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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys, we are looking hard at the Ion Redline as a new addition to our driveway. I drive an Evo and my g/f drove a VW GTI 1.8T up untill recently when it met an untimely death. I would really appreciate some feed back on the redline.

1. Modibility. Is there anything out there for this car? Chips, reflashes, pullies, cams, exhaust?
2. Is car is pretty much the same as the cobalt SS?
3. LSD. Is one available for this car?
4. Changes for '05. Anything worth mentioning?
5. Problems. Anything I need to be warned about?

-Steve
 

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slt said:
Hey guys, we are looking hard at the Ion Redline as a new addition to our driveway. I drive an Evo and my g/f drove a VW GTI 1.8T up untill recently when it met an untimely death. I would really appreciate some feed back on the redline.

1. Modibility. Is there anything out there for this car? Chips, reflashes, pullies, cams, exhaust?
2. Is car is pretty much the same as the cobalt SS?
3. LSD. Is one available for this car?
4. Changes for '05. Anything worth mentioning?
5. Problems. Anything I need to be warned about?

-Steve
1.) Parts are on the way, we've contacted several manufacturers and they are making parts.
2.) Yes, it is pretty much the same. Smaller wheels, composite panels, MUCH better seats though! We have nice Recaro designed seats.
3.) There will be a LSD to our knowledge, ask about the Competition Package at the dealer.
4.) I dunno, what is different about the '05? I have one, I think it's just a little different ground effects? Or just the wing?
5.) Problems? Depends on who you ask, in my opinion, a few, but so far nothing that Saturn hasn't fixed ASAP. In MY case. A few people have had an issue with the Cam Postion Sensor, and an outdated ECM program. Both make the car run a little rough, and crank a bit long. In my case the Cam Position Sensor spun while I was at redline. Scared the hell outta me, but they fixed it all up in 3 days, and has been perfect since.

That said, get it! It's a great car. You can wait for the Cobalt, but they are the same car for all practical purposes. Both of them are an under-rated 205 hp, as far as we can tell, check some of the dyno reports. The handling on this thing is amazing for a daily driveable compact. I'm also not sure of what kind of price tag is on the ones that you're looking at, but you can get a pretty hefty chunk of change taken off the proce of it. Mine had a sticker of just under $24,000, and I got it for around $18,000.



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the onyl changes for 05 are the availability of the competition package, you could get the wing on an 04

Problems: just make sure it has the most up to date ECU update
 

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The competition package (LSD, boost guage, black painted rims) will be available mid-year, and should start production either late this month or sometime next month. You can order one now at your dealer, to arrive as soon as they are available.

The differences between a Red Line ION and a Cobalt SS are:
polymer panels (which are highly underrated - check them out, they alone are worth buying a Saturn)
Recaro seats
the Saturn family :)

Also, have you ever seen the trunk of a Cobalt? I got to play with one at the Washington Auto Show - the opening is so small I don't see how you could even fit a suitcase in it! The trunk itself is huge but you can't actually get to it because of the tiny tiny opening. I also thought the interior felt very cramped compared to the ION.

If you're caught between the two, I'd suggest checking them both out fairly. You're going to get a biased opinion on this board, obviously. Take a test drive in both. If you can't get to the SS, drive a regular Cobalt to get the feel of the interior. The ION Red Line has the same engine, so drive a RL ION to get the feel for the engine. Then you just have to decide which interior you like better, and which dealership you'd rather deal with. I think if you do your research, you'll probably go with the ION. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Hmmm, searching the internet for an hour now, there doesn't seem to be anything out there for the supercharged ecotech yet. Coming from the evo community with unlimited aftermarket support, this is somewhat discouraging. When we bought the GTI, we bought a $300 chip the next week that was good for 40hp. I can't believe there isn't even a pulley or ECU flash yet. Hopefully when the Cobalt SS hits the scene there will be more support. At this price point, I really like the Redline. The LSD not yet available really hurts, though. We need a car now, so waiting a few months isn't an option. Thanks for the input guys.
 

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You'll be able to add the LSD when it comes out, if it's that big of a deal. You can handle a little wheel hop until then, right?

Aftermarket support for Saturns is small in general, but especially for a new car. You're right, when the Cobalt SS is release, there will probably be more stuff released.
 

