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Saab 9-5 Sedan



  • What type of deals are out there on '02, '03 Aero's. I understand that 9-5's dont hold their resale value. What can you expect for a used '02 Aero, Thanks.
  • Hi,
    I'm thinking of getting a Saab. It's the only car my wife likes. I'm also considering VW passat 4mo, and Subaru. I like the look of the 9-5, too, but I'm concerned with reliability, because I would hold onto it for awhile. I know that these depreciate like a stone. One dealer told me a guy had a 9-3 for 9months, and wanted to get a WRX. The value of the car was 50% less. Now, I don't know if that's realistic, but the red book values (I'm in Canada) are way lower than what dealers list them for used. Significantly lower. I don't want to invest in one if it's not reliable and I take a bath on resale. If it's reliable and I can enjoy it for 5+ years, great, I could probably find some deals, but not if they don't hold up. They cost as much as bimmers, even more in some cases, but they don't seem to be the same level of car.
    REgarding the car magazines. I've always felt that they b---ch about the "quirkiness" of the center ignition, and something with the seatbelts. Then they give them a low rating. I think they just can't get over that, and feel they need to knock it because of that. Why should "Quirky" design mean it's not as good a car? They are very biased IMO.
  • rob999rob999 Posts: 233
    With rare exception, anytime someone buys a car and trades it in a few months later they will take a bath. Especially at a dealership where they pay 'wholesale' at best, and even less in a situation where they may have sensed they had a customer who was willing to do a trade for the WRX at any cost. If you intend to keep a car 5+ years, then short-term trade-in values are almost irrelevant compared to reliability. Almost all the consumer organizations have given the 9-5 excellent reviews for both initial quality and long-term reliability.

    You'd be hard pressed to get a BMW for the same price as a similarly equipped 9-5. With the current incentives, a 9-5 is a great value and you'll pay far less than MSRP.

    Yes, the 'quirky' adjective seems to pop up in every Saab review ever written. OK, so the ignition key is in the center console. Big deal, it's been there 20+ years in different models. It would be nice if writers would just get over that. From a functional viewpoint, I've come to really appreciate having the ignition and the window regulators in the center console. It's nice to keep your left hand on the wheel at all times and use your right for ignition, shift, windows, heat/acc, and stereo.

    I drive both a Subaru Outback and a 9-5 wagon, and I must say that though the Outback is endearing in its own right, it doesn't come close to the comfort and performance of the 9-5 on a road trip.
  • Hi,
    I test drove a Subaru Outback sedan/vdc-H6. It was a 2002. It was fun, and I was impressed. I took it in a big parking lot and did some tight turns. Fair bit of roll to it, but otherwise, very nice and smooth engine. Man the heater fan is noisey, though. My problem is I don't fit. Even with the seats all the way down, my hair and left side of my head kept brushing the liner and roof. That gets annoying after awhile. I couldn't sit in the back seat without bending my head. So I think they'll have to get taken off my list. They are very nice.
    Lasat night I test drove a Passat with 4mo. I am interested in the vr6, but they only had the W8. WOW. That is peppy and puts you back in the seat! I loved it, but now I must get realistic.

    I stopped by the Saab/Saturn etc. dealer on the way home. I loved the look of the Linear wagon, and the aero sedan. The wagon had the touring package and premium package and was 44,999.00 but I overheard the saleman telling another guy that there was no dickering on price, that was it. He didn't mention anything about incentives. A woman who works near me says she and her husband have a 9-3 and 9-5 wagon. Even though they bought two from the save dealer, they didn't get any break on the price. That knocks them out unless I go used and then I'm concerned about care and repair of that turbo. Very pricey I'm sure. Though they depreciate fast enough that I might find a deal there. Especially in a wagon. So they hold up in the long run? I've found two 99 wagons to look at.
    I must say that I think they are one of the sleekest looking wagons out there, and the cockpit is gorgeous; it looks like a jet!
  • tomekktomekk Posts: 310
    1. No discounts on 9-5 wagon... hm, that's unheard of.

