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      06-23-2012, 09:52 PM   #1
Brennan
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08 Saab 9-3

Just wondering what you guys thought of these cars, I know Saab have been through a rough time recently, things havent really worked out for them, but i think their cars are really nice, ive always loved the 'left-field' approach from them and quirkiness of the brand.

The parents are looking at a facelift 9-3 Vector Sport 1.9TID 150 in silver, one exactly like in the picture below, i think its a great looking car, especially from the front end, the seats are the comfiest ive ever sat in and the 150hp engine is torquey and responsive, overall i was very impressed

Have any of you guys had any experiences of these cars?

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      06-23-2012, 11:19 PM   #2
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They starts to grow on me after, well you know what happened to the company, I would probably buy a 9-5 from their last batch and I spotted one last year and interestingly, the dealer said it was not for sale at the time. I had no idea what was their reason but I moved on.
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      06-24-2012, 12:49 AM   #3
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well when you get inside one you will figure out why... if you liked 1st gen caddy cts interior or like the gm green monochrom display then perhaps you will like it... i think chevy malibu has better interior.
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      06-24-2012, 06:50 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by py0413 View Post
They starts to grow on me after, well you know what happened to the company, I would probably buy a 9-5 from their last batch and I spotted one last year and interestingly, the dealer said it was not for sale at the time. I had no idea what was their reason but I moved on.
The new 9-5 is a great looking car but my parents have no need for a car of that size otherwise they would have considered it on the shortlist

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well when you get inside one you will figure out why... if you liked 1st gen caddy cts interior or like the gm green monochrom display then perhaps you will like it... i think chevy malibu has better interior.
i think the interior isnt bad, the large dash is a Saab tradition and is meant to resemble an aeroplane cockpit, coming from Saab's aeronautical heritage. I do like the quirky designs such as the floor mounted ignition and handbrake inter-graded into the shape of the centre console. The green back lighting doesnt bother me, to be honest our bmw's orange monochrom display is not much better. I can see what you mean the interior is similar to the CTS but it is functional.

Last edited by Brennan; 06-24-2012 at 07:01 AM.
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      06-26-2012, 03:02 PM   #5
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this is my cousins saab... the shape or form and functionality of the interior may be a preference, but there is no way you can compare the quality of BMW with a SAAB. yes its quirky... but i think its all just unnecessary bits with no legit reason behind it trying hard to defy it self.

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      06-26-2012, 03:33 PM   #6
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I've owned a Saab and never will again. They are very neat cars that I find very attractive but they are quite unreliable and the repairs can be pricey. Why do you think there are so many indy Saab specialty shops? It ain't because they're dependable...
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      06-26-2012, 04:11 PM   #7
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I've known a couple people who have had them. 'Never again' is a common phrase among them.
I have no personal experience with their autos though.

Last edited by NYC6; 06-26-2012 at 04:41 PM.
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      06-26-2012, 04:20 PM   #8
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I used to valet cars back in college and came across my first Saab. I went mad trying to find the ignition.
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      06-26-2012, 04:44 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NYC6 View Post
I've known a couple people who have had them. 'Never again' is a common phrase among them.
I have no personal experience with their autos though.
I had one, although older than '08 by a few years.

Definitely NEVER AGAIN. I've had an atypically problematic 335 and it's an absolutely incredibly reliable car in comparison to my 9-3.

YMMV though. Maybe they've fixed a lot since then, but I really can't remember the last time an owner told me they were pleased with the reliability of the car.
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      06-26-2012, 07:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfJericho View Post
I've owned a Saab and never will again. They are very neat cars that I find very attractive but they are quite unreliable and the repairs can be pricey. Why do you think there are so many indy Saab specialty shops? It ain't because they're dependable...
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I had one, although older than '08 by a few years.

Definitely NEVER AGAIN. I've had an atypically problematic 335 and it's an absolutely incredibly reliable car in comparison to my 9-3.

YMMV though. Maybe they've fixed a lot since then, but I really can't remember the last time an owner told me they were pleased with the reliability of the car.
I dont think any cars are that reliable, ive had to spend 2000 on repairs on my 3 series and i reckon that would be more than you would have to spend on a 9-3
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      06-26-2012, 08:35 PM   #11
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I've had 3 coworkers and friends that have owned GM Saab's and all of them were horribly problematic. One needed an engine after 25K miles. If you get one make sure it has a good warranty. Saab's were better before GM.
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      06-27-2012, 08:25 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron.B View Post
I dont think any cars are that reliable, ive had to spend 2000 on repairs on my 3 series and i reckon that would be more than you would have to spend on a 9-3
Mine's turbo ate itself and subsequently grenaded the engine. It also had coil pack issues repeatedly, transmission issues, even the e-brake line snapped. The best part was you had to leave it in R to get the key out, but the transmission would sometimes slip out of R on its own (parked or moving). That combined with the snapped e-brake cable made parking on any sort of incline very very interesting for a couple of days.

And I don't think the Saab tax was quite as high as the BMW tax, but I do remember there being a shitty Saab tax on everything, even though it was just a reskinned Cavalier or whatever.

