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Saab 9-3 Sedan



  • mrblonde49mrblonde49 Posts: 626
    The major change is that the '05 will have Navigation available in US. And 3 new colors. Full details here:
  • The major change will be Navigation but they are also getting rid of the 6-speed manual and replacing it with a 5-speed manual in the U.S. Have there been problems with this transmission? Why get rid of the 6-speed in the U.S.????
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    I used to have a '97 900 SE turbo. I currently have a 328i. Both, IMO, need snow tires, perhaps the SE turbo even moreso.

    How does an ARC do with all-seasons, such as the ones it comes with? With snow tires, the 328i is pretty good in the snow, but swapping tires is a bit of a pain, and those same tires are pretty poor in the rain--i got into a pretty bad hydroplaning skid this last spring.
  • skysaabskysaab Posts: 32
    I would like to share spme of my experiences. I have leaner with all season tires on it. Mosr of time driven in Chicago area all year ariund since november 2002. I feel pretty confident on this car performance on ice and snow condition. Some of time I feel it handles better than my other car with real time AWD funtion on the similar road condition. From I heard and read in the forum, all season tires are good for all season not need for other snow tires. Hope this help.
  • skysaabskysaab Posts: 32
    Here is my story. I sent in service for break issue. After check up, there is no problem for breaking system, need to replace break pads and roters costs me a fortune. While they were testing the break, they found there is problem in steering wheel, it solves the question I always have in my head about the wierd crack sound while cold start or turning. It's coverd under warrenty and dealer service dept. said this is the first time they ever see the problem in steering wheel.
    It's still drivable but do need to replace the problem parts.
    If you have ever hear some wierd crack sound come from your steerling wheel, better send them to check up. It's not easy to catch it while doing regular oil change, need to be driven out for testing.
  • hbc75hbc75 Posts: 37
    You say it's a cracking sound? I noticed a lot of road noise while driving, and felt what I thought was maybe the power steering (that noise you get when you turn the wheel all the way), but I then just attributed it to the road. Does anyone else seem to get a lot of road noise from the tires the car comes with, the Pirelli 6 (they are known to be good distributor). I have had them on other cars before and liked them. Any suggestions for lowering road noise, or just turn the stereo up? My first road trip under 1,000 miles I got between 29-30 mpg, and got 31 this past weekend. That seems good.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    I had a muted "click" when my steering wheel passed the center point (turning right or left). I could feel the "click" through the wheel too.

    For this specific problem, there is a TSB out. Something about a coupling that is fixed by adhesive (!). Dealer fixed it under warranty.
  • skysaabskysaab Posts: 32
    Yes, it got fixed by dealer. Let me write down the problem written by service dept.---" Clunk from steering column during turns play on shaft" the solution---" Tighten bolts per bulletin - replace steering shaft."
    Now the problem seems gone but I feel bit heavier than used to be.
  • cwpostcwpost Posts: 11
    Hey, I have heard that there is a hidden $3K incentive or rebate on the 03 9-3. Has anyone taken advantage of this recently? If so can you give me some information about prices paid with rebate included. Thanks.
  • Hello to everyone,

    Its been a while since I've been on this forum. My 2003 ARC with very minor exception has been great, this after 20,000 miles. Make no mistake, this is a very sophisticated car, and I bought in to the first year release and the annoyances that come with it. I'm here to say that those annoyances were far less than I expected, and today, my ARC is very "dialed in".

    Based on performance, appearance and overall value, I highly recommend this car. Do not let any ranting on this site about the car's stereos sway your buying decision. Peace.
  • 3and143and14 Posts: 36
    I have a 2004 Arc with the factory all seasons and it was absolutely fine last winter in the snow. Although, granted, it wasn't much of a winter here in Chicago.
  • I tried to order a 2005 9-3 Linear through the military program, but they deleted auto-climate as an option, no more head lamp washers as part of the cold weather, body sills are not available in body color (only black), and no fog lights. To many changes so I bought a 2004 Arc they had available. Everything except xenon, park assist, and sport wheel package for $29,700.
  • Congrads.

