Saab 9-5 Sedan



  • saabeesaabee Member Posts: 23
    Has anyone replaced the stock wheels with anything other than the optional BBS wheels? At the time I took delivery on my Aero in January I replaced the stock wheels with Ronell wheels that were in the Saab catalog. The reason I didn't choose the BBS option is because my wife's 1999 SE came with almost identical BBS wheels (part of a special sport package that was also on the preview car in Palm Springs). Didn't want the same wheels on both cars, even though there awesome.
  • bretfrazbretfraz Member Posts: 2,021
    I'm looking to change my SE wheels to something custom like Saabee did. Some of the Ronal's look good. The Saab BBS 17" are fantastic, but at $500+ in the aftermarket, I'll buy something else. If you are in the market for a 2001 model and are balking at the $1650 for the BBS wheels, believe me, you are looking at an incredible deal. They are also known as the BBS RK 2 piece. Tire Rack sells them for ~$500 each and tires are ~$150 each. Do the math.
  • aeroav8raeroav8r Member Posts: 4
    Thanks for the re-direction for everyone's benefit.
  • rbrrbr Member Posts: 113
    What you're describing sounds a lot like "turbo lag," but 2-3 seconds is an awfully long time. It's certainly something I feel on my '97 900 SE with auto. transmission, which has a 2.0 litre higher output turbo, but I did not feel any noticeable turbo lag on the 2001 9-5SE that I'm considering now. I recall driving, as a loaner car, a 2000 9-5 2.3 Wagon with a manual transmission -- there was a bit of lag, but you could easily mitigate the issue by revving the engine (kinda fun, actually!). I think the V6 on the 9-5 SE can generate more torque at lower RPMs which I would speculate would lessen any turbo lag. In fact, I've driven a couple of 9-5 SEs as loaners and I havent felt anything resembling the sort of lag on my 900SE. Sorry, I haven't driven a 2001 9-5 with the 2.3 engine yet.
  • kilimanjarokilimanjaro Member Posts: 11
    My boss is considering a 01 volvo wagon to replace his explorer. I mentioned that volvo has ED and suggested he look at Saabs as well.

    I went to and did not see any references to ED. I thougt tha Dhanley might have bought his Saab via European Delivery. Can anyone point me to websites or provide deatils?

  • rbrrbr Member Posts: 113
    Actually, there is a section of the website that discusses European Delivery. Just click on "Models" and it will appear.

    Hope this helps.
  • chriscraft1chriscraft1 Member Posts: 1
    I recently had the T7 ECU replacement done as part of the recall. The car was running great when I pulled in for the service, except that starting was getting difficult. After the new ECU was installed, the car has noticeable pre-ignition ping. I have always run 89 octane with good performance.

    The Saab dealer has been very helpful, and just today replaced the ECU with yet another unit. Still now have the problem. Next step will be to try 93 octane, but I shouldn't need to do this. Do any others out there have any pre-ignition ping problems with the new ECU module? Maybe my dealer has a bad batch of replacements? Any other ideas/suggestions.

    Thx. Rich
  • smu1976smu1976 Member Posts: 110
    Thanks so much!
  • c21robdavc21robdav Member Posts: 6
    I wonder if your ignition is now more advanced or the mixture leaner. This would cause pinging.
    I don't know if Saabs have the sensors which automatically retard timing when detecting ping. If they do have the sensors the car shouldn't ping.
    I have a 2000 9-5 and I usually run 89 or 91 octane but I tried 87 for one tank. No pinging but it didn't perform as well under heavy throttle. Hope this helps
  • dhanleydhanley Member Posts: 1,531
    Saabs definitely SHOULD sense preignition. If yours is not, there is a problem.

    A little pinging under initial heavy throttle is OK though, it takes a second for the car to adjust to changing conditions.

    to jeff: 2-3 seconds of lag sounds like too much for the 2.3L, on the 2.0L it's normal though, unfortunately. On the six, it should NOT be present. If your '99 9-5 a manual transmission? This helps a lot!

