Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Saab 9-5 Wagon



  • petersjfpetersjf Posts: 8
    1. I would say it's difficult vs. a minivan or other wagon/suv with a 3rd row but probably similar to many mini-suv's and midsize suv's with 2 rows. Another family hauler we looked at closely was the Highlander, and I think because of the spacious second row in that vehicle you'd have an easier time getting the baby/child around the outside seat to get to the middle seat.

    2. The adult could buckle in with the 2 car seats in
  • nelsoncmnelsoncm Posts: 103
    Yeah, I agree with petersjf, the saab it gonna be way cramped with 3 car seats. The Highlander has a nice roomy back seat, but is actually not bigger in space than a large wagon (about 85 cu feet.) It's really a glorified wagon vs. a true SUV. I only have 1 kidlet so I went with the wagon but if I had 2 or more, I'd go with something else. Besides, where are you going to putt all their stuff? There's very poor storage in the Saab (ie, cubbies/drinkholders.)
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    We have 2 kids ages 6 & 8 and the space in the Wagon is fine for us.

    We used it during our vacation last summer instead of my Hugh Montero and had no regrets.

  • Happy to say I am the new owner of a 1999 Saab 9-5 Wagon, black with charcoal interior, 6 cylinder and almost any option you can mention! It has 90,000 km. on it and we purchased the extended warranty for it. Dealer seemed miffed I had checked the car out through Carfax and has all my info with me when we talked with him. They leant the car to me for a day which was good and also I took it to my mechanic. It is in beautiful shape - interior like new and barely a scratch on it. We tried out a 2000 Volvo S/W they had on the lot but it seemed noisier both idling and driving. Saab is much quieter and everything seems well thought-out as to placement of controls, etc. The Volvo was $28,000 CDN and the Saab $21,000. They WOULD NOT budge on price!!! Salesman said he had discounted it as far as he could go. Car was on the lot for six months!!
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    and congrats on your recent purchase. We look forward to hearing all about your Saab 9-5 wagon experience. Please keep us posted. Happy motoring! ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    Anyone care to share some details about their Saab 9-5 wagon? For those interested, you can list your:

    1. Model Year & Total miles to date.
    2. MPG & Driving habits. Any differences in mpg since you first purchase?
    3. Any additional accessories & mods?
    4. Maintenance issues to date.
    5. Any interesting trips or cargo experiences?
    6. Overall impressions pro/cons of your vehicle since you first purchased....

    Share as much (or as little) information as you'd like. I'm sure other Saab 9-5 owners/shoppers passing through here, would find the information quite interesting, if not helpful.

    Also, you can report back every 3-5k to update again. Who's game?

    Thanks for your participation! ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Wagons Boards
  • beer47beer47 Posts: 185
    is how much in US dollars? Please forgive my exchange rate lack of knowledge.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,862
    at the current rate (.7) that's about US$14,700.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    I just read an article this morning about the problem of Americans purchasing new cars in Canada. It's perfectly legal to bring them across the border apparantly and Canada has adopted US Emmission standards now.

    The savings examples they were citing were significant. Automakers openly admit the lower pricing is a Market Situation. Pricing is often as much as 40% lower!! I was amazed to read this. In retaliation, some manufacturers are NOT honoring warranties here. Some Canadian Dealers are offering Private Warranties to off set.

  • charlesbcharlesb Posts: 43
    New cars sure are cheaper North of the border, but most manufacturers will refuse to honer the warranty of cars purchased in Canada. I guess if you are buying an out-of-warranty car, this wouldn't be an issue.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 11,859
    Great idea. I'll jump in. 2001 se wagon(wife's); 3 year lease (about 2 years in).
    fine looking auto in steel gray.
    like the multi memory seats.
    stereo sounds good, but multi cd is extra.
    feels solidly built.
    not much interior storage; i. e. console.
    gas mileage 24-25, 21-23 in winter.
    dealer friendly, but not impressive.
    like the sedan much better(loaner experience).
    lots of brake dust in the front.
    don't ever feel like i want to drive it hard.
    kids like the heated rear seats.
    front wheel drive with all season tires can't beat a dedicated 4 wheel drive system in the winter.
    Overall impression; great looking vehicle, comfortable, reasonably efficient; want to love it, drive train not impressive, but ok. Sticker was overpriced, but had incentives. It's possible that dealer 'induced' some issues to collect warranty claims.
    You know what they say - 'In for a penny, in for a pound!'
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2014 Ford F-150 FX4
  • buddhabmanbuddhabman Posts: 252
    Does anyone have any concern about the lack of stiffness of the front springs? When I drive in the canyons with a little pace I get alot of bumper stop hits and some bounce when traveling over undulations midturn. The car stays planted but doesn't inspire confidence. To be honest my Subaru GT Wagon feels better in the curves and it's not just the AWD difference. My car is 2003 Aero Wagon with only 6k miles. Any sport handling imprressions?