    Arc is better, anyway!
  • p63p63 Posts: 5
    My 2001 9-3 is in the shop again (3rd time having it towed off the side of the road in 3.5 years). Anyway, I'm just now within 6 months of lease end and I want to know what your options have been during the same time period. Does Saab offer customer loyalty options for early lease end? My car has almost 47k with just under 6 months to go. With the experience I've had with this car, I don't want to have it without factory warrenty. Thanks in advance.
  • I test drove a 9-3 Arc and when I went through the communications panel on the dash there was a Bluetooth setting.

    I've searched for information regarding what, if anything, can be done with this in the US, but can't seem to find anything. The dealer assures me there isn't Bluetooth on the car, but I have read on-line that the Bluetooth is there but activated only with a Saab phone. I've also read that it requires On-Star to function.

    Any help would be appreciated.

  • 03 9-3
    10,000 miles
    Already has a new battery because, according to the dealer "SAAB batteries don't do very well in South Florida heat"
    Radio won't work, onstar won't work, can't change seat memory, and now the check engine light is on
    Is this car just a bad egg?
  • If i were in your shoes I'd bring a digital recorder with me and talk to the dealer. I cannot be sure, but what he told you sounds like BS, and here is why:
        SAAB is a GM brand, and uses many GM components, I would not doubt it if SAAB's battery was shared with cars its related to, like the Malibu and the new G6. I personally do not know if this is true but its so obvious to spread the costs around, you know?
        There are many GM's in florida i bet, and I have not heard of battery problems there (I'm in NY but it would be a prevalent issue on the boards).
        You could play your recording back to GM and see if they deal with this dealer. SAAB is a critical brand for GM, and so they would be inclined to take action.
        I hope this works out for you, sorry I couldn't help you more. I just love the 9-3, having driven it myself I loved the drive more than any other car I have ever driven.
        So, if anyone interested in the 2006(?) 9-3 w/navigation and 2.8L VVT Turbo V6 with 250hp/258 lb-ft of torque? I mean to me the car seemed fast (stop and go) with the 170hp ecotec, oh man I can't wait till this little guy gets all that power! It could be known as the Mega Man of sport sedans :-D - tml?tid=edmunds.h..wkedmunds.headlines.2.*
  • The 9-3 turbo 2.8 should rock.
  • Hello all.

    I have a 2004 9-3 Aero. I replaced the tires it came with and put on Continental ExtremeContact all seasons. It seems as though I lose air constantly in all tires. Every time I check them they're between 37 and 39psi. Also, whatever system the car has in place to alert me on underinflated tires is all out of whack. My question is this: do I inflate these tires to the recommended pressure found on the inside of the driver's side door (41psi) or do I use the recommendation on the actual tire itself (44psi)? Has anyone else had trouble with the tire pressure sensors?

  • New crash test results posted yesterday:

    "The better performers among vehicles that earn good ratings are designated 'best picks.' The Saab 9-3, which also earned a 'best pick' designation in the Institute's frontal offset crash test, is the first car to earn this designation in both front and side crash tests. It's a 'double best pick.'"

    Perhaps this will help get the 9-3 some of the attention it deserves. One of the many reasons I chose the 9-3 was that it is the safest car available.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    Nice performance from the Saab.

    Unfortunately these specific side-impact results only apply to 9-3's manufactured after December 2003, when Saab changed the side torso airbags to "improve occupant protection in side-impact crashes."
  • Unfortunately these specific side-impact results only apply to 9-3's manufactured after December 2003, when Saab changed the side torso airbags to "improve occupant protection in side-impact crashes."<<

    All it means is that the pre-December '03 ones were not tested for side impact by the IIHS (though all 9-3SS models have a 5 star rating for frontal tests). The earlier ones are still very, very safe cars. Nothing unfortunate about it

    Also, when the new style 9-3's were released, they were given 5 out of 5 in the European crash tests, which included 2 side impact tests. The test results were published in December 2002

    A quote:
    "The Saab 9-3 Sports Sedan received five stars for the impact tests, including a perfect score of 100% in both side impact tests."

    So basically, Sabb took something that already scored 100% and improved itfurther (which it did not have to). This is a very rare feat indeed

    The entire press release is here:
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    Sure, the December 2003 and earlier vehicles were safe vehicles and standouts. The main reason I leased my 9-3 was because of its strong safety.

    But the earlier models are just not AS SAFE as the post December 2003 vehicles. And that's unfortunate.