  • aeroav8raeroav8r Member Posts: 4
    Anyone out there have the Sport Exhaust from SAAB for their 9-5 Aero? Please let me know what you think!
  • jeff5302jeff5302 Member Posts: 15
    Thanks Dave and rbr for responding to my posting (268) about hesitation in test cars. As I said, my wife's car has no hesitation off the line, and even spins its wheels without substantial effort. The problem was in driving a base 9-5 and a 9-5 SE V6 (both 2001s). Each of them had almost no miles, and each had a really sluggish response from stop. Whatever it was felt a lot different than turbo-lag, which just seems to last for a fraction of a second or so.

    I'm seriously considering leasing a base 9-5. I'm concerned that by adding 15 hoursepower this year someone may have mucked something up. Is there anyone out there in Saabland, USA, who can simply confirm that they purchased a 2001 base 9-5, and that it works fine and is a blast to drive (and maybe even that it lays a patch taking off from a stop). Thanks for your input, Jeff
  • dskidski Member Posts: 414
    I have not had my ECM (thats what Saab calls it - don't know why it's called ECU here)replaced yet. But My I4 will ping occasionally when I use less than premium. And furthermore, I've noticed that when I use Shell gas I always get pinging.

    I do have to say that the pinging I've had is very slight and only heard with windows open and accelerating hard up a hill. Experts have told me that this "limited" pinging is not a problem. With BP Premium I NEVER have pinging.

    I remember many years ago BMW did a study on the fuel quality of various brands. BP was the only brand that passed on all three grades. I didn't beleive it until I experienced this problem. I went from never using BP to almost always using it.

    Bottom line- you may want to consider what brand of gas you've using before you have another ECM installed. Have you switched between brand?

    Hope this helps
  • davidgmillsdavidgmills Member Posts: 6
    When I got my 00 wagon I ordered the Fondmetal twin tri spoke wheels out of the Saab catalog and then ordered a second set for my 99 9-3. Really like the wheels and the Michelin 225 16s that I put on the wagon. Going to the 225s seemed to make the wagon much quieter than my 99 9-5 sedan.
  • saabeesaabee Member Posts: 23
    dski, The opposite was true for me. When I used BP premium grade my Aero would ping upon hard acceleration, but when I switched to Shell, it stopped. After my ECM was replaced the pinging stopped altogether regardless of brand used.
  • aeroav8raeroav8r Member Posts: 4
    Don't suppose anyone might be interested in a set of '00 Stock Aero wheels?
  • eieio1eieio1 Member Posts: 6
    Hmmm... I might be interested in those wheels for my SE. Of course, shipping them to HI might cost a little much. Drop me an e-mail and let me know what you want for them. [email protected]


  • bretfrazbretfraz Member Posts: 2,021
    Come with the tires too? Just curious, what are replacing them with? Gotta pic? I've got a SE and want 17" ( I REALLY want the 17" BBS) so I'm shopping and would like to see different styles mounted on a 9-5.
  • saabeesaabee Member Posts: 23
    I'm sure there are many manufacturer cites out there that show their wheels on Saab's, here's Ronal's, under contents, go to index of cars.
  • renzo09renzo09 Member Posts: 2
    Have any of you experienced a significant amount of break grease buildup on the front wheels? It seems as if every time I wash the car, not less than 5 miles later the build up returns. Any suggestions as to keeping the wheels clean looking?
  • saabeesaabee Member Posts: 23
    I've had good luck cleaning the wheels by spraying them with "Simple Green" a all-purpose cleaner. A little elbow grease is required but not much. As far as keeping them clean, that's tough. I would recommend polishing your wheels at least once a month, the brake dust will wipe off much easier. I usually wipe the dust off my wheels daily depending on how much driving I do.
  • sirpoonsirpoon Member Posts: 1
    I have taken my 1999 9-5 into Momemtum SAAB in Houston (the only SAAB dealer in Houston) 5 or 6 times now for a lit 'check engine' light. The code that's causing the light to come on is a 'major vapor leak' or something to that effect. They have changed my gas tank twice and performed some recall relating to the 'fuel injection computer.' Still no luck - the light comes on within a day or two of getting the car back. This is getting frustrating. Any similar experiences?
  • davekovacs1davekovacs1 Member Posts: 35
    I have seen something similar posted on SAABNET.COM. Saaabnet is also visited by some master technicians so you might benefit from their expertise also.

