel ran out so the vehicle would turn off. The contact received a notification for NHTSA campaign number: 14E021000 (electrical system). The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The dealer informed the contact that the parts were not available yet. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 119,000.

- Johnston, RI, USA

problem #131

Jun 172008


  • 43,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact stated after being serviced under recall NHTSA campaign number: 14V047000 (air bags, electrical system), NHTSA campaign number: 14V153000 (steering) and NHTSA campaign number: 14V171000 (electrical system) the contact stated that the vehicle continue to crank after the engine had started. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 43,000.

- Carnation, WA, USA

problem #130

Jun 022014

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles


2005 Saturn Ion. Consumer writes in regards to the ignition switch recall and seeks reimbursement for repairs. The consumer stated after the recall was performed, the shifter had to be replaced, because the consumer was unable to remove the key from the ignition switch.

- Decatur, GA, USA

problem #129

Jun 022014

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
2005 Saturn Ion. Consumer writes in regards to several recall defects and requests reimbursement for vehicle repairs. The consumer stated the vehicle broke down and had to be towed to the nearest repair factuality, where there kept the vehicle for over two months. After the vehicle was returned, the problems continued. The engine light was on and there was a problem with the ignition switch. Also, the engine vales, timing chain and sway bar links were replaced.

- Rochester, PA, USA

problem #128

Apr 032009

Ion 4-cyl

  • 61,399 miles
Issue started in 2009. Ignition switch would not start car. Once car was running could not turn off car with ignition switch on off. Key would not come out of ignition switch. That was the first time I had the switch replaced. Had the ignition swich replaced 2 more times in the next 4 years. I am still having an issue with getting my key out of the switch, even after the last recall with it being replaced the 4th time.

- Menomonee Falls , WI, USA

problem #127

Apr 012014


  • miles
Have a 2005 Saturn Ion that was part of ignition switch and cylinder recalls. Have had issues with ignition and electrical since 2006, but was "put off" by local Saturn dealership on at least 6 occasions when I questioned them about the problem. Finally received recent ignition recall, and contacted Chevy dealer to fix. Dealer paid for rental car until repair was done (about 1 month) as instructed by GM corporate. I asked dealer about power steering recall as corporate had stated my vehicle was involved in that recall as well. Dealer found no history of recall in their system (checked on 2 occasions). I called GM corporate 3 times and was told the same story...my car is part of power steering recall (as per VIN), and I would receive my recall letter shortly. It is now June, have not received recall letter for power steering. Ignition working okay now, but other electrical problems still occurring. Alert chime for headlights and turn signals does not work. Unable to change radio station on digital factory radio with digital screen turning off when I attempt any station change or press any button on the radio. All windows but driver's back window wouldn't roll down. Was told by Chevy dealer that the electrical issues were not related to ignition switch, may be related to dashboard malfunction. Windows were related to door motor (replaced myself, 3rd time for this). Dealer refused to fix electrical issues, and refused to proactively fix the power steering in accordance with corporate recall cause they didn't have paperwork. Dealer was going to charge me large fee for fixing any of the other issues except for ignition switch and cylinder. GM has made substandard vehicles for years and dragging their feet to fix their mistakes. Can't trade or sell my vehicle til this is fixed. Feel like I've been driving around a death trap. Do something some one please!!!!!!

- Naples, FL, USA

problem #126

Apr 212014

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
Reached out to dealer in April regarding ignition switch and cylinder, and power steering assist recalls. Parts have allegedly been ordered for the ignition switch and cylinder recalls. However, never been called stating parts are in. Never been asked to make appointment to bring car in. Never any mention of the power steering recall. Dealer I contacted is Chevrolet of homewood. 18033 halsted St, homewood, il 60430. (708) 799-2000. Everytime I call, I am told parts have not been received yet. However, I did receive a card in the mail from Saturn stating their records indicate I have not had my car in the recall yet. Would very much like to get in. Card makes me believe dealer may be blowing off. Need assistance in making this happen.

- Homewood, IL, USA

problem #125

Aug 132012

Ion 4-cyl

  • 89,450 miles
2006 Saturn Ion. Consumer writes in regards to reimbursement request information.

- Nome, TX, USA

problem #124

Jun 022011


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact stated that after turning the vehicle off, the key could not be removed from the ignition switch. The contact indicated that after several hours the key was able to be removed from the ignition switch. The contact stated that the failure had occurred on multiple occasions. The vehicle was repaired under NHTSA recall campaign number: 14V171000 (electrical system) but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 60,000.

- Westchester, IL, USA

problem #123

May 292014


  • miles
On May 29, 2014 when driving from home to work on my Saturn Ion 2005. At approximately 35 miles per hour the engine did not turn off, but the steering got extremely hard that I actually drove on the other lane with incoming traffic going the opposite way of my direction. The dashboard went blank, my headlights turned off mentioning that it was approximately 0940 night time.

- Nogales , AZ, USA

problem #122

Apr 162014


  • miles
The contact owns a 2005 Saturn Ion. The contact received two recall notices for NHTSA campaign number 14V171000 (electrical system). The dealer stated that the part pertaining to the recall was unavailable and did not know when it would become available. The manufacturer was not notified of the delay. The vehicle had not experienced a failure.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #121

Aug 082012

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
2005 Saturn Ion. Consumer writes in regards to ignition switch recall and seeks reimbursement for repairs. The consumer stated she was having problems with the key getting stuck in the ignition, long before the recall was issued.

- Visalia, CA, USA

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