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9-3 Sedan, Cabrio ('04+)/Combi & 9-3X Workshop 9-3 SportSedan, Convertible ('04+)/Combi & 9-3X , 2003 - 2012 Technical Forum

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  #1  
Old 14th February 2007
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wtfwill wtfwill is offline
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Default howdy !

hi there!

i've been browsing these forums for about 30 minutes now, and i have to say this is a great resource for anyone who wants to know anything about a saab! you all seem very friendly too.

as you can see i'm new to the forums, and i don't yet own a saab. i did some searching, but a lot of the best threads are outdated and i didn't want to bump them, so here's my question!

i currently own a 1999 hyundai elantra. it's nothing special, at all. and it served me well for 3 years. i'm currently 19 and working almost full-time while commuting to school. my car hasn't been too reliable lately, especially in the cold weather. i was just curious as to what i can expect driving-wise from a 2003 9-3 arc. i realize most reviews on-line of this car are comming from people who have always driven luxury, and often compare them to bmw and lexus. i'm comming up from a pos hyundai, so i would like to imagine it's quite an upgrade. not to mention, the vehicle is beautiful!

i'm going to check out a used '03 arc this weekend, they're asking a little shy of 16k - it has a warranty still and about 45k miles. it looks great, going to get it checked out and whatnot.

thanks for reading!

- will
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  #2  
Old 14th February 2007
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CL65Pilot CL65Pilot is offline
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Will, welcome to saabcentral first of all! There is so much information available, and this isnt like alot of other forums, we tend to stay pretty kind and professional. I have a 2003, now one thing to consider is this was Saab's launch year for the new 9 style. There have been a number of problems reported, mostly with the automatic transmissions getting contaminated with coolant fluid. Personally, I would stay away from the automatics from this year... I have an autobox, but I didnt have this information before i bought. Luckly, no reports of coolant in my transmission... yet

I upgraded from a 1993 Saturn station wagon that was literally falling apart (it was my first car, i got 6 years ago when i was 16). I can guarantee that you will love SAAB. It didnt take me long to fall in love with the car, and I can say that I will be a customer for life. Im sure it wont take long for you to be able to say the same.

The Arc you mention seems like a good price, I would either have the seller get it CPO'd before you buy it to extend the warranty to 100,000 miles for extra coverage as the deal maker. If they wont do it, you can do it at the dealer for $2,000 or less i believe, just make sure you do it before you hit 50K on the odo, i dont think they will let you extend after you cross that line. Good luck on your car search, and hopefully we will see you around on the forums. Make sure you check out the Lounge section of the site, its a nice place to just talk about anything and there are usually some funny threads circulating, its just a good place to shoot the breeze!


Oh, I almost forgot, post some pictures when you get it!
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Last edited by C206Pilot; 14th February 2007 at 10:15 PM.
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  #3  
Old 14th February 2007
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wtfwill wtfwill is offline
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that sounds like a fair warning. i have read that a lot of the 2003 launch cars had problems once they hit the 20-30k mile mark. as i mentioned earlier, this car has 45k so it has seen it's fair share of road use. i'll be sure to get the extended warranty regaurdless, it seems pretty impressive what you get the price tag considering what these cars went for retail.
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  #4  
Old 14th February 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wtfwill
that sounds like a fair warning. i have read that a lot of the 2003 launch cars had problems once they hit the 20-30k mile mark. as i mentioned earlier, this car has 45k so it has seen it's fair share of road use. i'll be sure to get the extended warranty regaurdless, it seems pretty impressive what you get the price tag considering what these cars went for retail.
Ya, thats a smart move with the warranty. I was surprised when i bought mine last summer, the prices are lower than i had expected for what you get and the lower mileage. I think alot of it is just that Saab isnt as well known as some more mainstream brands. One of my coworkers asked me what kind of car i drove, when i told them it was a Saab, they said, "whats that look like?".... they had never heard of it.

