Last post on Jul 17, 2012 at 5:08 PM
You are in the Saab 9-5
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Saab 9-5, Sedan
#1498 of 2237 Abnormal Tire Wear
Aug 05, 2003 (11:22 am)
My friend at work has a 2000 Saab 9-5 Wagon that had the "bike" package and came with 225/45/17 tires. The originals were Michelins and they wore out in 15K miles. He had them replaced with a set of Kumhos and had an alignment done. They lasted another 15K miles. He bought a third set of tires and had another alignment done. This time he asked to see the alignment results. They said that the front had been out of alignment and they fixed it, and that the back was just a little out of alignment and there wasn't anything they could do about it. Is this type of tire wear (15K for a set) normal for a wagon that is driven in a non-sporting manner around town only??? I drive a M3 with the same size tires on the front, and I'm getting longer life out of the same Kumho tires and I drive extremely fast and hard and even do a little autocross racing. It just doesn't make any sense. Can anyone help??
#1499 of 2237 RE: Tire wear
Aug 05, 2003 (3:05 pm)
Two things to find out: Does he have an Aero Version and how often is he rotating?
The Performance tires used on the Aero are low profiles that do not last nearly as long as traditional tires do. 15K might be normal if he's not keeping pressures and rotations up.
With either 9-5 version, he should be rotating every 5,000 miles. Ignore what Saab says about 10K or not at all with the newest versions. Thats insane! IMO I followed the 10K recommendation with my first 9-5 and my tire wear was not as good as it should have been. BUT... I got closer to 25K before one tire became unacceptable for wet roads.
Our 2002 9-5 Wagon now has 15K on it and no sign of significant wear. I rotate every 5K now.
Aside from his rotation interval, he needs to make sure he keeps his tire pressure in check. That will kill these tires very fast and MUST be checked when the tires are cold or sitting idle for at least 3 hours.
#1500 of 2237 not all that unusual
Aug 05, 2003 (7:00 pm)
I've heard plenty of stories from 9-5 owners of rapid tire wear on 17's. Heck, the 16's on my SE wore out at 28K.
Gotta run higher than normal tire pressures, rotate often, and pay close attention to them. Even still, they're gonna wear faster than a RWD car.
Aug 05, 2003 (7:33 pm)
Guys, I'm at 41K and rolling on the OEM Pirelli Scorpion 16" tires on a Volvo XC. We've rotated once in all these miles, drive in ice and snow with the attendant wheel spin (and I presume abnormal wear), and cruise at 75 MPH on I95 with the back full of dogs, bikes, and other weekend must-haves. So, what's up with the short tire life on the 9-5, even the non-Aero?
#1502 of 2237 4 cylinder vs. 6 cylinder engine
Aug 06, 2003 (5:11 am)
the SAAB 95 linear is a car I am seriously considering. However, my friend says the 4 cylinder engine only lasts around 100k while a 6 cylinder engine lasts 150-200K. Is this true? Also he said the turbo will only last 60K before needing replacement. Is this true or not.
#1503 of 2237 Saab 95 vs. BMW 325xi
Aug 06, 2003 (6:43 am)
I am looking at the 2003 Saab 95. It is a 4 cylinder turbo charged 185hp. It is recommened in Consumer Reports. I am also looking at BMW 325xi which is 6 cyl and 184 hp. Saab is 7K cheaper. But I was told by a friend that the 4 cylinder engine will not last as long as the 6 cylinder. He also said the turbo will only last 60K miles. Do you agree with this. I often drive my wife's 1999 Saab 93. I enjoy it. It is a 4 cyl turbo and is quick. Also the BMW is AWD while the Saab is FWD. Opionions, comments welcome.
Aug 06, 2003 (9:13 am)
This is one of those eternal debates within the Saab 9-5 community. The fact is that both engines are very reliable. Your friend's mileage figures are 100% arbitrary and seem to have little or no basis in reality. I wonder how your friend became such an expert in Saab engine durability.
The current 2.3L 4 cyl is based on an old design which has been upgraded many times over the years. Its almost over-engineered and is very robust. With proper maintenance 200K+++ is easily attained.
The current 3.0L V6 is sourced from Vauxhall (GM England) and is heavily modified by Saab. While its only been in the line since 1999 its proving to be very reliable. About the only beef people have with the V6 is that it uses a timing belt instead of a chain, and the belt needs to be changed every 60K (Saab pays for the first replacement). Comments from dealers show the V6 to be less troublesome than the already reliable 4 cyl but that's prolly due to there being fewer V6 Saab's on the road.
As for 9-5 vs 3 series, both are great cars and either is a fine choice. Obviously if you want/need AWD, the decision is made as the Saab cannot compete. But if that's not an issue you'll find the 9-5 to be roomier, more versatile, more passenger friendly, and probably safer - the 9-5 is simply one of the safest cars on the road. The 9-5 offers a much larger trunk, 82% larger, and the rear seats flip and fold increasing the cargo capacity even more. The 9-5 has a larger fuel tank which means more miles between fill ups. The interior noise and braking performance are about equal.
The BMW is certainly a terrific driving car and the BMW name holds a lot of cache with folks. So it really depends on where your priorities lie. I suggest you drive them both extensively and decide which works better for you, day in day out. Have fun shopping!!
#1505 of 2237 Front end noise, 2003 Linear
Aug 06, 2003 (10:07 am)
I have a thumping or clunking sound from the front end when I drive over bumps. I also get a feeling in the steering column that something is loose in the front end when the wheel is turned or when I go over bumps.
The dealer replaced the left front sway bar link at 5k, also "checked all suspension components, retorqued front suspension bolts and lubricated bushings". This seemed to help for awhile but the problem resurfaced.
Returned to dealer at 7k, they then"removed and replaced control arm bushings"
This did nothing to alleviate the problem. Before I go back to the dealer I want to be certain that there is in fact something wrong...
My question to my fellow Saab owners is ... is this a characteristic of the Saab? Do you have similar noise?
#1506 of 2237 V6 vs. i4
Aug 06, 2003 (10:51 am)
Your friends comment about the 6 vs. 4 is bogus. The Saab 4 is a GREAT engine and will probably out last the 6 currently in use. He made a general statment about 4 cylinder engines which is just not correct IMO.
The previous Saab 6 in '94 & '95 was horrible and dropped very quickly. I had one and even though I didn't keep it long enough to experience too much trouble..it was not a very desirable power plant.
One thing to keep in mind is that Saab is DROPPING the V6 for 2004. If I were buying a 2003, I'd go for the 4.
Another thought... You mentioned that your shopping the BMW 3 series.. I would highly recommend taking a serious look at the newest Saab 9-3. The Arch version of this car is Aweseome.. the linear version is a steal. Remember that Saab has about 3K in incentives right now which puts a 9-3 linear down around 26K.
#1507 of 2237 RE: Front engine noise
Aug 06, 2003 (10:52 am)
We have 17K on our 2003 and have not noticed the noise your referring to.
Hope you find the problem soon.. good luck.