Anyone else in Oz after an ARB?

For anyone unfamiliar, this is my car:

Now that the Sweden trip is done, dusted and almost paid off, my next round of automotive expenditure is going to be spent making this the car that I want it to be. Which is a little more than the car that it currently is.

There’ll be a website going up soon to cover all of that in detail, but in the meantime…..

One of the problems with the Viggen in general is that there’s just too much engine for the chassis. Engine upgrades will be coming, so I’ve got to get the bones sorted out in a manner that will handle the extra power and give this car better manners.

I’ve fitted the Koni adjustable dampers to all four corners (which are great, by the way). I’ve got an Abbott Racing steering rack clamp sitting at home, waiting to be fitted. The next step in the handling scenario is to bolt down the back end. Hence, I’m looking to get an uprated anti-roll bar (ARB).

As many of you Aussies know, importing stuff from the US or the UK can be a little costly. ARBs are reasonably priced overseas but the postage is a kicker. That’s why I’m looking to source one here.

Fortunately, there is a guy who makes them, but only in batches of 10 at a time. The guy’s a solid Saab service guy, Steve from Saab Serve, who are one of the best regarded independant Saab service providers in Sydney. I’ve had several people recommend his work but when I called to enquire about it today there’s only three other people waiting on his list for an ARB and he needs at least five to take a punt on production.

I’m now number four on his list and am putting this out there to see if anyone else is interested in joining me. The ARB’s in question are 22mm in diameter and are built to fit on any NG900 or OG9-3. Obviously they’ll be of most use on your more performance-oriented models such as the Aero or the Viggen, but they will fit any of the range. Richo, another Viggen owner in Sydney, had one fitted recently and raves about the improvement.

So if any of you 9-3 Aero or Viggen owners out there (Alex, SAB, J-Lobo etc – even PT!!) are looking to gain more control over your arse-end, please call Steve at Saab Serve on (02) 9630 2795 and tell him ‘that guy’ from Tasmania sent you. The product’s reputed to be first-class, it’s locally made, and if you wait for another batch you could be waiting for ages.

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As always, any other handling recommendations are also welcome in comments. Cheers.

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11 Comments

  1. i’ve just ordered some stuff for my Viggen this weekend. (i’m in the US.) got myself a steering rack brace, an ARB, and a new intake. woohoo…can’t wait to take some fast corners! 🙂

  2. This is pretty much the most common mod ever… You don’t even need a viggen/aero to notice how big of a difference it makes. BUY ONE!

  3. It’s mainly around sweeping bends that you feel it. Great improvement though and well worth the 2 hungie. Now that I have the brace fitted the rear seems a little sloppy… but hey, you can’t have everything!

    Well maybe you can becasue I just ordered….

    ================
    Thank you for your order!

    In a few moments you will receive an email notification of the order that you have placed with Elkparts.

    Recirculating Dump Valve
    900, 9000, GM900, 9-3, 9-5

    Stage 1 PPC (+44bhp/+74Nm)
    Saab 9-3 2.3 HOT Viggen M99-

    Steering rack mounting bush (flat bottom type)
    GM900, 9-3

    Steering rack mounting bush (round type)
    GM900, 9-3

    Thanks for shopping with us online!
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    🙂

  4. Swade, pick up some poly bushings. That upgrade suprised me the most on my ng900.. much flater and more stable throwing it around into corners.

  5. Sorry Swade but Steve got the gist of the Talaferro ARB form mine as he installed one for me about one year ago. I was in the US only 2 weeks ago and could have bought gladly the same for you and bring it over !!! I am in Perth at the moment and have seen a few older 9-3 around, I’ll ask for you if I have a chance. I’ll e-mail you next time I go to the US to see if you need anything.

  6. Thanks Joe. Please do let me know when you go stateside again.

    Seth, everyone mentions poly bushings, but which ones should get done first? I always feel ignorant for thinking that, but I just don’t know.

  7. I have a 1999 9-3 convertible (T5, 17″ wheels), and just put the GenuineSaab.com (Tallaferro) ARB on this weekend … HUGE difference. I tried to throw the car around to create torque steer several times and it simply won’t do it! Hardly pushed back at all. I also have the steering rack brace — another solid upgrade, improved the feel and feedback while making the car a whole lot tighter … but until I put the ARB on, I actually think the brace made the torqe steer a little harder to handle, as it seemed to transfer even more of the push back through the steering wheel.

    Of course those of you with Viggens have a larger herd of horses to contend with … but mine are behaving nicely now … time to look for a few more HP!

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