2008 Saab 9-3 SportCombi User Reviews
- $9,620 - $13,848
- Great fuel economy (up to 34 mpg/hwy), distinctive, fun to drive, safety features, cargo space
- Overpriced (missing many standard features), Uncomfortable seats, AWD is not standard
Purchased As New
I have owned the Saab 9-3 SportCombi for just over a year and have dilligently kept notes on the Pros and Cons of this vehicle:
Pros: Great looks and very unique styling, LED light bars over headlamps are very cool looking. Turbocharged 2.0 liter engine has plenty of power (210 hp) and great acceleration. Great gas mileage (26/city 31/hwy, up to 34 mpg w/cruise control. Automatic transmission is very smooth. High-performance handling (very fun to drive!) with excellent all-season Pirelli tires. Soft touch interior materials. High quality stereo system (150 watts, 5 speakers, XM included free for 3 months, auxiliary input for mp3 player, also remembers different audio settings for FM, XM, CD and Aux).
Features: rain sensing wipers, dual climate control w/Auto temperature settings, Hands-free integrated Bluetooth phone system w/voice recognition, On-Star free for 1 year, air conditioned glove box (not sure I'll ever use it), comfortably padded middle armrest slides forward and backward, one-touch windows down for all 4 windows, speed warning chirp (you pick the speed), telescopic steering wheel.
Excellent safety features (tire pressure monitor, daytime running lights, four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock, traction control, electronic stability control, active head restraints, side air bags and side curtain air bags).
Cons: Front seats are too narrow and uncomfortable for me (5’10” 180 lbs). You can't use the 12V power outlets unless the key is in the ignition and in the On position (runs down battery). Sun visors are really cheap and only cover 60% of the side windows (no slide-out extensions), and there is no window tint on any windows. Neither the glovebox nor the armrest compartment locks. Electronic manual shift is nice to have but I always have to down-shift after switching to manual in order to get the needed power. Ok performance in the snow but not on par with AWD/4WD vehicles. Some torque steer is noticeable when you accelerate quickly, but not much turbo lag. OnStar Turn-By-Turn directions is not available on this vehicle (a feature I love on other GM vehicles). Could definitely use more storage spaces in the dashboard (not much will fit in the small spaces there), and there are no places for coins anywhere. Cruise controls buttons are awkward to use (would be better to put them on the steering wheel). Fake plastic trim on doors rattle from stereo. Remote entry only works in close range (within 50 feet) - won't help you find your car if you're looking for it. Excessive wind noise from the windows during highway driving.
Missing features: many standard features are only available on the Aero model (i.e. AWD, home-link/garage door opener, digital compass, auto dimming rear view mirror), which is a $7,000 minimum upgrade (plus another $6,000 for AWD). I would personally prefer to have an auto-dimming rear-view mirror with a compass as a standard feature, instead of the hand-free phone which is probably only used by a small percentage of owners. Would be nice if AWD was standard (or at least a cheaper option) to be more in line with competitor’s vehicles (Audi, Subaru, etc.).
I would definitely recommend taking the Saab 9-3 SportCombi for a test drive, particularly if you are looking for a performance-oriented wagon, but I would strongly suggest also looking at Audi, BMW, Subaru, Dodge, Mazda, Volvo, Volkswagen, etc. in order to compare the features, performance, value, etc. that are most important to you....read morehide
6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- Great looking inside and out, smooth ride, lots of cargo room, quick, handles great, very safe
- hard plastic"y" interior, some annoying rattles, gas mileage
Perhaps the best wagon on the market. It is certainly the best looking wagon out there right now. It has a great ride and is very quiet inside, but the small annoying rattles can be very annoying. THe interior is full of dark hard plastic, but looks great. The tubro six is great, but I wish they would have found a way to get more horses out of the four and use it in the aero. THe six only has 40 more horses and a lot more weight. It is amazing how they were able to nearly eliminate all torque steer. Safest thing you can drive besides a tank...read morehide
3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- Speed AND Fuel Efficiency combined with premium options
- Door button release for rear hatch has to be pushed every time you want to open the 5th door
I have owned this car for 12 months and have put 20k on it. It has performed excellent and has been a blast to drive. I can cruise at highway speeds in 6th gear with little effort and hit the gas to pass without needing to downshift. The turbo makes this car just rip in the city and does not seem to kill the fuel economy when aggressively driving.
I have a family and need to have something that can allow me to pack in kids and still have fun on the road... this car lets me do both. The amenities inside are great and still reflect the Saab heritage of Scandia design.
I would highly recommend this car....read morehide
11 out of 12 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- No trim specified for this review
- Small enough to park in NYC, with enough casgo for camping gear for 4
- It's not a BMW. That thing is driving perfection
This is a good looking car that drives well and has lots of legroom for 4 tall people. at 6. 2" , one learns to appreciate that.
Tons of cergo space. beats any American sedan in practicality.
And it's made in sweden. It laughs at winter.
Test drove it and was completely impressed. It takes winding roads like a sportscar....read morehide
10 out of 10 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- sharp looks, very comfortable seats, unique "saab" touches
- driver seat memory positions not linked to key FOB, miss the 2006 dash mounted driver info screen
Having driven both the 2006 and new saab sportcombi (both in 2.0t trim levels) I find the new dash and center console layout MUCH more intuitive. That said, I miss the driver information screen that was mounted on the centre of the dash board in earlier models.
The handling is quite tight and much to my surprise, torque steer is not as prevelent as I anticipated. While not as quiet on the road as my 03 CTS, it is a fun car to drive... much better in the snow though as I got to test the 2006 on the hills of Vermont last winter.
Have to laugh - just don't call it a wagon in front of my wife!...read morehide
15 out of 15 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- GPS good, seats and instruments well positioned, easier to reverse than a saloon
- Have yet to find something that I dislike
The car performs really well as good if not better than other saloon cars I have owned. The performance is startling, the gear ratios are well matched to the engine torque. I like this car enough to put together this evaluation, this is something I have never done so before.
SM. car bought from Alexanders of Stockton/Middlesbrough...read morehide
16 out of 19 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- No trim specified for this review
- Nice Styling.
- Still no AWD.
Contrary to one of the other reviews, it seems Saab still doesn't offer any AWD option (at least for 9-3)...which might explain why it didn't handle so well in the snow! : )
Guess I'll have to wait another model year before considering Saab. Bummer.
1 out of 10 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
- The Performance was good, and great features, and design of the car is very nice. Its comfortable.
- Some Dashboard Lights went out, and AWD system isn't good.
I liked the car because it was comfortable and had performance. I live up in Portland and when It snows here All-Wheel-Drive is a must.
Interior quality is great but also cheap cause just after a couple weeks
a couple of the lights on the dashboard went out and the transmission
seemed kinda jerky. But, I went to the dealer and they fixed those issues. It had great handling and great braking distances. But when It came Winter time and it snowed the real test came testing the All-Wheel-Drive capability. Well snow comes around and I find out that the AWD just isn't smart like I would like. It just felt cheap and I felt like the car was always slipping. I was mad at the quality cause I just had bought it and thought it would perform better.
In the end, I sold the car and bought a older Audi A6 with Quattro. It
was much better, I felt better driving in the snow....read morehide
3 out of 13 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful to you?
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