Piss poor ownership experience. That's JMHO though. Like I said, I don't know if my experience was typical, but the thing I seem to have in common with most former or current Saab owners are that we can BS for hours about all the shit that has gone wrong with the cars or other stuff we know we need to look out for. I'm not alone.
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      06-27-2012, 12:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ragingclue View Post
Mine's turbo ate itself and subsequently grenaded the engine. It also had coil pack issues repeatedly, transmission issues, even the e-brake line snapped. The best part was you had to leave it in R to get the key out, but the transmission would sometimes slip out of R on its own (parked or moving). That combined with the snapped e-brake cable made parking on any sort of incline very very interesting for a couple of days.

And I don't think the Saab tax was quite as high as the BMW tax, but I do remember there being a shitty Saab tax on everything, even though it was just a reskinned Cavalier or whatever.

Piss poor ownership experience. That's JMHO though. Like I said, I don't know if my experience was typical, but the thing I seem to have in common with most former or current Saab owners are that we can BS for hours about all the shit that has gone wrong with the cars or other stuff we know we need to look out for. I'm not alone.
what year was your 9-3?
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      06-27-2012, 01:06 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron.B View Post
what year was your 9-3?
'99 SE

Like I said, quite a bit older than the one in the OP. I'm sure nothing remains on the new one that was on mine, but I've got a friend in SoCal with a newer one and he's very eager to ditch it. Oddly enough, it's because of reliability issues.

And don't the JD Power ratings have them dead last, or near dead last? Haven't they been there for a while? I don't think Saab reliability issues are new, nor are they a thing of the past.

It was a riot of a car though. Pretty quick for its day and quirky enough to let you know it was "special".
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      06-27-2012, 01:27 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ragingclue View Post
'99 SE

Like I said, quite a bit older than the one in the OP. I'm sure nothing remains on the new one that was on mine, but I've got a friend in SoCal with a newer one and he's very eager to ditch it. Oddly enough, it's because of reliability issues.

And don't the JD Power ratings have them dead last, or near dead last? Haven't they been there for a while? I don't think Saab reliability issues are new, nor are they a thing of the past.

It was a riot of a car though. Pretty quick for its day and quirky enough to let you know it was "special".
I think it would be unfair to compare your car to a car that the brand has built a decade later. Time, money, regulations and advances in technology have ensured the latest 9-3 is a worthy competitor in the compact executive class.

The JD Power survey in my opinion is a lot of rubbish, they ranked the jag x-type 2nd in the list, i mean who drives them cars now? They are like the most ancient compact executive on the market.

And if you do want to go by these results, our BMWs didnt fair too much better, only 2 places above the Saab. They even ranked the Saab more mechanically reliable than the BMW.

http://www.whatcar.com/NonCar/Lexus/285121235630.jpg JD Power Survey 2012
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      06-27-2012, 01:35 PM   #16
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Quote:
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I think it would be unfair to compare your car to a car that the brand has built a decade later. ...

The JD Power survey in my opinion is a lot of rubbish....

And if you do want to go by these results, our BMWs didnt fair too much better, only 2 places above the Saab. They even ranked the Saab more mechanically reliable than the BMW.
Yeah that's why I stated that my experience was with an older version. A lot can change, but I do talk to owners these days (I don't know, it's kinda like there's a bit of a bond there having been a Saab owner), and I can't say I've heard a lot of good stuff about the reliability of even the newer ones directly from owners' mouths.

JD Power isn't the be-all end-all, but I think it does provide a good relative showing of certain aspects of certain makes/models of automobiles. Its findings shouldn't be taken as gospel, but it's a damn good tool compared to the alternatives.

Yeah, BMWs didn't fare much better, that's no shocker to me.

In the end, if you want one, get one. They're not the most reliable cars on the planet, but that's not the only aspect of car ownership.
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      06-27-2012, 09:57 PM   #17
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New parts are not available

My wife has a 2008 Saab 9-3 with 41,000 miles. Please be advised new parts are not available any more. The car has a manual transmission, and a valet guy broke the "reverse lock" because he didn't know how to engage the reverse. We could not find a new part, and needed to buy an used one in New York (we live in Texas).

Other than the above, the car has been very good to us in our 20,000 miles of ownership.
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      06-28-2012, 11:32 AM   #18
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If I remember correctly the reliability started to get better after 2004-2005 model years but still bottom of the list and a bastardized parts bin car. If the OP wants to take a gamble with his money then a Saab, Volvo, Jag or Audi are good choices.
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      06-28-2012, 04:14 PM   #19
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sounds like his hearts set on one... perhaps we will hear back from him after year or so and convince us.
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      06-28-2012, 04:28 PM   #20
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sounds like his hearts set on one... perhaps we will hear back from him after year or so and convince us.
read the first post lol the car is for my parents, not me. Im happy with my e90
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      06-29-2012, 02:15 AM   #21
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My boss has a 2010 9-3 tdi, it's been in the shop more often than not. You name the part and it's been replaced, he wants to get rid of it and will take a massive hit, even selling it privately is hard, nobody wants them and they are going for a song, his only real option is to drive it till it dies.
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      06-29-2012, 02:19 AM   #22
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If your parents want a Swedish saloon get them into an S80, they aren't much bigger and they are a better car.
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