1991 SAAB 9000 Carlsson from Australia and New Zealand - Comments

18th Apr 2013, 17:13

Stuart, somewhere along the line I was told or read "7" of them. I can't say that's absolutely correct, simply because the source eludes me. There were 329 made and delivered worldwide. A lot more 2.0 litre Carlssons were made and delivered to Australia, so that confuses the issue. I own an Aero 1996 also, and an Anniversary.

The Aero is the most powerful of those three 9000s, but I have read that the Carlsson is a faster car point to point than the Aero (I presume in serious tests, not rumours from Westies).

A couple of years ago I bought a very nice dark blue Anniversary... It sits in my garage as I don't need to use it... but it's beautiful. I didn't adjust the turbo waste, or perhaps the issue is actually the sensor, so the drive back was at the outset one of die-out when accelerated hard, however when the turbo then sprang into action, the car just blasted off. I quickly learned how to handle the turbo issue, and this car is as good in street use as any Aero. Maybe I should check the part number on that SAAB Turbo I bought. The drive back was economical and refreshing, and a slightly different feel from the manual Aero/Carlsson. I was really, really impressed with it.

Most cars I have bought from the Eastern suburbs, when younger, have been abused, cigarette burns on seats etc... covered in leaves, signs of copulation on the seats... used and unloved.... 40,000 miles looking like 400,000.

I suggest they'd been bought by loan defaulting louts from far away unmentionable places, now the suburbs of the nouveau riche on the way to the Blue Mountains... who rent around Rose Bay and Bondi to get a feeling of civilisation, but keep reverting to trademark vandalism, or bought by lisping parents for their spoiled brats attending one of the greater public schools, or somewhere like Emanuel or Moriah. They are the sophisticated version of the Westie.

Mine however proudly boasted a Sydney Yacht Squadron membership... so it was owned by someone of discernment, wealth, class, puckermanship! Even brinkmanship. He may have been a company director and been educated at Barker or Shore, or even Riverview... though I doubt Joeys, or the seat springs would be broken.

He possibly drank only the best 'mis en bouteille au Chateau' Bordeaux. He'd have washed and shaved daily, and not tossed deodorant all over himself to smell worse than a cattle dog.

He would not have tolerated feet on the dashboard or chips on the rear floor, or that delight of some taxi drivers... Kentucky fried kept under the front seat with its permeating perfume absorbed into the car decor like that of a corpse... or the curry containers drifting about and piling up until simply getting into the car demanded some cleaning out... non non non... none of that!

I replaced the leaking turbo and drove it back to that state of Queensland, where it sits as a reminder that not all people living in Queensland buy trash cars like Supercharged Benz's or Holden utes. The flourishing cannabis, cocaine and other drug trade in Qld still prefer Porsche and Ferrari... and like to tattoo their necks with mysterious objects and their tribalised arms like Maoris (whoever filmed 'Once were warriors' should have been thrown from a high flying helicopter!) or plastered with Yakuza-like body tattoos.

You have to dissipate the profit somewhere don't you... and have a 'feel-good' sign of success, and to be admired for the misery you cause instead of what you deserve... a .22 experience.

Tougher than Tarzan women who like these brain dead males "drive" the road to Brisbane daily in 'the smart state'. The number of crashes bears me out with the highway closed in monotony, but they are a tiny, tiny, tiny % of the narrowly averted disasters in a state where the inside lane is the passing lane apparently, and aggressive fury greets your driving in the slow lane at under 110 k/hour.

I think maybe the refugees displaced from Sydney's West by more recent immigration, and who became tattooed physically and mentally, but stopped short of becoming organised crime bikie bully boys might have headed for Qld in a lemming rush, determined to kill or be killed in Queensland. Isn't it great we have a state called 'the smart state' which accommodates them... You can tell them easily... they don't drive SAABs.

Getting back to the Carlsson. The gearing is what pits them against the Aero. The suspensions are little different. Both are exceptional. The 9000 was the best set up front wheel drive for a decade... and today a Carlsson not only looks smarter than most other cars, but will be waiting for a week for another marque to match it in a trip around the nation. The rip off dealers and dishonest, grossly overcharging service people destroyed the SAAB. I doubt any car in history deserved less the lead like plummet in price (not value... the value is always there) the SAAB experiences. Right now a beautiful 9-5 6 speed Aero manual is for sale for well under $8000. GMH really did not address the simple issues that SAAB owners needed to be addressed. All the same, there is a YouTube video, must go on for an hour, of a Swedish police pursuit at enormous speeds... for no good reason and ending in the deaths of the motor cyclists in an Aero, and that car is one hell of a car!... And the driver a sort of road going Houdini.

Our great 9000's seem destined to fall in value after the inexcusable sell out to China. GMH has a very poor reputation when researched... in WWII for example, it, along with other profiteers like Standard oil and IG Farben and the financiers Adolph accused... resisted US war effort.