    Why would Saab make an improvement to occupant protection in side impacts if it didn't see ways of making the vehicle more safe? Because it makes the vehicle safer. Thus the post-December-2003 vehicles are more safe.

    As far as the EuroNCAP side-impact test goes, the results were impressive no doubt, but the IIHS side impact test is simply more demanding and more relevant. Fortunately, the post-December-2003 vehicle does very well in it.

    A lot of vehicles score 100% in the EuroNCAP side-impact test so that's no major feat. Whereas the post-December-2003 9-3 is currently the only sedan to score a Good+Best Pick designation in the IIHS side impact test.

    We'll just never know for sure how the earlier models would have faired in the test. They might have scored as well, or worse. I would suspect worse because the improvements Saab made were to the side torso airbag -- exactly where the significant injuries are being revealed in the IIHS test, after head protection is applied.

    E.g. look at the Subaru Legacy, which aced the side-impact test in the Australian NCAP tests (very similar to the EuroNCAP ones). No issues with head injury. Yet it only scored a "marginal" in the IIHS test. Many Subaru owners are speculating that the issue was the side torso airbag -- exactly what Saab improved after December 2003. There's speculation that Subaru will raise the score by making improvements to the side torso airbag.

    Similarly, the MB C240 and Volvo S40 did well with head protection, but in both cases the driver dummy registered significant torso injuries and they scored "Acceptable." Again, an improvement to the side torso airbag, as was applied after December 2003, may have been what put the newer 9-3 out on top.

    Thus, yes, the 9-3 manufactered in December 2003 and earlier is a very safe vehicle, without question. But the post-December 2003 models are even safer! And I consider that unfortunate because I wish Saab had made the improvements earlier. You can never have enough safety, that's why a lot of us bought the Saab in the first place.
  • Well put, WMQUAN! Now, if only I could afford a Saab...
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    The pressure on the side of the tire is the max inflation not the reccomended. Use the manufactureres number unless it is under 32 psi or so.
  • Catherine:

    Invoice minus holdback minus October incentives for a base 2004 Linear is $22,043. (Some dealers add $480 for marketing/advertising/handling fees.)

    A loaded Aero is much more expensive, but a base Linear is just as safe.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    Have to admit, was considering a SAAB 9-3 Arc but after perusing this board in some detail there appears to be a definite concern about multiple mechanical features/problems relating to the 9-3, ranging from stalls to squeaks and rattles to bad stereos and bad transmissions, etc., etc., etc. Very offputting to say the least.

    Is the car that bad and is it that far removed from Chevy's new Malibu LT sans the problems.

    Constructive answers only, please and thank you.
  • wmquanwmquan Posts: 1,817
    I _think_ that the issues with stalls has been fixed with a software update? I had it applied a few months ago and it has not stalled since.

    The stereo is not audiophile quality. It's adequate for some, bad for others.

    The key to enjoying a 9-3 will be the quality of your local service department. If they are capable of quickly and permanently fixing issues as they arise, it won't be a big deal. If they give you more headaches, don't fix a problem the first time, etc. it'll be a bad ownership experience.

    The same is true of most vehicles, but especially with the European makes.
  • tman1tman1 Posts: 1
    I've just test drove a 2004, automatic, 9-3 Linear and noticed what appeared to be exceptional turbo lag and subtle vibration during acceleration. The vibration was similar to what happens when a manual transmission is in too high of a gear. The salesman attributed this all to the idea that the car hadn't been 'broken' in. Note that the car had approx. 80 miles on it. In support of his argument, he had me test drive another 9-3 (auto) whereas little to no turbo lag was experienced. The 2nd vehicle had approx. 200 miles on it (not a big difference), but there was still a bit of vibration during acceleration. Has anyone else experienced this? If so, can it simply be attributed to low mileage?
  • ""The vibration was similar to what happens when a manual transmission is in too high of a gear""

    I have a 2004 Arc. I noticed what you said about this.... It sometimes happens when the gear is in between 5/4 and the RPM is about 2000 when you are accelerating. According to manual... it says it will kick in if RPM is below 2000 when your gear is in 4 or 5. So I think that's why somwtimes you feel the vibration because of that. I usually just switch to the maunal mode and keep the rpm above 2000 and then I get plenty of power without hesitation.
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