Market check. Saab 9-3 Cabriolet MY 1998 to 2003.

A Saab Cabriolet market check in the middle of winter? Yes, when, if not now? When it comes to open-air driving throughout the year, you can not miss a Saab. Who invented it? Just. Saab. The 900 Cabriolet cultivated the ideal of a year-round cabriolet. And the 9-3 continues this philosophy.

Saab 9-3 Cabriolet. Image: Saab Automobile AB / Archive
Saab 9-3 Cabriolet. Image: Saab Automobile AB / Archive

The first 9-3 Cabriolet is the last draft of the pre-GM era. The design and conception were already fixed before the Americans joined the Swedes. People who were allowed to lend a hand with the 99, 900 and 9000 contributed to its design. You can see that, you can feel it. The 9-3 Cabriolet shows the brand's typical design language. The interior is solid to classy, ​​garnished with the promise of eternity that once distinguished cars from Trollhättan. Its successor no longer achieved this level, but it is also a completely different caliber of car.

The first 9-3 generation is based on the 900 II and was built, in a short time for Saab, only from 1998 to model year 2003. Nevertheless, the selection in the market is still relatively large today. What is the reason that about half of all sold in Germany 9-3 I wore a fabric roof. And convertibles, in contrast to their closed siblings, always had a higher survival rate. In addition, convertibles are better maintained, maintained and often used only as a second car.

Another reason lies in the production location. The 9-3 I Convertible was always built by Valmet in Finnish Nystad. There, the bands ran a little slower, the workers were more careful, the processing better. The first 9-3 are now 20 years old and are on their way to becoming a classic. If you have fun with a care-free, car-free car, you might find your love of motoring here. The 9-3 is close to the classic 900 in its design idiom, it combines modern, relaxed travel in a sympathetic, relaxed way with a lot of style.

Attention: bargain alarm!

The 9-3 I Cabriolet offers real bargains due to the relatively large selection. Even for well below 5.000 € checkbook-maintained first-hand convertibles come into the trade. Partly in fantastically beautiful color combinations, and always awarded the same. Patience is worth it, and the market has offers for almost every wallet.

The entry starts at around 3.000 € for vehicles with high mileages and not very clear history. Looking at it can be worthwhile, because the technology is robust and rust is usually a smaller problem than with vehicles from Trollhättan. Well-maintained vehicles cost from 5.000 € upwards. The mileage is then just over 100.000 kilometers, often a complete history is included, and you get a lot of Cabriolet for relatively little money.

And then there are them, the real treasures! Carefully maintained from day one. Often better than new, from true fans. The prices may then be 5-digit, but still remain moderate. Because often a fast new car rolls out of the garage, for a fraction of the original price.

Fancy summer, sun and an open Saab? Here are some ideas for the coming, nice days.

Saab 9-3 Convertible Design Edition
Saab 9-3 Convertible Design Edition. Image: CarPoint Bonn
Saab 9-3 Cabriolet 2.0t, Design Edition. 2002. 99.000 kilometers

A first-hand convertible with less than 100.000 kilometers. Well motorized with the small 150 hp turbo. Nice equipment, and at a fair price. Landed on a gravel place in Bonn. Definitely worth considering.

Saab 9-3 Aero Cabriolet Bad Vilbel
Saab 9-3 Aero Cabriolet Bad Vilbel. Image: autoscout
Saab 9-3 Cabriolet Aero. Viggen Body Kit, 2003. 75.355 kilometers

The completely emotion-neutral computer of Autoscout rated this first-hand copy as too expensive. For real? An ingenious, rare color. Great equipment and an emotional motorization make the open Saab desirable. Contrary to the opinion of the cloud, my advice would be: watching and testing. And, if the Saab keeps what the ad promises, bargain and buy. Even if you have to liquidate the home savings contract. The 9-3, whose Turbo harmonizes very well with the automatic, is for sale in Bad Vilbel.

Saab 9-3 Viggen
Saab 9-3 Viggen. Image: autoscout
Saab 9 3 Viggen Cabriolet. 2000. 110.00 kilometers.

If you want a little more, then a Viggen would be a good choice. It's the over 9-3, with a big 2.3 liter engine. One vehicle that will increase in value in the coming years is this convertible from the Netherlands. With an attractive color combination in the interior that only the Viggen has to offer. Second hand, at a fair rate. The open Saab is for sale from a private provider in the Netherlands.

The market offers a wide selection, the 9-3 I Cabriolet is not an object of speculation. Not yet, but the closer the series gets to classic status in the next few years, the more the focus will fall on the last Saab design from the pre-GM era. But there is still enough time to approach the topic in a relaxed manner and to look for your dream car in peace. It doesn't look quite as relaxed with the sedan and coupe. The next market check will deal with these vehicles.


20 thoughts on "Market check. Saab 9-3 Cabriolet MY 1998 to 2003."

  • I just see that the one in Bad Vilbel went down in price ... anyway, still a moon price. In KA there is a comparable vehicle (Aero, Viggen Body Kit, 80tkm, black) for less than 10000 € and it has been there for some time. The ad has even been updated.