Oh well, its better for us i suppose, lower prices = more saab's for me!
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Amen.

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  #5  
Old 14th February 2007
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wtfwill wtfwill is offline
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http://cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp...1729&aff=utica

that's the link to the actual car, by the way!
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  #6  
Old 14th February 2007
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CL65Pilot CL65Pilot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wtfwill
http://cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp...1729&aff=utica

that's the link to the actual car, by the way!
wow, its beautiful! And by the look of it, you have alot of options... automatic A/C controls, auto dim mirror w/compass... nice car. Im jealous, I dont have half the extras that one has and mine was the same price....
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  #7  
Old 14th February 2007
JonV JonV is offline
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Tell the guy you'll give him 14 and buy an aftermarket Warranty from him....but check with your local saab dealers and see what aftermarket warranty's they accept.
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  #8  
Old 14th February 2007
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wtfwill wtfwill is offline
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sounds like a plan. any other suggestions? you guys seem like pros, i'm at your mercy!
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  #9  
Old 15th February 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wtfwill
sounds like a plan. any other suggestions? you guys seem like pros, i'm at your mercy!
Not that I can think of, just do a thorough test drive, have a mechanic you trust look at the car for any hidden mechanical issues. Ask for all the service records when you buy it. Find out how much your trade in is worth if you are going that route and negotiate a good price on that. Other than that, my biggest piece of advice is to just enjoy the heck out of it!

EDIT: Did you run a carfax on the VIN? Make sure the title has a clean history without alot of previous owners (can be an indication that it may have problems). After the hurricane katrina incident and other natural disasters, there may be a few saabs on the market with salvage titles, etc... something to watch out for.
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Please grant me the ability to punch people in the face over standard TCP/IP.
Amen.

~mfong

Last edited by C206Pilot; 15th February 2007 at 12:05 AM.
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  #10  
Old 15th February 2007
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unfortunately, a majority of my friends are total knowitalls about specific cars. such as camaros, mustangs, firebirds, etc. it would be useless to bring them with me to check out a car that is fitted with a turbo.

i intend on checking out the vehicle, finding out what i can about it from the dealer, get the records, and if i'm interested in it go home and call a few dealerships near me/run the carfax report.

it looks clean, and if it feels good .. i'll take it from there. i know that GM owns saab now (which is what originally got me interested in them, american cars are cheaper to insure) so i'll see how it goes
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  #11  
Old 15th February 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wtfwill
unfortunately, a majority of my friends are total knowitalls about specific cars. such as camaros, mustangs, firebirds, etc. it would be useless to bring them with me to check out a car that is fitted with a turbo.

i intend on checking out the vehicle, finding out what i can about it from the dealer, get the records, and if i'm interested in it go home and call a few dealerships near me/run the carfax report.

it looks clean, and if it feels good .. i'll take it from there. i know that GM owns saab now (which is what originally got me interested in them, american cars are cheaper to insure) so i'll see how it goes
Its still considered a foreign car, but in my case, my insurance rates went down when i switched from the Saturn (Death box) to the Saab, meerly because the Saab was a safer car, it cut my injury insurance by 2/3rds . I went from $113/mo to $94/mo for the same full coverage... it was a real surprise to me.
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Please grant me the ability to punch people in the face over standard TCP/IP.
Amen.

~mfong
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  #12  
Old 15th February 2007
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jay1680 jay1680 is offline
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Default do yourself a favor

