2002 9-3

Consumer Reviews
2002 Saab 9-3

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4.0 out of 5 stars

4.0

22 Reviews
2002 Saab 9-3
4.2 out of 5 starsComfort
4.2 out of 5 starsPerformance
4.4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
3.9 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
3.7 out of 5 starsReliability
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What Drivers Are Saying

1 - 10 of 22 reviews

5 out of 5 stars

So much more than you thought you paid for.

by Naadomail from Brownwood, TX on January 19, 2009

I bought my 2002 Saab 9-3 SE Hatchback with a 5-speed manual transmission about a year ago. My car has 104,000 miles on the clock and I have had no problems mechanically thus far. I have had to replace the retractable antenna which cost $15.00 online and about 20 minutes of my time. Upkeep for this car is fairly cheap if you stay away from dealerships. I have been able to source all my parts (filters, spark plugs, etc.) from CarQuest. A word of advice, use only full synthetic motor oil and NGK spark plugs. This car is absolutely amazing. Nobody believes me when I simply tell them the facts about my car. What other car has a real, quality leather interior, (with "turbo" printed on the seats) real wood grain in the dashboard, heated seats, sunroof, heated mirrors, full electric... everything, a computer that tells you things like MPG and average speed in real time, and a brilliant turbocharged engine? My car makes 205hp, will go 0-60 somewhere in the 7 second range, and has a top speed over 150mph. All the while making 34 MPG highway. And all for under $7000. The car is also very practical. The storage space is unrivaled. I have actually seen pictures of people fitting a full sized washer and dryer set in the back of thiers. Plus you get all the aformentioned perks that come with the car. The computer will even tell you what time you will arrive at your destination based on real time data. It also has interesting features such as and alarm clock and an adjustable alarm that will sound once you exceed a set speed. It is so comfortable to ride in, and handles brilliantly. It is simply a blast to drive. If you are going to purchase one of these cars, make sure the seller has substantial service records. While this car will run forever if maintained, it can be destroyed by neglect very quickly.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
5 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

25 out of 25 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

Solid Car - A little quirky

by I miss my bike from Boston, MA on October 2, 2012

This car has been fine so far for the most part. For a 10 year old car with a turbo engine, the gas mileage is really good. I've been filling the tank every 2.5 weeks for my short commute. The car is very comfortable to ride in, and the sound system seems good enough. One big complaint: Saabs have a known problem with the neutral position safety switch, which we failed to detect prior to purchase (thanks to a sleazy dealer). Basically, the switch doesn't reset properly when the car is turned off, so until the engine completely cools, the car cannot be restarted (usually ~ 1 hour). This can be fixed, but it is rather expensive (>$600 for the part alone). My advice: if you're looking at a used Saab, drive it fast enough and long enough to get it hot, then shut it off and try to re-start it 10 minutes later. If it doesn't start, you're going to have an expensive repair.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
3 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
3 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

16 out of 16 people found this review helpful. Did you?

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4 out of 5 stars

Love the Classic Hatch

by First time Saaber from Chicago, IL on April 13, 2011

I bought this vehicle used when Saab was on the verge of extinction. I always wanted this car when I graduated from college. This is a very intelligent design providing balance in luxury, performance and utility. Great brakes, fun to drive 5 spd, easy to maintain and inexpensive replacement parts. Gets around well enough in the snow. I have no idea why saab moved away from the hatch design when they should have kept perfecting it and perhaps increased the size by about 6 inches in length and 4 - 5 inches in width. This is the car the Prius was modeled after. Saab just needs to innovate and provide more mpg with performance. That said, my 2002 SE gets very good gas mileage in relation to the performance. The styling never gets old. The rear trunk is cavernous. With seats down it holds as much as any mid-sized suv. If saab were to make a slightly larger version with updated performance say 240 hp and tune the suspension firmer, with similar interior fit and finish / safety features and keep the car in the high $30s / entry $40s, I would buy that car all day. Saab is under rated but they need to go back to be unique and purpose built versus trying to be like every other european manufacturer.

4 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

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4 out of 5 stars

One fun vehicle!!!

by Dr. Dan from Naperville,IL on March 18, 2007

Ths SAAB 9-3 convertible sets itself apart from most other convertibles with its unique styling. The 4 cylinder Turbo engine has plenty of pop when you need it , yet gives decent gas mileage. This car is great for someone who may have considered a BMW or AUDI , but didn't want to quite spend that much , yet didn't want to step down into a lower class of convertible. It handles nicely & is a blast to drive. About the only downside is that the interior design is a bit quirky, due to the ignition key being in the center panel, but other than that , it's a fine car that has given me no problems at all in 5 years.

4 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
3 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Does recommend this car!!

