Roadshow Video Reviews
2007 Saturn Aura HybridThere's a hybrid under the hood--and not a lot else for tech lovers.
>> Saturn's new tag line is rethink American. Okay, I'm game. Let's check out the Saturn Aura Hybrid. [ Music ] Now hybrid's can go one of two ways these days. They can be high end, luxurious, a status statement like a Lexus, but they can be a little more you know pedestrian shall we say like a Prisa or like this car. GM positions the Saturn Aura Hybrid as a very basic car. You can't get a lot of the tech options you'd like to see on this vehicle. Let's go to the head unit for example, and by the way, you're never going to see a nav screen there, not available. But I'll tell you about that in a minute. This audio system is the audio system is the hybrid version of the Aura. AM FM, single disk CD, it will play MP3 disks, so that's nice. And it does have one of GM's great integrated auxiliary jacks right next to the button that enables it. So the basic features are all there. But we're not talking surround sound. We're not talking some kind of Bose branded technology. No six disk, no iPod adapter. XM radio isn't even available on this hybrid version, although it's available on other Auras. That's an interesting omission. The system sound fine, six speakers all around the cabin. Again, for the kind of mission they've got here of making an affordable largish hybrid car, it seems to be fitting the mission of basic transportation. Now I talked about navigation. Navigation is not available on the on screen GPS deal like you see in so many cars. Instead, we've got our old buddy OnStar up here. There's never an LCD map in the Aura hybrid. Let's talk about Bluetooth. Okay, that was quick. Not available. You've got the charge discharge gauge over here on the right side of the dash never the fuel gauge. That tells you that you're either putting juice in the battery or drawing it out to move the car. More about how this hybrid works in a moment. But another cue is over there on the far left, the tachometer has an auto stop indication. This car works in that eco mode where when you come to a stop, it turns the engine off to save gas. When you lift off the brake, it restarts the engine. Now let's go under the hood and really get into this hybrid power train. Under the hood is this inline four, 2 point 4 liter eco tech lean gas engine. Here's how GM's hybrid logic works. The electric motor that is coupled to this does a boost when the engine needs more power. But you never run electric only, so very simply, helper electric motor clamped on to a lean relatively low power gas engine. And of course as I just showed you in the cabin, it also has auto stop technology. So those two hybrid tricks combined are where they get the benefit of better mileage, lower consumption and better pollution numbers as well. The car's is rated at 28 35. I got about 25 and a half in a real world cycle on one day's commute, not babying it or trying to test it at all. So, not a bad number, but its not going to pop your eyes out. All this power by the way, goes out to a single transmission, four speed automatic. Okay, let's price our Aura green line, that's a real simple job. I'm barely earning my pay here. 22695, that's it. No tech options. I'd add a sun roof for 800 bucks just to lux it up a bit. ^M00:03:05 [ Music ]