Your 19, in school and work. The last thing you need now is to be mucking around with cars and their problems. Get your self something reliable, new and cheap eg (civic, scion ect.) Treat yourself to a new Saab when you are out of school. I just bought one, love the looks and the ride and will pick it up in sweden but I am also prepared to spend signifigant shop time with this car.
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  #13  
Old 15th February 2007
saab19 saab19 is offline
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I had an 04 linear for three years (comes off lease this march, don't have it at school with me)
good car, nice and safe and it was fairly reliable...some of the 03s haven't had problems so keep that in mind, not every car is going to be a pita...and you should never have to be prepared to spend a significant amount of time with the car in the shop--that was a big consideration in looking at my next car
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  #14  
Old 15th February 2007
Wulf Wulf is offline
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$14 - 15K seems like a fair price for that car, 16K is too much. If I were in your situation, I would consider a later MY with less miles for just a bit more money. It won't make a big difference in your monthly payment but you'll have the factory warranty. I was looking on eBay and found this ARC 2.0T 2005 with 24K miles for $16,500.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/2005-...QQcmdZViewItem
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  #15  
Old 15th February 2007
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wtfwill wtfwill is offline
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thanks for the advice --

i would imagine this car, with its reported problems or not, it's a bit more reliable than my current hyundai. the thing is, if i'm going to be spending between 14-16k on a used car, i'd like to get the most for my money. i'm interested in something quick but comfortable to drive 50+ miles a day in. saab is up there in getting the most for your money, and the sex appela of the car is on the top of my list.

i'm naturally going to try and get him to lower the price given what these go for across the country with less mileage, and find out what the history of the vehicle is. wouldn't you agree it's fair to assume that 45k is a good estimate as to how reliable the vehicle is given the number of issues reported with the 2003's? then again, it could explode as i drive it off the lot..
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  #16  
Old 15th February 2007
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CL65Pilot CL65Pilot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wtfwill
thanks for the advice --

i would imagine this car, with its reported problems or not, it's a bit more reliable than my current hyundai. the thing is, if i'm going to be spending between 14-16k on a used car, i'd like to get the most for my money. i'm interested in something quick but comfortable to drive 50+ miles a day in. saab is up there in getting the most for your money, and the sex appela of the car is on the top of my list.

i'm naturally going to try and get him to lower the price given what these go for across the country with less mileage, and find out what the history of the vehicle is. wouldn't you agree it's fair to assume that 45k is a good estimate as to how reliable the vehicle is given the number of issues reported with the 2003's? then again, it could explode as i drive it off the lot..
Well, you still have 5,000 miles left on the original warranty, so any issues can be fixed at no charge up to this point. Its is very important that you get some kind of extended warranty, preferably through Saab. I would have to disagree with some on this forum, in that Saabs, like every other car, arent immune to problems, but arent plagued by them either and just because you are in school (I am too), doesnt mean you cannot get a car you enjoy and love. If it is what you really want, go for it, you'll be happy... and yes... I can attest that the ladies like the car...

EDIT: Pricing on alot of cars is regional, you will find that the price will vary depending on the market you buy in. What might be 16K in North Dakota, could be 18K in New York, it just depends.
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Dear God,

Please grant me the ability to punch people in the face over standard TCP/IP.
Amen.

~mfong

Last edited by C206Pilot; 15th February 2007 at 09:53 AM.
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  #17  
Old 15th February 2007
ArcGP ArcGP is offline
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Will, I sent you a private message. If you didn't get it let me know.


GP
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  #18  
Old 15th February 2007
ArcGP ArcGP is offline
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Hey C206Pilot,

Do you fly for fun or pay? I'm a private pilot , but work as an air traffic controller down here in Louisville. Ever fly through my airspace?

GP
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  #19  
Old 15th February 2007
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wtfwill wtfwill is offline
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i'm afraid i didn't recieve it, ArcGP.

pilot: i agree, you're correct. living in new york naturally things are inflated =\

and about your insurance decrease.. i wish ! being under age 30 in new york state i'm forced to suffer ridiculous insurance rates, even under my parents' name. i'm currently paying $200 a month for BASIC coverage a 99 elantra! i'm expecting my insurance to be as high as $350 a month for full coverage on this car, being that it is much safer - but more expensive/better performing.
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  #20  
Old 15th February 2007
ArcGP ArcGP is offline
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Let me try again.
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