Date: Tue, 02 Sep 2003 18:23:14 -0400
From: ma_twain <>
Subject: Re: Starting to shop - Done!

Do you have the name of the dealer? I am looking at Saabs and found a 2000 9-3 for over $17k with only 24K miles. I just wonder if I could do better. Thanks in advance. Joe Gugliemino wrote: > Well, it didn't take as long as I thought it would. About a month after > I originally posted I ended up buying a dark blue/tan 2000 9-3 SE. I > love the car. It's been a while since I drove a car that had anything > remotely resembling balls (my '83 Mustang GT). It's crisp, handles > well, and makes my commute more enjoyable. > > My wife wouldn't go for an older car so we compromised on an off-lease > car. Another newsgroup reader (thanks Bob!) referred me to a dealer who > specializes as a buyers broker at the monthly car auctions. We talked, > and he mailed me upcoming auction inventory. I picked a few, gave him > my limit, and waited. I ended up getting my first choice. While high > on miles (60k) I saved over $5k compared to used cars on the Saab dealer > lots. > > The plusses: > - The most comfortable car I've ever ridden in. I didn't believe all > the buzz about their seats, but they are great. My wife loves the > leather. And that they're heated. I like the 3-person memory setting. > It makes switching between us a snap. > > - The turbo has minimal lag and delivers power right in the range where > I need it. It's great for getting on highways or passing/changing > lanes. The rest of the time it idles and doesn't eat into my 30 mpg. > I've specifically tried to get into (controlled) torque steer situations > and have found it a non-issue. > > - The ergonomics took a while to get used to, but once I did I think > they've done a fine job of locating things. The cruise control is > especially unique, and - I think - easier to use than other cars I've > driven. The buttons are so dissimilar that there's no getting confused. > Other cars we've owned have had their cruise buttons located on the > steering wheel but not always doing the same things. "Now is the top > button set or resume in this car? No ambiguities with the Saab. > > - I'm a gadget fiend so I like fooling around with the computer and the > weather radio. At some point it'll get old, but not yet. And I really > like the night display where everything but the speedometer dims. > > - Tons of room in the trunk. I wasn't able to fit my bike in the hatch, > but everything else I've needed to put in has fit. > > The minuses: > - There is no interior space!!! I have the driver's seat all the way > back, so only a small child can sit behind me. Fortunately I have one > and he sits there, but it'll be interesting as he grows. There's no > place to put all the junk that you normally have in a car. My Palm, > cell phone, and sunglasses occupy the small shelf in front of the shift. > Under the armrest is useless space. The glove box is small. And > having only a single cup holder is amazingly short-sighted. But seeing > as this is primarily a commuter car I can live with it. > > - The driver's side mirror doesn't tilt out far enough for me. I have a > blind spot right before my peripheral vision can pick up a passing car. > I want a wide-angle mirror for the driver's side. A mechanic I > talked to told me I need to order a passenger side mirror for a > right-drive (U.K.) car, but the Saab parts web sites I've found don't > seem to have it available. For the short term I went to Wal-mart and > got one of those stick-on fish-eye mirrors and pasted it to the mirror. > It's ugly, but it does the trick. If anybody has a pointer to the real > thing, I'd appreciate it. > > - The shift throw is long and clunky. Sometimes when I'm about to > downshift it doesn't seem to want to come out of gear - it takes a > little extra nudge. I don't know if it's a quirk of this car and always > been that way, or if that's the way all Saabs are, or if I maybe really > do have a problem and am living in denial. Usually it's so slight as to > be almost unnoticeable, but I wish it were more smooth. > > - The radio is sub par. I've brought in music that I know well, and > parts I expect to hear - like a distinctive guitar rift - don't stand > out as well as they should. I've tweaked the treble/bass/fade and made > it sound better, but I'd expect a car like this to sound really good. > Maybe a stereo upgrade is in my future. Does anybody know if the > standard Saab single-disc CD player can handle MP3's? It seems like a > gadget car should be able to, but I don't want to experiment. > > Sorry for the long post. Overall it's a great car. If it holds up as > long as I expect it to I'll have gotten more than my money's worth. I > had been really blah about looking for a car this time around. I'm > really happy to have found a car I like as much as I do this one. >

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