2008 Saturn VUE review and pictures

Posted on Tuesday, 15 May 2007 , 14:05:25 byAlina

Filed under Saturn

Saturn VUE

The 2008 Vue is the latest Saturn model to showcase the new design character of the brand. The model is versatile, technologically advanced and loaded with safety equipment. The 2008 vehicle is available in XE and XR trim levels, but also as the performance-inspired Red Line and Green Line hybrid models. For incredible ride and handling, the carmaker offered a stiff, steel body-frame integral structure. The all-new Vue helps protect occupants with its high-strength steel structure and a long list of standard crash protection safety features. Under the hood it features a 3.6-liter V6 VVT engine that is capable of developing 257 horsepower and 248 lb. ft. of torque. The output is being sent to the wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. It will be available in front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.

A compact five-door crossover vehicle with European-inspired design and sporty ride and handling, the 2008 Vue is the latest Saturn model to showcase the brand`s new design character and intensified focus on driving characteristics.

"The 2008 Vue continues the product revitalization at Saturn," said Saturn General Manager Jill Lajdziak. "The all-new Vue is versatile, technologically advanced and loaded with safety equipment. Saturn customers will be as pleased with the vehicle as they are with the customer treatment they`ve always received at their Saturn retailer."

The 2008 Vue is available in XE and XR trim levels, as well as the performance-inspired Red Line and Green Line hybrid models - when it was introduced in the 2007 lineup, the Vue hybrid was the first vehicle to use GM`s new affordable hybrid powertrain.

Vue`s broad lineup will offer a wide range of powertrains, including a more powerful four-cylinder engine, and two V-6 choices mated to six-speed automatic transmissions.

The `08 Vue is the fourth all-new Saturn model since the beginning of the 2006 calendar year. The other all-new models are the Sky roadster, Aura sedan - which was voted the 2007 North American Car of the Year - and the larger Outlook crossover utility. The Saturn Astra small car will join the lineup this fall, completing a comprehensive revitalization of Saturn`s portfolio in less than two years.

Ride and handling
At the core of the Vue`s European-inspired driving character is a stiff, steel body-frame integral structure. Ride and handling is augmented by one of three levels of specific spring-rate and wheel-travel tuning: Red Line, XE/XR with a V-6, or four-cylinder-equipped. Front and rear stabilizer bars, MacPherson strut independent front suspension and independent multi-link rear suspension, along with a double-isolated engine cradle, add to the specifically tuned ride. Hydraulic power-assisted steering on V-6 models, standard four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, standard traction control and standard GM StabiliTrak electronic stability control provide outstanding vehicle control.

A towing package with hitch and wiring is available on all Vues. When properly equipped, the Vue can tow up to 3,500 pounds (1,587 kg). A towing stabilization system uses active braking to help control the vehicle in trailering situations. The Vue can also be towed as an RV "dinghy vehicle" with all four wheels on the ground.

Safety is standard
In addition to the handling features that help drivers avoid crashes, the all-new Vue helps protect occupants with its high-strength steel structure and a long list of standard crash protection safety features. Dual-stage front seat air bags, front seat side thorax air bags and head curtain air bags covering front and rear rows are standard on all models.

Unique to the compact crossover segment is Vue`s Electronic Trailer Sway Control, a feature that is integrated into the standard StabiliTrak system. It detects the occurrence of trailer sway that may be caused by improper trailer weight balance or excessive vehicle speed. Upon detection of trailer sway, StabiliTrak will begin to apply the brakes, independent of the driver applying the brake pedal, to assist the driver in stabilizing the vehicle. The StabiliTrak activation telltale will flash to signal the driver to reduce vehicle speed. If trailer sway continues, StabiliTrak will reduce engine torque to reduce the speed of the vehicle.

Other standard Vue safety features include front-row dual safety belt pretensioners, disengaging collapsible pedals, active head restraints, tire pressure monitoring system, automatic power door locks and side turn signal lamps.

Like all Saturn vehicles, the Vue comes standard with GM`s OnStar safety and security system, including a one-year subscription to the Safe & Sound plan. The OnStar service includes Advanced Automatic Crash Notification (AACN), making crash data available to emergency services to potentially dispatch the appropriate life-saving personnel and equipment to crash scenes sooner. If the vehicle is in a crash that activates an air bag, the system automatically notifies an OnStar advisor, who will contact the occupants and summon emergency help if necessary. OnStar also provides remote door-unlocking service and can assist authorities in locating a vehicle if it is reported stolen.

*SAE certification pending.
**SAE certified. A new voluntary power and torque certification procedure developed by the SAE Engine Test Code committee was approved March 31, 2005. This procedure (J2723) ensures fair, accurate ratings for horsepower and torque by allowing manufacturers to certify their engines through third-party witness testing. GM was the first auto manufacturer to begin using the procedure and expects to use it for all newly rated engines in the future.


VUE RED LINE AND GREEN LINE HYBRID DELIVER BOLD LOOKS, PERFORMANCE TUNING AND VALUE

Two popular models return to the lineup with the all-new 2008 Saturn Vue: the performance-oriented Red Line and the Green Line hybrid. Each builds on the new Vue`s European design, and sporty ride and handling characteristics.

Red Line details
The Vue Red Line features an aggressive front-end design, including a large, lower air opening and projector beam fog lamps. The rear of the vehicle features a special fascia, spoiler and chrome trapezoid exhaust tips. A lowered suspension, 18-inch alloy wheels and Red Line badges complete the aggressive appearance.

From a performance perspective, the Red Line comes with standard tap up/tap down transmission control and sport-tuned ride and handling. It is powered by a dual overhead cam 3.6L V-6 VVT engine that delivers 257 horsepower (192 kW) at 6,500 rpm** and 248 lb.-ft. (336 Nm) of torque at 2,100 rpm.** The engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission. The Vue Red Line will be available in front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.

Interior modifications include a Red Line-exclusive black interior, including leather sport seats with red stitching and perforated suede fabric inserts. The vehicle also features unique Red Line instrument cluster graphics and embroidered floor mats.

Green Line hybrid details
The 2008 Vue Green Line hybrid will continue to provide consumers with an affordable hybrid that also provides uncompromised utility.

The hybrid system on the Vue Green Line combines sophisticated controls with an electric motor/generator mated to a 169-horsepower (126 kW) 2.4L four-cylinder engine and a modified four-speed automatic transmission. The system saves fuel by providing an electric power assist during acceleration; shutting off the engine at idle; early fuel cut-off during deceleration and capturing energy through regenerative braking. Fuel economy figures for the 2008 Vue will be announced later.

The 2008 Vue was first shown last November at the Greater Los Angeles International Auto Show, as an uplevel XR model. At the show, Saturn also announced it will offer a version of the Vue Green Line with GM`s new two-mode hybrid system, in the third quarter of 2008. This system will provide a 45-percent improvement in fuel economy compared to its non-hybrid counterpart.

Additionally, General Motors committed to the production of a plug-in version of the Vue Green Line that will double the fuel economy performance of any SUV currently on the market. No date has been set for the introduction of the plug-in hybrid, but it is a top-priority program for the company.

The Vue Red Line will arrive in the third quarter of 2007 and the Vue Green Line hybrid will arrive in the fourth quarter of 2007.