2003 SAAB 9-3 Reviews - Page 12 of 21

2003 SAAB 9-3 Vector 2.0 turbo from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 2.0 turbo Semi-Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 1 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.8 / 10
Distance when acquired50 miles
Most recent distance53650 miles
Previous carToyota Camry

Summary:

Never purchase major buys on impulse...I'm paying for that mistake with this car

Faults:

Stopped on 10 freeway, Santa Monica during traffic

Stopped on local street

"Coolant level low" warning...10+ times could not find problem

Dial for infotainment replaced

"On-Star" serviced twice

Driver-side window rolling back down 4"...3 times

Transmission replaced

Door handles fading

Interior's rubber peeling off

Car keys recalled

Seat belts recalled

ESP failure

Changed headlights many times

Gas cap caused "check engine light" to come on

Button on the steering wheel broken

Writings on cruise control lever peeled off

All I can think of at this time; probably more in my file dedicated to service trips to the dealer

Rear and front brakes changed, with rotors.

General Comments:

I fell in love with its design when they first came out. I was contemplating between Bimmer, Benz, and Infiniti G35. Would not have bought the car if I had done my due-diligence and researched on the web. It is fun to drive, but 1-2 trips to the dealer 35 miles away from my house is not worth it. I would rather drive my old Toyota Camry, which I sold prior to purchasing this car, over SAAB any day. I tried to declare this car as a lemon, but dealer denied my request. I will never purchase this car for the rest of my LIFE. For the amount of money I spent for this car, I could have got one with more power and luxury.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th September, 2006

13th Sep 2006, 21:40

Wow! Sorry to read of all of the problems with your Saab.

I own a 2003 Saab 9-3 and it has been a fantastic vehicle.

I certainly think it is very comfortable & refined.

Mine is a convertible, so it is the carry-over version of the older 9-3, as the convertible version of the new platform was released as a 2004 model (sedans were introduced a year earlier).

Based on my experience I personally feel the Saab is on par with the other premium makes you mentioned, and I couldn't be more pleased with mine.

27th Sep 2006, 13:52

Well, maybe they had higher standards before GM takeover. I don't know the reason why SAAB got so crappy or maybe it was bad from the prior management, but GM should not cut corners to make SAAB profitable. I would not buy any car from GM due to my experience with this car alone. I just cannot understand how GM could put car like this on the market.

27th Sep 2006, 18:53

I think you could voice similar complaints against almost any make.

I still feel that Saab, even under GM, is one of the better marques out there. Read some of the reviews of other high line cars & you'll see much the same.

I do empathize with you though, yours seems to have been quite troublesome, and not very durable. It most be very frustrating.

28th Sep 2006, 11:42

Why is it, that the extremely negative reviews seem to generate the most comments???

(And the extremely positive reviewers usually are accused of working for the manufacturers!!!!)

22nd Oct 2006, 10:10

I had the opposite experience with my 2003 Saab 9-3 Linear. I leased it for a year back in 03 and would have to say it was the nicest car I've ever driven - so much so that I have just put a deposit on a 2003 9-3 Vector. Only this time I'm going to keep it.

One thing that I have noticed is that the level of service differs greatly between Saab dealerships. This Vector (being my 3rd Saab) will be serviced exclusively by SSI Thornhill; well worth the extra 20km drive. You might want to try another Saab dealership in your area.

2003 SAAB 9-3 SE Convertible 2.0 turbo from North America

Model year2003
Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 2.0 turbo Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired30800 miles
Most recent distance31200 miles
Previous carVolkswagen Cabrio

Summary:

Very nice convertible with plenty of style and power

Faults:

AM reception was poor due to bad antenna.

Antenna replaced under warranty by Saab dealer.

General Comments:

I love the vehicle thus far.

Time will tell how reliable it is.

The performance of the 2.0 Turbo is amazing.

I'm astounded how much performance Saab has gotten out of the 2.0 liter four!

Very smooth & quiet, both with the top up or down.

The interior is well appointed. Quality materials are used throughout.

The seats are very comfortable. I can't wait to take it on a long trip!

The vehicle handles wonderfully.

Very nice sound system, but CD's tend to skip a bit over road irregularities.

Although it does exhibit a bit more cowl shake over rough roads than my old VW Cabriolet, it really is not bad at all considering the VW has a built in roll bar. I've driven Chrysler Sebring Convertibles as well as the Volvo C70 convertible and older Saabs that exhibited more cowl shake.

You have to get used to the reduced rear visability with the top up, but it is really no worse then most convertibles (with the exception of the VW Cabriolet).

It does ride much more comfortably than my VW.

It is a very well put together and a very comfortable convertible. The fit & finish is excellent (which it should be on a vehicle that had an original MSRP of over $42,000). I certainly hope that the Saab/GM marriage doesn't diminish the quality & character of this wonderful European marque.

It is very tight, not a drop of water entered the passenger compartment when I took it through a touchless car wash.

I also looked at the Volvo C70 convertible, which was very nice, when considering this purchase, but I preferred the power & handling of the Saab.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th August, 2006

28th Aug 2006, 20:56

On a recent trip from Boston to Philadelphia and back, my Saab 9-3 Convertible averaged 27 mpg. Very impressive indeed!

And a very, very, comfortable trip!

I love this car!!!!!

19th Sep 2006, 05:49

The Saab 9-3 also gets my vote as the nicest convertible on the market. Most underrated, as well.

Anti-GM types just don't know what they are missing.

Average review marks: 6.7 / 10, based on 63 reviews