2000 SAAB 9-3 HOT Convertible 2.0 turbo (205 BHP) from UK and Ireland


Quirky and quick, and great value for money


Display on computer screen missing pixels.

Battery needed charging.

Some paintwork imperfections.

General Comments:

Slightly old fashioned even for 2000, but low key, stylish fun without German brashness. A year round convertible thanks to good wind protection and a great heater.

An oddball mixture of a powerful turbo engine, scuttle shake, twitchy handling, fantastic seats, thoughtful engineering (including a high quality electric/hydraulic roof), and the odd bit of GM penny pinching quality slips (flimsy plastic trim and rattles).

Inexpensive to buy, and so far no expenses to keep it going. Classic car insurance is very reasonable (£120).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th December, 2015

2000 SAAB 9-3 Base 2.0 turbo from North America


Stay AWAY!


SAAB was a good company before GM. Buy a pre-1998 SAAB.

CEL for neutral safety switch.

Constant overheating.

Exhaust leak.

A/C blew hot.

CAR WOULD NOT START due to the transponder in the key; about a $150 fix.

This was the last straw. I owned the car for a month and it sucked.

General Comments:

Seemed like a good buy.

All leather, luxury, turbo.

Sweet car when it works!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 7th October, 2013

9th Oct 2013, 21:57

Golly! What did you expect from a 13 year old car?

23rd Nov 2013, 22:41

To LAST and KEEP GOING, just like JAPANESE CARS DO? Ah, that was EUROPEAN... Sorry, silly me. Why indeed would you expect a European piece of junk to last? I had a brand new Mercedes (company car, I am not stupid enough to buy one) fail on me almost every week. Why would you expect a 13 year old one to last, indeed?

By the way, the transponder chip is not subject to any wear and tear, so should last indefinitely. Anyone heard of Toyota failing to start due to a responder chip???

2000 SAAB 9-3 Type S 2.0 turbo from Australia and New Zealand


Don't buy it, don't touch it - run away from this miserable junk!!!


Heater hose burst on the highway at night 140 km away from civilization.

TDC sensor broke down, resulting in intermittent and sudden engine cuts - was hard to diagnose - again, at night, in the middle of nowhere. Took me 8 hours to drive 120 km as the car was stalling every 10 minutes.

Three (3) tailgate lock solenoids changed in one year, they just kept failing, locking the boot no matter what you do. Very inconvenient at any time, especially when shopping.

Ignition lock was changed 4 weeks before I bought the car (have paperwork, cost of $190) and the new one started to play up after only a few months.

Computer screen is of atrocious quality - 80% of the pixels are missing; you have to be a Sudoku expert to figure out what it says, and what you see also depends on the temperature.

Original SAAB rear speakers sounded like a Chinese-made tin garden shed on a windy day. Replaced with an aftermarket Pioneer.

Factory stereo sometimes went mute for days, no matter what I did, there was no sound. Than suddenly sound would come back by itself, for any time it wanted - 5 minutes or 5 weeks, only to disappear into thin air again.

Bonnet struts not holding (OK, normal wear and tear).

Engine finally gave up the ghost - failed to start at the end of my 14-hour hospital night shift, leaving me wondering after a sleepless night: "Why NOW? Thank you, SAAB! What a marvel of human engineering!" To make things more interesting, it happened after the car was sold and the buyer was on his way to pick up that pile of misery.

I tried to use "Start Ya Bastard" Instant Engine Starter, produced and marketed by Nulon, (who, obviously, do not have a problem using the word "b*****d" within the Australian public, as our site moderators do), but it did not work.

I know that female owners usually "humanise" their cars, thinking of them as of "living creatures", and we, males, don't normally do that. But I honestly think that b*****d had his own evil soul - otherwise, why he would do such things?

The most impressive part was that when engine failed, the NRMA guy was driving the Saab around town on the back of his truck all day long, because NO MECHANIC WOULD TOUCH IT. Finally he brought it back to me, saying "sorry, nobody wants to do anything with the SAAB" (and I live in Australia, not Papua New Guinea).

General Comments:

Total and entire rubbish. Will I ever learn??? I've had a total of 7 Saabs in my life - EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM BROKE DOWN MISERABLY due to electronic faults, and was too expensive and awkward to repair.

Every time I promised to myself that I will never touch one of those freaks again, and every time I bought another one!

And even I only bought a "low mileage, well looked after, one owner, meticulously maintained" examples - they still broke down on me, even though I maintained them even better than the original owners.

I used to be a Volvo truck mechanic for years in NZ, but... oh boy... I give up. To hell with them. As much as their trucks and buses are good, their cars are a total nuisance.

To be fair, Volvo people are clever enough to use some reliable (made in Japan) electronics, not that horrible, unspeakable VDO cr*p, created by a sick brain (if any!), that will fail if not every week, then every second week (SAAB ignition cartridges, anyone wants to put a good word for them?).

I came from a family of construction designers/engineers. When I look at Saab design, I want to cry. Saab engineers! You went to Uni, right??? Why not use the knowledge and skills to create something DECENT???

Those of you, Swedish Bricks enthusiasts, keen to "keep them rolling" - it is about time you wake up to reality and stop pouring your money and time into that black hole that is called "Quality European cars". "Quality" is not anywhere near them. I don't want to be a part of this insanity anymore. The more money and care you put in that b*****d, the more it wants, and it betrays you at the most unsuitable time.




Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 6th June, 2013

7th Jun 2013, 05:34

Ummm, a Volvo isn't a Saab! They may both be Swedish, but not the same! You should know that, especially if you were a Volvo mechanic! Volvo's do tend to outlast Saabs generally.

7th Jun 2013, 06:13

Actually, they didn't go bankrupt because of reliability problems. So sad to hear an ex-Volvo mechanic couldn't sort out a car with only 102K mileage.