    I have looked at Abbott Racing and Wigwam stuff, any other ideas.
  • js2musicjs2music Posts: 1
    Well, I test drove a 9-5 wagon yesterday and loved it. I was wondering if anyone could provide insight on the longterm reliability of this model and what type of problems you might have experianced (I'll probably be buying one with 50K or so already on it). Also, I was hoping to hear a few opinions on the 4cyl. compared to the V6. Any help will be greatly appreciated, thanks.
  • petersjfpetersjf Posts: 8
    js2music -
    I've only had my '03 wagon 2.3lpt (4-cyl) for a few months, but you may find the following helpful.

    Overall my experience has been great

    2 flaws have cropped up:
             - audible but slight rattle in dash
             - somwhat loose body panel

    The 4-cyl engine has loosened up and the performance is improved so that I have no complaints on the low end (where it is weakest) and really enjoy the 3rd gear 30-70 acceleration.

    Gas mileage on pure city short mileage driving (including the gas to start the car) is only ok at 18mpg. Highway driving is much better and gets up to 28mpg (engine is not yet broken in)

    I drove the v6 and found it just a little better for highway and freeway.

    A low-mileage used Saab 9-5 wagon is an incredible value - I personally would factor in an extended warranty for peace of mind.
  • fauxpawsfauxpaws Posts: 11
    I bought the Consumer Reports guide to used cars and was happy to find that the newer Saabs garnered a recommendation from CR. And compared with cars from ten years ago (last time I bought a car), most new cars are *all* more reliable-- Better parts, better QC.

    That said, they're probably not as reliable as Toyotas and Lex-i. But how much soul is in a Camry? I drove a rental on the plains east of Austin, TX last year, wanting to love it, but almost slashed my wrists out of boredom. BTW, Aisin-Warner makes the tranny for the Saab as well as for Toy/Lexus.

    I was all set to buy a nice Volvo 70 wagon after having driven all the permutations. My daughter talked me into driving the Saab, a Linear wagon.

    Yee ha! (But told my wife how *safe* it is)

    I snatched up the Polar White/beige Arc wagon (A blonde Swede...ahhh) off the floor of my dealer and have been putting some serious mileage on "Sigrid" in NJ/PA/NY state.

    No problems. The car is *solid.* Most unexpected discovery is the utility of all the different shift modes. At first, I thought the manual mode with the paddles was a boy racer gimmick. But a nine mile stretch of PA highway 61 south of Frackville made a believer out of me: up, down, twisty roads, alternating between 3-4 gear, letting third handle the speed on the getting a nice aerobic workout uphill without straining.

    At one point, I had the "opportunity" to avoid riding in a fast moving pack of descending cars presumably on their way home from Pocono raceway. All I had to do was get out far enough ahead of them, right? The Saab was amazing.I sincerely don't know why anyone wants those FUV's. Honestly. They can't get out of their own way (on the twisties). But I'm not going to make a habit out of 80mph descents on roads I don't know well.

    With the vented seats and quiet interior, the car lets you do this stuff w/o fatigue.

    The V6 in the Arc is allegedly more reliable than the lpt4. It's powerful enough for my needs. I'm afraid of how much fun the Aero would be. And it will haul your kayak and Golden Retriever.

    You get 4 years/50000 miles of free maintenance and warranty. You can extend that by certifying it. If your near a dealer, what's the problem?

    My $0.02: Drive the Volvo's so that you don't have buyers remorse. Ditto for the Audi and BMW 540. The Outback is nice, but too much plastic and tinny doors that vibrate when you close them. I *hate* that. Take the Murano out for a spin too, just for counterpoint, if you like trucks.

    Then buy the one you want. They'll all work.

