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Saab 9-3 Sedan



  • saablcpsaablcp Posts: 195
    Saab will only pay for the oil changes under their pre-paid maintenance programs in accordance with the 10k/or 12 mo. schedule.Any intermediate changes would be at the owners cost.In light of the fact that this would generate additional income for the service dept.,I think your skepticism regarding what this person was told by his dealer is questonable.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    Hm. Are you suggesting that 2-3 extra oil changes would be a better profit maker than a new car? Especially considering that those extra oil changes might well be performed by a third party or by the owner themselves?

    There's a definite pattern for service intervals to become longer when manufacturers pay for them, independent of actual improvements to the engine. And in the case of manufacturers dropping free service ( such as audi ) the service intervals have become shorter. Also, when service was free/factored into price audi engines had longer intervals than the mechanically identical VW engines.
  • flick2flick2 Posts: 4
    My dealer recommended getting it done at 5000 miles due to it being a new engine with possible metallic bits being in the oil. Since this in in line with what my father and father-in-law always told me, I'm going to get it done (at my expense since not part of normal service). It can't hurt.
  • saablcpsaablcp Posts: 195
    Interesting leap of logic......service manager is in cahoots with new car sales to get you into a new car every 100,000 miles instead of every 250,000 miles.In this day and age when leasing accounts for more than half of Saabs new car sales I think your basic premise is largely irrelevant.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    1) I never said anyone was in cahoots with anyone. I just said a single dealer owner might be biased a bit in his own interests.

    2) You're making my argument for me. To paraphrase your argument: "50% of people lease, so who cares how long the car lasts?"
  • So, Saabs kind of get a bad rap for being in the shop a lot, especially the newer ones. I've had my 2003 9-3 for a while now, and I honestly don't think of it as a problematic car. These are the problems I've had:

    1. Driver and Passenger-side headlight failures (replacement necessary)
    2. Driver and Passenger-side break light failures (replacement necessary)
    3. Check engine light came on (went away)
    4. Break failure (absolutely momentary, went away)
    5. Front break pads and rotors made grinding noise (replacement necessary)
    6. Saab lock system failure (occurs occasionally, manual lock necessary on rear driver side door)
    7. Remote unable to unlock car (very rarely occurs, unlock manually, and immediately turn car on to turn off alarm)(remote battery not low)
    8. Traction control failure (only happens when breaking on certain hills, ABS pulsates, not a problem)
    9. The far passenger air vent is broken (unable to close vent or direct air (Saab wants $300 to fix))
    10. Had to replace middle windshield washer ($7, did it myself)
    11. Coating peeling off of several climate control knobs, as well as the glove box release button (can't find needed part, problem not obvious)
    12. Engine Malfunction light came on, twice (problem went away both times (since Saab dealer was closed both days, I waited it out))

    Now, I know potential Saab customers are probably nervous after reading that, but the truth is that most problems aren't as big as they seem. It's a great little car, and I'm happy that I gave it a chance. Most problems are wear and tear, the rest went away pretty quickly. I think Saab is still a growing company. They need to start exploring better quality interior materials, expanding their model line up, customer base, and advertising, and figure out how to rival among companies like BMW and Mercedes. I personally am excited to see this company grow and hopefully evolve substantially. It's still a great company with a unique product to offer, plus not everyone has one like the BMW 3-series sedan.
  • I am looking to buy my first Saab ever. I like the 9-3 Aero's for 2005 and newer. I have a 2005 Subaru WRX STi, but I think I might sell it and sacrafice the insane performance and AWD for something more refined yet still sporty. I have found a CPO 2006 9-3 Aero with 15,000 miles on it but the dealer hasn't priced it yet. Can anyone give me some price ranges to think about? Also, I live in Vermont where winter driving can be treacherous. How do they perform in the snow (assuming I buy new snow tires)? Thanks!
  • bwbbwb Posts: 12
    It might have something to do that the front brakes are ceramic and the rear aren't. The ceramic brakes are cleaner and little harder (or so I hear). I would also get them done at a independent mechanic as it will probably be cheaper if the dealer doesn't come down in price. I also thought all routine maintainence was covered until 36K including brakes???
  • Anyone experienced any 'false alarms' on the warning light before?

    My car is only 3 weeks / 800 miles old and the "Right Low Beam Failure" warning came on today. I got out of the car to check and both front lights seem to work just fine. After I turn off the warning on the dash it never came back on (so far).