    2. Passat doesn't have a VR6 anymore, it has the old 2.8 V6 (190hp) used earlier in Audi A4. VR6 is now used in Jettas and Golfs GTI (2.8 liter with 201hp, there is also VR6 3.2L coming soon in Phaeton and Toureg, also used in Europ in Golft R32). Yummy!

  • rob999rob999 Posts: 233
    That non-negotiable price of $44,999 CDN translates into $28,900 USD, which is a pretty decent price if it includes an auto and premium package. Much less than what I paid last March, even with GM employee discount and that month's incentive. I don't dwell on what I paid vs the most current incentives - I just enjoy the car. Historically, 9-5 wagons usually get less of an incentive compared to sedans due to more limited availability.

    If you can swing it, go for it!
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    Wow..I didn't even consider what 44K was in US dollars. If $28,900 is correct in US dollars.. that's unheard of. It's no wonder they won't offer any additional discounts. You say that's with a Premium Pkg and Touring Pkg? Ours was equipped with Premium and the Sticker was around $37K US if i recall correctly. Go for it cdn. You won't regret it.

  • tomekktomekk Posts: 310
    Is that before or after GST?
  • I need to replace 2 of the original Michelin MXV4+'s and I'd prefer a cheaper alternative as I only have 7 months left on my lease. I am
    considering mixing 2 Yokohama Avid V4's with the 2 remaining original Michelin MXV4+'s.

    Any opinions on whether this makes sense?

  • bretfrazbretfraz Posts: 2,021
    How many miles is that for you, typically? I'd understand your logic a bit more if your lease was up in 2 weeks, but it's not.

    You've got all winter ahead of you. I'd install 4 new tires and not worry about the extra $200 or so the additional 2 will cost.
  • I've already bought 2 new ones several months ago. The MXV4+'s cost me almost $200 each installed! I'd prefer a good cheaper alternative to last the remaining 8,000 miles of my lease.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    Mixing different Tire types is not a good idea. Different tread designs on these types of cars can create poor handling characteristics.

    The other problem you'll encounter is from your Lease Company. When you get your turn-in information, it will be very cleary stated that you WILL be charged for turning in a car with mismatched tires.

    Sometimes they will get very picky and charge for replacing with a Lower Tire Rating as well. However, we did replace our MXV4's with a lower speed rated tire (Bridgestone 950's) before turning in our old 9-5. We loved the tires, they were cheaper and the lease company didn't charge us.

    To others with newer tires, I suggest that you step up your tire rotation schedule. Saab's recommendations are way too long. Rotate every 5-6K and your tires will wear evenly and longer. We used the 10K Saab say on our last one and also experienced 2 tires wearing to fast. Actually, I believe that with the new No Charge Scheduled service, Saab is actually saying that NO rotation is needed. That's insane IMO. The tire manufacturers will Love it though.

    Good Luck
  • bretfrazbretfraz Posts: 2,021
    I rotate mine every 6K and still they'll be gone by 30K. The OE Michelin was not meant to last 100K and be maintenance free.

    The 9-5 tends to wear the outer shoulder and being front wheel drive means the fronts will take most of the punsihment. Check air pressures weekly and run a higher PSI in the fronts than the rears. What's SAAB say you should run, 26PSI or something? Jeez, I run 41PSI in the front and 39PSI in the rear.
  • I traveled to Canada and bought a used 9-3 through the dealer. I paid the GST and it was refunded plus interest. The B.C. sales tax was waived. It's legal but the cars must have been registered in Canada a minimum of 12 months.
    I've heard that new cars are coming over the border and are being sold to USA buyers. Who knows how this takes place? $44,000.00 CDN$ is $28,106.00 USA$ at today's rate.
  • Hi,
    The dealer here says he has a 99 9-5 coming in with the 6 cyl engine. Are these very good engines, and is the 99 a good year or perhaps I should ask, if I go for a Saab 9-5, pre-owned; what would be the best year to look for, assuming it's a clean car? since little has changed to the current one.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    I like the 4 personally. I've heard that the 6 is very difficult to work on and more expensive to repair. You might check out what people are saying at Saabnet.

