Saab 9000 CD rescue - technology and final (3)

After Oli had pulled his 9000 CD with a trailer from the yard, he tried among others in Car Archeology. His result was surprising, the past of the rolling cultural asset is well documented. Technology is now on the list.

There is a simple procedure for old vehicles that have been parked for a long time. First you exchange all the fluids and eliminate the obvious defects. And look what happens then.

After the rescue: Note 2 from the appraiser
After the rescue: Note 2 from the appraiser

The Saab garage von Detlef Koecke therefore takes care of the technology. It seems unspectacular. A change of all fluids, wear parts; the exhaust is renewed. That's it. The TÜV finds the Saab worthy of participating in road traffic again. The badge is issued, and if you wanted, you could have bought a good and stylish car for a few years for little money. But Oli is a perfectionist, of course he wants more.

While the TÜV is fulfilling its sovereign task, it is already at 6:15 a.m. in front of the still closed doors of the registration office. After the online appointment agreement was able to offer a date 14 days apart, it must be a spontaneous appointment on site. 14 days waiting time is simply too long when you are looking forward to a Saab classic. Equipped with documents from our COC archive and from Saab-driving friends, the CD should be recoded to Euro 2.

Despite the 4-speed automatic, that's not a problem in the end. The flood of documents and words shows its effect. The sedan now meets the Euro 2 standard, the tax rate drops from just under €300,00 to just €165,00.

Our CD should be more beautiful

MOT, tax and desired license plate are clarified. Now it's about looks and comfort. The little things that don't have to be serious, but that increase the fun of the 9000. Oli first donated the CD from his fundus to a contemporary Grundig radio with a cassette player and a wooden dashboard.

And he replaces the destroyed rear panel with an original sheet metal part. To make the result even more coherent, the Saab gets track plates. Very discreet, with 10 and 20 mm they do not change the driving behavior negatively. The look of the Swedish luxury class now harmonises better with the standard fender flares, which improves the appearance enormously. For the H license plate in a few years, the operation is not a problem because it can be quickly reversed.

Rust is not an issue. The old Saab is completely free of the brown plague, except for a small spot. A bump on the stern is also removed, minor cosmetic repairs to the paint follow. Then another preservation, so that the condition remains as it is.

The result is impressive, which the appraiser also finds a few days later. In April 9000, the 2019 CD received the dream grade 2 and a market value of €9.000,00. Not bad for a vehicle that had to wait for what felt like an eternity for a buyer in a sad state. Now it is safely parked in an underground car park with another beautiful CD from Oli's collection.


The Saab 9000 CD is a vehicle that has been ignored by Saab fans for years. Not justified, because the CD is objectively the much better CS. He is the true, comfortable S-class from Sweden. Because its noise level in the interior is much lower than the hatchback. But the Saab fans and the author are no exception, just love their Schräghecks hot and heartfelt.

Times are changing, the 9000 CD is finally getting the appreciation it deserves. After the first part of the rescue trilogy went online, a reader contacted me who was restoring a CD. Then an editor of a car newspaper, who also put a CD back on the streets in the Hamburg area. He has been in contact with Oli ever since.

A few weeks later, at 4. Hamburger Saab meeting at Brandshof, the CD is in the majority. More 9k sedans than sloped tail. That gives hope for the future.

36 thoughts on "Saab 9000 CD rescue - technology and final (3)"

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    I would be interested to know how older Saab is received by the population?
    Is there anyone here who uses his classic Saab as a daily driver for work?
    How is the customer, if you do not use any of the common models of the well-known German manufacturers but vorfahren in neat 9k, 902 or 903?
    I'm currently considering getting a 902 and would drive it up to my customers' premises every day ...

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      Of course I meant 931.

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        ... is also my experience:
        With a well-kept Saab you are always well dressed.
        You can be seen in all circles and layers and do not fear envy or pity.

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      My experiences are not so concrete that I could explicitly refer to a 9K or a 900 ...

