Sold my 9000 Aero with 155K miles and bought a 1999 9-5 2.3T wagon with 120K. Absolutely love it as my commuter car. All options still work and is still nice and quiet.
I have however had lot of vacuum problems. Replaced the turbo bypass valve, vacuum hoses, and fixed brake booster lines(Did all the work myself with the help of a friend so very inexpensive). Other than that nothing beats this car on performance and gas mileage. I get a couple mpg's better than my 9000 Aero. My family is full of Saabs and thats for a reason. Fantastic cars if you keep up on maintenance. Hoping to get a newer 9-3 after this 9-5.
I drove this car from NY to Ohio the month it came off the showroom floor and loved the car. 8 yrs later, I bought it from my friend at 96000 mi. still rode great and I was on top of the world. Then the warning lights came. I spent $2000 in repairs with a Saab dealer and it looks like it might come to that in repairs again this year. Love the looks and the ride, but...
Don't Do it! Fun to drive when not driving to the shop. Water pump (twice) alternator, ignition, alarm, struts and Ive lost count of what else in two years. This is my wife's 5th and last SAAB. I was sold on asian vehicles a number of years ago, even my Hyundai was more reliable. Im glad we have AAA towing with SAABs. Since I met my wife, I am familar to the SAAB Store due to our what seems like quarterly visits. Its not a matter of if something breaks, but when. Whats that SAAB stands for Something Always Again Broken? With a new baby we had better things to do, so I bought a Toyota, and am forcing a SAAB sale. Any buyers? Please take this clunker off our backs!
We bought our 9.5 wagon new and drove it approximately 10,000m per year. After a very short period, we began to experience a broad range of mechanical issues and failures. This was in spite of the fact that we brought the car back to the dealer for every scheduled maintenance item. The list of failures is very long and the costs have been very high. The final straw was when, after replacing the timing belt as required, the bearing in the timing belt assembly failed and the engine was destroyed. Do not buy this car under any circumstances unless you are ready to pay for many repair bills and want to become best friends with a mechanic.
I love the comfort, styling and drive in the Saab 9-5. But the quality and therefore reliability of this car is terrible. Yes, it's the electrical system - head/tail lights burn out too quickly, the entire key/ignition system had to be replaced (by me, after the warranty expired), the climate control periodically goes on the fritz; even the digital display loses pixels on a regular basis. A real disappointment on my first and last Saab.