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SAAB 9-3

1468910

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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    Sounds like you walked away so as in aviation, your SAAB performed its primary mission with aplomb. How long did you sit on the side of the road until help arrived. Also, how did you belts hold up. Did you have any problem freeing yourself. Was the passenger compartment compressed at all or did the steel cage stay intact? Have you contacted SAAB USA to have them review the structural integrity of the passenger compartment? Did the doors open without difficulty or did you have to crawl out through shattered glass? I am very interested to know because sooner or later we are likely to be involved in a serious collision or weather or fatigue related crash. My other quaetion is whether the engine shut itself off after the crash? I am glad to hear that there was little fuel spillage and that there was therefore no fire. Did the windshields stay intact despite shattering and cracking?
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    Saab's don't look good after a crash, but the passengers are supposed to have a better than average chance of walking away with only mild blunt force trauma associated with rapid deceleration. Did you sustain lacerations or bruises to any organs, liver, kidneys? Did the belts leave burns or welts on the skin from sudden constriction? Did you cut you lip or bite your tongue? Any broken bones or did you survive with just coontusions and lacerations to your arm due to the open sun roof? Thank your lucky stars, you were not driving a 9-3 convertible!!!
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    Hey Fellman, do you want the poor guy to post x-rays of his injuries, as though he were the president getting a growth sliced off his nose?
    Glad you're alive and well Fred. I noticed elsewhere you're looking at a Jetta. Might it be your replacement vehicle?
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    Wow, lots of questions, all of which would be interesting to hear about. But all I really want to know is: What condition was your underware in after the crash and were your drawers salvagable?

    This is what happens when you try to pull back onto the road surface too quickly after screwing up. I've seen cars flip just by trying to get one wheel off the berm and back on the road surface too quickly. Better luck next time.

    Drew S
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    corvettecorvette Member Posts: 10,366
    Gee, I would expect better of a Saab dealer, but as they say, if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself. Try raising the antenna, cleaning all the grime off, then spraying it with WD-40 and wiping it off with a paper towel. You should do the WD-40 thing regularly with any power antenna.
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    I try to look at these occurences as the random events they are and I try to divorce emotion from the scientific process of inquiry. We all drive these cars. Are we all in denial about the possibility of a crash or do any of you wish to know occupants fare in such scenarios. Real life crashes are far more instructive than controlled tests. Most of you bought SAABs in part because you have a safety fetish, so yeah, I want to know more. Obviously if frederick does not wish to write about the experience, he will ignore my post and I won't persist in this line of inquiry.
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    eckdareckdar Member Posts: 30
    I believe the 9-3 owner's manual says specifically not to use lubricants on the antenna, just to wipe with a clean cloth. Is your advice based on your own experience or dealer advice, etc.?
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    If the manual recommends wiping with a lubricant, DON'T use WD-40. Contrary to what most people believe, WD-40 is NOT a lubricant, it is a a moisture repellent, a corrosive one at that. WD is great for getting rusted bolts loose and does have lubricating properties for awhile but they are quickly gone along with whatever other lubricating material that used to be present. That's why people who use WD to lubricate, find that they have to apply it often.

    Drew S
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    opps, just re-read your post. I misunderstood thinking you said manual recommends rather than does "not" recommend. In either case, my comment on WD40 is still valid, is not the best thing to use for lubrication.

    Drew S.
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    Following the lengthy discussion of speakers here a few weeks ago, I just replaced the dash speakers in my 9-3 with Boston Acoustics CX3, two-way units. Sound is much improved for only $90 (Cdn.) and half an hour of work.
    I don't know much about speakers, but for what it's worth, the two that came with the car didn't match, ie. they looked quite different than each other.
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    eckdareckdar Member Posts: 30
    bluejays1
    When you said "I just replaced ..." did you mean you did the work yourself or you had it done? BTW what does (Cdn.) mean? My dealer mechanic said the door speaker locations are pre-wired in the 9-3. (A question that I recall coming up in the previous discussion.)

