Re: What's it like owning one of the "new" 9-3s (GM)? - Saabnet.com Bulletin Board


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Re: What's it like owning one of the "new" 9-3s (GM)?
Posted by Justin VanAbrahams [Email] (more from Justin VanAbrahams) on Sun, 5 Aug 2018 17:05:03

In Reply to: What's it like owning one of the "new" 9-3s (GM)?, bender [Profile/Gallery] , Sun, 5 Aug 2018 17:05:02
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In my limited experience there are severe pros and cons. The biggest con is that there electrical bits do not seem particularly robust. Simple stuff like door lock and window motors fail routinely... maybe not "excessively" but more Audi than Saab, if you know what I mean. More complicated stuff like control modules also seem to fail routinely - I've been lucky, but search "ECM replacement" and see how many people replaced failed Trionic 7 ECMs (0?) vs. how many have replaced ME9 or T8 ECMs. Or driver's door modules. Or CIMs. It's a bit intimidating. I think you'd be bonkers to go into owning one of these cars if you don't know where your Tech 2 work will come from.

On a mechanical level both engines are pretty solid, all four transmissions are more or less as good as any, and the cars are well built. They are nice to drive and pretty darned easy to work on (minus the electrical concerns). Safe, quiet, and quick. I'm quite fond of my Aero Sportcombi.

I think I would be somewhat concerned about parts availability. Fuel pumps for V6s just went backordered for who knows what reason, as an example. Some stuff is widely available, bit little random bits can sometimes prove troublesome. I've had intermittent issues - it always works out, but I have panicked once or twice. ;) A friend of mine got into a real pinch when the back glass on his wagon got smashed a year or two back - it took two months to find a replacement *used* glass, new was not available. It's not going to be "water pump" that creates a problem, it'll be "tiny plastic pipe" that does... non maintenance items.

Personally I think I would aim for the '08-'10 cars. I would definitely avoid the first ones with the SAI and the less common ECMs, I would try to avoid the ones with the fiber optic dashes, and I would try to avoid the very last years as I *think* some things changed a bit, the cars were sold in excruciating low volume, and I wouldn't want to be stuck needing something for a 2011 that is unique to 2011. I don't know offhand what that is, but I know I've read threads.

My takeaway was that '08 was kind of a sweet spot, so that's what I got... I'm sure others with broader experiences will have more/better info.


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