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Saab 9-3 Coupe (2002 and earlier)



  • gbriankgbriank Posts: 220
    The incentive monies offered by Saab corporate is taken off the MSRP. I recommend that you negotiate down from the MSRP and then subtract the incentive cash.

    As for 0% financing, you are required to put (I believe) 10% of the car's value down (not including the tax, title and license). I have looked around and most credit unions are offering very good rates (5.8% for 60 months).
  • Ok, I bought the 2002 9-3, automatic, fully loaded for $26,900. I got my own financing through a credit union for 5.8%.

    Be sure you ask for the arm rest extension.
  • Oh I meant to mention that the TMV on Edmunds was $28,732. So, work your way down from there.
  • agentzukagentzuk Posts: 5
    Cleveland 2002 9-3 5 speed base lease (w/ heated seats and black paint, no premium pckg): $259 x 36 mos, $1999 down + fees. Ok, sounds good.

    WHY no wiggle room on the fees? $495 acquisition fee, and $300+ termination fee. Why pay Saab these ridiculous bank fees. WHY ARE THESE FEES "NON-NEGOTIABLE"?

    Also, GM is obviously kicking back something to the dealers for these cheap lease deals. How much?

    After 2 hrs at the dealer he gave me 10 bucks off the national offer and when I asked them to sweeten the deal (saab dealerships are not exactly conveniently located) the owner offered me a coffee mug and a smile. I like the car, but refused to pay the acq fee and walked. I can't believe they let me walk over the acq fee. He said they make $100 over invoice on the deal. BS! pls advise. zuk.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,331
    They're kosher on a lease. $495 seems normal. It is a BS fee charged by the bank, but you have to pay it. The $300 termination fee I'm not sure about. I know my friend has a termination fee on his Audi, but I've got a 2000 Saab 9-3 and there is no termination fee.

    Does your $259/month ($314 if you don't put a 1999 cap cost reduction) include taxes?

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • agentzukagentzuk Posts: 5
    Nope, that is the base rent. I was too mad to check what the tax would be if rolled into the payment. If I chose to pay the tax up front it was around $800 plus $100 or so for tags/title, etc. (new Ohio laws require tax up front OR rolled into the lease with interest! - yuk).

    The kid from the dealer called me back to see if I wanted the car today. ALLEDGEDLY they have sold 7 of these at the $259 offer this week. I doubt that any dealer has that many BASE 9-3's. I just can't see paying $900 or so in fees (acq + termination) for the right to give saab my money.

    It is a great lease though and seems like a great car. Also, this is day 1 without a car (I turned in my Catera yesterday). Life is hard without a car let me tell you. thanks for yr reply!
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 356
    WHY no wiggle room on the fees? $495 acquisition fee, and $300+ termination fee. Why pay Saab these ridiculous bank fees. WHY ARE THESE FEES "NON-NEGOTIABLE"?

    I believe its because its the law in some States. They've apparently decided that its a specific service and has to be fixed, or something to that effect.

    You have a couple of options. One is to tell them what the service is worth to you and how much you'll pay for it, and ask that they take the balance out of their own hide, but this is probably not all that likely to work, as these fees are really hidden profit centers that they were planning on getting at the price that they've already offered you.

    The second option is to ask specifically what service is being provided by the fee. And FWIW, "documentation" is not a sufficient description. If one of these fees is to process State Motor Vehicle title/tags/etc, if their rate is outrageous (IMO, $300 is), you have the rights in most states (including NJ) to do this yourself. Apparently, the key buzzwords to use are to ask for a "Certificate of Origin", which is the document that they provide if you're registering a vehicle out-of-state. The most likely hitch in any such deal will be processing the title when you have a lien-holder (bank). Its not really rocket science, but they want you to believe that it is.

    The alternative is to shop around. I recently got rid of my Saab for another car and I walked out of the first dealership due to a $300 doc fee and went to one who only charges $99. Because this fee is fixed, you should be able to shop this around on the telephone.

