Can anyone tell me what it should cost to replace a rack & pinion and outer tie rod ends in a Saturn?
Get an estimate from someone like Midas, that gives you something to work from. If you don’t use Midas, your independent mechanic will charge a little more, but will likley be more competent. A GM dealer, who HAS to service your car under Uncle Sam’s orders (he is majority owner) will charge you the most.
No one can say because the price will vary a lot depending on where the parts are procured and the flat rate labor charge. The labor charge can vary wildly from one part of the country to the other and some places may be 2 to 3 times higher than others.
The best thing to do is call at least 3 places in your area for an estimate and go from there.
You could try this site to try and get an idea: http://repairpal.com/
Of course, most of the costs it shows me are well above anything I’ve actually paid, even on the low end of their range. There are also other anomalies, such as the idea that replacing an entire steering rack for my car costs LESS on their estimates than replacing the inner tie rods. Never mind that the former is considerably more in labor and parts than the latter (it can be done without removing the rack)