Hmmmm…..car shopping

After gaining the approval of the household finance manager, I’m now officially on the prowl for a new Saab!  The 99T is packing it in and will be available for purchase, as is, for any of you Aussie readers.  I’m sure we can work out a suitably low price.

In the meantime though, I have to find myself a new car.  The frontrunners so far…

The Saab 9-3 Aero.  I might have access to a 2000 model in Cosmic Blue, leather, 5 speed, with around 100,000 kms on the clock.  Asking price yet to be determined, but here’s hoping it’s the cheapest of the three current alternatives.

This’ll be a reasonable car to grab for the money, but to be honest, I’m looking for something a bit more distinctive and a little more out of the ordinary.  I’m seeing this as a fairly long-term exercise so I’m looking to go as rare as I can within my budget limitations. 

I can certainly live with this if it’s what it comes down to, but I’ll be investigating my options too.

The Saab 9-3 Monte Carlo.  This was a limited edition of only 195 cars worldwide, 50 of which made their way to Australia.  They’re all in a special Monte Carlo yellow and have the HOT 2.0 litre turbo engine.  You can read a review of the Monte Carlo here.

I’ve managed to track one down in Sydney with what appears to be remarkably low kilometers.  Black leather inside with wood on the dash, though not on the console 🙁

The one I’m looking at also has 5 spoke wheels rather than the Aero three-spokes in this picture.  The only thing I don’t like about this model is the black strip down the side and on the bumper, but I could live with that if I had to.

The Saab 9-3 Viggen.  The big daddy.  The Mammaluka.  A firewall-ripping 350Nm of torque pumping out from it’s HOT 2.3l engine.  Hubba Hubba.

I’ve sourced a Lightning Blue Viggen in Melbourne with 66K on the clock.  I love the interior of the Viggen with the seat inserts and the carbon fibre.  The body kit is also free from the Monte’s black stripe.

Unfortunately the price is a premium though, especially considering I’d likely have to by the "Viggen Rescue Kit" as well in order to make it a bit more driveable.

It’s a pickle, but oh, what a pickle!!

At this point the Monte Carlo’s probably the front runner.  I’ll keep y’all posted.

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19 Comments

  1. I realize they’re quite a bit different than the 99, but is the 9-5 even on your radar? I guess you’ve driven the 9-5 bus before, so you know what you’re turning down 😉

  2. And here I was thinking they sang “Pour some Monte Carlo on me”.

    Ah, the 80’s!

    Ryan, I’ve not really considered the 9-5 as to get the type of performace model I’d be after they’d be out of my price limit. I also prefer the hatch to the sedan too.

    I’m lining up an inspection of the Monte Carlo as we speak.

  3. At this stage the leader of the opposition has tied me up in senate estimates for the time being as well…..

    I recall you already have a 9000CSE swade? If not, you could get a cracking 9000Aero for about $15k. Probably a 96 or 97 with only 100k on the clock.Tere is actually one being sold in tassie on carsales or drive.com at the moment that was previously for sale in Sydney for $13K not that long ago.

    I take your point about the current range being priced out of your budget…although I know of a 95 Aero sedan being sold at a local car yard recently for $23K.

    That said, the models you’ve outlined above would be a lot of fun.

  4. Pete,

    That would be the silver one, eh? I recall seeing that on Ebay some time ago. The guy was going overseas and his parents live here.

    Might be worth a peek, though I wouldn’t mind a bit more variety in the driveway. Spice of life and all that.

    Make sure you’re “not tied” up in Senate estimates without consent. No means No! 😉

  5. To each his own of course, but I vote for the Aero – I like the understatedness of that model, and I’m very jealous you can get a 3-door in that spec (unlike in the US). I personally think the Viggen is overpowered for the chassis and that 16″ wheels are a better visual fit than the 17″. Shame to see the 99t on it’s last legs, but a little bit of it’s soul still exists in the 9-3 coupé.

  6. Vote with your feet, especially the big one on the right. Viggen:>)

    My dark blue 9-5 wagon has the black strips. Makes sense when some cretin opens their door on to yours, which they will.

  7. On reflection, its hard to go past a Viggen, if purely for freakshow status in some ways. I’m sure the guys at swedish prestige could sort it out with some abbott gear too.

    As for me, i have this compulsion that coupes need to be black or silver so the yellow Monte Carlo doesn’t get a guernsey. + the MC is a pretty standard ride set up so i’d be going for the full whack sports suspension on the aero/viggen

    Thats the Silver 9000 in question. SOunds like its in pretty much mint condition – if the seller is to be believed.

    I’m kind of going through the same wrestle myself at the moment although yet to be convinced of anything in particular.

    The aforementioned leader of the opposition has decided to buy a boat as of this morning so everything saab is going on hold.
    Interesting times!

  8. Pete, the Viggen would be pretty sensational, lets face it. But the MC is going to be a compromise with price and equipment. It’s got all the gear (exc sunroof) and a bit more poke than the standard Aero but it doesn’t have the torque steer problems of the Viggen. And sorting those out with the Viggen Rescue Kit would probably add another 2 or 3 thou to the price. For $5K less and still pretty well set up, I can live with the Monte. I’ve always been a fan of the yellow so there’s no loss of appeal there either.

    David, the Aero’s been taken out of the equation now anyway. The vehicle my dealer thought might be available has been sold elsewhere.

    I’m sure I’ll get over the black side cladding as soon as I turn the key!!

    Provided the test works out OK, of course…

  9. Excellent site BTW! There’s only one car in this and you know which one it is! I’ve had a Viggen for 2 1/2 years now and use it every day and have never looked back. I’ve driven all SAAB models apart from 9-2x & 9-7x and nothing comes close to the Viggen. In my opinion it doesn’t need the rescue kit. Remember, BMW’s the so called “ultimate driving machine” dont have rescue kits for driving in the wet or snow whilst taking a corner. Potentially they can be death traps as the back end of the car tries to overtake the front. The talk of uncontrolable torque steer in the Viggen is an overated myth. Unless you do track days everyday of the week or push the car to the limit, which you will never do as I’ve had passengers scream when the power is unleashed and have always had to pull back. The great thing about the viggen is it looks the part and is the part and doesn’t hide the fact. If you buy any other SAAB you will always be looking over your shoulder just in case a Viggen flies by. You deserve one just do it!

  10. You can’t go past the Viggen. The MC doesn’t have the torque steer problems due to a torque limiter in 1st and 2nd gear.

    Is the MC you’ve seen in Sydney the one at Alec Mildren’s?

  11. Am now looking into getting both the Viggen and the Monte Carlo inspected. Still leaning toward the Monte, but need to ascertain the condition of the Viggen before I make a decision.

  12. I think this is the point where Jesus said to Peter “Get behind me, Satan!!”. i.e. stop tempting me with more Viggens!!

    The Monte’s getting checked out on Monday now. The dealer and I had some issues about what I’d have to commit to prior to getting it inspected offsite. Being afraid of any commitments beyond my marraige, I’ve opted for the NRMA test onsite instead.

    I think yellow could become the new black….

  13. Viggen, IMHO.

    There’s something to be said in favor of driving a ridiculously overpowered car. If cost is the issue, wait for awhile after buying it before you spring for the rescue kit.

    And Viggen blue is the new black. Seriously. I see a lot of Mazda’s in Viggen blue, and I about fell out of my car the other day when I saw a Chrysler PT Cruiser in Viggen blue (or whatever Chrysler calls that color).

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