  • jas28jas28 Posts: 50
    on my 99 9-3, I was charged both the 495 aq and 300 lease termination fee. These are standard and not "dealer add-ons" - my price was a fixed discount rate in which the dealer was bound to the stated price - no add-ons, etc. The fees may be different if you lease through GMAC or another bank as opposed to Saab Financial.
  • agentzukagentzuk Posts: 5
    hello again, thanks for yr info!

    last dumb question(s): invoice on the 9-3 w/heated seats is $27,377 (via edmunds). my cap cost on the car is approx $24,700. do you pay tax on the difference between invoice and cap cost (ie the $3000 under invoice)? there is an additional tax charge of abt $200 on my quote and I don't recall paying this tax on my last lease.

    also, is this $3000 reduction the dealer cash allowance from saab? maybe these guys are only making $100 bucks on the national offer! I must say it was an impressive test drive and well designed for the price. I can get the metallic paint for an add'l $8 bucks a month. any real advantage to the paint other than the unique colors? brgds/zuk
  • jas28jas28 Posts: 50
    the tax is on what you pay (the 24K). The 3k is from Saab, not the dealer. Saab claims the metallic paint will keep your car from getting that dirty look that a black car gets when somebody breathes on it.
  • sweeney5sweeney5 Posts: 9
    Saab 9-3 2002. Lease based on 3 yrs, 15k per year, everything rolled in (Virginia tax, tags, bank fee, no down payment) also includes all of your lease loyalty (apparently $500).

    9-3 SE with premium package, automatic and metallic paint
    $393. per month
    $393. due at lease (1st payment only!)sale price will be $28184.

    9-3 SE no premium pack, including automatic and metallic paint
    $369.08 per month
    $369.08 due at lease, sale price of $26430

    Please advise if anyone is doing better than this specifically?

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,331
    Sounds like a good deal to me. I pay $398 per month on a 36 month 12K per year lease on a 2000 base 9-3 with Slushbox, Leather, Moonroof, CD, & Metallic Paint.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • agentzukagentzuk Posts: 5
    I'm extremely upset with our local dealers. After 2 weeks of dealing with these people I wouldn't buy a saab if you paid me. Think twice before you buy this car... and then think one more time if you're still considering it. thanks for all yr info. zuk
  • jas28jas28 Posts: 50
    I agree with you, but my issues are car related - my latest (in a looonnnggg string of warrany repais over the last 32 months) is having the driver info center replacted (for the second time), new bushings on the sway bar for loud suspension creaking and the muffler replaced after developing a leak (on a car with 27k miles -according to the dealer, this is not uncommon due to condensate build-up in the muffler).

    Just like you zuk, I'd say be vary careful before getting one of these (especially if you don't like your dealer) because you'll be spending a whole lot of time in the service department of your dealer.
  • 22sub22sub Posts: 9
    I've been considering the new 9-3 for my wife - are the serious mechanical issues that some of you are describing the norm?? Or do you think you got some bad cars out of a good bunch? What about your experience nycarguy? You're looking at BMW's now right? Is that b/c of the unreliability? I'm totally new to SAAB's, so any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks,
  • jas28jas28 Posts: 50
    the "normal" ones (ie many other people I know have had them) are: A/C controls breaking; suspension creaking; Saab logo/badge on hood wearing off/falling off; radio reception on AM failing due to bad antenna; weak wheels (had to replace rims 3 times at $250/wheel) and numerous rattles on the vehicle interior.

    Other ones I have had (which I have not seen duplicated on other cars) include failed side airbag (fortunately not in an accident); bad driver's sear; poor A/C performance; bad power locks; failed driver info center; failed side mirror motor; bad sun roof seals.

    Just a warning from an admittedly disgrunted Saab 9-3 owner.
  • hppypaulhppypaul Posts: 43
    I don't want to jinx myself, but other than an errant airbag light on in week 2 (easly fixed by reinersten motors in denville, nj) , i've run 38K without a hitch. Just regular maintenance checks and oil changes. Did a solo run from nj to miami and back (2800 miles) with 34mpg and fun all the way.

    Guess I got a good one. Probably because it's a lease and will go back in a year. If I owned it, I'm sure it would be a mess.
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 356
    My Saab was sold earlier this month. I generally enjoyed the time I owned it, except for all of the teeth gnashing that occurred every time the car's poor mechanical design caused a failure. And over the time I had it, it failed me far too frequently for it to be considered an acceptable ownership.

