Saab 900 (1979 – 1993) Review

Saab 900 (1979 – 1993) At A Glance


+Tough mechanicals, great build quality, superb seating and interior

-Hidden and structural rust now a major concern

The Saab 900 was one of the more intelligent facelifts seen within the car industry. In simple terms it was a 99, with a longer front and rear ends, new interior and additional safety equipment, It was a result of Saab's decision to evolved new models by augmenting platforms. It was no bad thing being based on the 10-year old Saab 99 - it boasted front-wheel drive, excellent handling, and a number of (then) Swedish idiosyncracies, such as heated seats, headlamp washers, and in the case of the 900, a lovely wraparound windscreen and deep passenger doors that cut into the sills.

During its life, the 900 was developed through its life to keep pace with contemporary technology – and that maintained a healthy demand. The naturally aspirated cars might have been overshadowed by the Turbo (and still are), but they are cars of deep inate quality and ability. Drivetrains of these carburetted and injected cars are considerably more durable due to being less stressed.

Ask Honest John

How much is a Saab 900 2.5 V6 worth?

"I've owned my 1995 Saab 900 2.5 V6 convertible for almost 10 years and I 've only seen two other 2.5 V6 convertibles for sale over the years. Would I be right in saying my car is rare in the UK? I'm considering selling my car but have not been able to find a way of getting some idea of what my car might be worth? "
The 'new generation' Saab 900 was built under General Motors stewardship, which meant engineers had access to the 2.5-litre V6 that was used in the Calibra and Omega. It was also offered in the Saab 900, but very few were sold - certainly in the UK. According to DVLA data, there are 29 900 SE V6 autos on the road. As such, valuing one is extremely difficult as so few come up for sale. Prices for this era of 900 convertible are held back by its GM heritage so even a very good one is only worth about £1500-2000. You may be able to ask a bit more for yours given the engine.
Answered by Keith Moody

Can you help me get an accurate valuation for my Saab 900 Convertible?

"I'm selling a 1992 Saab 900 2.0-litre, LPT, convertible in red with a black roof. How much should I advertise it for?"
It could be anywhere from £1500 up to £4k+ - it's hard to say without knowing a bit more about the spec and the mileage/history. We asked Alex Rankin at the Saab Owners' Club GB and he had this to say: 'Any Saab with less than 100k on the clock now is considered worth having and adds value. Leather interior is sought after, but most are a bit shabby now. So if the interior is in good condition that adds value. I’ll stick my neck out and say in nice condition, with a good MoT history, reasonable mileage slightly more than 100k, and with a roof in good working condition and a good interior, I’d put its value at £3 to £3.5k. If it’s ‘really’ nice, and shall we say 80k on the clock then £4k and more is achievable. The LPT is nice, but obviously, a FPT will be potentially worth more, especially if it has the plastic body kit (which is not to my taste actually) and is a T16s version.'
Answered by Keith Moody

Why is the ride unsettled in my 1990 Saab 900?

"I have recently purchased a 1990 Saab 900 auto. It has travelled 126,000 miles.The full service history does not show any replacement of suspension parts. The ride is unsettled and it rolls when cornering more than previous Saabs I have owned. If I replace the shock absorbers, should I also consider the springs and perhaps relevant suspension bushes?"
This generation of 900 does suffer from body roll. Check for signs of cracked springs and leaking shock absorbers, you could also try bouncing the car at each corner to check the return rate. If you do decide to refresh the suspension, then it will be worth doing the bushes as a 'while you're there' job. If you decide not to replace them with stock items, make sure you drive as many modified or 'uprated' examples as you can because if you decide your new ride is too firm it's not an easy process to reverse. It's also likely to be an expensive one. Few suspension jobs go smoothly so if you're doing it yourself make sure you've got heat handy as you'll probably need to warm up siezed bolts and burn out stubborn bushes. You'll probably also need a decent press to get the new items home. Likewise, if you go for a garage, it could take a bit longer (and make the bill a bit higher) than originally expected. Which leaves you having to answer an important question: how much is the car worth to you? It would be quite easy to refresh the suspension and end up spending close to the purchase cost of the car on that one job. How deep are your pockets? Are there any more urgent or pressing jobs that would require funds first? Good luck with whatever you decide to do.
Answered by Keith Moody

My classic was damaged inside a rented garage - who is liable?

"I rent a garage from a local housing association and I park my classic Saab 900 in there. I recently visited the garage to find that they had replaced the roof without informing and with the car in situ. As you can imagine, there is a fair amount damage been caused to the bodywork. I phoned the housing association and they said that they would get the contractors to contact me. They duly did, but the people that I have dealt with so far are rude and ignorant and, although they initially said that they would sort it, they are not communicating with me. As I rent the garage from the housing association and my contract is with them, is it they who are liable to sort out the damage to my car? I thought about involving my insurance company, but don't want a black mark against me for a possible claim if I end up not claiming."
The housing association that you pay your garage rent to is legally liable (not the contractor it employed). Get quotations for the rectification work and demand that the housing association pays with threat of Small Claims action if they don't.
Answered by Honest John
More Questions

What does a Saab 900 (1979 – 1993) cost?