By KBB.com Editors
The Relay joined Saturn's line-up last year in an attempt to help keep growing families in Saturn vehicles. Based heavily on the standard GM minivan platform (think Chevrolet Uplander and Buick Terraza), the Relay gains a touch of Saturn sensibility with handsome European-like styling and a lovely, upscale interior. Short of owner loyalty, however, there is little about the Relay that makes it stand out in an already competitive field. The minivans from Honda and Toyota, for example, are newer designs that hold better resale values, while vans from Hyundai and Kia offer more interior space, more safety features, more standard equipment and a better standard warranty.
In the world of minivans, the Relay has a look all its own. Though it shares a common platform with other GM vans, we think the Relay is the best looking of the bunch. Priced competitively and loaded with standard features, the Relay makes a great alternative to the station wagon or SUV.
Though it can seat seven, the Relay's narrow design makes it a bit tight in the areas of hip and shoulder room. Like its cousins from Chevrolet and Buick, the Relay does not offer side-curtain airbags for third-row passengers or flush-folding seats.
For 2007, all Relays receive StabiliTrak stability control and a 3.9-liter V6 engine.
Driving Impressions The Relay's 240-horsepower 3.9-liter V6 pulls strongly off the line and provides the low-end torque needed for passing and merging. The engine is smooth and silent, even at full throttle....The front-wheel-drive layout works well for this type of vehicle, providing good traction in rain and snow. Steering and braking have been greatly improved over the old Venture, Silhouette and Montana minivans on which the Relay is based. The smaller size and narrow footprint make the Relay feel easier to maneuver than the larger competitors from Nissan, Chrysler and Honda.
The elegant dash and door panel designs truly make the Relay feel special inside.
Optional Remote Start
The optional remote start lets you start the vehicle from as far away as 500 feet.
If all GM vehicles took their interior styling cues from the Relay team, the company would never hear another complaint about interior design and quality. French-stitched seams on the door panels and seats, a handsome dash and instrument cluster design and a hefty dose of sound-deadening insulation make life with the Relay anything but mundane.Exterior
The Relay's long hood and added C-pillar are intended to make it look like an SUV. The sliding side doors betray the Relay's minivan origins, but overall the look is quite appealing. Saturn's grille, headlamp and wheel treatment are simple yet somewhat elegant and, in our opinion, work best with this shared GM platform.
The Relay 1 includes front air conditioning, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), StabiliTrak stability control, traction control, power locks, power windows, dual sliding side doors, automatic headlamp control, AM/FM stereo with CD and MP3, tilt wheel and full wheel covers. The Relay 2 adds a rear defroster, rear air conditioning, overhead rail system, DVD entertainment, keyless entry, dual heated power mirrors, cruise control, rear wiper/washer and 17-inch wheels. The Relay 3 adds rear air conditioning, alarm system, garage door opener, second row captain's chair seating, six-way power driver's seat, front side-impact airbags and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with touch controls.
Options include remote start, automatic level control, sport suspension, PhatNoise entertainment system, power sliding side doors, second-row side-impact airbags (Relay 3), heated leather seats and a Trailering Package.
The standard 3.9-liter engine features variable valve timing, which helps improve torque at low speeds and fuel economy when cruising at higher speeds. Compared to the previous 3.5-liter engine, the new V6 is quieter, more refined and helps the Relay achieve horsepower and torque figures near the segment's class leaders.
240 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
240 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25
By Deacon (MO) on Friday, March 23, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8
"Faulty bearing assembly was giving false traction controland stabilitrac warnings until dealership finally (after 5 tries)figured out what was wrong. The left passenger power sliding door does not want to stay closed and sounds warning beeps when closing. This is a problem with my daughters relay also. Other than those 2 things I have been very happy with the car. It drives very well under adverse conditions."
2 people out of 2 found this review helpful
By Want to like Saturn (OR) on Friday, February 17, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 85,000overall rating 3 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"I wanted to like this Relay. Unfortunately the slider doors don't work without beeping, sending off the alarm that the door is open (even though it's not). After many trips to 3 different Saturn dealers and 2 body shops I just pulled the fuse. So now it's quiet but we don't have power doors anymore. It's also effectively quite small. It's very hard to get to the back seats, even for my daughters, who are now 6,8 and 9. The rear "storage" area behind the back seat is effectively very small because of the triangle made by the rear sloping back seat and forward sloping rear door. It has however been quite reliable from a purely mechanical standpoint, with nothing with anything other than the above. If we hadn't paid so much for it, we would have sold it years ago."
3 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By cheerio kid (ND) on Tuesday, January 17, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 68,000overall rating 5 of 10rating details
Pros: "Smooth ride going down the highway."
Cons: "I just wouldn't recomend this van to anyone......."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 3
"We've had nothing but problems with the power slider door on passenger side since we bought it. ABS sensor light keep coming on. Nobody can figure these problems out. You might drive a 2 - 3 hour trip with the dinger going off, and the only way to stop it is to disconnect the battery for a few seconds. So we have to use the driver slider door all of the time so as not set the noise off. It's a real pain in the buttocks!!! It has been reliable for the most part, not spending much on it otherwise."
By fuzzykitty (PA) on Monday, January 02, 2012
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 98,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Cons: "Automatic doors"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"We like our Saturn Relay. The DVD player has been nice for the children to watch movies or play games. It has lots of cupholders and little tables are nice. The problems we have experienced with this vehicle is the automatic doors for the passengers; we periodically are having problems closing them at times. We also find that when we want to take the seats out they are very heavy and bulky. We had problems with our heating last year with cold air coming out of the back vents. Other than that it's been a good vehicle for us. We tow a small camper and it handles well as long as you don't travel over mountains; otherwise, it overheats. The space between the back seat and gate is small. We do have a removable compartment for storage for this area but haven't used it since we have had the vehicle. We were surprised that it doesn't get good gas mileage outside the city also."
By TD (UT) on Tuesday, November 22, 2011
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 102,000overall rating 7 of 10rating details
Pros: "Comfortable, roomy, great for the family"
Cons: "AC has been problematic"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I have driven this van for six years. It has been reliable with only a few mechanical issues (AC needs frequent recharging, control arms went out at 60,000 miles). It is roomy and comfortable and drives nicely. The standard DVD player is great for the family on long trips."
4 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By Leeesa (FL) on Monday, November 14, 2011
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 110,000overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "Good value, hauls a lot of kids and gear"
Cons: "could use more cupholders in the back"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"We have loved our Saturn hard! Responsible for endless team trips to soccer, baseball, basketball and football games with lots and lots of boys and their gear. Easy to get in and out of, very reliable. Not fancy, but did a great job for what we needed. Safely transporting lots of kids comfortably to lots of places."
1 person out of 1 found this review helpful