      What I can say is that it is generally not offensive to drive up to a customer's premises in a car whose acquisition costs or current market value can be settled below the bodies of the management. You are more likely to have problems when it is the other way around ...

      Furthermore, I have experienced that the exotic and vintage cars will be granted a certain bonus. And in both directions.
      That is to say, that one can drive up even with the cheapest car and may, without being laughed at, without discrediting oneself, if at the cart something is special. It should also mean that conversely, but also with a valuable car should drive up, if it is just old and / or exotic enough.

      I think that there is currently not a single SAAB that you should not or should not drive up ...

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      I drive such a “boring” 9000 CD with the 2.3i vacuum machine. As Olli aptly mentioned, you are really well dressed with the car. Drive the SAAB almost 60.000 km as a daily driver and the acceptance / respect is actually growing from day to day. Whether with friends or in traffic, you never go wrong with a SAAB. On the contrary, you are often asked about the car, so you already have the right small talk topic.

      Only in the company I collect (still) partly tough slogans. Since the SAAB but so far is the only car that is really always running, I book the garage visits of colleagues under Karma 😉 But also since all colleagues know the car, and can order that or know mostly all the car but not the holder , A SAAB on the company parking lot is once again something quite different than the x-Golf or Skoda / Volvo.

      I can not and do not want to give away 9000 as a Daily Driver anymore. Too bad that you almost never see the 9k in everyday life anymore ..

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        I also see such a beautiful old car as a statement about all the insane changes relating to the automobile of the modern age. I also like old Saab best ...

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        I know him from CS and at that time I was traveling several 1.000 km with it, mostly very quickly. Never felt underpowered with it. Neither on the BAB nor when overtaking on country roads. Not even in the UK, where overtaking with a left-hand drive is particularly exciting ...

        If you buy an 9K today or any other SAAB, you better look at mileage and condition, than turbos and engine data.

        Until one finds a SAAB, which today it would be difficult to swim in the traffic, one would have to leaf back in the history and model history very far.

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          Also have two 902 in focus - also 2.3i!

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    Great story and pictures. Can one consume several times. Since someone has a lucky touch and this SAAB is really in good hands. Every handle sits. The stern, to track plates *, the radio and the wood. Great result.

    And this scarab green. A SAAB 9000 can not be more conservative than this CD. He embodies the assault of modern Swedish technology and Swedish designs on the S-Class like no other. SAAB itself overwrites this in a prospectus for 9000 and next to a picture of the fittings with wood decor so:

    "If you feel good, you simply drive better."

    * Speaking of track plates, I'm still interested in what experiences there are beyond the optics and where the 10 and where the 20 mm and why.

    By the way, I think and hope that Oli doesn't have to undo the surgery for the H. Any form of tuning that was already available at the time of EZ and TÜV-compliant is also permitted on classic cars. And track plates are not a newborn ...

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      Hello Herbert!
      Look at a post above. Since I had you answered, how it is with the plates behaves.

      Because of the H mark: Since this is the only change to the series condition possible at the time - and the plates can be dismantled again in a few minutes, this should not be a hurdle.

      The question is whether you should put an H mark on yourself. I still don't see any real sense or profit from the “modern” Euro 2 cars. The tax is more expensive with “H” (192 euros) you have to go back to the tourist office (which is the maximum fine at least here in HH ;-))

      Although it is of course appealing because with an “H” you make an even clearer statement. Even if that would not change anything in terms of maintenance and usage behavior in my case. My sweethearts are and will remain fair-weather cars and are not used up in everyday life. And care thrives for them anyway in (healthy) excess. 🙂

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        Hello Olli,

        yes, we had overlapped and I'm smarter now in terms of records. Thank you very much for your AW.
        In the H, the things should in my opinion go through with ease and must not be dismantled - as soon as the strength is right and the wheels no longer grind 😉

        And with the H-costs you shouldn't forget the H-insurance either. I pay only € 88 per year for my oldtimer in motor vehicle liability insurance ...

