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(2004 model shown)
The compact ION continues in sedan and Quad Coupe versions; the latter comes with rear-hinged half-doors to ease entry and exit into and out of the back seat. Both sedans and coupes come powered by a 140-horsepower, 2.2-liter four-cylinder engine that's fitted to a five-speed manual gearbox. A sporty Red Line edition of the ION Quad Coupe offers a quicker 205-horsepower supercharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, among other upgrades. Many 2005 updates are aimed at helping to quell numerous quality and performance-related issues. For starters, General Motors' long running four-speed Hydra-Matic automatic gearbox becomes available in place of the VTi continuously variable transmission on coupes and the five-speed conventional automatic on sedans. A newly added acoustic engine cover, along with so-called Quiet Steel for the plenum and dashboard are said to help reduce the vehicle's oft-criticized noise, vibration, and harshness. New calibrations for the electric power steering system are claimed to offer a better on-center feel, while a number of minor chassis upgrades are made to improve the car's ride and handling characteristics. Plus, revised seats are added to the ION 2 and 3 models, along with the larger four-spoke steering wheel that was featured on last year's Red Line version. Sedans now come with a beefier-looking front fascia and grille.
Saturn ION Quad Coupe by Bengt Halvorson (10/27/2003)
Positively charged, but it could use a little more spark.