1999 SAAB 9-3 SE 2.0 HO turbo from North America
Finicky, but Fabulous
At first, the Auto climate control would be on the fritz and wouldn't work at all. The dealership where I purchased this Saab (not a Saab dealer) told me that it needed a new Climate Control computer. They replaced with a used model. ACC still did not function. Then I was told that it needed a completely new AC Compressor, belt, hoses. That was all replaced with (supposedly) new parts. The Climate control still didn't perform correctly. On a 100 degree day it would be set at 72 and blow pure hot air. I kept mentioning that the TEMP display on the dash kept reading - 38 degrees. I was told that it had nothing to do with the climate control. My partner then researched and found that it did have something to do with it, the car thought it was always -38 so wouldn't turn the compressor on, only heat. We found a $9 sensor on the bumper, replaced it. The TEMP gauge now reads exact outside temp. Climate control works perfect. It should work for a long time now with a $3500 new system which was probably not necessary.
Next, about 3 mos later, the car would stall out on takeoff and blow lots of smoke. Took to Saab this time. Needed a DI Cassette $500.Fixed and runs and drives great.
A few weeks after the DI cassette, upon takeoff and stopping, the engine would feel as though it was being slammed around in the engine bay. Transmission mount had to be replaced. Works good.
No further repairs other than scheduled maintenance for 1 1/2 yrs.
Despite the issues at the beginning, I Love my Saab. It is quick especially on sport mode and handles decent for front wheel drive. A lot of the problems were due to having the mechanic at the dealership where I purchased the car, trying to diagnose a car he was un familiar with. Take your Saabs to a Saab Dealer for repairs or al least someplace that works on European/Swedish cars. Like I said I Love my Saab, I haven't had any further problems and now consider it to be very reliable, But if something goes wrong I only allow local Saab Dealership to do the work.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 27th December, 2006