  • bretfrazbretfraz Posts: 2,021
    The V6 is turning out to be more reliable than the 4 and SAAB covers some of the future repair costs with a free timing belt change at 60K. The timing belt issue is about the only negative comment anyone can legitimately make against the V6. And lots of cars have timing belts.

    Both engines are very good and durability is a strong point. Buy the one that gives you the performance you want.
  • I am still debating between a new 9-3 or a used (1999-2000) 9-5 or 9-3. I just read a website and it said one of the thing to watch out for when buying a used Saab is rust? Anybody have rust problems with their Saab? I checked out some used Saabs over the weekend and saw some of them have rusts in the brakes? Is that possible? What about the turbo engines? Does the turbo fail easily (my friend's audi has its turbo failed in less than 3 months)?
  • tomekktomekk Posts: 310
    Hm, my neighbor had already 3 repairs on the 6 cyl in his 2002 9-5 Arc - all coolant leaks. He is happy he leased and didn't buy used.

    It appears that 9-5 Linear sedan carries about 5K in rebates right now until 1/2 --> target price is something like USD 30K - pretty close to those $44K Canadian. If I needed a new car, I'd probably go for it (we're talking VW passat $$$ here).

    Happy SAABing -

  • The turbo on my 2000 95 had to be replaced at ~ 32K. If you're inclined towards a Saab I would put a lot of value on the warranty.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    Every Brake rotor on every car make will show surface rust even after just sitting idle for as short as one day.

    It's perfectly normal and the rust is gone as quickly as backing out of your driveway. Check the rotors on your current car after it's been sitting for a day or two. You'll find the same thing. The difference is that with some wheel designs you see the Rotors and thus the surface rust more easily. With Saabs you can see the Rotors very clearly. It's normal and NOT a problem.

    I can't really speak to Body rust issues with Saab. Our '94 did have some cropping up inside a rear door that I thought was odd. We purchased it used and have no idea if there was any body work done. Our '98 never showed a rust problem and of course our '02 isn't even a year old yet.

    Good luck
  • Good that it's not a problem. My current crappy car has a wheel cover. So I cannot see what's in there. But whatever the case is, here's a link to the website I was talking about.

    Go to the bottom and read the last question. According to the site, I need to pull up the carpet to check the rust out. Don't know if the dealer will allow me to do that.

    Also, another website said "The only Saab model I would advise against is the 2.5L/V6 GM engine (1994-1998)." Hope that's not the old version of the current 3.0L in the 9-5. Besides turbo failure, what other problems do you guys have with your cars?

  • bretfrazbretfraz Posts: 2,021
    The 2.5L was made by Opel and not very good. The current 3.0L is sourced from Vauxhall and is heavily modified by SAAB. No comparison between the two motors. The 3.0L is proving to be extremely reliable. Automobile magazine prefers the V6 9-5 over the 4 cyl versions incl the Aero. So the V6 has plenty of fans.

    Most of the problems with the 9-5 seem to be electrical. But that's the problem with most expensive cars so the 9-5 is no worse than anything else on the road.
  • When ppl said electrical problems, does it mean light bulbs burning out or something wrong with the battery or something else? Please be specific cuz I really want to know what to expect when I buy a Saab. I think the 9-5 is the only european model that CR gives a good rating for used cars. So it should be somewhat reliable. I just want to know what I'm getting into when buying a used 9-5.
  • Hi,
    I aasked the dealer about the 9-5s and their battery and headlight problems. He didn't know what I meant. I said I'd read about batteries going after two years and headlight burning out, for a car that touts it's safety, having lights go out is not particularly comforting. He said "well, they don't go out completely, it's a high intensity halogen bulb and they just get a lot dimmer. We replace it free the first time." I said "Why should I have to pay for a Saab design flaw. If this happens a lot, then get a decent headlight in there...they do make them you know. If these guys build fighter jets, but can't get a decent light bulb in their cars, then I pity Olaf over Stockholm when his Viggen instruments conk and he has a flameout."
    However, if light bulbs are the worst thing that happens...compared to turbos going, etc. that's not too bad. Might as well buy the xenons when they go, or they should give you a deal on them. Or is it teh xenons that are the ones burning out?
    (ps, thanks for all the suggestions on pricing, etc. There's a company here where you pay 50 bucks and they will give you all the invoice and incentive info.[we can't get it for free up here] and if you want they have contacts and call dealer fleet people and sales mgrs and get very good deals for you from three dealers, often close or below invoice. And you get your fifty bucks back when you go in to pick up the car. they go through the fleet or it guys, and bypass the salesmen.)
  • manamalmanamal Posts: 434
    SAAB's have DRL that run on the main lights (Low beam, if I remember correctly). The intensity is regular intensity (Toyota, by comparison dims the lights when the DRL are on). So, the reason for the early light burnout is that all lights have a limited life. However, with the SAAB, the lights are at high intensity all of the time.

