As Chevy's iconic Corvette has passed through each successive generation, it has transformed into a bona fide supercar, a ride that can step into the ring with the world's best and leave un-bowed. But that transformation has come at a price--literally. A base Corvette now costs nearly $45,000, a steal in terms of the capability it offers but expensive enough to price it out of the very niche it helped create: the accessible, all-American sports car.
And so we welcome a new patron of performance for the everyman, the Saturn Sky Red Line. At just under $29,000, the Red Line is exactly what the Corvette used to be: fairly cheap and plenty fast. The 260-hp, 2.0-liter, turbocharged and intercooled, DOHC Ecotec four sounds pretty damn good and will move the Red Line from 0 to 60 mph in 5.7 seconds. The 6300-rpm redline and closely spaced gear ratios mean that you're working the standard five-speed manual all the time, but with the Saturn's solid shift action and perfect pedal placement, that's no bad thing.
Around town, the Red Line will dip into the turbo only if you ask it to. Should you manage to keep your right foot reined in, you'll cruise from stoplight to stoplight boost-free, and there's ample low-end grunt to make this a viable strategy.... Read full article