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  #1  
Old 26th November 2009
Lenshead2 Lenshead2 is offline
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Default 99 Saab 95 reliability question

I am considering buying a 99 Saab 95 with 208000 miles with a manual 5 speed trans. The owner suggested that perhaps the engine had been replaced, but wasn't sure. ( yeah, right).

Anyway- the car is in beautiful cosmetic condition, but the mileage concerns me. Is there a way to tell when the engine number is correct for the vin? I'm looking for a way to tell if the engine is original. Also- what should be my key concerns to look for- typical and/or costly repairs. There are two Saabs in my family and they're great cars, but Saabs in general seem to have a reputation for being unreliable. This has not been my experience, but I'm looking for a luxurious used European car for cheap that will not be a money pit. Advice appreciated- Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 26th November 2009
gghh gghh is offline
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Its a 10 year old car with more the 200k miles - what do you expect?

Every car in this age may fail.
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  #3  
Old 26th November 2009
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I just got a '00 9-5 for $500. It will be rolling for another $950. It has 203,000 miles. If the car lasts me until March, I will be happy, but it will most likely last longer. At this level of mileage the reality is that you never know.


What kind of motor does your 9-5 have? V-4, V-6?
When you start it does it let white smoke out of the tail pipe?
When you accelerate it does blue smoke come out of the tail pipe?

Any light on inside?

Any service record?

We need more info
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  #4  
Old 26th November 2009
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Sounds like the four-cylinder if its a stickshift.
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  #5  
Old 26th November 2009
Lenshead2 Lenshead2 is offline
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Default Engine details

It's the IL 2.3L Turbo 4. I haven't driven it yet, but the owner bought it at auction and claims it runs perfectly. I hope to test drive it tomorrow. He's asking $2800 or best offer. Kelly Blue Book says excellent is worth $1450. If I take it to a mechanic for an inspection- what would be good numbers for a compression test? Are there any easy tests for a turbo- maybe a boost check. I imagine replacing a turbo on a car with this kind of mileage would be a bad investment? Thanks again for all the input.
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  #6  
Old 26th November 2009
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If the car has over 200,000 miles and something happens where the car gets deemed as a total loss, you will get very little for it. Of course this depends how the insurance companies work int he state where you live but the fact of the matter is that at that mileage there is a high risk of the car not lasting too much more. You can use that as an argument to talk the price down, even if the car feels like it has 100,000 miles when you drive it (no noises, clunks, no blue smoke on accelerations, no lights on in the dash, etc.)

Just be careful and use sensible judgement.

Just my $0.02



Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailspin View Post
Sounds like the four-cylinder if its a stickshift.
oooo...I didn't know that the only motors that came with manuals on 9-5's were the 4's. Sorry about that.
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Old 27th November 2009
jim blair jim blair is offline
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Hi Sorry to but in can you tell me the white smoke blue smoke you are asking as my 1998 95 auto does the white smoke big time on starting especialy after sitting for hours Best Regards.
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Old 27th November 2009
Lenshead2 Lenshead2 is offline
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Default Blue Smoke vs White

Quote:
Originally Posted by jim blair View Post
Hi Sorry to but in can you tell me the white smoke blue smoke you are asking as my 1998 95 auto does the white smoke big time on starting especialy after sitting for hours Best Regards.
Hi Jim-

I'm not the person who mentioned white vs blue smoke, but I believe blue smoke indicates burned oil- probably need rings or valves or both. White smoke indicates burned engine coolant, suggesting a leaking head gasket.
This is not Gospel, but I believe this is accurate.

John
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Old 27th November 2009
ngisywo ngisywo is offline
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Cheers!
Valikie
Out of the many posts, this one attract my attention. I believe it is possible for anyone to participate.
Excellent ! I like it very much.

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  #10  
Old 27th November 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lenshead2 View Post
[...]The owner suggested that perhaps the engine had been replaced, but wasn't sure. ( yeah, right).

Anyway- the car is in beautiful cosmetic condition, but the mileage concerns me. Is there a way to tell when the engine number is correct for the vin? I'm looking for a way to tell if the engine is original. Also- what should be my key concerns to look for- typical and/or costly repairs.[...]
I don't know perhaps this was the line that he got when he brought the car. I can't imagine there being any way to distinguish the original engine from the replacement. Since the engines don't usually have any external markings on them. You might consider getting a Carfax report to see what it reveals.

With respect to what to look for. We usually recommend dropping the sump for sludge inspection. Additionally I'd asked the owner about the alarm battery and what oil he's used since they owned the car. There's no way of knowing what gremlins are lurking in this car. That's why we're here. If the car motivates you sufficiently... buy it. They are a helluva lot of fun and they look good even if it is 10 years old.
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  #11  
Old 28th November 2009
PeriSoft PeriSoft is offline
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$2800?! I wouldn't buy a car from someone who's clinically insane. That's absolutely absurd - I've seen '01s in the low 100ks in that price range. The guy is either deluded or an *******; either way I'd run fast and far.
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  #12  
Old 28th November 2009
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as far as taking it somewhere to have it looked at, i would reccommend an indy who specializes in saabs particularly, or a saab dealership. The reason being that they will know the trouble spots of these cars very well and can give you the best analysis

i had to pay 110 for my inspection before i bought my aero, but it is WELL WORTH the peace of mind/just knowing whats wrong with the car before you buy it. Its also a great bargaining point.

as far as the compression test goes, anywhere in the 170-175 psi range is a very healthy engine. rather than being concerned with each individual cylinders' compression, you want to look at them all together, as in no case should they vary more than a few percent. if its over 10 percent variation between all 4 cylinders, you may be looking at leakage problems and i would steer clear of that car.

As far as saabs go, i've heard if you treat them right theyll do the same to you. You absolutely need to keep up with all maintenance if you want reliability out of these cars, as they are not very forgiving otherwise
EDIT: And about the turbo, since its an older model with the gt-17 garrett, i can almost GUARANTEE you its been replaced at least once, if not a few times. These are pretty weak turbos and you dont see many go past 100000 miles, so if it was replaced recently, you may be ok for a while, but its tough to say

Good luck!
Ivan
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Last edited by ivanwakeup; 28th November 2009 at 02:12 AM. Reason: forgot something
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  #13  
Old 29th December 2009
kitesforsale kitesforsale is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pegasus50 View Post
I don't know perhaps this was the line that he got when he brought the car. I can't imagine there being any way to distinguish the original engine from the replacement. Since the engines don't usually have any external markings on them. You might consider getting a Carfax report to see what it reveals.

With respect to what to look for. We usually recommend dropping the sump for sludge inspection. Additionally I'd asked the owner about the alarm battery and what oil he's used since they owned the car. There's no way of knowing what gremlins are lurking in this car. That's why we're here. If the car motivates you sufficiently... buy it. They are a helluva lot of fun and they look good even if it is 10 years old.
Nice thread - some good stuff to consider.
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