Saab 9-3 II - III and the rust

The topic of rust is not on the agenda of the 9-3 II - III. The cars are still too young and still on the road too much in everyday life. Neither owners nor Saab workshops worry about the future. Still, because the topic comes up sooner or later, at the latest when you feel the desire to continue driving a Saab.

Saab 9-3 III. Is rust an issue?
Saab 9-3 III. Is rust an issue?

Our 9-3 III was first approved for road traffic just prior to 7 years ago. And because at Saab, during the short Spyker era, the 9-3 was given no additional protection at the Saab Zentrum Bamberg. Since then, he has been moved throughout the year in everyday life, without any limit. The winter and the salt have left their mark.

During a major inspection in the spring, rust deposits were found on the underbody. Not relevant for the TÜV and not for immediate action. But topic - and a fundamental decision. Keep going for a few years, just let the grate be rust. Or react?

According to the motto that prevention is always better than welding, the decision to cure rust was made. Of particular interest was the question of what is hidden under the wheel arch liners? Rust, or the best, bright Swedish steel?

Unfortunately, the answer was sobering. Even a modern Saab rusts like other cars do. The wheel arch liners provide deceptive safety, and after dismantling, there were signs of rust on all wheel arches. Likewise on the shock absorber mount. In all cases in such a way that one could have continued for several years. But in 3 or 4 years there might have been a first rusting. On all fenders and on the mounts of the shock absorbers. Why is that? The paint is thin, the wheel arch liners rub against the body. Dirt and moisture penetrate - and do their job. Certainly slowly, but continuously.

Rust: Provision is cheaper than welding.

Is the Saab 9-3 a roster? Is not he. With average care would have noticed nothing without the dismantling of the wheel wells. The Saab could possibly be moved 10 or 15 years without anything happening. But sooner or later there would have been a major refurbishment or disposal due to total economic damage.

In Bamberg the underbody of the 9-3 was sanded off, applied primer with rust and corrosion protection and everything was resealed. A time-consuming operation that took several days. In the end, the rust protection was better than ex works, the body prepared for several more years. Together with the other work, wishbones with side rails, heated seats and air conditioning was finally an 4-digit amount on the bill. Is this expensive?

Is not it. If one compares the effort for a really good, profound rust prevention with the possible costs for a reorganization with Durchrostung, then precaution is in any case more favorable than welding. Prophylaxis is advised. It does not matter if it's just a station wagon or maybe a rare Turbo X or Cabriolet.

14 thoughts on "Saab 9-3 II - III and the rust"

  • Will my 9-3 MY11 SC miss a treatment based on sheep's wool fat / lanolin. It will probably stink like in a stable, but then should also extend the life significantly.

    The offer here in Norway has been around for years, but demand has just picked up speed. Up here there are specialized workshops on fluid film. A major initial treatment costs well and gladly 400 Euro, post-treatment, so every 2 years, about 250 Euro.

  • Car magazines in Sweden are full of full-page advertisements for private workshops. There lifting cranes for the expansion and revision of engines and also full-fledged lifting platforms along with a number of other tools are offered for astonishingly small money ...

    Sweden is probably THE country in Europe (or even the world) that has by far the most barns and lifts on each car?

    Sometimes one wishes, one would have the same conditions. A big country, a lot of road, few inhabitants and long winters, which you could spend with his cars on a warm stove in a cold barn.

    Some rust prevention and some repairs would (almost) take care of themselves ...

  • Correct, dismantling and lift are required. But it's worth it!

  • This probably means that you can not see the first signs without dismantling plastic parts. So save already for the big rust inspection.

  • then our 9-3s should also be reviewed.

  • Our former chrome goggles have long been unremarkable, but looking back is well worth it.

  • Nice that younger 9³ are no roster.

    And good to know that it's best to take a look under the wheel arch liners. This is probably exactly the same for my chrome glasses ...

  • Again, a very interesting article that also affects the condition of my car somewhat (fenders, bonnet and a door, luckily, all replacement parts). Unfortunately it is clearly too far to Bamberg, but maybe there is someone here who does something with great care and dedication. At the upcoming review in a month, I will address this. On the other hand, I wonder how sensible it is to make a cost-intensive provision for a diesel in today's "diesel devilish times", when soon you will probably no longer be able to drive everywhere with it anyway. A shame to the beautiful 9³ ☹

  • Muckelbauer is a really good address, I'm probably back in BA in the last week of October.

  • Some time ago our 9-3 Cabrio got a complete cavity sealing and underbody preservation, the friendly Herr von Dekra was thrilled. The Saab got the badge without any defects and that after 16 years, precaution is worthwhile in any case

  • I'll take a close look at my 9-5 station wagon because I definitely want to get it. Unfortunately, the statement “four-digit range” doesn't mean anything. That lies between a major inspection and the value of the whole car ...
    Let's see what my workshop says!

  • An 9-3 is (I think) quite harmless as far as the rust is concerned. Tom`s report strengthens my opinion, we continue ours until it is no longer possible.

  • Hello Tom!
    The text reveals everything that needs to be said. In November the TÜV is due for my Cab Mj07,
    (R. Muckelbauer) Since you will already look carefully. What is to be done is done. Finished!
    Love my car ...

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