Used 2002 Saab 9-3 Hatchback Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2002 Saab 9-3 - Consumer Reviews

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The best used car you can get for your money.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By zidjan
on

Vehicle

2002 Saab 9-3 Hatchback SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

I started with saab 10 years ago, bought the 1999 model but has tons of issue. Sold it cheap and I ended up with the 2002 model se at 80K miles. Nowthe car has 120K and had no problems at all. It's all been fun with this car...205 hp and gets 30mpg hwy miles driving 65-70 mph. So my conclusion to new buyer out there, research the history of the car, if the car has always used synthetic oil and been taken care of well, chances are you'll have a good reliable car...but if anything points out that this car has not been care well then buyer's beware. NEVER Buy this car if you are going to treat it like a Honda or Toyota. You'll reap what you sow.


Favorite Features

The Td-04 Turbo puts a lot of smiles and "FUN: in driving. Cavenous trunk space. Easy to learn to maintain (DIY)...never take it to a dealership. Tons of used/aftermarket parts. Easy to Mod. 25 city and 30 hwy. "Exclusive" you don't see a lot of this car on the road anymore. Turns head for cheap. Gets a lot of compliments from women.


Suggested Improvements

THIS IS A MUST: PCV Update #6. This will helps a lot to prevent the sludge issue. Have a "Spare" DIC on hand because they will fail at 100K or less, watch for misfire ($250) Spend $200 for steering brace bracket to tame the torque steer. Spend $200 for chip upgrade 229hp 240 lbs torque. if you have the money, spend $1000 for Bilstein suspension upgrade. You do this, you'll keep the car forever.


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**CAR IS A SOUR LEMON**
1 of 4 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By shay127
on

Vehicle

2002 Saab 9-3 Hatchback SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

I purchased my '02 Saab 9-3 used and right out the car lot, it was problem after problem. It started with having to get the front right wheel bearing fixed, then the right headlight went out twice, shortly after I had to get the heating coil fixed (cold air blowing), then the air stopped working. Car stopped 3 months later on the expressway (found out I needed another fuel pump) got it fixed, 3 months later, I had to replace the Starter, left wheel bearing, control arm & ball joints on drivers side, CV Shaft, Spring Coil Sensor for Check Engine light, Brake Pads & Rotors, but the biggest problem is a Starting Issue. The car will randomly NOT start for about 15 minutes. No one knows why:(


Favorite Features

I am so unhappy with this car, I truly cannot say I like anything. The radio display does not work and from my understanding if a saab dealer doesn't replace it, it's connected to about 10 other electrical parts in the car, and a 3rd party could damage a lot more in the car by fixing the radio.


Suggested Improvements

Everything on this car is horrible. I am very disappointed. That start up issue is a MAJOR problem. There is no reason that I have had everything on the car fixed that could possibly be wrong, but the car won't start. I've been told it may be a faulty security reading on my car, but to have to play russion roullete everytime I get in my car to figure out if it's going to start with my children in town in the cold Chicago weather is embarrassing. I will NEVER purchase, nor will I recommend a Saab to anyone I know.


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9-3 turbo hatch, irresistible
1 of 10 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By baxter10
on

Vehicle

2002 Saab 9-3 Hatchback SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

I had one of these for 4 years. Bought it at 45k miles when it was 4 years old. It had all the reliability issues everyone talks about, including the sump oil problem. It was totaled last month when someone hit it while it was parked. I looked at other cars, and ended up buying the exact same car again (except stick instead of auto), now at 80k miles. They're as spacious as a small wagon, very quick and great handling, heated leather seats, premium sound, climate control, sunroof, power everything, 30+ mpg, and the style of a classic suit from a vintage store. All for under $6,000. Irresistible.


Favorite Features

Mid-range acceleration, handling, seats, cargo capacity, styling. Look at this way: these cars are the same weight with the same power as a Mk5 VW GTI -- but with more space inside.


Suggested Improvements

The reliability is in fact not that bad (similar to VW/Audi or other European cars), but the parts and labor is more expensive than average. Shorter throws on the manual shifting would be better. AWD option would be good, I guess, but AWD is not as necessary as people think.


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Design Perfection - Handles like new
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By SaabMe
on

Vehicle

2002 Saab 9-3 Hatchback SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

Just purchased a mint condition used 2002 9-3SE. This is an amazing car. While it is small and handles nimbly it has generous room for 4 plus the huge hatch area. Mileage so far has been mid-30s mpg. Amazing that they could build a fast and efficient car 8 years ago. At 205 hp this car has as almost the same power as my 2001 Boxster.


Favorite Features

Great ergonomics, very supportive and comfortable seats, fuel efficiency with good power.


Suggested Improvements

Well this may be moot since Saab is going away but I would have liked a nav system and the ability to link my ipod.


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Steel Gray Hunchback
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By robg3176
on

Vehicle

2002 Saab 9-3 Hatchback SE 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

My wife called it a hunchback, so it is my Steel Gray Hunchback. Was looking around for another car actually, and test drove it, didn't feel right, and the one I wanted was sold. But I saw this one, and it had tint and a built in alarm. I was looking for utility, such as a hatchback to lug things around. 4 doors too. I also required better gas mileage since gas prices were sky rocketing. Also, power with torque to go up hills and turns. Alas, I test drove this 2002 Saab 9-3 SE: has leather seats, and more power than normal. It is a 4cylinder turbo auto, more economical than a 6cyl, with just as much power because of the turbo. Driving it ever since and my wife and I love it.


Favorite Features

SE Model 4cylinder, gas mileage, Turbo power, 5 door hatch w/folding rear seats. Moon roof, leather seats. GM Onstar. Power. Suspension is smooth and taut. Upgrades available. Nice, quiet ride.


Suggested Improvements

Some parts from the GM bin wear out, but that's expected and upgrades can be found. There's been a couple recalls, but free fix, just bring to the dealership.


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