1999 SAAB 9-3 SE 2.0L turbo from North America
A fun drive, but expensive maintenance
Gear shifter sensor switch failed, locking gear shifter in "PARK" at 40K miles.
DI cassette required replacement at 50K miles.
Power seat control assembly has broken twice.
Alarm module battery failed preventing car from starting at 108K miles.
AC compressor replaced at 108K miles from worn bearings.
Alternator replaced at 108K miles from worn bearings.
SID unit has been replaced 4 times.
The cabin temperature probe failed at 65K miles.
Idlers seem to require replacing every 10K-15K miles. Engine compartment in general seems to have issues with bearings. This was true with my last SAAB, a 97 900 SE.
The valve cover gasket and head gasket are leaking oil, but slowly.
Parking brake does not work even after several attempts at fixing.
Overall I am satisfied with the performance of the vehicle. I would classify the experience as "fun with practicality", considering the 25 mpg fuel rating under aggressive conditions.
What is not "fun" is the excessive expense of repairing and maintaining this vehicle. With the exception of oil changes I have rarely left the repair shop with a bill of less than $1000. Replacement part markups on this car are high.
I love SAAB, but I am undecided if the frequent expenses to keep the car running is worth it as I approach the time of buying a new car.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 11th May, 2007