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2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe Review
Sporty look but not very sporty car.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The 2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe is the replacement for Saturn’s S-series coupe. Adding ?Quad? to the name justifies how a coupe can have four doors. While it has four doors, it's designed like a coupe and has long front doors and short rear doors opening to the rear making it to look more like a coupe than a sedan. The best feature is the rear opening rear doors, which allow easy access to the back seat and improves its utility immensely. Not only is it easier to load packages into the back, it’s easier to load people.
Engines: 2.2-liter four-cylinder
Transmissions: five-speed manual transmission, five-speed automatic
Models: Saturn ION Quad Coupe 2, Saturn ION Quad Coupe 3
The 2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe is all new for 2003.
The 2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe have four doors, two front hinged front doors, and two rear-hinged rear doors. This means it opens like a clamshell with easier entry and exit. It has color bumpers, heat reflective glass, and daytime running lamps all standard on both models, while it also comes with tinted glass and Complex surface lens halogen bulb headlights. The 3 model has power mirrors, dent-resistant body panels, and aluminum alloy wheels. A rear spoiler is optional.
The 2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe has a central-mounted instrument cluster, which allows gages to be seen no matter where one sets the wheel. The back seat has greater utility due to the rear opening doors. Power door locks and a CD-stereo system are standard. There are 12-volt outlets in the front and back, while the front bucket seats are not particularly comfortable. There is also a great deal of plastic on the interior, which may be too much for some tastes. The sight-lines are good throughout. The 3 version adds power windows and mirrors as well as upgraded seat fabric, but the seats are still uncomfortable.
Performance & Handling
The 2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe comes with forward drive and a 2.2-liter four-cylinder DOHC 16 valve inline engine that gets 140 horsepower at 5800 rpms. A manual transmission is standard, but customers who upgrade to the automatic will be using a new technology called continuously variable automatic transmission or CVT, which has it plusses and minuses. The plus is shifting is very smooth; the minus is that it seems to make passing sluggish at some speeds. It does stop and start relatively quickly, stopping within 189 feet from 70 mph and going from zero to 60 in 8.4 seconds. On other handling measures like braking and handling on twists and turns, it's adequate but not outstanding. Rapid twists and turns on the 2 can cause a great deal of tire squealing despite standard strut front suspension with an independent stabilizer bar with coil springs, a torsion beam rear suspension also with stabilizer bar, and an immobilizer. The 3 model has a sport-tuned suspension, which helps a little. Even the standard/non-ABS is good with a stopping distance of 189 feet from 70 mph while the ABS-equipped models perform even better. It also starts faster than other cars in its class reaching 60 mph from zero in 8.4 seconds.
The 2003 Saturn ION Quad Coupe has strong safety features including dual-stage front airbags that adjust based on the severity of the crash. Daytime running lamps are also standard, and safety can be further improved with the addition of ABS, traction control, and head curtain airbags. It also receives a perfect five-star rating on the front impact crash test from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
EPA Fuel Economy
- Rear seat access through rear opening doors
- Safety features
You Won't Like
- Front seat comfort
Sporty look but not very sporty car.
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