    Saabs are notorious for having poor mufflers. I found this out in my 2nd year, when I had both my middle & rear ones replaced while the car was still under warranty. My recommendation here is to wait as long as possible towards the end of your warranty period, so as to more likely have a better muffler after your warranty has expired. A coworker who used to own nothing but Saabs has moved on to VW's/Audi's and his advice on mufflers was that the aftermarket cheapies tended to last barely a year, so they can be more expensive in the long run - - but they'll last long enough to pass State vehicle inspection and to sell the car to someone else, he advised :-)

    I also had my "driver info center" replaced while under warranty. Shortly after, it stopped providing the "time for service" reminders, so it was obviously broken again. It was by this time out of warranty, so I wasn't about to pay for that repair.

    I also had the AM radio reception problem. It never really was fixed to my satisfaction. Also had the flimsy headlights switch break because I actually dared to use the switch.

    I apparently got lucky on serpentine belt failures in that I only had one of them. These fail due to seized bearings on idler pullies. You won't get that many miles/hours worth of warning before the end comes: figure less than a single day/100 miles from the first hint of a 'squeaky' from under the hood.

    Continuing, I'd have to say that my engine rebuild was the "fluke". Of course, this was due to a blocked oil line that the oil pressure transducer wasn't able to detect. I was lucky in that I caught it very early: "only" $2500 for a rebuild of the timing chains, instead of three times that for the whole engine.

    Finally, another poor bearing/bushing design is in the older manual transmission. My first one failed catastrophically at 36K miles (requiring the car to be towed in), and because they claimed it was part of the "wearing parts" of the transmission, was NOT covered by warranty. The second was an immanent failure, less than a year and less than 12K miles later, and I absolutely demanded that they pay for this one. Boy, was I livid, and that was pretty much the final straw.

  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 356

    You're using the same dealership I bought from & used... wished I would have known, as I just sold off my second set of wheels. I still have a nearly virgin Evolution IV car cover, if you're interested.

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,331
    I feel the same way you do about your car. I've been lucky (knock on wood) because my car is a lease. I think to own, I would have chosen another make from the get go. Mine is a 2000 Base 9-3 with a slushbox. My car had the suspension creaking (as jas pointed out) from about 2 weeks after I took delivery. When I brought the car in for the "free" 1000 mile service, they replaced the front right strut. Other than the 1000 mile service, I brought the car in for an oil change at 5K, 10K, the 20K service which I had the same strut (broken) and thrust bearing (cracked) along with a right front wheel (cracked on both sides) replaced because of a pot hole that swallowed my car in Harlem when I got off the FDR drive to get around some Saturday night traffic (luckily $20 got the service advisor to cover those under warranty), and I just completed the 30K service. There is a rattle in the dash that happens on cold starts when I have my foot letting off the brake. The front pads will probably have to be replaced before I turn the car in. While I do love my Saab, part of what I love is that it is leased and in a little over 8 months I'll give the car back. definitely got a lemon...your car is at the dealer at least once a month! A Sob story!

    huntzinger...You've posted your problems that you've had with your Saab and every timer I read them I still can't believe my eyes! Another Sob Story.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 356
    huntzinger...You've posted your problems that you've had with your Saab and every timer I read them I still can't believe my eyes!

    If there's any unbelievers out there, I guess I can grab my big pile of repair receipts, scan them in as PDF's and put them up on a directory on my website. :-)

    The real lesson I learned was to use Saab's Customer Assurance 800# and to be very firm when calling them.

    Another Sob Story.

    Agreed. The thing I know today that I didn't know before was that the 900, 9-3, 9000 and 9-5 are all platformed off of GM's Opel Vectra.

    And if that wasn't scary enough, you can then add in "engineering contributions" from Fiat.

  • manny17manny17 Posts: 2
    Just came back from the dealer. They are offering me a 36 month lease 15k, premium package, 2002 9-3 SE for $2,112 at signing and $375/m. Is this a good deal or do I have room to negotiate?
  • Both Patrick Saab in Schaumburg and Saab Exchange gave me the best quotes (I sent email to them). I got my Saab from Saab Exchange in Highland Park because the manager replied my email with the lowest price (invoice price). Also, they sold only Saabs (they just started to sell Prosche). They have much better service too.

