Date: Sun, 05 Nov 2000 20:59:20 +0100
From: Goran Begicevic <>
Subject: Re: Doubts about the 9-3's "nervousness"

Try a bit smaller wheels and no so small-profile tyres. Those "two turns of tape" tyres are just fashion thing without any real-world significance...and they cost more too... Andrew Stephenson wrote: > > Today I handed back a 9-3, borrowed from my local dealer for a > 24-hour test. And I really don't know what to make of it. > > There is so much to like. Design attitude. Care over ergonomics > and safety. Performance. Etc. But there were features I could > not live with -- and I'd like to know if these are typical of the > model, or just easily-fixed aberrations. > > The specification was almost what I was interested in, relevant > parts being: 2001 9-3 Coupe LPT SE. But it had 17" wheels, not > the standard 16" size. > > What ground down my happiness was what I call the "nervousness" > of the ride. With SAAB being a mid-to-high performance marque, > one must accept the suspension will be lively. It needs to be, > for good road-holding. OTOH, each bump came straight through, > unmuffled by the seating; the car jittered restlessly; and it > occurred to me that any passengers would surely become sea-sick. > > This BTW was on well maintained but narrow winding rural English > roads. I was getting around 38 MP(UK)G, at an average of 35 MPH > in the course of one hour on the home stretch. Ie: little wild > acceleration, just reasonable progress for the route, allowing > for slow tail-backs, some town driving towards the end and that > only a fool would exceed 60 on most of _those_ lanes. The car > wasn't exactly being thrashed or thrown about. > > I could probably get used to: > * the controls crammed into the gap between the front seats and > having to fight my jacket to reach them and the ignition key; > * and the struggle to deploy the seat belt (remember, this was a > Coupe, on which the wider door's rear edge is extra-far back); > * and the teensy storage bins; > * and let's not start _another_ thread on cup holders <g>; > * and odd stuff like that. > > But the decidedly un-restful ride would kill the deal. > > What I need to know is: how right was the salesman, when he said > that probably the standard 16" wheels would smooth out the ride? > Do they make much of a difference in the car, as specified above, > compared with the 17" ones? > > Thoughts appreciated. Do keep in mind: I wanted to like the car. > -- > Andrew Stephenson

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