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5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic

by Jrjacks from Three Rivers, MI on October 20, 2011

All I can say it they sure design a fun vehicle that is a pleasure to drive. Very good excelleration & top notch fuel milage that is no found in most cars. WE LOVE IT

4 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
3 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Having fun

Does recommend this car!!

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4 out of 5 stars

Whole Lotta Fun!!!

by Dr. Dan from Naperville,IL on April 26, 2007

I've had this car for 4 years & I love it!!! The styling is unique , and the turbo give nice pickup to move through traffic easily. And of course , once the top goes down .....

5 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
3 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Does recommend this car!!

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4 out of 5 stars

My 2nd Saab

by Seth from CMH on June 1, 2006

This is my second Saab, my first having been a 1983 900S that I got used back in 1989. My experience is completely different from Dano's. I bought my 9-3SE used and it had about 45k on the odometer. I'm up to 60k now and have had absolutely no problems with it at all. I had to have the direct ignition casette (DIC) replaced a couple days ago but that was done under warranty, even though I am past the warranty expiration. Also, the DIC wasn't giving me problems, but I was eligible for the replacement so I had it done. The car handles wonderfully, though I'll admit I installed a thicker rear sway bar. The turbo lag is noticeable, but not awful. While not a champ from 0 - 60, it flies from 5 - 75. The seats could be a bit more supportive, especially around the sides of the hips, but overall they're not too bad. The hatchback design (which they sadly did away with in the 2003 model) has always been a favorite of mine. With the back seat down there's enough room in the hatch area to carry a new table saw and a new mitre saw in their boxes. I would absolutely recommend a Saab 9-3 to anyone looking to buy a used car. Make sure you have it checked out first by a mechanic, but if he gives you the go-ahead then it should definitely top your list.

3 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
5 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Does recommend this car!!

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4 out of 5 stars

Fun to drive

by BuffMuscle1 from San Diego, CA on April 1, 2010

I purchased this 2002 9-3 SE hatchback after many years of wanting one, was looking for a manual transmission but ended up buying an automatic. I'm the 3rd owner of this car and bought this car from a friend with only 40K mi on it. My friend purchased the car with only 27K mi, on it, 1 year before i bought it. The first thing i noticed was the power, in SPORT mode you feel like you're riding a car with more than 205 HP, the handling, the performance is inmaculate, and it's quiky but handsome looks really captivates me. Gas mileage is good, i get even better gas milage than my previous car (a 2.0 VW Jetta), but you have to keep your foot off the gas pedal. There was a little computer issue, coordination between the engine computer and the central, but a $120 tune up fixed the problem. So far i'm very happy with it and i'm going to keep it as long as i can. Very happy with it!

4 out of 5 starsComfort
4 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
4 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
2 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Commuting

Does recommend this car!!

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5 out of 5 stars

This car... just wow!

by Jake from Chicago on October 21, 2013

I just bought a Viggen, and it's amazing. When I say this thing is the most fun car I've ever driven, that is an epic understatement. This thing is a monster! It puts 260 ft/lbs through its front wheels! Even with TCS, the wheel wants to rip out of my hand. The handling isn't as precise as I'm used to, but the ride is awesome, for a sports model. The convertible top is tight as a drum, and there's no squeaks/rattles. The seats are comfy, and the seat heaters are a perfect temperature. The cons are, the digital display in the dash is fragile. I hate power seats, but that's my personal thing. Everything electric shuts down when the engine's off, so no rolling up the windows, or seat adjustments, just the radio. Lastly, the trunk is tiny. If you want to put the top down, you're left with a space 13" tall. Also, parts prices are insane. Let none of the cons deter you. This car puts the Enzyte smile on my face. Ifyou're looking for aconvertible that's fun, fast, and safe, then this is it. My only regret, I now live in fear a Viggen sspecific part will fail.

5 out of 5 starsComfort
5 out of 5 starsPerformance
4 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
5 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
5 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Just getting around

Does recommend this car!!

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3 out of 5 stars

good for $ spent

by sce from WEST PALM BEACH, FL on May 5, 2013

This is a very good car, with an excellent reliability record and outstanding safety record. When you can get a $ 40,000 car for $ 7000, 11 years old, that's worth using Cars.com every time I need a vehicle----for myself, my business, or anyone in my business. Thank you CARS. com !! SCE. In the Biz.

4 out of 5 starsComfort
3 out of 5 starsPerformance
3 out of 5 starsExterior Styling
4 out of 5 starsInterior Design
3 out of 5 starsValue for the Money
4 out of 5 starsReliability

Purchased a Used car

Uses car for Work

Does recommend this car!!

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Our Expert Review: 2002 Saab 9-3