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slt said:
Hmmm, searching the internet for an hour now, there doesn't seem to be anything out there for the supercharged ecotech yet. Coming from the evo community with unlimited aftermarket support, this is somewhat discouraging. When we bought the GTI, we bought a $300 chip the next week that was good for 40hp. I can't believe there isn't even a pulley or ECU flash yet. Hopefully when the Cobalt SS hits the scene there will be more support. At this price point, I really like the Redline. The LSD not yet available really hurts, though. We need a car now, so waiting a few months isn't an option. Thanks for the input guys.
The pulley swap is always available. We just have some reservations about the usefulness of the swap. The supercharger is limited at 12psi at this point, and the RPM's of the supercharger are pretty high at redline. The LSD you should be able to negotiate out with the dealer to have it installed or something. I'm gonna go talk to them and see what that would require, or if it's even possible. Seeing as how they have Ecotecs that are running 8's in the quarter, I know there are parts out there. Being a longtime Camaro owner, I can tell you that the aftermarket is a bit slow, but will come around fast. Exhaust work is anyone's game, don't need a special one, and there is a header coming to market this month, a few intakes, Eaton has spoke of a supercharger upgrade kit in the spring. Take one for a test drive, tell me then what you think of waiting a month for upgrades.



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I love my Saturn Ion Redline. I hate to let it sit in the driveway. It begs to be driven. I would not even trade it for a Colbalt. They are only making 5000 of these. So it not like everyone has one. Be different besides most people don't know what is in these cars. So it has a a great kill factor when you smoke someone.
 

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to be honest, what do you expect from a brand new car? the aftermarket will be here shortly, AEM, K&N, and Injen are working on intakes, so is Adam (SCdyne) who is releasing the headers (to be shipped today, 2/14/05), and anyone can do a custom exhaust setup.

also, the RL has gotten a best of 13.9xx in the 1/4 with only a welfare intake mod, and a custom exhaust, so she's quick enough out of the box, and is faster than the GTI stock for stock. get the RL, you'll be happy you've got the plastic panels when you realize you haven't gotten a door ding in the year you've owned it, not to mention rust wont appear anytime soon
 

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haunter said:
who ran that 13.9?
barry, hasn't posted slips yet, so i haven't spread it all over the 'net, but once he does i'm going to! posted in another thread, one of his story from the strip threads has the slip in it (numbers, not actual slip)
 

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yeah, he didn't give them outright, they're a page or two in
 

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the Competition package that will included the LSD on the RL is available now 2/14/05 via ordering a car through a Saturn dealer. So you do have to order yours as probably nothing in the lot made before 2/14/05 will have the LSD or the competition package. I believe they can take at least 3 weeks to built it or not more than a month (wife had vue special ordered and it took 3-weeks). So if you can settle on the time being with the LSD you will just to wait a little bit to get all of the other performance goodies. It will be worth the wait.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Well, we picked up a blue Ion Red line today for the g/f. Not as fast as the GTI its replacing, but not too bad. She really likes the way it looks. The GTI was a nice car, but it's not a looker. I told her to take it easy for the first 500 miles or so, so what does she do? I pull up behind her at a stoplight in the Evo, light turns green, and she drops the hamer. Tires chirp and she takes off :D You know, I think these cars are faster than they feel. With a turbo, you get that kick in the pants when the turbo spools up so it feels real fast. The supercharger, on the other hand, is almost electric in how flat the the power delivery is so its kind of decieving on how fast it really is. Anyways, with an off boost start, she put a couple car lengths on me. I pulled up next to her at the next light and shook my finger at her. She was just smiling. I give it untill this weekend untill the mod itch sets in.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
The VW was warmed over (chip+catback) and nearly kept up with the Evo when the evo was stock. I fully believe that the Ion will be faster by summers end, though. Once the SS hits, the aftermarket has to pick up.

Quick question, do these cars really run on 87 octane? A smaller pully, some timing advance, and some real gas would be worth an easy 25whp. Maybe that will be GM's "Stage 1". And damn, that supercharger is just sitting on top of the engine, so easy to take off and replace with a bigger one.....
 

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No, do NOT run 87. The manual says 91 or higher in mine. Lots of debate on the supercharger and updates and such. I just sent Eaton an email asking about the numbers that we had run in another post. Bigger superchargers don't always make a ton more power, depends on the app. I did just get an email from SuperChips saying the the do in fact have a development project in the works for the Redline. They said hopefully by the 3rd quarter of this year. More good news! I also recieved an email from Lingenfelter Engineering over in South Bend, IN. Sent them an email while sending to a bunch of other companies. Believe it or not, they said that they are familiar with the car and it's potential, and that I should not count them out of the development loop. That would be great, a Lingenfelter modified 400hp Redline... put that in your pipe and smoke it... yea I know reality has to set in, but I can hope!



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Yes, there is a company I believe Psi-Fi that is working on a pulley upgrade though these S/Cs are running really close to its max. Also the aftermarket is picking up a little since there is about 3 intakes going to be available soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Sp00ner said:
No, do NOT run 87. The manual says 91 or higher in mine.
Shows you what the jackoffs at the dealership know. He gave me some line about how the Vue, even with 250hp, still takes 87. :rolleyes: O'well. Been buying premium for years now anyways.

What type of gas mileage are you guys getting out of these? Evo gets like 16mpg in real world driving. I would think low 20's?
 
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