    Had the volume on the remote chirp reduced from high to low, no longer annoying.
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    woj1woj1 Member Posts: 48
    corvette - been there, done that. thanks for the post but I am convinced that I will just have to make a fuss and have the unit replaced. It is getting worse by the day and accompanied by a lot of clicking noises.
    Are the doors on a base 9-3 pre-wired for speakers?
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    corvettecorvette Member Posts: 10,366
    I've done the WD-40 thing to 2 Volvo's with power antennas and 2 Hondas with the cheesy pull-up kind. It did not cause problems, but I guess from now on I'll use 3-in-1 oil. I don't know what Saab recommends as far as power antenna maintenance is concerned.
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    I actually replaced the speakers myself, but I'm talking about the dash speakers here; I didn't fool with the door panels etc. I've read elsewhere that the 9-3 doors are not prewired as the 900s were. Anyway, I'm happy with the sound now so I probably won't mess with the door locations.
    Cdn. stands for Canadian, the currency in which I paid $90.
    Getting the chirp quieted or eliminated is still on my to do list.
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    I finally made it back to the dealer to have the alarm chirps killed. When I unlock the doors or trunk now, all I get is a nice quiet flashing of the lights. No more scaring the crap out of people in parking lots and garages everywhere.
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    Hey did you ever think maybe you were scaring the crap out of the hearing impaired with those flashing lights! Maybe someone will have seizure because of those lights as in the Andromeda Strain! Gosh, I guess you only care about the those who live in the hearing world! How insensitive!
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    You'd be right at home over in the News section discussion of daytime running lights. Some clowns there seem to think the only thing in the universe brighter than DRLs is the sun.
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    Perhaps that statement would be true if we launched a SAAB into space on a trajectory to take it out of the solar system. I think around Uranus, the sun and DRLS cause equal amounts of windshield glare.
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    Isn't that what the Viggen is all about?
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    I read a very informative article about the new Viggen on-line in Dealer magazine which has a queriable archive. Indeed the price will be 37.5 K MSRP. However, I am very eager to learn if SAAB will offer the driving school as an option to other SAAB owners. I think it is a great idea which has a lot of appeal today. (See Nascar growth as spectator sport).

    As for lauching the Viggen, I a very interested to learn how the new suspension modifications impact accleration and how the 17' tires respond to the new gearing of the HOT in the Viggen. Sounds like a real road warrior for the interstate. Anyone catch the top speed, is it also liited to 144mph as with the regular 9-3?
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    Also, any possibility of leasing Viggens? To be honest, I would rather the Viggen than the high end 9-3 convertible which costs thousands more.
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    pure911pure911 Member Posts: 40
    i wonder how they will quell torque steer, which is a problem in the base 9-3, and would be a real danger in a higher powered model like the Viggen.
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    bill42bill42 Member Posts: 29
    I dont see any reason why you could not lease a Viggen. I've asked my Saab dealer to put the numbers together for me. He said as soon as Saab tells them the money factor he'll give me a quote.
    My guess is that it will come pretty close to the 9-5 that is being nationally advertised for $459 per month. that is for a car with an MSRP of $38,000 +.


    We will see.
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    Here we go again with the torque steer comments. Lets not forget that Saab has a long history of producing specialty performance cars. Just look at all the Rally Racing wins they've logged. The Viggen will certainly not be Saabs first high horsepower car and not their last I'm sure.

    High horsepower in a front driver may not be the ultimate combination in all situations but neither is high (or low) horsepower in a rear engine rear driver and look at how awesome that experience can be. I expect the Viggen to be a very exciting car to drive. Just learn to drive it properly get a good grip on the wheel and have a blast.
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    I was at the dealer yesterday to pick up some stuff and struck up a conversation with one of the guys out back. He says that Saab is apparently going to off set any torque steer problems in the Viggen with electronics that will somehow limit all the torque hitting at once off the line. I'm not an engineer and I'm paraphrasing so in other words - I have no idea what they're doing to limit the problem. I hope to be able to test it out first hand sometime though.

    The thought did occur to me though that there have been several front drivers with 225 hp and I've never heard complaints about the problem. The 5 speed Aero had 225 hp and the new Acura TL has a 225 hp engine available as well.

    Drew S.
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    woj1woj1 Member Posts: 48
    Drew: It's all a matter of weight and gearing. Just drive Ford's defunct Taurus SHO and you'll get the picture.
    I was under the impression that Saab stated that there was no tracion control in the viggen. Can't wait to test one out :-)
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    pure911pure911 Member Posts: 40
    well, the problem with the Viggen is its turbocharged horsepower...because boost comes on quick (peaky horsepower and torque curves) it can overtax the tires which have to turn and accelerate with 60% of the weight on the front wheels. This is usually a problem. In rear engine\rear drive cars it is not...this layout and weight distribution actually helps the power to be transmitted to the ground in a more efficient fashion. (That is why a 400hp 993 Twin Turbo can do 0-60 in 3.7sec and a Viper with more hp and torque can do it in 4.4sec)

    I also heard at the New York Auto Show about the electronic control of torque steer on the Viggen using a special drive-by-wire throttle and computer. A trick differential like on the Honda Prelude SH would help too...
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    JHermonJHermon Member Posts: 22
    A quick kudos to a dealer. I just had my 99 9-3 SE in for its 10,000 mile service at Saab of Troy in Michigan. Got wonderful service from their rep (Susan Golemba), as well as a loaner convertible with sport exhaust and 17" wheel package. I always appreciate the loaner anyhow, but it is an extra treat to be able to drive something different - makes sense from the dealer perspective, of course. They're hoping to move me into a convertible or a 9-5 when my lease runs.

