1989 SAAB 900 Reviews

1989 SAAB 900 2.0 turbo from North America

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership1993
Engine and transmission 2.0 turbo Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.6 / 10
Distance when acquired29000 miles
Most recent distance100000 miles
Previous carFord Mustang

Summary:

Sensible rocket, but treat them right

Faults:

Reverse lockout is a real pain if they cause problems. Vacuum leaks are sometimes a cat and mouse game, and keep your turbo from working properly.

Overheating is the killer on these, so make sure you keep your system working very well...

General Comments:

Performance is great for an 80's car; mine is a convertible, and yes they are not a very rigid car, but still handle well, and go great when you do some tweaking of things. It does not take much money to make these a screamer.

If you treat them right and get used to the way they are engineered, what you can and can't do with them, they are very reliable and a blast to drive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th October, 2013

10th Nov 2013, 18:39

Do you have any idea where to get an owner's manual for a 1989 Saab Turbo Convertible?

11th Nov 2013, 15:36

About getting an owners manual:

Try your local junkyard, out there they're generally free, if not then you can find them cheap on eBay.

1989 SAAB 900 2.0 turbo from North America

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2009
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 2.0 turbo Manual
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired198000 miles
Most recent distance207000 miles
Previous carChevrolet Camaro

Summary:

Quirky, but perhaps one of the most functional cars ever produced

Faults:

It had its fair share of problems upon purchase for being 20 years old.

The drivers seat had a rather small tear in the bolster from age.

The AC is not working (turns out the bearing froze previously on the tensioner pulley and has not been replaced).

The turn signal lever will not stay engaged when you move it to a right-turn position, and the instrument cluster illumination bulb contacts have spread out and no longer make contact with the bulbs. Obviously, that means no illumination. Smacking the instrument cluster results in temporary illumination.

All the problems are easily fixable for myself, but I'm not concerned enough at this point.

General Comments:

It's probably the most fun car I've owned so far. It's not that fast, but it merges on the freeway with ease, and is at the least, snappy.

There are no mechanical problems, minus a somewhat noisy lifter.

The interior, in my eyes, is pretty spacious.

The controls are very easily accessible, and were definitely designed for function.

The seats are comfortable even after 20 years.

The rear hatch has more space than you'll use. You could even fold down the rear seat, and sleep comfortably in the hatch.

As far as function (hauling your junk, carrying passengers, traversing the country), this car is perfect. They also have a certain cult appeal about them that you'll really love.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 2010

2nd May 2011, 02:04

Well stated, I have the same year of SAAB, I appreciate the same as you!

11th Apr 2014, 09:12

I agree! This car is my favorite.

1989 SAAB 900 Turbo 4 cylinder 16v turbo from North America

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2007
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 4 cylinder 16v turbo Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 3 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.5 / 10
Distance when acquired173000 miles
Most recent distance180000 miles

Faults:

Water pump.

Transmission grinds - but hasn't broke (yet).

Oil leak in head gasket.

Transmission fluid leaks.

Frame bent in wreck.

Strut bearing started going out.

Turbo gauge broke.

When you take past 80 mph, the seat belts wildly go back and forth - but don't move otherwise... the fuse is fine though.

The car doesn't shift when it is suppose to unless you flip the car from second to drive.

The car vapor locks constantly.

The antifreeze leaks.

General Comments:

I drove this car pretty hard... and it really cost me. I don't know where you're from, but I live in Lewiston, Idaho and I had to travel about 40 minutes to get any service on it. An oil change and tune up was 400 dollars to give you an idea. The water pump was 600.

I got in a wreck going about 60 into a curb, and it put my alignment off 4 inches and bent the frame, broke the rim, and the engine started making some slight clicking noises. It was 550 to replace the rim and over align the tires so it drives correctly. I didn't bother fixing the frame... they wanted 1500 to fix it.

I also bumped into someone once - it bent the headlight and dented the hood. When I went to get a quote, it was 1,800 to fix IF I could somehow find the discontinued parts it needed to fix the head light.

The hoses are to find in the right sizes... and trust; I have had to replace at least 5. I would usually find a tube I would have to force to fit.

I haven't even bother trying to get a quote on the electric problems the car has. Half the time the electrical stuff works and the other half it doesn't (seat belts, windows, sun roof, gauges, ect). The sad thing is that I feel like I'm forgetting more.

Although I will admit... the car went really fast for an old car. Once you hit 60 you can get to 100 in no time. Once you pop the turbo going that fast - all bets are off. That was the only thing I like about that car. Oh... the interior wasn't bad :)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd August, 2009

10th Jun 2010, 21:09

Where do you get your parts from?? I got a brand new water pump for $45.99 at Advance Auto Parts...

1st Mar 2011, 18:33

Sounds like you would have Camry. Something you can run into the ground and forget about.

8th Oct 2013, 08:56

"Frame bent in wreck" isn't a fault of the car.

Average review marks: 7.5 / 10, based on 22 reviews