2000 SAAB 9-3 2.0 LPT from UK and Ireland


Stylish, comfortable and refined, but at a price


Took it for a service when bought it. Was told battery, turbo clip and exhaust are on their way out. Nothing urgent though, so replaced them gradually during the rest of the year.

On next service (2 month ago) I was told that suspension is on the way out, and head gasket may start leaking in the next couple of years. Not sure about the correctness of second assessment and am going to leave it for now, but will replace suspension in the next few months.

Pixels on display fading intermittently every now an d then.

General Comments:

I'm quite happy with this car. Running cost is quite high, especially if you go to main dealer. Even independent specialists are quite dear. But it's worth it, it's a quality car after all. The engine -even the entry level 154bhp version I have- I absolutely brilliant, really smooth, refined and powerful both in highway cruising and in town.

I suspect that reliability wouldn't be on par with japanese cars or a ford, but it's a SAAB :)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th March, 2007

2000 SAAB 9-3 SE 2.0 turbo from North America


Nice car, poor design of oil system


Oil Sludge identified at 33K. Engine failure at 57K due to oil sludge.

General Comments:

Engine oil screen was cleaned and I was instructed to change oil at manufacturers intervals. Changed oil 8 times within 30,000 miles and replaced oil pump. Engine again diagnosed with serious damage from oil sludge. Saab offer is to pay for 50% of cost for a new engine and will not contribute to use a rebuilt engine.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 6th January, 2007

2000 SAAB 9-3 SE 2.0 High-Output turbo from North America


Maintain it well and it will run forever.


SID had a few pixels go out at 75K miles (replaced under warranty). Everything else is maintenance stuff (front brakes at 75K, etc.).

General Comments:

I'm surprised to see so many negatives here. But then again, I suppose people who have had bad experiences are more likely to post here than people who aren't having problems at all. I am one of the people who have had little to no problems and have had fine dealer service.

Owning a Saab, I've learned:

The 2.0 turbo motor is a delight. MUCH more powerful and refined than I thought it would be.

The seats are sublimely comfortable. Not particularly big-bolstered, but downright wonderful.

The manual transmission is just as engaging as was the gearbox on my VW Corrado SLC or 94 Twin Turbo 300ZX. May not be on par with a Honda or BMW, but it is very rewarding and you'll never miss a gear.

Don't go to the dealer if you don't have to. Repairs and maintenance is SO much cheaper if you just go to the eccentric Euro-only shop down the way which has tons of experience with these cars.

I bought mine used. I bought my particular Saab because the previous owner did every scheduled maintenance and changed the friggin' oil every time he should. He had receipts to back this all up. And you know what? The car is still perfect just as it is about to hit 100,000 miles. My dad's 95 Camry XLE V6 (he bought it new) has had more problems (engine light, brake light, shocks) than my Saab ever has.

Plus, the quality of the leather in the Saab versus leather from 1993 VW, 1994 Nissan, or 1995 Toyota is superior. The leather really reacts the way real leather should when fine balsam is applied (I used to use Lexol which was okay, but a fine balsam for shoe leather is just so much better in my opinion).

I could go on and on. My boss had a Honda Accord which had endless problems. Check your Saab before you buy used. Apparently like other cars, there are bad Saabs and there are good Saabs.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd January, 2007