    Anyone had this experience?
  • shihanbshihanb Posts: 17
    I complained on the Saab customer service hotline, and they told me that brake wear was not includedin the warranty, I had to pay out of my own pocket. In case that is not true, at least i have a case number to reference, but as my car has 28K miles, i think you may be misinformed, brake wear does not appear to be covered. I brought it to my own mechanic who then had the rear rotors checked for wear, and then left them in and installed new pads, saving me over $200. I tried to get the mechanic to put in ceramic rear pads, he wouldn't do it, saying that he had to go with the OEM recommended replacements in order to be safe, and ceramics were not in the computer as rear pad replacements yet. Next time, i will do rear ceramics.
  • waterdrwaterdr Posts: 307
    CPO is definately the way to go. You will get the biggest bang for the buck this way by a long shot. I think this is the best way to buy a Saab.

    The car will be a lot more grown up then the STI. But don't think that the 03 will drive anything like it. While Saabs do well in the snow, the AWD of the STI will do circles around the Saab.

    The STI is a skateboard too....handles like crazy!

    With all that said, I am not a big fan of the STI. They seems like very expensive econo boxes and I just can't get passed that. So, unless you are actually ralley racing, I just don't understand why anyone would spend $40k for one of these when you consider other options on the market.

    If you are no longer concerned with taking corners at the highest possible speed (perhaps only slower then a Elise), then you may be ready for the Saab. I do like the look of the Aero and you do get more goodies too. The car will hussle well, BUT it is NOT a sports car.

    If I had to guess on the price, I think you are prolly looking at something in the high 20's.....$28 - $30k, but that is just a guess.
  • flick2flick2 Posts: 4
    Yes, I got it once very early on, like at about 500 miles or so. There was nothing wrong with the lights and the message has never appeareed again (4,300 mi. now)
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    Ah, the STI. It's part of a small category, along with the evo. Basically, these are very fast economy cars. They can hold their own with some very fancy cars on a track, and take you to the grocery store, but they are still economy cars. Nothing wrong with that, to be sure, but some people i've known with such cars eventually want some of the features that lux or near-lux cars have: comfort, safety, quiet, etc.

    That being said, the 2008 9-3 can be ordered with a sophisticated AWD (moves torque to the rear while accelerating), a very slick limited-slip rear differential, and in this guise makes 280hp and 295lb-ft. It's not going to move quite like an STI, it's making some concessions to comfort, safety, quiet, etc, but it's going to be darn quick, and good in the snow besides.
  • bwbbwb Posts: 12
    Bummer, I keep on learning these valuable lessons as I get older.
    I shouldn't assume anything. I just figured it was covered since it was covered on my Audi and my friends BMW. I'm glad you got your local mechanic to do it. I do like how the ceramic brakes leave less dust.
  • waterdrwaterdr Posts: 307
    To be honest, I have NEVER heard of brakes or pads ever being covered under warranty unless there was a defect.

    I suppose someone could have bought a warranty that covered this or perhaps a rare few manufacturers have done this from time to time, but I was say that this is a rare thing indeed.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    Audi used to cover brakes under the "included service"

    BMW still does--all they don't cover is tires.
  • flick2flick2 Posts: 4
    correction to my previous response, here is what my dealer says:

    We recomend every 5,000 miles for the oil change....required every 10,000...
    It's up to you if you'd like to change it at 5K...I would do that because even though it's full synthetic....condensation occurs and dirt builds...
    If its a leased car....its not as important....

    could be $ making scheme, who knows. But I've seen other forum posts of Saab owners complaining of engine sludge too. I think I will do it at 10,000 interval until the free maint is finished and then change it 2x per year which will be 7000-8000 mi.
  • waterdrwaterdr Posts: 307
    Looks like I need to start buying different brands.
  • waterdrwaterdr Posts: 307
    Hell, I have been running every 15k....just what the book says. Looks like I should start changing at 7500 miles.

    Anyone know if a standard oil change place can do a Saab? Anything goofy with these things? My Saab dealer, while great, is 30 minutes away and I need an apt.
  • bwbbwb Posts: 12
    upon furthe review, it looked like SAAB even covered them on the '04 and '05 for the first 12k miles or 12 months as they covered every thing including "wear items", but changed their policy with the '06. As well as already stated, Audi did until last year and BMW still does for the first 50k miles.
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