    PS: Give us a report on the Saturn LW300 while you're at it. It uses the same V6 as the Arc, only not turbo charged.
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    Consumer Reports lists the 9-5 reliability as "above average," but I have heard lots of complaints about the 1999 models (first year of the make) so watch out for that year when buying used. I've read several places that Saabs are much more reliable now than they used to be, probably even moreso than the general trend. Because they depreciate a lot (or had a MSRP that was way too high to begin with), you can get some good deals on them. I've seen some Arc Wagons listed on a dealership in Charlotte that had under 10k in miles for about $31-32k.
  • buddhabmanbuddhabman Posts: 252
    We have had no problems with our 2003 Aero wagon. it idles a little rough when cold, and the auto shift a little stiff when cold. Drives smooth and quiet otherwise. Fit and finish are superb, no rattles, buzzes, squeaks, no loose fittings. We read the Consumer Reports and some other reviews, that helped us decide on the Aero over the Audi Allroad. I loved the Allroad, IMHO Audi interiors are the Gold Standard, but I was concerned that all that tech will break after warranty period. I also think you can get a good value/price when comparing to Audi, BMW, MB and Volvo. There are so many nice cars out there now, you would be hard pressed to mess up.

    If you can wait until fall you might consider the revamped Subaru Legacy. It is going to be awesome, we couldn't wait otherwise that would be my choice.
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    Unfortunately, I think the Legacy doesn't get revamped until Fall of 2004. That's probably going to be too long for me to wait as well. Shame, because they're promising to update the interior and exterior to make them more refined, which has been one of the biggest drawbacks to the current iterations, IMO.
  • Fauxpaws, thanks for the great post. Did you consider the manual shift? Is is available with the V6? Are the vented seats standard on the Arc? They are a big buck option on the Aero. I've never hear about a reliability advantage of the V6 vs. the I 4 but thought it interesting that the General was using a naturally aspirated version in the Saturn. That opens up new parts doors for what I think is an Opel sourced engine.
  • fauxpawsfauxpaws Posts: 11
    Blockislandguy, I'm no motorhead. But they tell me the V6 *is* the same engine as in the Vauxhall/Opel Vectra and Omega. You,re right about the new parts door.

    Old time Saabers will stand behind the I4, and why not?

    Since I live in the most densely populated state in the country, I didn't investigate a stick. It's just too dangerous for a latte lovin' java hound to handle our traffic and a Starbucks at the same time. However, whenever the subject comes up on other BB's, the consensus seems to be that it's really hard to criticize all the possible modes of the slushbox on the 9-5. It even has a "winter" setting. You really don't lose all that much by not doing everything yourself.

    My daughter has a '93 Audi 90 5-speed manual. It's a blast. But the romance dims when stuck in summer traffic around here. Good character builder for Kristen, though.

    Well, I'm jealous as h**l of the sport seats in the Aero. It's sort of a yin/yang thing between that car and the Arc. I really like keeping the sunroof and windows open on a sunny day, yet not get a sweaty back. It's almost a guilty pleasure because nobody around you knows why you don't look hot and bothered. Not that we've had that many days like that this year...

  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    I've heard nothing but bad things about the manual in the 9-5 wagons. One reviewer referred to them as a "disaster." Plus, the Arc has a clutchless manumatic shifting system anyway if you want to get more of a manual feel.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    The V6 is not available with a Standard Shift.

    People who have the V6 seem to be happy with it but in the long run, I hear it will cost much more in repairs. An indepedant Saab Shop talked me out of buying our new Wagon with the V6, he insists that it is extremely difficult to service.

    As a Leased car I wasn't too concerned but we may want to purchase this Saab after the lease. This is our 3rd Saab.. Second 9-5.

  • nelsoncmnelsoncm Posts: 103
    trying to post, have been having problems...this is just a test
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    That's interesting about the problems with the V-6. I would have thought that a V-6 would be less troublesome because there is less turbo boost to overwork the engine. I'm not a mechanically inclined person, but it seems like the Aero, which is getting 4 cylinders to produce 250 hp, would be a lot more prone to wear and tear faster than an engine that has 6 cylinders working to produce 200 hp. Is it the difficulty of getting the pysically bigger engine out to work on it that adds to the cost?
  • nelsoncmnelsoncm Posts: 103
    What I like: the super comfy and supportive seats, plus the heating/cooling options; the awesome speakers on my stereo; the very solid built quality; the quickness and handling, very nice, but not too tight, like some of the German cars.