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          Hi Herbert!
          Yes, of course that's true about insurance. Whereby I have a special collection tariff (liability with fully comprehensive insurance) that makes no difference between “H” and normal 😉
          The “bad thing” with such a tariff is that the insurance costs are no longer a real hurdle when it comes to deciding to buy a new one ...

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            Collection rate?

            I didn't even know it, but it sounds attractive and I'll find out more ...
            If this leads to more cars and a Ehekrach, I will refer my wife to a unknown Hanseatic 😉

            Until then (until my wife locates you), I wish a happy knack for and lots of fun with all the new acquisitions.

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            Haha, great ... now I have to fear not only my wife in this regard, but also yours 😉
            In terms of insurance you can like to send via Tom your contact information to me.
            Because in order to make everything even tastier, there are also discounts for Saab drivers in the aforementioned collection tariff ...
            (No, I'm NOT an insurance broker !!! Only Saabfahrer passionate)

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    First of thanks to Tom for the great trilogy and the encouragement within the comments on my somewhat borderline project!

    I have to admit that I had literally spurned the 9000 for many years. The last one, which I was very satisfied with (a CD as 2,3 TurboS, at the time provided with a lot of extra power by G&W Motorsport), I drove until 1999 and then switched to the 9-5 station wagon. Which was a real disappointment at first. The first station wagons that could be ordered lacked the Saab feeling at the factory. It was only available as a tired soft turbo with a limp chassis. Only the space (and a few deer upgrades) justified that he was allowed to stay at that time ...
    Since the release of the 9000, my heart beat more for the classic 900.

    I have not had the 9000 for a long time.
    Until I was allowed to drive it again a couple of years ago. I almost had a serious relapse and went in search of a beautiful specimen. I found one (the license plate number 5111 on the photo above). Only 53 tkm run, pensioner's hand, never winter - and up, down, inside and out in the pro-annual car condition (but that's another story).
    Since my relapse the 9000 is the perfect travel car. I love to drive him! So much car for (in proportion) as little money, as it offers a good 9000, probably looking for its kind.
    But that I take a second to it ... Well, how it came to that, Tom has meticulously described here 😉

    The track plates are distributed as follows:
    Front 10 mm per side, rear 20 mm per side.
    That sounds drastic at first. But with the 6 × 15 original rims standing far inwards and the wide arched wheel strips, the 9000 looked strange in my opinion.

    The action was primarily a visual improvement. The Fahrverhakten has neither noticeably deteriorated, nor improved. One should pay attention only to an optimally balanced wheel, because an imbalance shows more effect here.

    And: On our first trip in Sweden with a lot of luggage and Saab parts in the trunk (ie high load), I have observed that the tire at the back inside touches the Radbogenleiste very easily on strong bumps. Of course this is not alright and I still have to check what exactly that is - and whether it should be shut down. Probably 15mm are the royal road on each side.

    The blessing of the TÜV one would have to catch up by the way. Because I have not been able to find track plates with an ABE for Saab in the desired strength.

    Greetings, Olli

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    as an Austrian here looks envious to Germany. 165 € car tax is very cheap

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    seems to me the right name: A beauty who has slumbered for a long time behind a haunted appearance! Thanks also to the dealer, who believed in the beauty and left it for so long to sell for under 2.000 Euro, rather than scrapping or slaughtering it.

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      True, the used car dealers often lose patience, or need the space and then pass the Saabs somewhere and then you can not save them. Some cars are sometimes almost a year at dealers and then it is understandable from a dealer's perspective, if he gives the car.

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        In this case, the dealer had a good relationship with the previous owner or contact with his heirs. And he had the car in service for years. In addition, there is a certain affinity to Saab.
        Of course, the 9000 was constantly in the way on the very small yard. But he did not have the heart to sell the car as a battle object or to bring it to the recycler.
        He was noticeably happy that he was getting into good hands and someone was trying to save him. Have today contact with the dealer and will soon proudly present the final result.

        One more word, why a dealer would rather sell such a car cheaply than fix it up and then possibly be able to sell it a bit more expensive. Because one might wonder why such a “good” first-hand car with a few kilometers and great equipment is offered so cheaply.