    I am assuming that they also replaced the gas cap since that might be the source of the vapor leak. If not, I would make sure there is a good seal at that point.


    Dave Kovacs
  • rollierollie Member Posts: 337
    Regarding post #296:

    sirpoon, this sounds like the gas vapor removal system which is a component of the OBDII specification. This problem occurs on all premium cars and is actually a feature and not a bug! The system will register a fault if you don't put the gas cap on tight (happens often at full service gas stations, top off the tank with too much fuel, or fuel the car with the engine running. The 'Check Engine' light will reset itself automatically with a few days of typical driving if it doesn't encounter another fault. Have any of the abovementioned conditions happened to your 9-5 regularly?

    Good luck.

    [email protected]
  • bretfrazbretfraz Member Posts: 2,021
    If they are really grubby, Simple Green is OK but it is very caustic so do not let it dry. It's a product you should use on occassion, not regularly.

    The only way to keep the wheels clean is regular maintenance. It's the type of brake pad that is generating the dust. Although this is a different issue I do not recommend switching brake pads just to minimize dust unless a specific pad has been recommended to you by a Saab tech or a brake expert. Dirty wheels are safer than lousy brakes.

    Having said that, there are several excellent brands. Eagle One is one of the pioneers of wheel care products. Their A2Z cleaner is safe for weekly use. P21S is highly recommended by European mfrs but it's fairly expensive and usually has to be bought thru mail order. Other brands like Zymol, Meguiars, etc make fine products, but the best is elbow grease and soap. It's a pain I know but it's the most effective and safest for the wheel finish.
  • smu1976smu1976 Member Posts: 110
    Make sure the gas cap clicks three or four times when tightening. I was not putting my on tight enough and had to make a trip to the dealer also.
    Hope its this simple.
  • rtd1rtd1 Member Posts: 22
    Just a guess, but the hesitation you describe sounds exactly like what happens when the traction control engages. Given the very wide and flat torque curve of the LPT engines and the tiny turbo used, there simply isn't any classic turbo lag (as with the old Saab APC and 8-valve turbo cars).

    Maybe try again with the TCS switched off?
  • ffb13ffb13 Member Posts: 181
    i am on the road but have my notebook and nothing to do now.
    i had the 2001 9.5 as a loaner .
    i did a psot on it about a week ago.
    overall i found the power good ,and for regular driving i found that the car was a good alternative to the aero.
    the tires are 17 inch and not the 16 inchers that are prone to cuts or blow up as a result of the thin sidewall.
    if i had to buy again i would probably get this one over the aero.the aero is faster,but the tires ,the low frontal aerofoil (which breaks easily when doing frontal parking),makes the 2001 9.5 easier to live with.
  • saabeesaabee Member Posts: 23
    Careful, careful,"SCRAAAAPPPPP..CRUNCH".....Good point regarding the front spoiler when parking. Also remember, when having the car valet parked, let the valet know about the spoiler. I always make it a point to show the valet how low to the ground the front spoiler actually is (don't forget to get his/her name, just in case).
  • kwandokwando Member Posts: 2
    Saab vs. Mercedes?? Any thoughts on how these two models compare? I like the Saab but something tells me I'd be crazy to get one when I can get the new Benz for the same price!!
  • dhanleydhanley Member Posts: 1,531
    What's wrong with test driving both and deciding what fits you better?

    Well anyways, the cars have totally different drivetrains, mercedes is 3 valve per cyl naturally aspirated v6, RWD, the saab 4 valve per cyl turbo 4 with FWD. Similar luxury features? Offhand i'd expect the saab to be more fun the c240 to be less fuss, but as a first year car in a new cost cutting era, you never know. If you like the c240 i'd look at a bmw 325i also/instead. A larger straight six with more valves, not in the first year of production, etc.

  • dskidski Member Posts: 414
    If my wife weren't so opposed to driving a Mercedes, that would be a tough choice. I haven't been in or driven the new Mercedes but from what I've seen and heard, it's a great improvement and great car. If it were just my decision, I think I'd go with the new C but again, that's without having driven one yet.

