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I have worked on 3 different Solstice GXPs for other people, now working on a Sky base for myself.

I started thinking which one visually tickles me more so I searched the forum and found a few older threads on the subject. I decided to start a new thread, maybe because it's new thinking for me.

My over-all preference is a Sky, but the Solstice is on it's heels.

First of all, I am a man of functionality. I generally don't appreciate "fake" features in anything, let alone a car. But for some reason, the Sky's fake grille work in the hood, fenders, and fascia is "good fake" to me. That surprises me about myself. Still, I wish Saturn offered some kind of practical usefulness in this category, yet I don't see myself making changes to have it.

I feel the twin peaks in the Sky trunk lid and tulip are a little too sharp for my liking (the mild Solstice is my preference) and I don't care for the vertical crease in the dead center of the rear fascia. But in-general, the Sky is my preference when it comes to exterior styling.

It's a flipped decision concerning the interior. The Solstice is styled more like a "driver's car" which I like. But my wife prefers the Sky, I think she feels more welcomed in the passenger seat. One thing about the Solstice dash, I feel the location of the 12V outlet could be improved upon.

Sky or Solstice, the deep tunnel gauge cluster gets a serious "thumbs-down" from me. It's hard to see unless I am in just the right position. The illumination was terrible until I did the Black Cat Custom gauge transformation with my Sky. That was well worth the expense and the effort on my part.

Redline or Base, GXP or Base, I don't see any advantage in having a base except for keeping the power plant simple. I drive cars conservatively so "power" is rarely utilized which is why I ended up with a base. I do wish my Sky base had the dual exhaust for style alone. It is otherwise a fully featured base now of which I value all the bells and whistles. I added myself, the power driver seat height adjustment.

Boy, I ended up sharing a lot more than I thought. I could go on and on, but this is long enough.
 

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I prefer all facets of the Sky, but the interior was the real deciding factor for me.

I agree that fake is bad, but "functional but unnnecessary" is pretty close. The vents aren't needed, so making them functional is barely a step above fake. My plan from about Day 2 was to replace the fake vents with pieces that fit the same spaces but don't try to look like vents. By the time I had time to do that they didn't bother me as much so i still haven't done anything about them.

The hump peaks are about the same to me visually, but the sharper peaks are more functional in that they are stronger. You hear about finger dimples in Solstices, but not in Skys. The styling of the rear is an homage to the Vauxhall Lightning that the cars were more-or-less based on, so I actually like that.

The interior is far and away better as it is more "traditional" except for the piano black, and I'm OK with that as an accent. I would have liked for the radio to have been positioned for better visibility in the sun, but I can live with it as my hand makes a nice sunshade and the move is almost reflexive now.

the gauges only bother me on sunny days when the top is up, otherwise i can see them fine and have never understood what all the fuss was about. Maybe I fit the 99th percentile for the car's design, because it all fits quite well.

The NA is simpler and therefore more reliable, and I also believe that the suspension is superior for the vast majority of street driving. The clutch is lighter and the engine has more torque at idle making most take-offs smoother and easier.

The only function of the dual outlet exhaust is style, so more non-functional fakery. My NA has a RL takeoff exhaust, and although louder because of the lower-restriction muffler it is otherwise identical to the original, and was a 30-minute change.

I don't use the power seat in my RL so i don't miss it in the NA, and the non-power seat measures a bit lower so I like that. If I was shorter or shared the car with a shorter driver I would want one, but for me it hasn't been an issue.
 

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My choice is the Sky RL. Why, because that is what the guy was selling that my wife wanted. Looking back from MY perspective, I like the European looking front of the Solstice, but everything else is the Sky. I like the RL because it is scarier than it looks and it already looks "cute" to the ladies, and Bad Ass to the guys. Would I take a Solstice if offered, sure, but I love the look of the Sky.
 

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Since I own a Solstice and usually post on the Solstice Forum, I now feel I have a great opportunity, even a duty to represent the minority opinion. Some Solstice owners do prefer the looks of the Sky, but I am not one of them!

I didn't compare interiors when Kappa shopping because I so preferred the look of the Solstice. I've never been in or looked closely at the Sky interior. So that interior superiority was lost on me! I did read it was more luxurious before I purchased my Pure GXP.

I too prefer the Sky wheels.

Not mentioned so far is the smaller production volume of the Sky which is a plus.

Perhaps the Solstice looks more feminine, and the Sky looks more macho. Who cares? I would be on a Harley with tattoos and open pipes if I had a need to look more macho. On the other hand I risk being in a "cute" car when in my Solstice. Luckily the handling and turbo with the tune makes me forget about "cute." I'm too busy being fast and fun.

