2002 SAAB 9-5 Linear from North America - Comments

26th Jun 2008, 05:52

As I've said, here is a list of things that have gone wrong with the 2t Linear I bought at 45 thousand kilometers. The mileage was genuine and certified. Thankfully, I took out insurance.

1. Complete transmission failure, back at the dealers for two weeks.

2. Brake failure all brakes.

3. Heater stopped working.

4. Sid unit became unreliable.

6. Front drive unit, drivers side, fell to bits (needed total rebuild).

7. Air bag warning lights came on and stayed on.

8. The paint peeled off the SAAB emblem on the bonnet and blew away whilst driving, (a very common problem).

9. Drivers electric window malfunctioned and needed repair.

Then the same happened to the passenger window.

10. Knocking noise from underneath; exhaust brackets came adrift, because they were very badly welded at the factory.

11. Another complete transmission; exactly the same internal problems the first one had, purely bad manufacturing.

My experience in eighteen months of ownership? Delightful to drive when going well, and I love the comfort and higher cruising speed. BUT, can I drive this car now without the ever present fear of what next will go wrong? NO; WHY? Because it's a total piece of crap as far as build quality and reliability goes. I'd be forever fearful of buying another one, and certainly couldn't recommend a Saab to anyone needing a reliable car.

26th Jun 2008, 10:22

I've owned a Saab for years and it has been the most reliable car I've ever had the pleasure of owning.

I would buy another one in a minute, but I don't plan on getting rid of mine anytime soon.

29th Jun 2008, 17:18

Then I think you've just been one of the few lucky purchasers of a Saab. I've spoken to a lot of people who have owned and currently own Saab cars and most of them have the same response. Never again. Good responses are in the minority.

Nice car in terms of performance and comfort, but the chances of buying one that is trouble free is very rare.

All in all, the build quality and reliability of Saab cars is shocking.

30th Jun 2008, 09:25

In response to the comment on June 29th 17:18.

Now I'm really beginning to believe that there are a lot of either grossly misinformed people out there, or there is an conscious effort out there to damage the reputation of Saab.

Saab the automobile company is now owned by GM, and is no longer affiliated with the aircraft manufacturer.

As for your remark that most Saab owners would never buy another - Well there are plenty of Saab loyalists who are very happy with their cars and are happily repeat buyers.

If your Saab had problems - it is your right to be unhappy about it, however my Saab is the most reliable car I've ever owned, and it is by far the best car I've ever had the pleasure of owning or driving, and I have the right to my opinion too.

You can drive your Audi, BMW, Lexus, Jaguars & Mercedes - all fine automobiles - but I'll keep my Saab!

30th Jun 2008, 10:34

According to those surveyed on this site 55% of those who own a Saab 9-3 (which I do) would buy another one.

That is the MAJORITY not the minority.

5th Nov 2008, 18:29

Yeah, 55 per cent is a ringing endorsement. Not!

Let's agree to disagree: some Saab owners are fanatically loyal while others swear at them, not by them. If you want to look at a statistically significant survey, consider JD Power's Dependability Survey. Saab is near the bottom of the list consistently, along with VW. Land Rover is the worst.

Personally, I think you'd have to be nuts to buy a European car - with the possible exception of BMW. Now leasing is another matter.

13th Jun 2009, 06:47

Can anybody help? We have had a Saab 9.5 estate for 7 years from new. For approx. a year the car just does not start, it normally is after a short run. We wait from one hour to sometimes about two hours then it will start. This has happened over the past year and is very much on a infrequent basis.

Our normal garage cannot find the problem, contacting Saab they sent us to the nearest dealer (our local dealer closed down) they had the car 4 days and could not find anything. They suggest it could be the ignition switch, which we will have again to pay for and it might not be that. We have called the A.A. rescue out, but when that arrives it starts. When turning the key the lights come on the switch board, but nothing happens. Has anybody come across this, if so please give some information. This is our third Saab and we do like the cars, but we have to say, with other problems we have had, this is the worst car and it puts you off buying another. Any advice please.

24th Jun 2009, 16:29

If your car is not starting after running and having to cool down in order to start again. It may be your crank position sensor. My 9-5 Aero had the same problem.

19th Jul 2009, 10:42

Saab made great and reliable cars until GM bought them and insisted that they use GM sourced engines instead of Saab units... and a GM Vectra chassis instead of Saab chassis... and GM electronics instead of Saab electronics. I have seen many Saabs that have clocked up over 200,000 miles on the original engine and box. Hopefully they will go back to making great cars under Swedish ownership.

30th May 2011, 12:28

JD power survey is taken at 3 years. Ask someone who has owned one for 200k miles, like me. You will get a very different answer. The lowest cost overall to maintain per mile!

17th Nov 2012, 13:56

Have your mechanic replace the ignition switch... it's common.

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