    Good Luck
  • rtd1rtd1 Member Posts: 22
    Hey, I'll trade you straight across--my SE's for your Aero's calipers and rotors, then you can use 15s!

    You're kind of stuck in the meantime having to go w/ 16s. I'd do a search for 9-5 takeoffs (try dealers and Ronal, for starters, along w/ perhaps some wrecking yards). They'd have the correct offset, etc. I don't know of any 17-inch snows--even if there were, you'd still have that pothole issue.
  • ffb13ffb13 Member Posts: 181
    re snows on the aero.
    i have an aero and did get the saab dealer's is a great deal.
    1) the wheels are being sold way below list as part of the pack.
    and the snow tires are good.
    2) if you ever decide to change tires for the 16 from the 17 ,you have now a good set of wheels to do this.

    also,if you do it. be careful the first few hundred miles. the car will feel like it is riding on chewing will experience less control until you wear in the tires.
  • L8_ApexL8_Apex Member Posts: 187
    ...more be more appropriately discussed on that site or via email.


    Sedans Host
  • saabnetsaabnet Member Posts: 1
    Hello, Scott Paterson from The Saab Network. I've been on the Internet since 1986 and started The Saab Network in 1988 as a simple mailing list. Now, the site is visited every month by more than 102,000 users. It's my own private site and I have nothing to do with Saab corporate.

    I just wanted to point out that the The Saab Network bulletin boards are 'problem solving' bulletin boards. We expect only problems on the bb's, not "I'm not having any problems' postings. Considering the millions of Saabs on the road, the site gets relatively few reported problems (number of bb posts vs number of Saab owners). Which is amazing because JD Powers APEAL study showed that Saab owners are the most active Internet users of any car owner group. So, when anybody points to The Saab Network as a point of reference that Saabs have problems, they've got their argument backwards. In fact, this is posted on every page of every bulletin board:

    "This is a problem solving forum for over 100,000 Saab owners, so expect to see problems discussed here even though our cars are generally very reliable."

  • stewdaddystewdaddy Member Posts: 4
    The reason to consider the expensive 16" alloy wheel and tire option is the high cost of replacing a damaged 17" OEM Micheline Pilot, then having the dent taken out of my right front wheel (I don't even remember hitting a hole).
    Total cost was $440 for the repair package. Winter in New England equalls even more hidden pot holes. Buying less prone to damage 16" wheels and tires @ $850-$900 delivered, seem to be the cheapest insurance (unfortunately).

    It appears there are no 16" steel wheel alternatives. FYI, the 15" Tire rack Blizzack and steel wheel package for 9-5's is half the price.

    Thanks rtd1,ffb13 & bretfraz for your help.
  • stewdaddystewdaddy Member Posts: 4
    Anyone considering or have already stiffened the suspension of their Saab 9-5? I find the body sway of my Aero excessive compared to other sport sedans I've owned. Tire rack suggests stiffer spring which lower the car 1" (more spoiler nicks). Has anyone modified the OEM suspension successfully?
  • rtd1rtd1 Member Posts: 22
    I don't know anybody who's tackled an Aero upgrade yet, but here's a good place to start for information on the hows and whys:

    18-inch wheels, anybody? (The sump guard sounds like a good investment!)
  • ffb13ffb13 Member Posts: 181
    a warnning---do not make the mistake of going with a 17 inch snow tire.
    a narrow snow tire is best,better,anytime. the wider the tire the less of a snow tire it is.
    i know that they make 17 inchers---snow tires.but,if you do go this route you will find yourself regretting it if you ever do get into a snow situation--
    suggest that you speak with tire rack guys on this one.
  • lmeyer1lmeyer1 Member Posts: 215
    Just got my Consumer Reports 2001 Buying Guide (not to be confused with Consumer Digest).

    FWIW, they still show the 1999 9-5 as having a "much better than average" reliability rating (in the section with the reliability charts), BUT overall they now rate it as "average" (in the section where with the mini-reviews for each car).
  • davekovacs1davekovacs1 Member Posts: 35
    During my travels in the past few weeks in Southeast Asia I noted that most new Saab 9-5's come with park assist. I wish that option was available in the U.S. Hopefully we will see this appear as an option in the U.S. in the near future.

