The 2006 Saturn VUE sport utility vehicle (SUV) offers good safety and many new features, both internal and external, to choose from. It comes equipped with an inline-four or V-6 engine providing 143 or 250 horsepower. The performance is average at best, but the safety is above average. This vehicle competes well in its category though. The fuel economy ranges, depending on the model, and ride quality can feel a bit bumpy in certain terrains.
Body Styles: SUV
Engines: 2.2-liter four-cylinder, 3.5-liter V-6
Transmissions: five-speed manual, four-speed automatic, five-speed automatic
Models: VUE Base
The 2006 Saturn VUE has tons of new features in 2006, including a revised interior with a new center stack, center console, door panels, and seat fabric. On the exterior, it has redesigned front and rear fascias. The steering wheel now includes audio controls and OnStar. Power windows, mirrors, door locks, air-conditioning, and cruise control come standard. An optional CD/MP3 player stereo system includes an auxiliary jack for various audio devices. An optional Red Line Package provides ebony leather seats with suede inserts, a power driver’s seat, unique instrumentation, and foot well lighting in warm amber and cool blue.
The 2006 Saturn VUE comes in ten colors, including both light and dark shades. The exterior features include dent-resistant polymer front fenders, door panels and rear quarter panels, and bumper fasciae. It features auto headlamp controls, daytime running lamps, manual folding power mirrors, and intermittent windshield wipers for the front and back. The wheels measure 17 inches and 18 inches with the Red Line Package.
The 2006 Saturn VUE has more interior features than exterior, some of which include air conditioning; power windows, locks, and mirrors; and cruise control. The steering wheel adjusts. The speaker system provides four speakers and an AM/FM stereo. Other features include rear privacy glass, an engine-immobilizing anti-theft system, visor vanity mirrors, and a cargo area organizer. The V-6 models add remote keyless entry, a six-speaker AM/FM/CD player stereo system, automatic headlamps, an auto-dimming rear-view mirror with a compass, aluminum wheels, and an enhanced security system. The steering wheel uses a three-spoke style and comes wrapped in leather. The interior trim plates look bright and the seats use upgraded fabric.
Performance & Handling
The 2006 Saturn VUE minivan gets 143 horsepower with the inline-four manual and automatic transmission models. This provides for 152 lb-ft of torque. The V-6 models come with 250 horsepower which provides for 242 lb-ft of torque—quite a bit more than the inline-four model. The inline-four models come with front-drive in both automatic and manual transmission. The V-6 models have optional all-wheel drive and use automatic transmissions. The performance on the Saturn VUE is good with the V-6 and it handles decently over a variety of terrain. Ride quality remains average with bumps felt in the cabin and a general lack of smoothness. The power-steering is speed sensitive and useful in parking lots. According to Saturn, the VUE can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in 7.5 seconds. The brake system comes fitted with rear drum brakes.
The 2006 Saturn VUE receives above average ratings on safety tests. It earns five stars for driver and passenger front-impact ratings as well and driver and passenger side impact ratings. It receives three stars on the rollover rating, however.
The VUE comes equipped with dual stage airbags for the driver and front passenger. Daytime running lamps improve visibility during the day. Saturn offers an option for side curtain airbags. For the base model, it offers anti-lock brakes and traction control, but those come standard on the V-6 models. The VUE includes a rear center shoulder belt and child-seat anchors on all three rear-seating positions. The V-6 models include projector-beam fog lamps for cutting though fog while on the road. Visibility remains good on this vehicle with big mirrors. The driver visor has a visor to block the sun as well.
EPA Fuel Economy
VUE I-4 manual: 23/29 mpg city/highway
VUE I-4 automatic: 22/27 mpg city/highway
VUE V-6 all-wheel drive: 19/25 mpg city/highway
VUE V-6 front drive: 20/28 mpg city/highway
You Won't Like
A good choice of compact SUV with an above average safety rating and average handling.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Ford Explorer
- Honda CR-V
- Ford Escape
- Toyota RAV4
- Jeep Liberty