        In the case of 9000 there were deficiencies of unknown cause and incalculable repair costs.
        Take an airbag light, for example: It can be a minor thing such as an erasable error or a loose plug - but it can also be something critical such as a control unit, steering wheel coil or sensors.
        Simply reading out and deleting the error codes would mean a considerable effort for a company that does not specialize in Saab. Not to mention the later necessary repair.
        Similar to a non-working air conditioner. Here, too, a new filling could be sufficient - but more expensive repairs such as cooler, evaporator or compressor could also be necessary.

        Even the troubleshooting would have devoured a lot of working time and money. In addition there would be spare parts and working hours. Then a few cosmetic repairs, the elimination of the bump ...
        Unfortunately, such a Saab would still not have been worth much more on the market and also as a sucker even hard to sell.
        From an economic point of view, a refurbishment and repair would have made no sense for the dealer.

        Finally, one can be really happy that the dealer had so much patience and did not give up the hope that a lover will find. At any rate, I am very grateful that in this way a really good car has been preserved. Because the next (end) station would probably have been the validator ...

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    Yesterday something and again today. The blog is really becoming more and more of the SAABES TAGES press ...
    Congratulations to Oli for the beautiful CD, the appraisal and TÜV.

    I do not know if you should compare CD and CS with each other today, weigh up advantages and disadvantages. That the CD in the scene comes up and wins on presence, can also be because the once so popular CS with his variable and generous cargo space was simply harder ripped off and more worn that he is in good shape not more or only the highest is found.

    In any case, conditions have changed significantly since both were newly available with identical life expectancy and in the same new condition as an alternative to each other. Motor-journalistic criteria and purchase recommendations of the 1990er for the better 9K have not been around for a long time.

    The subject of track plates is interesting. I assume 10 mm on the right and 20 mm on the left 😉 ...
    So you could get closer to the curb without shredding its rims. Nonsense, I suspect 20 in the back and 10 mm in the front. Is that right or is it the other way around and why?

    How has the behavior of the 9K changed or improved? Are there any impressions and first experiences?

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    PS: Very interesting, for me new info with the noise in comparison to the hatchback! Unfortunately, I have never had the pleasure of sitting in an 9000. 🙁

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    Great action, great result, well written and a fantastic increase in value - or it seems to me that the value was actually largely there and only had to be worked out and polished. A car that undoubtedly deserves it can live a long time! 🙂 Big thanks to Oli and Tom! One (probably stupid) question: why do you need such a valuation report if you don't want to sell at all? Just nice to have? As confirmation of the good purchase? Or for insurance? Does that only make sense with youngtimers or also with newer Saabs?

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      For many classic insurances, valuations are a prerequisite. Oli insures his vehicles over such. It is recommended in principle to have a valuation made. In the case of theft or accident you can prove the (usually good) condition.

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        Thanks for the very interesting info! Will I even have beauties made by my 2011ers just in case, I suppose, with Dekra or something, or is there better for Saab?

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          For a rare 2011er year it is definitely worth it! I commissioned both Dekra and independent experts. I could not find any differences, but the appraiser should be a bit exotic.

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            In the present case, however, the reviewer was extremely exotic ...

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              I do not think so. The Anna project has been rated 3 + and 7,200 €, which is now several years ago. Since the rating of the CD fits in well.

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            Great, thanks, I do! Valuable info! Then I'll introduce my two 2011ers there. 🙂 Perhaps I could, in order to find a Exoten-affine appraiser, somehow make contact with Oli or otherwise learn the reviewer of the 9000er? 🙂 I'm also in HH.

            Thank you for the great blog, countless valuable, practical and daily relevant information and the best (and at the same time most meaningful) reading that I know to distract from the work! 😉

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              I like to contact Oli. You can send me your contact details, I will forward them by e-mail.

