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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2004 Saab 9-3 Aero, Espresso Black, 6 Spd, fully loaded except the ICM3 Stereo. Currently the car has 94K on it, it has some minor body damage, a ding in a rear lower control arm, a broken window/lock on drivers side and now a completely broken passenger side headlight. Since I have owned this car in Fall of Last year I have had to replace the power steering pump, rear brakes that are still grooving up bad, and other various little crap. Recently I was in the market for a motorcycle but am at a stand still with all the issues my car has. KBB gave me $6k for selling it straight out, unfortunalty i owe more then that on the car still. Right now I am trying to figure out if i want to sell it/trade it in for a new honda civic or subaru impreza 2.5rs or get everything on the car fixed. The headlight, window regulator/lock stuff, and the lower control arm are going to cost $1000 + guaranteed and the body damage will cost aorund $750 at my job with a full buff to clean up any scratches on the car.

What do you all think I should do at this point? I am 23 with a decent job, a GF and a 4year old daughter. I need a 4 door reliable car that I am not going to have to sink $100's into like this Saab. I love the car dont get me wrong, i love everything about it except for the fact that it just keeps breaking. I have owned 3 hondas that have all had over 100K on them and if I tallied up all the money I put into them (besides performance upgrades) its probably still less then what I have had to pay and will pay for this Saab. I know everyone on here is a Saab person but financially i dont feel its worth even trying to keep this car, but if I were to try to trade in or sell I would have to fix some of the stuff at least.
 

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Sounds like you might have bought a lemon--buyer beware.

Selling it might be the way to go but you're upside down it appears. And KBB #'s are optimistic. And once you hit 100k count on it being worth under $5k.
 

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Well at that mileage you should expect to have stuff fail/break. My old (the love of my life) Lincoln Mark VIII (1998) started having all sorts of issues after it it 90K miles (air suspension, electrical issues like HIDs), etc.

I would suggest and this is just my opinion, if you're in negative equity, keep it. Fix the more critical stuff like the control arm, the window regulators are cheap, you can find those parts from a recycler like goldwingsaab.com. Dont fix the body dings and so forth, unless it provides to be an unsafe situation (misaligned doors or something akin).

By doing some good research and making a lot of calls, you can find the parts cheap. You're still very young, so drive the car until it completely dies on you (and of course do regular maintenance) and it should last you a few more years, then you can get something new(er).

I have a 2004 Saab 9-3 Aero, Espresso Black, 6 Spd, fully loaded except the ICM3 Stereo. Currently the car has 94K on it, it has some minor body damage, a ding in a rear lower control arm, a broken window/lock on drivers side and now a completely broken passenger side headlight. Since I have owned this car in Fall of Last year I have had to replace the power steering pump, rear brakes that are still grooving up bad, and other various little crap. Recently I was in the market for a motorcycle but am at a stand still with all the issues my car has. KBB gave me $6k for selling it straight out, unfortunalty i owe more then that on the car still. Right now I am trying to figure out if i want to sell it/trade it in for a new honda civic or subaru impreza 2.5rs or get everything on the car fixed. The headlight, window regulator/lock stuff, and the lower control arm are going to cost $1000 + guaranteed and the body damage will cost aorund $750 at my job with a full buff to clean up any scratches on the car.

What do you all think I should do at this point? I am 23 with a decent job, a GF and a 4year old daughter. I need a 4 door reliable car that I am not going to have to sink $100's into like this Saab. I love the car dont get me wrong, i love everything about it except for the fact that it just keeps breaking. I have owned 3 hondas that have all had over 100K on them and if I tallied up all the money I put into them (besides performance upgrades) its probably still less then what I have had to pay and will pay for this Saab. I know everyone on here is a Saab person but financially i dont feel its worth even trying to keep this car, but if I were to try to trade in or sell I would have to fix some of the stuff at least.
 

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Im struggling to see the problem apart from having to buy a few parts, these all sound like mega easy jobs to fix? Just DIY it, there are plenty of how tos on here and a WIS manual is cheaply aquired on ebay. Either way you are going to have to repair it to keep or to sell unless you want to lose even more money on it.
 

