NHTSA — Steering: Hydraulic Power Assist System Problems

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.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
30,840 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 steering problems

steering problem

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2005 Saturn Ion Owner Comments

problem #3

Mar 192012


  • 61,020 miles


Just recently bought the car 3/18/2011, used and when driving car, I heard 3 rings and then where the odometer is it lite up pwr str. Pulled over the side of the road (turnpike), shut the car off and restarted and power steering was back. Only to drive 10 miles and it happened again. Feel that this is very dangerous since car is manual and I am woman who is 5'0 and weighs 135lbs, to steer and shift this car when the pwr str goes out so suddenly.

- Saint Cloud , FL, USA

problem #2

Feb 012011

Ion 4-cyl

  • miles
The power steering on this car repeatedly fails. As soon as you start the car the power steering light comes on making it extremely difficult to maneuver the car.

- Clayton, NC, USA

problem #1

Oct 132006

Ion 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,500 miles
The power steering unit on my 2005 Saturn Ion has failed twice while driving the vehicle causing a dangerous condition. I brought the vehicle to the dealer, Saturn of ellicott city and was told there is a "service bulletin" about the issue and there is nothing they can do to repair the vehicle at this time. My vehicle is a 2005 with less than 32K miles. The steering failed while entering a highway and again while entering a parking lot. Saturn admitted they know about the problem but refused to repair it. It is on many Saturn vehicles, not just mine. *

- Catonsville, MD, USA

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