    What I don't like: the appalling lack of storage space, i.e. the cupholders, places to put change, trash, etc. I shouldn't have to lose my armrest and storage bin so my husband and I can use the second cupholder on family outings. Argh! Door pockets need to be expanded, and give me someplace to put change besides 6 coinslots. The storage under the cargo floor is difficult to access unless you have nothing in the back (who does that?)
    The other thing is they need to do is put door locks and window controls in a more practical location, like oh I donno, the doors! Very awkward to reach and use.
    Finally, they could do something to reduce the amount of vibration that comes into the front of the cabin and the steering wheel (I bought a leather cover for my steering wheel and it helps but I still feel every single bump in the road!)
    It's a nice car, but the designers need to balance cool with practical, just a little bit, for we unrefined, soda-slurping, stuff-hauling American drivers!
  • ncvolncvol Posts: 196
    I've been spending some time on one of the Saab website discussions and there is some difference of opinion over whether the v-6 or the four cylinder is more reliable. Some say the 4 cylinder is the "real" Saab engine that is built to last while the V-6 is a poorly engineered American engine that GM made them put on the car. Others say that the proof is in the pudding, and that V-6 models have less reported engine problems, particularly with the turbo.

    The loss of cupholder space is troubling, but otherwise I think that your pros far outweigh your cons. Now if I could just figure out whether they will be adding Subaru's AWD to the 9-5's anytime soon . . .
  • NCVOL, you mentioned other sites. Could you provide us the addresses? Thanks.

    With regard to wear, certainly a highly stressed 4 cylinder (e. g., the Aero) is going to wear out a lot sooner than a six. The six will cost more to repair however in some cases (to redo the cylinder head for example, because of the greater number of parts involved).

    Incidentally, a vee six sacrifices compactness for some of the rigidity and resulting bullet proofness that the in line design offers. (Think about all the bullet proof engines, beginning with say the Chrysler Industrial 30 and going up to the CAT 3406, they are all in line sixes.)

    IMHO, the Saab product planners were asleep when Volvo replaced them as THE winter FWD car of choice. Now late in the 8th inning they are playing catchup with the under-engined AERO. (And the General is getting restless in the bullpen, to continue the analogy.) If SAAB gave a California engine tuner a half dozen pallet loads of Opel V6 engines, instructions to hang a PAIR, yes, one per bank, of turbos on the engine, and a 90 day deadline to pass emissions, Saab would have something that could go head to head with the Audi 2.7 twin turbo engine and the BMW six. This would broaden the market and the dealers could sell the car not the "deal". Instead today Saab has the four banger Aero engine that is tweaked within an inch of its life and giveaway lease programs.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    Saab didn't dream up the Aero in recent years to compete with a Volvo Model. They've been producing Aero's for over 10 years now.

    The original Aero 9000 was a WONDERFUL car. The engine in the 9-5 is just an updated version.

  • buddhabmanbuddhabman Posts: 252
    blockisland - you seem a little tweaked today.

    Are you kidding ? The whole 9-5 family are better engineered than the competing Volvo V70 lineup. The new 2002+ 9-5 is safer, has more features, equal in room, better gas mileage, faster, better handling, there is no comparison in looks. It is by far a better driving car and great value. SAAB is lacking in the AWD, area, but a Subaru AWD will fix that.

    As far as your opinion that the Aero 2.3 4-Cyl is tweaked. Sure it is, it's been refined up to 250 HP but it still has more available HP and torque on tap. Nordic, Hirsch, Abbott perfoamance all have products that take it up to 300HP, and Hirsch and Nordic are warrantied.

    You make the comparison to the Audi 2.7-T, like in the Allroad. Nice car, beautiful interior and design. We almost bought it over are Aero but for the reliability concerns. The other issue was gas mileage and the Allroad suffers bad from Turbo lag from standing starts. Aero will eat an Allroad for lunch 7 days a week in acceleration. Part of that is weight difference with Audi AWD. And aside from the BMW 540 or M3 the Saab is as smooth and powerful as the 5 series in a roll-on power situation from 50-100+. A 530 will not keep up in the 50-70, 80-100 run.
  • ATTN HOST: feedback to my recent post about Saab product planning and reading other posts on this board suggests that there would be interest in a new discussion board of Saab vs. Volvo. I suspect that Saab/Volvo buyers share demographics, inhabit the same geographic regions, and cross shop the other manufacturer more than any other two pairs of vehicles. There are other boards like this (e. g., Toyota Sequoia vs. Expedition vs. Tahoe) and this new Swedish Wagon/Sedan board would be a natural.

    Can you set it up?
Sign In or Register to comment.