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            Without wanting to talk small about the value of a 9k, I also consider this amount to be sporty. You might also have to clarify whether you see this as a replacement value or market value in the sense of a price that can be achieved on the market. The CD as a non-turbo is virtually the niche in the niche in the Saabuniversum. The circle of interested parties is already very small. Sure, it only takes one buyer to get the 9000 € or 7300 €. As a comparison of a real sale, I can take a late Aero that was certainly one of the best 9k aeros in Germany (is now abroad). The brought about six months ago no 10k € as far as I remember. (Report was above 12000 €)
            In Holland, since the beginning of May, according to description and pictures, a comparable CD is offered for sale. Same engine. Run a little more (150000km) but technically top, much invested. Price is at 5950 €.

            In general, it can be said that above 5000 € with the 9k the circle of interested parties and the real! Offer is already thin. The majority of such vehicles change hands "on the fly" between enthusiasts anyway, if it is exactly the overall package that one has been looking for for a long time.
            Regardless, I grant everyone such a good report, which also does the market value of all other vehicles of the brand good. Without an opinion, it is already hard enough to be compensated in an accident with an (older) Saab.

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            @ Daniel

            An appraisal of value is similar to the real market value as the manufacturer's EIA for a new car at the price of an annual car or even a two- or three-year car.

            Valuation reports are usually created for cars that have just been handcrafted. This is also the case with this CD. So for cars with a fresh MOT, new tires and who knows what else ...

            If these vehicles go on sale, the seller likes to refer to the last but usually years old appraisal report. This does not mean that the valuation report was invalid at the time of its creation.

            It is much more so that the inspected vehicles rarely to never immediately after the preparation of the report are offered for sale. There are the same discrepancies that exist between EIAs and younger used cars.

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            Hi Daniel!
            Basically I agree with you. A 9000 CD as a vacuum cleaner is "actually" the last thing that you would classify as a high-priced Saab classic - or you have to ask yourself whether such a price is even approximately justified.
            I clearly say yes! And not because it happens to be about my car.
            Because they hardly exist anymore, the good and unused copies. Well equipped, with little KM from the first (or collectors) hand, with a comprehensible history.
            The 9000 had so far no real collector or lover status and was scrubbed in the past often mercilessly in the everyday life. Service only, if it was absolutely necessary. Maintenance and maintenance jams are the rule rather than the exception.

            And now?
            Many have simply disappeared from the scene. There are still a few sweethearts romping about in deep sleep in the portals that only have to be discovered - and saved -.

            But who does that?
            Hardly anyone has the 9000 on their screen as an object of desire. Especially not if it's a Bread & Butter copy or if it doesn't have a turbo.

            And who has the courage?
            The majority of the offers are just vehicles in which you have to invest properly again. Even supposed pearls lurk with (for normal Saab lovers) unpredictable risks. What if the airbag light is on? He consumes cooling water while driving? The chassis rumbles? When Check Engine is lit? What about the DI cassette? The air conditioning? The brakes? Why is the cruise control not working? The seat heating? Who wants to buy the cat in a sack and with bad luck also a lot of money to fix it, so that the new acquisition is just technically reasonably okay (the optical we still do without).
            Then you have a car that in the end has become quite expensive - but nobody else cares because it is far from being in perfect condition. And even if it were - it's just a Saab 9000 - probably also a boring sucker ...

            Until that acceptance and appreciation changes (which fortunately is slowly the case), such "projects" will only tackle passionate people who are in a position to solve such problems. Detached from all reason or financial point of view.

            As an example:
            Even the in the article shown in the photo and today almost perfect retiree car with the license plate 5111 was at purchase a sad sight at first sight.
            It stood on steel rims, the paint was dull, some lighting parts were cracked, scratches here and there. Stall damage (despite - or because of the low mileage of only 51.000km) such as head gasket, exhaust, tires, etc. were mandatory.
            Offer price (not negotiable!): 3.750 Euro
            Location: Mannheim.
            Hometown of the interested party (ie mine): Hamburg.

            The effort and expense of even just looking at the not exactly cheap car should not have been done. I listened to my gut instinct and did it. Booked a one-way ticket, got me short-term license plates and got on the ICE to the south at 5 a.m. In the hope of not having to return to HH by train in the evening ...