    Anyone looking for a dealer for sales or service, I couldn't have had a better experience.

    BTW, if you haven't driven the 9-3 convertible on a nice spring day, you should. Put a grin on my face all day.
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    I believe you are correct about Saab not putting traction control on the Viggen. I was told they will off set the problem in another manner. The electronics they talked about must be the "drive by wire" throttle that Alex referred to.

    BTW Alex, no question about the Porsche and Viper as far as traction. I've spent time behind the wheel of both those monsters, what an awesome experience. My earlier comment on the "rear drive - rear engine" layout was more in reference to the many new Porsche owners who end up with their tails into a guard rail before they learn how to properly handle such an unforgiving beast, at least with the previous generation 911. I haven't had the pleasure to drive the current one but understand that it is much more forgiving. My point being that every layout has its advantages and disadvantages.

    Drew S.
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    It's like dejavoius all over again. Sorry for the double post.
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    mznmzn Member Posts: 727
    Your host to the rescue!! ;-)

    carlady/host
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    Saab must be reading our comments here. I just got latest copy of Auto Week. In it they have announced that for the $37,750 price of a new Viggen, you get "flight lessons". The price includes enrollment in the "Viggen Flight Academy" which is a 2 day driving training school at the Panoz Racing School for Viggen owners only. If they offered flight training in a Viggen fighter jet, I'd get my down payment in today! Now I just need to figure out how to get into the class without actually owning a Viggen.

    Drew S.
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    woj1woj1 Member Posts: 48
    Wasn't the most recent version of the Porsche turbo AWD to avoid the inherent traction problems with that much HP? I though only the Cup cars were RWD.
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    bo_chungbo_chung Member Posts: 61
    Porsches had their own problems due to the fact that the engine sat behind the rear wheels. They are not immune to weight shifts during acceleration and handling at or above the limit produced scary results. AWD helped tremendously. Last generation 911 Turbos came with AWD standard. I had an opportunity to test drive the old and new 911s recently and felt that the new ones are much easier to drive but were not as fun as the older 911s. In any case, best drivetrain configuration is mid-engine layout. But then you must sacrifice utility. Everything has its price it seems. Viggen is no 911. But at only $37K with so much utility, it doesn't have to be.
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    corvettecorvette Member Posts: 10,366
    The June C&D (just came today) says the Viggen has "big-time torque steer"...
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    dskidski Member Posts: 414
    Those guys at Car & Driver would benefit from the driving school. Sure it has some torque steer, they should be able to reduce the "Big Time" with a little driver skill.

    To be fair to Car & Driver, the average driver will no doubt experience the problem. The only solution is for Saab to build a rear drive platform and that would defeat the mission or philosophy behind Saab cars. Oh and one other solution would be to build Saabs with 90 hp engines, no torque steer with that.

    Drew S.
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    bo_chungbo_chung Member Posts: 61
    an AWD Viggen that splits the torque evenly to all four wheels will take care of t-steer and wheel slip during fast launches.
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    bill42bill42 Member Posts: 29
    Some of us who are old enough to remember the
    1983-85 Audi turbo quattro rally coupes think that the Viggen could be this generation's rally coupe--except it does not have AWD.

    Of course the rally coupe was $35,000 back in 1984.
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    Actually if Volvo can make AWD, then SAAB should too especially for the 9-5 station wagon so it can compete with the Volvo cross country. An AWD 9-5 Viggen would crush an A-4 2.8 and might even beat out a 328. However, there would need to be an overhaul of the rear suspension to accomodate useful AWD. By useful, I mean the ability to acclerate into tight turns with spinning the inside wheels and without too much body roll.
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    corvettecorvette Member Posts: 10,366
    Of course torque steer can be controlled by driver skill, but it is annoying nonetheless. To add insult to injury, in the same issue the 9-5 wagon placed last out of five luxury wagons. "endearing Saab character" was listed as a high, and "annoying Saab quirks" a low. Sounds like two of the same thing.
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    bo_chungbo_chung Member Posts: 61
    tested were so very close (only one point difference between #6,5,4,3...). That means they are too close and the ranking are more of a reflection of editor's personal tastes. And Saab being the least "mainstream" was bound to lose there. And let's remember that BMW and M-B cost $10K (20%) more than the Saab. Did they score 20% higher? No! I WILL be impressed if they can build the same cars and sell them at 9-5's price.
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    woj1woj1 Member Posts: 48
    As a new question, I just hit a deer with our 9-3 several days ago and am being told that I will face an insurance surcharge...sounds plausible? Estimate is that it will cost $2400 to repair, mostly headlight and grill assembly replacement as well as the hood. Not much visible damage, but a lot of plastic in the front end has to be replaced.
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    What state is the policy underwritten in? Who is the carrier and what are the DOI regs for surcharges in cases of collision sans driver fault? Tell those jackasses that you will be happy to carbon copy their chief counsel on the letters you will be sending to the insurance commissioner, the NAtional Association of Insurance Commissioners and your state chairman of the state's ways and means committee. Then see how badly their P&L is dependent upon that surcharge. They will run for cover faster than cockroaches exposed to light. Remember is insurance is locally regulated by state government and as a taxpayer and resident, you do have juice in the capital.
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    woj1woj1 Member Posts: 48
    rfellman: Massachusetts...have a call out to the local insurance rep to sort out the details.
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    woj1woj1 Member Posts: 48
    For those of you interested in the Viggen: entertaining review in Top Gear rag from the UK. In summary:
    FOR 
    Thrusting turbo engine
    Superbly built
    Great long-distance cruiser
     
