2006 Saturn Relay

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(3.0) 4 reviews
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Overview
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Key Specs

of the 2006 Saturn Relay. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Passenger space
  • Cargo capacity
  • Available power sliding side doors
  • Seating versatility

The Bad

  • Pending further review

Notable Features of the 2006 Saturn Relay

  • SUV-like styling cues
  • Optional 240-hp, 3.9-liter V-6
  • Overhead rail system
  • Available StabiliTrak stability control
  • Available Versatrak AWD

2006 Saturn Relay Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview
Saturn introduced the Relay, its first van, for the 2005 model year. Previously, the division offered only passenger cars and an SUV.

The Relay and its corporate siblings — the Chevrolet Uplander, Pontiac Montana SV6 and Buick Terraza — are billed as "crossover sport vans." They blend SUV-like styling touches with the functionality of a "mid-van." Practical features include sliding side doors and a low step-in height, but all of General Motors' divisions are avoiding the stigma associated with the minivan's tame image. The Relay is the first Saturn model to seat seven passengers.

Front-wheel drive is standard, but the Relay can also be fitted with all-wheel drive. A 3.5-liter V-6 mates with a four-speed-automatic transmission. For 2006, a 3.9-liter V-6 with additional power becomes optional for front-drive Relay 3 models.


Exterior
The basic look of the Relay is recognizably Saturn, but SUV-like styling cues include wide C-pillars and a horizontal grille. The Relay has ebony-colored lower cladding. The wheels measure 17 inches in diameter, and the optional roof rack has tubular-shaped side rails.

The base model has steel wheels, and uplevel versions have six-spoke silver-painted aluminum wheels. Built on a 121.1-inch wheelbase, the Relay is 204.9 inches long overall and 72 inches tall.


Interior
Seven passengers fit inside, and the Relay has three rows of seats. The second- and third-row seats can be folded and removed. The third-row bench is s...
Vehicle Overview
Saturn introduced the Relay, its first van, for the 2005 model year. Previously, the division offered only passenger cars and an SUV.

The Relay and its corporate siblings — the Chevrolet Uplander, Pontiac Montana SV6 and Buick Terraza — are billed as "crossover sport vans." They blend SUV-like styling touches with the functionality of a "mid-van." Practical features include sliding side doors and a low step-in height, but all of General Motors' divisions are avoiding the stigma associated with the minivan's tame image. The Relay is the first Saturn model to seat seven passengers.

Front-wheel drive is standard, but the Relay can also be fitted with all-wheel drive. A 3.5-liter V-6 mates with a four-speed-automatic transmission. For 2006, a 3.9-liter V-6 with additional power becomes optional for front-drive Relay 3 models.


Exterior
The basic look of the Relay is recognizably Saturn, but SUV-like styling cues include wide C-pillars and a horizontal grille. The Relay has ebony-colored lower cladding. The wheels measure 17 inches in diameter, and the optional roof rack has tubular-shaped side rails.

The base model has steel wheels, and uplevel versions have six-spoke silver-painted aluminum wheels. Built on a 121.1-inch wheelbase, the Relay is 204.9 inches long overall and 72 inches tall.


Interior
Seven passengers fit inside, and the Relay has three rows of seats. The second- and third-row seats can be folded and removed. The third-row bench is split 50/50. The seats in the base model have cloth inserts and "protein" vinyl bolsters that have a leatherlike appearance. Uplevel versions can be equipped with leather-appointed seats. Cargo volume totals 136.5 cubic feet with all the seats folded and 26.9 cubic feet when all the seats are up.

The Relay gets a three-spoke steering wheel that's leather wrapped in the uplevel model. Light maple-colored woodgrain decorates the radio and climate-control trim plate.

The Relay is available in two models, the Relay 2 and Relay 3. An overhead console and rail system are installed. Standard equipment includes a backseat DVD entertainment system, power heated mirrors, an eight-speaker CD/MP3-capable stereo, power windows and locks, and remote keyless entry. The Relay 3 adds a power driver's seat, a power-sliding door on the passenger side and rear climate controls. A power-sliding door on the driver's side is optional.

For 2006, an available PhatNoise media system offers a variety of multimedia capabilities including MP3 and MPEG playback and storage. This removable device mounts into the overhead console and can be connected to a home computer for downloading files.


Under the Hood
GM's 3.5-liter V-6 engine generates 201 horsepower and 216 pounds-feet of torque — slightly less in all-wheel drive versions. For 2006, a new 3.9-liter V-6 is optional in front-drive Relay 3 models. It features variable valve timing and generates an estimated 235 hp and 239 pounds-feet of torque. Both engines work with a four-speed-automatic transmission. When properly equipped, the Relay can tow up to 3,500 pounds. Versatrak all-wheel drive is optional on Relay 3 models.

Safety
All-disc antilock brakes, GM's OnStar communication system and daytime running lights are standard, while traction control is standard only on front-drive Relay 3 models. An integrated child-safety seat, rear parking assist and GM's StabiliTrak electronic stability system are optional. Seat-mounted side-impact airbags are available for the first two rows of seats.


Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(4.0)
Performance
(3.2)
Interior Design
(4.2)
Comfort
(3.8)
Reliability
(2.5)
Value For The Money
(2.8)

What Drivers Are Saying

(3.0)

Has excellent ride and driveability. Has issues!

by Electric Bill from San Diego on February 22, 2018

The van drives real nice and has plenty of power for 3.5l V-6. The lights flicker under medium to hard acceleration. Lots of complaints of this. I think it's a bad regulator design problem. When the ... Read full review

(4.0)

best minivan on the street

by someone who knows about cars from QUEENS,NY on September 8, 2009

this car was the best so far in almost all the catagories. its perfect for the family. the ride is smooth, it can take good punishment, it has a great engine. handles great. its very safe for a family ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2006 Saturn Relay currently has 2 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2006 Saturn Relay has not been tested.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Relay received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker