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· Registered
34 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone, great place, great resource. :D

We got a 2001 Saab 9.3, the two door hatchback (not SE) at the beginning of this year, with about 17k miles on it.

It is our first Saab.

The car was not wrecked (it did not look it and it came up clean on CarFax) and seemed to be fine.

We bought it through CarMax.

However, it has spend what seems to be a disproportionate amount of time at the dealer in the last 6 months (car is still under warranty which expires real soon).

Both me and my wife know a little bit about cars, she is the one that drives it mostly.

We have had replaced (under warranty) one of the DI cassette coils, the clutch friction plate only, -they did not resurface the flywheel or replaced the pressure plate or bearing (at 22k miles!!!, my wife took her last car -also a stick- to 150k miles), the AFM (or is is it a MAP, I can't remember right now), and now, the turbo bypass valve.

Along with that, there were some minor power window switches and such that had to be replaced, and now the sunroof, will get stuck open (or closed) and we have to wait for 2-3 minutes before we can get it to move again.

We have had also the usual front suspension noises, (for which they said they re-torqued the front end) and we have some occasional (not common) roblems with the shifter either popping out of gear when shifting or refusing to go in there, to which the dealer claims they cannot replicate.

The car has had regular and preventive maintenance since we got it, including replacing the brake fluid at the dealer early, changing plugs, changing already the oil more than once in the engine, with Mobil 1 5W30, and having a tranny flush (also early) with RedLine MTL (following the flush twice bulletin procedure). For the record the problem with the shifting existed both prior and after the tranny fluid change. I had the car changed to RedLine hoping to help alleviate such problems, since it is one of the better oils out there.

Even though as I understand it, this is the "low output" B205L turbo engine and the owners manual says 87-93 octane, we have been putting nothing but 93 octane premium in it, since purchase, from good brand gas stations.

There are NO aftermarket modifications to the car of any sort.

All work has been done at the local dealer, however, within 80 minutes of where we are located, there are only two Saab dealer locations and are owned by the same company proprietors.

Neither I or my wife drive the car hard.

Even though it is the "low output" turbo and the owners manual says 87-93 octane, we have been putting nothing but 93 octane premium in it, since purchase, from good brand gas stations.

Are these problems thus far common?

I also do not know what others get, but we do not average, more than 22mpg in mixed driving. On a highway trip, with crusie control at about 78 mph, we got 24 mpg. I am not complaining about the mileage, I am just wondering if it is an indication of the engine's condition.

While I can excuse the other problems as unfortunate, the transmission issue is something that concerns me, and would like to get addressed, before the car is out of warranty within the next month.

Any help/suggestions would be appreciated as well as anything else we should try and have fixed prior to it going out of warranty.

We had been very excited to get the car, and we love it in many ways (I love how the trunk will swallow almost anything) but my wife has had to leave the car so many times to the dealer, our little girl is asking us, why is mommy's new car always sick or why is mommy driving another car again(rental)? :roll:

Thank you,


· Registered
6,596 Posts
Wow, those are a lot of problems all at once. "Fortunately", a few of them might all be really the same problem manifesting in different ways.

The clutch, shifting, and creaking I think are related. To fix the clutch they needed to take the transmission out. To do that, they needed to take the subframe off. If the subframe bolts aren't tightened properly, you'll hear a creaking noise. I'm not sure about the shifter, but if the linkage and/or clutch weren't put back together properly, perhaps that could cause it to pop out of gear or be difficult to put into gear sometimes. So, these three symptoms could be one related problem.

· Registered
9,423 Posts
The transmission problem is troubling. Popping out of gear isn't good. There is a simple procedure to realign the shifter mechanism you can do at home. That typically adresses many of the "hard to get in gear" situations but not the shifter popping out of gear. I'd definately get it looked at before the warrenty runs out. That car is too new to have this much trouble w/ the transmission. Hopefully, Boxman will be along, he's a tranny guy (if not, PM him). 24 mpg is on the low side for highway mileage. Most of us get in the high 20's. Have you cleared out the mpg? I reset mine w/ every tank. You may want to buy a bottle of Chevron Techron concentrate or my favorite, Chemtool B-12 and run through. Were the spark plugs changed? Maybe this has something to do w/ it. As for octane, 87 won't hurt you if you need to put it in, you just won't receive the performance benefit of the 93. If your car starts to ping though w/ the 87, go back to 93 on the next tank.
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