            To make it short: I did not have to. I took him. And that although at first glance it was clear that here several thousand will flow into it to substantiate the actually good basic condition.
            Then there was the renewal of various parts and the addition of equipment. Not because it was necessary, just because I wanted it that way.
            So the result was bought at a high price - but it was convincing. At the last Hamburg Saab meeting at the oldie tank, various people were able to convince themselves of the condition. However, this cannot be made tangible with pictures or descriptions. Sit down, see, feel, smell. And you know what the decisive and value-increasing difference is.

            I noticed something interesting: It did not matter at the moment that it was not a turbo (which of course you would have found even better). Such a car in the state is almost unique today and that convinces. Also as a sucker, as a cruiser.

            And: Since two 9000 CDs are actually one too many in the collection (here in HH it is not so easy with the garages), I had offered the car for a price just under five digits. There were several interested in the car. In the end, he was actually sold. The desired price was achieved with minimal discount and paid with pleasure. In response came the words: "he is worth it ..."
            Now another collector is happy about a nearly perfect and not boring Saab 9000 CD 2,3i
            And I am glad that he has gone into good hands. At a price that both parties consider realistic and acceptable.
            So 9000 is also higher priced.

            Example two: We recently exhibited the green 9000 CD from the article as a non-salable exhibit on our Scandinavian stand at the Klassikertage Neumünster. The response was surprisingly high, because it was not the 5-door, but the elegant sedan. Various purchase requests were loud. In conversation, the prospects were told what such a car would cost. Again, no twitching, as the price in the high four-digit range was called. On the contrary, the interested parties were able to experience the exceptionally good state live and asked stubbornly whether they would not want to separate themselves from the 9000.
            Man (n) did not want to! 😉

            I don't want to keep my rose-colored glasses on at all costs regarding “the 9000 and its value”. But it is coming, the 9000th. The fact is that there are tons of cars that are not bad - but still have a longer and more expensive way to go before they can be rated higher. Getting the last 10-15% of a car really good are the hardest. But when that is almost done, then an independent expert will also recognize and take into account - and place him well above the standard list in terms of value. There are value-influencing factors that justify this. It has to be said that it makes sense for an appraiser to be a little Saab-savvy and familiar with the vehicles. But a courtesy report should never be sought. That does not help anyone and in case of doubt it would probably not be resilient anyway.

            What a prospective buyer should consider:
            In the offers on the online portals (no matter which vehicle or model), all information is relative. Text and images can show only limited, what actually expected and how good or not good a car really is. You have to see such a car live. Experience is important and helps to assess much better. But ultimately can not ensure that in the end not lingering high investments ... But of course there are really good or worthwhile cars. You just have to have the right mix of courage and reason to dare.

            For me, Saab is a hobby and a passion. And so - despite all my experience - I am also willing to take risks to a certain extent. So far I've been lucky and almost all of my achievements have not turned out to be endless dime diggers. In the end they weren't exactly cheap anyway - although for me personally the word “inexpensive” fits better.

            By the way: The 9000 CD from the ad you (Daniel) mentioned is a good example. It would look very promising to me - but some things make you sit up and take a closer look / ask. It can be one of those pearls. Selling such a car online in this price range is difficult. This can actually only work if more (many) pictures - including details and close-ups - and detailed information reveal more about the car. Or someone who is interested does not live far away and has the chance to examine the original of the car. For myself I would probably just go there again. Fortunately, it's too far ... 😉

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    Great story! Do you still get the wood decors for the dashboard bought? Also for example for 902 and 931?

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      Barely new, SAAB dealers have something in stock. I recommend the well-known portals where there are lots of choices from slaughter.

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    nice if you have a 9000CD in the garage, even better if you have two 9000CD.

    If you never have to transport anything, or next to a practical CS or Combi has, then the CD is the comfort for long distances.

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      Also in terms of transport, the CD is not bad. As long as you do not have to transport anything long, fits into the sedan -that longer tail quite a lot! Can absolutely recommend the CD!

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