Ok now that I've acknowledged 3 or 4 good points of the Sky I'll start my attack. The Solstice form is less cluttered with vents, creases, and chrome, and the more jellybean shape is more unique and timeless, more controversial, more attention grabbing in a crowd. True it looks more like the ugly old oval Taurus than the Sky does, but different enough that doesn't look like that old Taurus. It looks more like the jellybean shaped Jaguars and Aston Martins than the Sky does. There. I truly like the shape of the Sky, it's the excessive styling that turns me off. As an analogy I'd say I like the older simpler Honda Civics to the cluttered ones of the last few years. In that vein, as mentioned, the Sky looks more modern.

Mostly when it comes to cars I prefer less creases, less vents, and more compound curves. A dozen cars with simple clean curvy lines better looking than the Solstice come to mind immediately, but they all cost much more, so there's that.

On the Sky specifically, IMO, the chrome on the front bumper and the taillights are the ugliest features. Could be changed without too much trouble if necessary, and I would have if Solstice did not exist and Sky did. But I notice most people like those Saturn taillights, so the differences of opinion is what makes threads like this interesting. Or like a war.
 

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Since I own a Solstice and usually post on the Solstice Forum, I now feel I have a great opportunity, even a duty to represent the minority opinion. Some Solstice owners do prefer the looks of the Sky, but I am not one of them!

.......
I was willing to give you the benefit of the doubt until you mentioned "Sky" and "Honda Civic" in the same conversation.
 

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I see the cars totally different. To me the Solstice is the early Covette, and I like those lines. I like the interior of the Solstice because to me it is far more sports car looking than the sky.

The Sky has late model Corvette looks to me, even the 2015 and up have similar lines.

I have owned both When I bought my Mallett I was going to make it look like a late 50's Vette, but it was too rare it turned out and had to make it exactly like it was designed.

My Skpel is quite modified and some work done on the hood vents. I did not like the chrome at all, so most of the chrome on mine is gone. I really don't like the micky mouse look of the working vents. Rivots thru the body to me looks cheap and add on. But what ever makes the owner happy is fine with me.

I think if I could have done my Solstice like I wanted to, it might have won out, but for now the Sky is far better looking and I never get the cute comment!!!. I worked very hard to do away with that attitude the moment I bought the car. Most call mine mean looking. I like that idea.
 

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Mine has never been called "cute", but I have had someone pull up next to me at a traffic light and give me her phone number, so maybe that counts.
 

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When you are 83, it will take more than a "cute" car to get a phone number. Need more like a miracle. And then it will be just so you can show her husband where to get a "cute" car.
 

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I recently had a lady park beside me at my local Canadian Tire just as i was getting into my Sky. She and her passenger got out, she looked at me and said "nice car.... and you're kind of cute too". Trouble was that she was probably in her early 70's (a few yrs older than me) and she was there with her mother.....

That aside, i have a friend who has had a GXP for about 8 yrs now. I liked the idea of the car but never cared for its looks. I remember seeing the Skys at a nearby Saturn dealer back when i bought an Saturn Astra XR when they were clearing them out back in 2009 and thinking, damn that's a nice looking car.
 

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Six of one, half a dozen of the other.

I like the Sky interior but have never been a fan of stick on fake vents and such. OTOH, some feel that the less adorned Solstice looks a bit plain.

Each has it's fans, but they are the same car so it doesn't really warrant any major argument especially as there is no right answer to aesthetic debates.

Of course I much prefer the sleek purity of the coupe form over the needlessly humpy convertibles, and as that just came in the Pontiac flavour, there was no real decision for me.
 
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I wanted a Solstice, the wife didn't. I'm a Pontiac kinda guy.

I told her to pick what she wanted; least miles, color and newest that she liked.
So, she picked a 2008 Sky Redline in Silver with 40,000 miles on it.
 

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I like the Solstice but it is kind of bland. The sky has added features that make it look more expensive, especially in the interior, headlights and taillights. I like the projector lenses and the added intricacy of the taillights. The Sky has improvements in the suspension and a more sexy body.
 

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I like the Solstice but it is kind of bland. The sky has added features that make it look more expensive, especially in the interior, headlights and taillights. I like the projector lenses and the added intricacy of the taillights. The Sky has improvements in the suspension and a more sexy body.
Most of that is your opinion, and so that's fine. But saying the "Sky has improvements in the suspension" is untrue. They are the same (GXP-Redline and Base-Base) with the exception being that the Sky is heavier, and so has a slightly higher spring rate to accommodate the weight increase:

 

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Beat me to that one! No suspension difference.
 
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