Sky’s the limit for sporty Saturn 2-seater
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If somehow the look of the Pontiac Solstice doesn’t push your buttons, maybe the Saturn Sky will do it.
Saturn’s first sports car is basically a Solstice under the skin and shares the same powertrain options as its GM sibling. Like its Pontiac counterpart, the Sky offers good looks, sporty performance, value and generates lots of street stares.
Power comes from the 4-cylinder Ecotec and comes in two variants: normally aspirated in the 177-horsepower 2.4-litre base model Sky and turbocharged in the 2.0-litre Sky Red Line version with 260 hp at your disposal. This turbo powerplant is GM’s highest specific output engine ever (at 130 hp/litre) and the most powerful production engine in the Ecotec engine family.
Power is already adequate in the regular Sky, so you can imagine there are no major complaints about the power produced by the Red Line’s turbocharged engine.
The ride is not as harsh as one would expect from such a low-slung roadster. All four wheels are pushed to the corners, giving a wide stance and a long wheelbase to an otherwise small car.
Weight distribution is close to the ideal 50/50 front/rear ratio, helping the Sky’s chassis to offer balanced handling. Watch yourself when driving enthusiastically, though, as the Sky has a tendency to swing its rear end, in a controlled manner, when pushed.
The power operated and hydraulically assisted steering feels precise and provides good feedback on what is happening on the road.
Four-wheel disc brakes, with ABS, work well to offer good feel and stopping power.
The interior is driver-focused with integrated controls and displays and premium materials. Creative use of contemporary, upscale black and chrome finishes combine with available leather seats to emphasize richness and precision.
Tall people will find it livable, with enough head room when the top is up but many drivers of all sizes will find some controls to be awkwardly placed.
Aside from the turbocharged engine, the Sky Red Line features several unique interior and exterior differences compared to the base Sky, including dual exhausts with chrome polished tips and 18-inch polished alloy wheels. The front end sports a different headlamp look, along with functional brake cooling vents and a large mesh pattern in the lower grille for improved airflow.
The Red Line’s interior also brings a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, unique floor mat embroidery, metallic sill plates, stainless steel pedal covers and a specific gauge treatment that includes a Driver Information Centre.
The fabric convertible roof is easy to operate, with only a single lever to unlock before being able to stow the top in the trunk, though that leaves just enough luggage space for a day’s excursion.
The base Sky, and its high-power Red Line version, makes for a fun day-trip sports car offering eye-catching looks and sporty performance. At $32,130 for the base roadster and $38,175 for the Red Line model, it generates lots of appreciative glances for not too much money.
2007 Saturn Sky