2003 SAAB 9-3 Reviews - Page 19 of 21

2003 SAAB 9-3 Sport Sedan Vector 2.2 TiD from Belgium

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 2.2 TiD Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.6 / 10
Distance when acquired0 kilometres
Most recent distance47000 kilometres
Previous carSAAB 900

Summary:

The real driver's car

Faults:

The car seemed to have problems with the engine management system at first, which did cause a minor inconvenience on the motorway. The dealer did replace the entire computer unit during the next week under warranty.

Furthermore I had the driver's seatbelt replaced due to a problem with the tensioner, a slight problem with the GPS unit which was fixed with a software update, a new motion-sensor for the alarm system, a new unit for the electronic stability program and a new CD player. All these items were replaced under warranty and were done expertly without any hassle by the dealer.

General Comments:

This is my third Saab, and I must admit that this is the very best car I have ever owned, not withstanding the fact that it has been to the dealers a few times for some problems. It handles brilliantly, has a high degree of comfort and looks very nice indeed. And let's be honest here, which other car manufacturer can offer a complete car like this, with the same level of comfort and luxury, for the price of the Saab?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd May, 2004

2003 SAAB 9-3 Vector 2.2 Tid from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2004
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 2.2 Tid Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.4 / 10
Distance when acquired20000 miles
Most recent distance25000 miles
Previous carVolvo V70

Summary:

Where economy meets style, handling and performance

Faults:

Remote Central Locking Battery & Blue tooth software malfunction - quickly rectified with updated download.

General Comments:

Beautiful looking car, specially with the vector body kit, also cabin is truly unique and ergonomics are a joy.

Only bug bear is the mobile phone bracket inconveniently placed at the height of passenger's right-hand knee.

And no, its not a tarted Vauxhall Vectra, it's a diesel with mind blowing torque. Easily out accelerate most cars on the road from 40 - 80 mph in Fifth gear!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd March, 2004

23rd Aug 2005, 12:53

Ergonomics may be a joy, shame the quality of plastics is poor, seating not comfortable, Audio weak, cabin dull.

Apart from this, I could not agree with you more!!

2003 SAAB 9-3 Linear 2.0t from North America

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 2.0t Semi-Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10
Distance when acquired15 miles
Most recent distance5300 miles
Previous carSAAB 900

Summary:

Excellent car for the money

Faults:

I have small annoying problems:

I had an On-star malfunction the first month.

The rear cup holder doesn't like to lock back into place once you open it.

I have a small amount of wind noise, coming from the rear passenger side.

The most irritating problem is a rattling noise from what seems to be located in the front on the passenger side.

General Comments:

The seats seamed uncomfortable at first, especially the headrests because they are pitched forward and don't go down as far as the 900 models, but I'm used to them now and they feel fine.

The overall performance of this car is certainly much different than my 900s. I have the sport suspension which rides a little harder, but she corners and drives like a dream.

I'm still trying to get used to the turbo. I don't care for the lag from the time you hit the gas to when it kicks in, it's just not smooth.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 6th February, 2004

2003 SAAB 9-3 t 1.8t from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture2003
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission 1.8t Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.8 / 10
Distance when acquired3500 miles
Most recent distance5500 miles
Previous carBMW 3 Series

Summary:

Great car, great performance, and good value for money

Faults:

Nothing as yet.

General Comments:

The Saab 9-3 Vector 1.8T. What a car!

I recently drove it into the City, through the South of London to test the car's ability to handle random, poor/crazy urban driving and it handled beautifully.

In a city of BMW's, Mercedes and the odd Lexus, the SAAB 93 sport has charisma and stands out indeed.

Its 150BHP is more than enough to pull away from the lights and other cars to get to the other side before, in typical London style, the road merges into a single lane.

I used to drive a BMW 323 which cost about £3k more when it was new. Put the SAAB next to a BMW 3 series and there's no comparison. The SAAB wins hands down. For looks, for performance, for features, for comfort, for that big grin on your face.

The interior is very well decked out in leather. Leather seats, leather steering wheel, leather gear gaitrr, leather trim. Beautiful car.

When they said that BMW is the 'Ultimate driving machine', their marketing department forgot to sit in the SAAB 93. Its comfortable on roads and boy does it go round those tight corners on a country road. It sticks like glue to the road.

Take it from me buy one, as I believe when the SAAB gets more exposure, they'll become the new 'BMW' and sadly BMW will be a has been.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th February, 2004

7th Jan 2005, 16:07

I drive the 93 1.8t for two years now. The big plus is the comfort and torque that's always available. The big minus however seems to be the poor quality of the interior plastic fittings. I encounter lots of loose plastic molding, on bad tarmac my car sounds like a cab from eastern Europe. On good tarmac there is no real competitor on the market, and believe me I drove BMW 3 series, Citroen, Peugeot's, C-Class Mercedes, Alfa's. It's handling, speed and looks still are great after two years. Best car I've ever driven. Doing 120 MPH on the German autobahn for hours and hours feels very solid and secure. I get out totally relaxed and actually regretting getting out of my car. Two thumbs up.

6th May 2005, 01:20

I agree. It's definitely the funnest upscale sedan I've ever driven. The only thing that concerns me is the reliability. There has been higher than average recalls and electrical problems with past models, I love this car, but if I'm gonna pay $40k for a car, I don't want to spend a lot of time getting it fixed. any responses?

14th Nov 2006, 04:41

Well unless BMW is taken over by GM, I don't think that SAAB will be a threat on their competitors radar screen for a long time to come. Pity, becuase SAAB used to make very solid, interesting and well engineered cars. Now, unfortunately, due to GM and a lack of investment, they are Opels in fancy clothing. At least the new 93 handles well whereas the old model was an absolute dog and an unreliable one at that.

14th Nov 2006, 09:58

The old 93 certainly does NOT handle like a dog!

It in fact rides better than a 3 series BMW and handles just as well.

As for reliability - "top notch" I would say.

Average review marks: 6.8 / 10, based on 64 reviews