2003 SAAB 9-3 Vector 2.0T from North America
A comfortable, sporty, fun car to drive (when its not being serviced for some type of repair.)
I bought the car used, but certified. While driving the car home from the dealership, I exited the interstate and arrived at a stop light. I made a left turn and noticed that the engine revved up between first and second gear, almost like a transmission slip. It hadn't done it before, so I kept it in the back of my mind. After several weeks, I noticed it happening more and more. Mostly when I exited the highway and tried making a left turn. After several trips to the dealership (where they insisted it was software updates), the problem was intermittent, but still there. I finally spoke with the service manager and they kept my car for a few days. It turned out it had a faulty throttle body valve. They replaced it twice. To date, the transmission still shifts at weird times, but no longer slips.
At 31,000 I began hearing loud crumpling noises in the front suspension, especially when going over speed bumps or dips in the roadway. I brought it to the dealership and they told me that they had replaced an engine mount, but wouldn't elaborate on how they eliminated the noises that came from the suspension area. They told me that they would mail me a copy of everything they had done to the car, but I haven't received anything as of yet. In the meantime, I now hear noises coming from my rear suspension.
I've had no luck with the 6-disk in-dash CD player. I'm on my third one because the previous two continually skipped (not even from striking bumps in the roadway.)
At 30,000 miles, all the door handles had to be replaced because of fading.
I also had to have the front passenger's seat belt retractor repaired. The seat belt would not retract into its original position once the passenger unclipped the seat belt and exited the car.
When I'm able to drive my car and not the rental 9-5 they give me, I notice that the 9-3 Vector really performs. It's tight on the curves and has quick acceleration on the highway.
I like the manual mode of the transmission, its very functional in the snow, especially for slowing the car down without using the brakes.
The equipment controls are easily accessible and fun to use. You can tell Saab cars are born from jets, it feels like your seated in a cockpit.
The heated seats are a must, I don't think I'll ever buy another car without them. Absolutely the best feature living in New England!
Hardly any wind noise, even on the highway. The sound system exemplifies the last statement and sounds great! The only problem is that I don't hear the sirens when emergency vehicles are approaching.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 5th January, 2006