    Has anyone outside of the U.S. experienced this option on a Saab?


    Dave Kovacs
  • russ8128russ8128 Member Posts: 2
    Just leased a 2001 9-5SE. Love the car. The only minor issues I have relate to the lack of storage in the car. They have great deals on the car right now. $500/36mos/36k/$2500 out of pocket ($1000 cap cost, taxes in) (int rate is 2.6% and residual is very aggressive). Looked at Volvo 2.9 (499/36/$0 down) - too slow & tranny problems (Consumer Reports), Audi A6 2.8 (too slow, already own a A4 (very happy), Lincoln LS (too expensive and plan interior). Also, the stereo rocks!!
  • golfgod2kgolfgod2k Member Posts: 4
    Okay owners of Saab 9-5 SE's, I need to know how happy you are with your cars. I'm deciding between the SE which I think is fun to drive and currently has amazing lease deals vs. a Lexus GS 300 which common sense tells me I should buy, but it just seems too like it is softer and not as much fun to drive down twisty roads. Big decision to go with Saab over Lexus and I'd love some input. Thanks a lot.
  • dskidski Member Posts: 414
    Easy. Take a survey in the parking lot of your Golf or Country Club. Buy the one that is least represented there.

    Enjoy your new Saab.
  • davekovacs1davekovacs1 Member Posts: 35
    Get the Saab if you like the Saab. I won't go over all the subjective comments that could be made about why the Saab is better but . . .

    I have found that there is a higher percentage of Lexus owners who pick their nose when they drive -true - - it is a non statistically valid sampling but it definitely something I have observed in my rearview mirror. I guess the Lexus drivers are also in a relentless pursuit of something too ;-)

    Enjoy your new car . . .

    Dave Kovacs
  • rtd1rtd1 Member Posts: 22
    Probably your biggest technical decision is RWD (GS) or FWD. Do you have a preference? Then, there's the issue of looks. The 9-5 is a bit more conservative in its styling, although I'd argue that it's got the better overall design (the nice wedge shape). I don't care at all for the goofy Lexus nose and extra tailights. Historically, Saab designs "age" well and maintain their family resemblance (in the same manner as MB and BMW).

    I've had my SE for almost a year and am very happy with my choice. The GS300 didn't rank too highly on my admittedly large list of candidates, and after a brief look I never seriously considered it again. But the Lexus dealer was the best of the bunch in my area--something worth considering on an otherwise close contest.

    Good luck with whatever your choice is.
  • bg10bg10 Member Posts: 9
    No I don't own an SE, I own a 9-5 Aero, a 2000 which I got early in July. I needed something to replace my Alfa 164S which got totaled while I was on a different continent.

    I didn't even consider a Lexus, I have to have a car different than the crowd and a car with a personality. It also had to be bigger and better handling than the 164S. As Alfa doesn't import anymore (I've had 3), that left me with Saab and Audi. I bought the Saab because it better fit my size, price and performance requirements. The upshot of this patter is that if you need to fit in and want Japanese Quality, buy the Lexus, if like driving and want to make your own statement, buy the Saab. I didn't even test drive anything else but a Viggen and rejected it only because of size. My life with the Saab has been trouble free and it is better than the Alfa 164S in every respect.
  • novice9novice9 Member Posts: 1
    Help! I'm a novice in the new car market and must lease to meet my budget. Several of you have implied that there are really good lease deals on 2001 saab 9-5s. The Chicago dealers just play three-card monte--when I find one with a good cap cost and residual, they manipulate the money factor, etc. What part of the country are you finding good deals? And what are these good deals? Also, I've found saab incentives/rebates on the internet that saab dealers say they aren't offering ($999 cash allowance for leases, expires 11/30/00) and they keep changing how much of a rebate I can get for the loyalty incentive since I own a saab (`88) now. Any and all advice would be appreciated. I've read almost everything on the internet about leasing but now must find eager dealers--no luck so far.
  • dskidski Member Posts: 414
    Interesting post. It did have some "Bait" in it. Just an observation. We really don't want to go down that road again do we? LOL

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