The Saturn division of General Motors has had a short but interesting history. Founded in the late 1980s to permit GM to compete in the small car market, the first years of Saturn were marked by bad design, poor engineering, and poor manufacturing. However, over time Saturn was able to overcome these problems and become a strong local competitor in the mid-sized sedan market. It experienced marked growth during most of the 2000s, and was expected to continue doing well in the future.
Unfortunately, in 2007 the collapse of the credit market wiped out most of Saturnâ€™s target audience, namely the small family car buyer or young twenty-something who needed an affordable vehicle. Despite having what was considered a highly marketable and saleable product, sales languished and when GM went bankrupt it took Saturn down with it. Even though Saturn was arguably the best selling of the GM lines, in 2009 it was brought to an end, with all Saturn dealerships being closed and all factory operations halted. An assortment of reasons were cited in the divisionâ€™s collapse, including over-ambitious sales targets, a lack of auto sales overall, and over-leveraging on behalf of the carâ€™s financial arm.
2009 was effectively the worst year Saturn ever had, since it was the year Saturn was shut down. Yet ironically, the 2009 model year cars produced by Saturn were considered to be their finest and most affordable. While some bidders considered buying the company, GM demanded too high a price for the division and all of the deals fell through. This frustrated many associated with GM and Saturn, especially Saturn buyers, who had made the car reasonably popular. There are currently no plans for the plant, models or brand name to be purchased and continued, although some after-market parts manufacturers intend to stay in business.
However, there are many Saturns on the road to this day and if you are in the need of a saturn engine look no further than SW Engines.