    AGAINST 
    No sports car
    Hefty price

    part of the article is available at their web site.
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    I just returned from a long weekend trip to Northern Ontario, driving several hours on two-lane roads cut out of the Cdn. shield rock with lakes visible in all directions. What a terrific place to put the 9-3 turbo through its paces. Passing was a hoot, zipping around cars and trucks with aplomb. Handling was super stable, so much so that I was about 50% over the speed limit most of the time (120 km/h vs. 80 km/h). It was a disappointment to return to the conventional highway for the last leg of the trip home.
    With my wife and daughter asleep and all our junk stowed in the rear, it was easy to forget everything and just drive. What a car.
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    eckdareckdar Member Posts: 30
    I too just got back from a long weekend road trip, about 800 miles round trip, about half on interstate and the other half on state and count 2 lane roads. (southern Wisconsin and Minnesota so the views weren't as good as bluejay1's) Can't say I was as enthusiastic about the 9-3 as bluejay1 either. The hatch was nice as I brought back stuff I couldn't have if I had a sedan. Found myself thinking about what I would trade the 9-3 for when my lease is up though (and I'm only 3 months into a 39 month lease). Had some stiff cross and head winds. Don't think the 9-3 is as stable as my A4. Considerable wind noise also. Something I haven't noticed before, probably the cross winds. Although I do enjoy the get-up-and-go the 9-3 turbo offers, the convenience (or should I say inconvenience) things negatively color my overall opinion, i.e., automatic locking trunk function, lack of auto climate control and air distribution control on the manual system, lack of space for small items between the seats and small size of the door pockets, radio that automatically comes on and raises the antenna when a CD is ejected. Also front seats have to be moved too far forward (both limits leg room and position is too close to air bags) to allow back seats to be fully folded down.
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    bluejays1bluejays1 Member Posts: 40
    You're certainly right about the antenna going up everytime you switch cds. Very annoying. It's a good idea for the antenna to be down when playing a cd, but I think the mechanism gets more of workout this way if you change cds very often. Since I had to replace the motor on my 900, I expect the same thing will happen this time -- only sooner.
    Next version should adopt the antenna from the 9-5, which is embedded in the rear window. Just like on your A4, eckdar.

    The trunk locking is not so annoying once you get used to it. Don't click it open until you are going to open it, and if you are coming back, lower it but don't push down so it catches. Then the auto lock won't bite.
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    eckdareckdar Member Posts: 30
    bluejay1

    I'm way too forgetful, I close the trunk and then remember "oh yeh, I forgot to get my jacket out" just as the lock bites. If I left it open until I was ready to go I'm sure I'd get in the drivers seat only to see the tailgate ajar light.
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    rfellmanrfellman Member Posts: 109
    I agree w Bluejay on driving the SAAB across the countryside. Did this from St. Louis to Carbondale IL and back along the Mississippi on two lane roads and also to Omaha and back. Would like to drive to my point of origin in New England ans shoot around the Green and White Mountains of Northern New England.


    As for the reviews of the Viggen, I would say that the R&T piece in the June 1999 edition is highly complimentary of the end product. It made me wish I had one now. If you love the 9-3, how could not love the 9-3 Viggen? Since when did the 9-3 claim to be a sports car? Its a sports sedan and comparing it two a Triumph, MG or BMW two seater just makes no sense. Compare it to a 3 (M) series BMW or to any Lexus or Acura, I think any astute observer would concede it one fun to drive sports sedan. Perhaps the UK Periodical got hung up on semantics as the Cambridge-Oxford elite tend to fascinate themselves with such linguistic gamesmanship.
This discussion has been closed.