  • Yes, take a closer look. Unfortunately, the 9-3I rusts in places where you can only see the rust when there is a great need for action. This also applies to the 9-5I ... For descriptions such as: absolutely rust-free, you should take a particularly close look.

  • Hi all,
    Nice when the car is preheated. I am the proud owner of a 9-3 convertible from 2002 in dark blue, a manual switch, aero rims and the 185 machine. The good piece has 26km and is only allowed to be on the road in absolutely safe weather conditions. Yes, I sometimes annoy myself that when I am in doubt I leave the car at home so that it could still get wet on the way. Bought three years ago with a verifiable 000km ...
    Spring may come; o)

  • Good morning,
    the Viggen in black with the orange / black seats, is my dream
    Unfortunately, no space and 14.000 € are already a house number for a hobby.
    I call, among others, an 902 Turbo Convertible my own (fortunately almost stainless), is a lot of fun.
    Sad how this model is squandered in the market. Optically a jewel, clear lines, beautiful equipment.
    The engine unbeaten with the 185PS, for me the most beautiful way to drive Saab.
    In this sense, always open trip

  • I can not agree. Every halfway cultivated copy has little problems. Must have been very below average objects that were very neglected. The more praiseworthy if you receive it.

  • For my children, two 9-3 petrol engines from 1998 and one 9-3 diesel from 2000 365 are in operation every day, Km 180-300Tkm! Of course, with 18 20 years old cars break something and a few places down around you have to keep an eye on and occasionally conserve, but they are already damn solid cars! Besides, I'm always very calm when they're out and about, not with any flea box. Of course, collectibles are not.
    In one point I agree with you, if you ask for such a price, the documentary must be complete.

  • Just go through a few winters and then look again. Baking a car in cotton and mean it is super processed. Is like comparing apples and pears.

  • 9-3 convertible, yes, I can swarm with it! I own my yellow SE convertible since 2003 and I'm not sure.
    It is equipped with the 2.3i engine 150 PS. Together with the 4 Gang Automatic this does not give an explosive mixture, but a fresh convertible feeling comes up all the time!
    The winter will soon be fit and then the convertible comes fully back to the course! Let us look forward to it!

    Levi; Rust? I own three 93ers, built 1998, 1999 and 2000 and no one has a spark of rust. am I doing something wrong

  • After having partially restored both a convertible and a coupe in the last 2 years, I can only smile tiredly about the allegedly good rust prevention. No matter where the thing was built now. They are beautiful cars when they were shot with love and high costs. But next to the brake I still feel steering. Landing gear . Rust, circuit and muddy motors. But one thing is true even if they are through repair and optimized they are fun. Only one should sell the pink glasses when buying and only buy if everything is available to prove what it takes to justify a high price

  • Thank you for the great article. The market check also corresponds to my observations. The 9-3 I Cabrio is an incredibly well done car! A big hit! We have been driving a 9-3 Limited Edition in black with beige seats for several years. Even with the 150PS you are well on the way. It's a car to enjoy - not a lawn.
    I think if you want more horsepower you would probably have to intervene on the brake system. Do not get it wrong - it does its job reliably. But she had to be stronger. In addition, surprisingly, the torsional rigidity of the body is not what I would expect from a SAAB. But that did not stop me for God's sake from buying this Gesamtkunstwerk.

  • I have to digress here.
    Because I personally like the most on the cover picture!
    The Viggen front I think, just does not fit the shape of the convertible.

    And the prices ...
    Should one get such an awesome vehicle for the same price as a lousy Passat?
    But that is in the end determined only in Germany, right?

    Unfortunately I have no room for a third Saab, otherwise a Cosmic blue 9.3 convertible would probably be too tempting to resist.

    Thanks to Tom.

  • Right. For interesting vehicles, there is no loss of value, as the prices rise slowly. But still is a good time to buy!

  • Think this is Komos blue “Kosmosblå” (264). Comes very close to the Viggen steel blue.

  • Very nice, the combination, for me the most beautiful ..

    Perhaps a general note: According to my observation, well-preserved / attractive min. 3,5 years no longer cheaper. And if a really attractive one shows up at a good tariff, you have to be there within 24 hours, otherwise it is different (unless he is in absolute pampa, but even then ...).

  • My 9.3 Cabrio from 2000 is not blue, but it is yellow with a blue roof. I've owned it since 2014 and haven't looked back since. When will it be summer again……!

  • Agree on the blue Aero.

    What surprises me, maybe Tom or a reader knows more: according to my brochures there was only cobalt blue and midnight blue as blue for the convertible MY 2002 & 2003.

    The aero looks more like "Viggen" blue ...

  • beautiful vehicles, no doubt ... but a convertible with black leather seats? ... the solar-powered roasting of the most valuable (between medium and well-done) is included free of charge.

  • I understand. The blue aero made me think more than just. But the hall is full, actually I would have to hand in 2 cars beforehand. And that's where the problems begin ... 😉

  • For me, still the most beautiful line in the convertibles and with great details that did not exist later. Luckily I am supplied for a long time, otherwise the blue Aero would really make me ponder

  • I admit: I would like to have a viggen already. And he would probably be a kind of investment. But another SAAB more? Is that possible?

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