    C230 seems to be a more up-to-date car but I won't buy it because people may think I cannot afford the "real" Mercedes. I like hatchbacks. I like the front of the C230 but I found its rear area is ugly. It's liked being cut off by someone. Its sunroof and ABS are better though.
    I think it is suitable in snow. Although Kompassor may be more efficient but it got turned on once you start the engine. It probably have a shorter life than turbo. Since MB didn't develop too much standard transmission, many people suggested to buy a MB auto.

    These are just my opinion. If I am buy a Mercedes, I would save more money and buy an CLK or SLK. After you put leather and the sunroof to the C230, it could be expensive. (It think it would be strange if you don't have leather in a MB or a BMW and the sunroof is a MUST HAVE because it is one of the selling points of C230 !)
    For the same price, I would buy a 9-3 SE/Viggen (more powerful - 205hp & 230hp), A4 (at least quattro is available) or a 325i.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    In addition to the feedback here, you may also want to post (copy/paste) your question in this FWI Leasing discussion. Our host (Car_man) has a lot of knowledge on what the different manufacturers are offering. Btw, weekends are a little slow around here so give it a day or two for additional feedback. Good luck and please keep us posted.

    Hi stupideagles- 9-3 vs C230. You may also want to share (copy/paste) your thoughts in our new our new Mercedes-Benz C230 vs. Saab 9-3 discussion. Thanks for your participation. ;-)

    Hatchbacks & Station Wagons Boards
  • huntzingerhuntzinger Posts: 356
    Hi stupideagles- 9-3 vs C230. You may also want to share (copy/paste) your thoughts in our new our new Mercedes-Benz C230 vs. Saab 9-3 discussion. Thanks for your participation. ;-)

    That's where I'll be posting my comment.

  • Hello everyone: I would just like to say that I am relatively new to this room having only been in the Sabb-buying market for the last 2 weeks.
    However, during that time I have visited this forum numerous times to read differing opinions regarding the advantages - and more often then not!- disadvantages of buying or leasing a new 2002 Saab. With that that said - I have found this site to to be very useful and extremely informative in my car-shopping endeavor and I would just like to give you all a collective "thank you" for all your help

    Here's the offer that has been given to me:
    2002 Saab 9-3 SE fully loaded premium package
    The dealership I went to has offered me the following lease package: 3 year lease, 15k mile/yr, $361 lease/month, no money down, money factor of ZERO. To buy the car outright, they are offering me this car at $26,702 or to lease a cap cost of $27,702. No matter what - we are looking to lease. Personally - I think this is a sweet deal - as long as the "complete premium package" is worth buying it.

    What do you think?
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,331
    Sounds like a good deal to me to lease. $361/ month for a 15K per year lease is great. I pay $399/month for a 12K per year lease on a 2000 Base 9-3. Definitely lease, and don't buy!

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • 22sub22sub Posts: 9
    thanks to all for their insights on potential problems with SAABs. I must admit I am now feeling fairly aprehensive about purchasing or leasing one. Nevertheless, if I do decide to proceed, I'd like your thoughts on lease vs. balloon financing (nycarguy?)...

    At least in Texas there is a personal property tax that is imposed when leasing a car, which can amount to several hundred dollars (my secretary has a pathfinder, and her assessment this year was for $420). I have been told that a much better option is the "balloon financing" option, that has a clause allowing you to simply return the car to the dealer at the balloon if you don't want to keep it. This acheives the same low-monthly-payment effect, without the tax at year-end.

    Does anyone have any specific experience with these two scenarios and can shed light on which is better?? Thanks,

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,331
    I'm not sure how baloon financing works, but I think you don't just turn the car back to the dealer if you "don't want to pay the balloon." You can finance the balloon for another couple of years I believe. So what if you have to pay $400 a year for 3 years? It will be offset by the fact that the SE with Premuim Package comes with Free Maintenance for 3 years. A Saab is a great car to lease. If you balloon it and then finance the balloon after 3 years, Saab will be 2 years into a new body style and you'll be clobbered by depreciation. But agian, I'm really not sure how it works!

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

This discussion has been closed.