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I have to agree with both guys here at different points. I don't see it as a lemon but more of the fact that you're at the mileage where stuff starts to die. From what you've described its mostly stuff you'd do in the garage. First thing, forget about the $750 for paint rebar and all. Thats not hindering anything on the car, just your eyes. Save that money for any future problems. Start looking for parts. The LCA you can do yourself. The headlight, 100% yourself, not sure what you need for the window/lock but you should be able to do it. As Paul said, grab a WIS online and take a look at the work involved to fix things. With DIY labor and parts from somewhere other than the dealer, you should be able to fix the car for a decent price. Continue your maintenance and hold on to it. It's not worth selling it if you owe money on it IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I am actually working with someone on the WIS, issue is time. I am young, only 23, but my Gf, soon to be fiance as it seems lol has a 4 year old daughter. Between the 2 of them, my job, and trying to find a new place to live that has a 2 car garage for me :) its taking up all my time and I have not had a chance to even get under my car. Now on top of this I have to fly to Florida for a Funeral and have to blow tons of money on that. Really I am just in a tough block yah know, I dont want to sell the car I want to fix it, really i want to fix everything and try to get a second engine of goldwing for when I pay this car off I would like it to last another 2 years or so lol. Well hopefully once taxes end up in my pocket I will be getting the control arm, headlight, possibly window as it does not bother me right now, and anything I else I see fit fixed. Will keep everyone updated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
GOING TO FIX

After speaking with my head mechanic at wokr and discussing with the family I have decided I am going to have to fix the Saab the best I can and keep it for as long as I can. To aid in this situation I am going to look for a motorcycle, preferably something thats a 600 or smaller and either a crotch rocket (sport bike) or one of those on/off road bikes as they are a lot cheaper. This way I can take the Saab into the garage for a long period and take the bike to work everyday, if its raining ill hitch a ride with one of my fellow employees. Look for some write ups as I start fixing up the Saab gooing to try to do the little things like fix the door rattling, remove the OnStar box, custom grille, stuff that wont cost much while I am fixing everything else. Thank you for the support guys as it made my decision to stay with the Saab oh that much more easier.
 

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I was going to chime in but it appears you made your decision which I agree with... I was struggling with the same decision as yourself and also decided to keep the car. Besides being under ext. warranty, there have been many other OOW items that have added up. As your research has shown you, the car seems to always be worth considerably less than what you paid for a short while ago. Mine has dropped 150-200% since I purchased it used when it had already depreciated 125%. Most cars depreciate but not many like the 9-3 SS or even the 9-5 new generation. Relatively speaking, its unaffordable to unload the car since I now know the history and any upcoming repairs are essentially regular maintenance. ( have already replaced the engine twice... what else can go wrong? tranny & turbo I suppose.. :-(

Good luck with the bike !
 

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To aid in this situation I am going to look for a motorcycle, preferably something thats a 600 or smaller and either a crotch rocket (sport bike) or one of those on/off road bikes as they are a lot cheaper. This way I can take the Saab into the garage for a long period and take the bike to work everyday, if its raining ill hitch a ride with one of my fellow employees. Look for some write ups as I start fixing up the Saab gooing to try to do the little things like fix the door rattling, remove the OnStar box, custom grille, stuff that wont cost much while I am fixing everything else. Thank you for the support guys as it made my decision to stay with the Saab oh that much more easier.
If you are a bean counter and just looking at costs, it is cheapest to fix the Saab rather than buy a new Honda Civic. Life if more than bean counting so sometimes feelings become important. That's why some people decide it's time to buy a new car. I'd fix the Saab if I were you. Sounds like it's not an unreliable piece of junk now, which is good!

As far as the motorcycle, that sounds fun but not sure if it's cost effective from a bean counter's standpoint. A piece of junk used car might be cheaper than a motorcycle but less fun.
 

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If you are a bean counter and just looking at costs, it is cheapest to fix the Saab rather than buy a new Honda Civic. Life if more than bean counting so sometimes feelings become important. That's why some people decide it's time to buy a new car. I'd fix the Saab if I were you. Sounds like it's not an unreliable piece of junk now, which is good!
+1
Good point.. Life, which can include cars, is not always about the money but about feelings... I like this point very much.
I've unloaded cars before simply because the emotional cost of keeping it was weighing more heavily than financially.. That's just the way it is. Sometimes we do things that financially make little sense, but we often 'pay' for security, peace of mind..
Having said all that, once you invest a certain amount of emotional and financial commitment to our beloved SAABs, they may indeed repay you, not always, but sometimes! I feel thats happening right now with our SS. My wife went on and on for the past year about unloading this POS (as she put it) but its actually been quite reliable since the repairs. I may have actually fixed all the 2003 issues and have brought this up to 'speed' - no pun intended. In which case, I feel better about keeping it. On paper it may be worth very little to others, but to me its now priceless. I put the summer rims on this morning - and she looks great once again.

And I notice I don't spend as much time on Troubleshooting forums, which is a good thing !!

Cheers
 
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