Both standard oil and GMH refused to cancel contracts in supplying the Reich military with trucks and cars, and refused to increase production to aid the US. So much for all the post war posturing.

Government intervention was half hearted, as the financiers Adolph highlighted controlled it. In Australia recently the Government had spent hundreds of millions subsiding GMH, which promised to maintain a presence, and then having dissipated the money... I presume like Kodak to wastrels and unforgivable executive perks... said it was sacking 500 workers.

GMH spent hundreds of millions on the vehicles that drove at Bathurst, which pretend to be like your road car, but just 'homologated' and tarted up, when in fact they are an engineering feat costing millions just to compete with Ford's annual rubbish mobile, and not a single Holden or Ford has the admiration of the world that SAAB had when GMH was churning out its appalling junk, and Ford was boiling batteries in its incompetent designs.

Your Carlsson is a class car and a classic. Apart from the headlight switch issue, mine has had no drama. I replaced a clutch and pressure plate correctly, had the suspension completely checked and correctly suspension tuned Bilstein sports fitted at AJ Heasmans, who have been looking after my cars for 54 years...

Whilst up in the air, I had all the hydraulic engine mounts replaced and drove it back to Qld, where it sits as I have been working overseas much of the time since then. Whom could one trust to buy and really look after one's Carlsson? It's rare as hell; I don't want it killed off by one of those burn-out, donutting, drifting dopes who flock North of the Tweed.... and who's antisocial all weekend tyre shrieking is fostered by the lunatic fringe council.

Others spend their time creating dangerous road invisibility as they spin, tyres screaming and transmission stressing doing 'doughnuts' in the middle of used roads, even in Saturday daylight around the back streets of Molendinar and Labrador... never apparently heard or seen by police. You can see the smoke drifting from Brisbane road from donuts done outside a motor workshop on Arundel Drive some Saturdays, and hear the torture down the back streets off Harper Road at nights.

Even with a marque ruined by overcharging on service, jealousy leading to a better car than the Holden being sold-off (by the way, the only front drive car I would buy) to be ruined and turned into something of derision like the "Great Wall", the utter heap of underpowered weak junk fobbed of as a "great car" to the sort of people who buy tools at Bunnings.

No greater insult or industrial crime in the modern era has taken place than one of the best cars ever produced suffering the ignominy of GMH's incompetence and bloody minded decision to continue to produce a lesser car without SAAB, who's issues were a simple fix... had GM wanted to fix them. Worse then was the inexcusable ignominy of being sold off to China... the home of slave-labour manufactured, throw away trash wastrels of irreplaceable and finite Australian resources.

Surely SAAB could have rebought it and just museumed it... but no, they decided that the investment of hundreds of thousands of SAAB owners representing 60 years production and successful rally racing in a magnificent car, could be written off in a single monstrous and insensitive act.

Even on that act alone I will never buy any GMH vehicle, and I'll say why. Perhaps readers could take the same action... a BDS on GMH. Pieces of primitive junk like Holden Monaros and 351 XY Fords are adored, and are sold for sums for which you could by a vastly superior car, whilst the SAAB which offered much more quality, was ripped off for $40,000 by the Government on each car to protect that Holden and Ford rubbish, which was 20 years behind European cars, and to make it difficult for ordinary Australians to buy a quality car of world recognised quality and safety.

To avoid being shown up for the primitive things they were, better cars were excluded. Here's a comment from the 1992 Bathurst, where a fully outfitted non sports sedan competed and didn't win owing to brake problems in the early stage...

"The above 9000 CS was unlucky not to get 2nd outright, a great effort for such a low-profile and supposedly non-sporting sedan. Apart from a 1st-lap hiccup it ran like a train all day and was clearly faster around Bathurst than the uber-expensive BMW M5, especially in a straight line where it could even hold onto the tail of the very rapid RX7 TTs up Mountain Straight" (Mazda won)

See http://www.saabsunited.com/2009/10/saab-9000-at-bathurst.html

When you own a Carlsson 2.3 or the more prolific Aero, you own a car that is no less a motoring revelation than a Bugatti, but which unlike Bugatti, has been thrust into oblivion instead of just being stopped by SAAB. It's a far more classic car than the Ford Cosworth I own, and I suspect that in generations to come, it may resurrect itself as a classic.

Voila.

18th Apr 2013, 18:19

Two things... this is a marvellous jibe in SAAB-Garb http://www.club-passion-saab.fr/

Secondly I found an old comment of mine to answer your question on numbers of Carlssons in Australia as follows:

Response 2 at: http://www.saabhistory.com/2007/01/25/the-saab-9000-1984-1998/

24th Apr 2013, 21:57

Hi. I was told by a SAAB mechanic that 25 (not 7, which seemed short as I know of 5 remaining and I don't know them all) of the (122) SAAB 2.3 Carlssons were delivered into Australia. That sounds more likely than 7. On such a small manufactured quantity, I doubt many would have come in as private imports.

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