really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
54,000 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.

2002 Saturn SL steering problems

steering problem

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2002 Saturn SL Owner Comments

problem #6

Jul 072010

SL 4-cyl

  • miles


This vehicle is a death trap the vehicle shuts off while driving, can not start, whole steering column is loose, key comes out during driving....updated 09/22/15

- New Egypt, NJ, USA

problem #5

Sep 082014


  • 114,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Saturn Sl. While coming out of a left turn at an unknown speed, the power steering failed. The steering wheel seized and excessive force was required to steer the vehicle. The failure caused the contact to drive into a ditch, over a levee, and crash into a pipe. Once the vehicle came to a stop, the contact noticed the ignition key was on the floor. The air bags deployed and there were no injuries. The vehicle was towed to the contact's residence and was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The approximate failure mileage was 114,000.

- St. Martinville, LA, USA

problem #4

Jul 012013

SL 4-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
Spouse and I use car. The very first time the occurrence happened, was when parking car into driveway, I went to turn off car ignition and accidentally hit key ring, and the key fell out of the ignition, with the car in park, yet still running. On numerous occasions, while driving the car, the car is still running and the key easily slips out of the ignition. Also, on more than one occasion, when trying to unlock the steering wheel, the key will not turn while in the steering ignition. We would have to move the steering wheel many times while simultaneously turning the key many times to unlock the ignition. One day soon, it might not turn. Yes, we know the advise is to use only a single key, not one on a multi-key ring. However, we both have used other cars for many years, and never had such difficulty or frequency of problems as this situation.

- Congers, NY, USA

problem #3

Jan 082014

SL 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles


Ignition switch fails causes steering wheel to lock and or unable to turn on car.

- Grayslake, IL, USA

problem #2

Apr 012006

SL 4-cyl

  • 20,000 miles
My car has a lot of problems. The steering system has been replaced 2 times. The climate blower motor has been replaced 2 times. It has broken down 2 times. This car is a lemon and GM will do nothing to help with any problems I have.. they just give me the run around. And my windshield wiper system has been replaced 1 time.. which still never corrected the problem.. the speed of the wipers when on high are slower then most cars resulting in poor vision. The air bags never went off when I got in to a head on collision at 45 mph.. this has to be the worst car out there.

- Howell, MI, USA

problem #1

Aug 052003


  • miles
While driving at highway speed, consumer lost control and couldn't steer the vehicle. Passenger'sir bag deployed.dealer and manufacturer notified.

- Potomac, MD, USA

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