Saab Stories: Happy Saabiversary

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Hard as it is to believe, a year ago today I became the proud owner of a well used Classic Saab 900. Owning a c900 has been a great experience and I’ve learned an absolutely ton, and I still have much, much more to master. So let’s take a look back.

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As Boston is about to get pummeled by snow, it’s nice to remember warmer times.

In looking back over the last year, I can say that as far as project cars go, this one, on the whole, been fairly cheap! Starting with the original purchase for $860 + $160 to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to make it right with the authorities, I started from a modest $1,020 initial outlay. From there I righted a number of wrongs wrought by years of neglect. The mostly costly repair was also the most irritating – $360 to the local Saab specialists to break a stubborn bolt and change the v-belts, a saga well documented here. I am proud to say, that aside from that bit, all the work has been done by me (often under the close tutelage of friends – thanks Jim, Jesse, Zo and Ryan). I’ll spare you the agonizing details, but at year’s end I had spent approximately $2,443 on the project. That figure includes the initial purchase, registration and the v-belt job, so all in all the Saab hasn’t been too onerous on wallet.

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The Saab. Rust work underway, e-codes and roof rack added. It’s getting there!

So what did a year and some $1,500 in parts, fluids and various odds and ends plus my labor get me? Some bloody knuckles and the following odd jobs completed: both front axles, one ball-joint (gotta do the other when it warms up), new v-beltstwo e-codes, a new stereo, a lotta anxious worries and some other odds and ends. I have pretty grand plans for the car but I’m still working to get it to stage zero. Its been a great year and I’m looking forward to the next. Up next on my list – new summer rubber, motor mounts, bushings and struts, a new exhaust, and a bunch of other things small and large that’ll come up along the way.

Parked: Unfulfilled Wishes

Merry Christmas! Here's a Saab I've been hoping Santa will get me. Alas, no luck so far. #saab #saab900 #ford #fordtransitconnect

This 900 turbo is forever parked at the golf course down the street from my parents in Northern Michigan. I’ve left at least two notes offering to buy it with the car in the year’s I’ve noticed it, so far no response. Which is frustrating considering that it just seems to be parked there, slowly dying of neglect. Also, my mother upgraded her old Ford Transit Connect to a new Ford Transit Connect. The new one is much nicer with EcoBoost power and a much improved interior.

Saab Stories: A Saab Needs a Name…

I’ve been slowly coming to the conclusion that I’m probably in it for the long haul with the Saab; a fact primarily evidenced by my accidental purchase of e-codes. I mean, if I’ve gone to the trouble of securing e-codes for it, I’m pretty much committed, right? As such, continuing to call the Saab the Saab doesn’t feel right. So it needs a name. My last Saab was Sid. And Sid was a great Saab. This one is no less great, but without a name it’s a bit anonymous. So here’s what I’ve got as contenders…

  1. Maximilian von Spee
  2. Skidmark (Thanks Jim)
  3. Baron Harkonnen (Baron for short)
  4. Ragnarok
  5. William Wallace (because of its Bridge of Weir leather)

Thoughts? Ideas? Comments welcomed!

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What does this looks like?

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Saab 9000s On the Brain…

While I’m far from done with my project Saab 900, it’s never too early to think ahead to the next money pit. I’ve loved the 9000 for a long time. My friend had one in high school and even with its 4-speed slusher that car hauled ass moved with great alacrity! I’ve always admired the “futuristic” 80s looks, plus it’s got a great mill under the hood, and it’s very practical; all of which makes it the platonic evolution of the 900 in many ways. It also seems that the universe is subtly sending my signals that I should buy a 9000.

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Case in point: over the weekend, Jim at Tamerlane’s Thoughts tweeted me a 9000 MotorWeek review (see below), then the other Jim, over at Old Dead Volvos, spent Sunday morning sending me CL ads with 9000s. Then I get this month’s Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car, which includes a test of the 9000 vs its platform mate, the Alfa Romeo 164. So it seems the 9000 is out there floating on the ether of the car guy collective unconscious. It would be rude to ignore it, wouldn’t it?

So let’s take a few minutes and look back at the 9000 in all its glory! Any post that starts with a MotorWeek review can’t be that bad, right?

LIMITED EDITION? Only 400 made? Sign me up!

I’ve always liked to imagine what it was like to watch these promotional videos at dealers when they were new and relevant. Did most sales staff even pay attention to these? Were they as riveted by such trivial details such as a digital trip computer? I know I am!