    Consider, for example, the SAAB lights burn out at 1 yr or 12K miles. Compare that to a Honda Accord without DRL. Those lights last about 4 yrs/48K...when the car is driven at night about 25% of hte time.
  • bretfrazbretfraz Posts: 2,021
    To clarify a bit, when you start the car or turn the ignition to ON, all the exterior lights come on like you had switched on the headlights. On GM and Toyota only the headlights come on (no running lights) and those a low-powered.

    To prevent this from occuring, remove fuse 35 from the interior fuse panel. Doing so makes your headlight switch work the same as other cars. Removing fuse 35 was the very first thing I did to my car when I brought it home from the dealer.

    When I mentioned electrical problems I was referring to things like lights, batteries, SID failures, things like that which a few owners have complained about. It's not a major problem or epidemic with the cars and I'm sure that other cars have their own little electrical problems. Dealers seem to do a good job in satisfying customers so you should have some support there.
  • I agree that light bulbs have limited life. However, I don't know it is running at "full" power during daytime and that should be the reason for it to burn out so early.

    If I remembered correctly, after you removed fuse 35, you are still using the original light bulbs? If that's the case, I will consider doing that too.
  • Hi,
    In Canada, we must have DRL on. It's the law. Now if Acura, Lexus, Benz, Audi,BMW and others can build a car with the same high intensity lights,but theirs don't burn out frequently, and thier batteries don't go bad within a couple of years, then why can't the fighter jet building trolls in Sweden do it. I would think it's a nobrainer. Find a bulb that works for places that need lights on all the time, and replace them with those, instead of telling the customer that it's a wear and tear item, so it's on their ticket, and try to earn customer care points by giving people a free one. Why should people plunking down all this cash for this "luxury"high-tech car have to pay for Saabs design flaw? I don't buy the "because they're on all the time they burn out faster" theory. the headlight makers aren't seeing this as a chance to "cash in on Canadians." It's one of those little irritating things that, if I were an owner, would start to bug me. If they can't handle something as rudimentary as this, then what bigger, more important things are they messing around with. Especially when they are using safety as a big selling point: driving in the dark isn't a confidence inspiring activity.
    I'll stop ranting now....
  • I'm seeing the questions about turbos here, and I would like to point out that Saab was the first company to make a turbocharged production car, and the turbos have become quite reliable. That being said, I would highly recommend Mobil 1 (or at least some other synthetic oil) and that you try to let the car idle for a while to cool the turbo. Turbochargers (high pressure) get *very hot*, and can damage (or bake) regular oil that remains in the turbo when the engine is shutdown. Synthetic oil will not bake, and the turbo should remain lubricated for when it starts up again. I believe that if you use synthetic and try to allow the turbo to cool down, you won't have a problem. My 94 1/2' 900 SE was modified to produce approx 240hp and ran about double the boost pressure. I never had a problem with the turbo or engine.

    If you like the V6 go for it, it has to be better than that first V6 Saab used. But I just got a 95 Aero this weekend and I love the car and the 4 cylinder. It reminds me of a refined version of my old 900 SE. (Minus the adjustable Koni's.)

    BTW, I forget how bad the Pilot's are on dry roads. I know it's winter now here in the Northern US, but for summer I *really* need to get a set of Bridgestone Potenza S03 Pole Positions for this new car...
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