Useful information > How to buy a Saab 9-5 NG and not regret it?
How to buy a Saab 9-5 NG and not regret it?

How to buy a Saab 9-5 NG and not regret it?

From time to time we get the question: what to pay attention to when buying a Saab 9-5 NG, or what maintenance costs to expect.

This is why we decided to write the answers in one place, having experience from several years, many journeys and no (major) failures.

So, if you have the experience, maybe you are current, future or former NG owner, share your observations in comments.


From our perspective, the purchase should be divided into four parts:

  • First of all, we should assess the possibility of buying. When it comes to 9-5 NG, there is practically no bargain. The Swedes are unwilling to sell such cars outside their country. They prefer to stay with them. From the United States, cars always come broken up. And the version with a sunroof can be additionally flooded with rain. In Western Europe, these models are usually simply expensive.
    What do we mean “these models”? We mean the top versions in a powerful engine. Above all, there is no point in investing money in other models, like velour in diesel. In addition, this is a big, heavy car and a weak engine won’t pull it off. And it must be fun. In other words, you have to tell yourself that this car is expensive to buy. Although, of course, there are items available for 30k PLN, it will rather be a mine.
  • Secondly, usually, when we make a purchase we want to return to the brand we used to drive and like, or we want to enjoy driving SAAB for even longer, and 9-3 is already worn out. Hence NG is a nice and modern car for its age. However, it is worth noting that the maintenance costs will be higher because it is a different kind than 9-3 or earlier 9-5. Saab 9-5 NG is not a 9-3 in a new body, but a completely ” new-built” car.
  • Thirdly, you need to get a good hit. In other words, a 9- or 10-year-old car could really have had a lot of various adventures. The condition of a car should be assessed not with the heart and eyes, but with the help of an objective expert. For instance, with our eyes we will assess that the leather is fatigued, the glass is broken and the paint is scratched. All the rest depends on the experience of the engineer. In other words, it is a mass of electronics and mechanics. It is clear that outside the workshop, it is practically impossible to assess the technical condition of the car. So, if the situation does not allow for verification, you should let go.
    It is also worth checking for yourself whether the equipment of the car agrees with what is in the catalogue (catalogues not only for 9-5 NG are available online). Isn’t there a lack of some equipment option that went together or in a package? Is it a real Aero or a fake? When you sell it, however, it will later be quite an important factor, which we sometimes forget about.
  • Fourthly, check if there is service documentation. These may be invoices and/or the service book. Additionally, often owners have pictures of major repairs. However, it usually happens that nothing is known about a car. A well-maintained service booklet is also a good indication of the history of the vehicle and its owner. In a way, this requires some reliability. Moreover, it allows verifying the condition and quality of the service in confrontation with the condition of the car. And this may help us discover that the car is only a money box.


It’s worth seeing in the service booklet what was already done. There’s a chance that the same malfunction won’t come back to us so soon.

Below you will find expensive repairs with the mileage when we did it. Therefore, you’re lucky if you have it over and done with.

  • Initially: 117000 overviews of everything and replacement of consumables: brake discs, brake pads, all fluids and filters. In general, it is worth assuming that +10% of the purchase value will go into this initial inspection and replacement. Above all, you shouldn’t believe in the state of “getting in and out”.
  • 126000 rear springs, steering column lock
  • 132000 we bought a set of 6 fuel injectors and an ignition coil, for spare. Everyone needs their talisman :>
  • 136000 coolant pump
  • 156000 front shock absorbers
  • 161000 silent blocks, turbine regeneration
  • 173000 reduction box – replacement of bearings and sealing, replacement of box cooling pipes, cleaning the oil trap of the valve cover.
  • 174000 compressor valve – replacement and filling
  • 185000 battery replacement
  • 200100 water pump and thermostat – replacement and valve cover sealing
  • 206100 steering gear regeneration and steering rods replacement
  • 212300 Power steering pump reconditioned (new one just wasn’t available). All in all, it can be linked as a consequence of a fresh mangle.
  • 231 100 replacement of gearbox lever microstick (automatic). It has stopped contacting.
  • 232 300 replacement of end mufflers. The original ones had fallen apart.
  • 233 400 reconditioning the rear shock absorbers
  • 236 700 replacement of the timing gear including sealing of everything around it

These are extras. Besides, we do an inspection every 10k km with oil and filter changes. Of course, we also change the oil in the haldex and gearbox in the appropriate cycle.

We expect to have to take care of the steering gear and engine timing system. Also, the rims will have to be renewed. 19 inches is a difficult size even with great care.

We also assume that if a part ends its life and we still ride on it, we may spoil something else in the area. In our opinion – it is not worth it. In other words, an emergency budget on the side is useful. But this is an individual case. The fact is, you can always expect an emergency to pop up at the least appropriate time.

When we service our 9-5 NG, we try to be always up to date.
Therefore, the car is grateful to us, and it never did a bad joke. It is important because we make it about 20-25 thousand kilometres a year – in mixed mode.

Do you want to add a hint? Do you have different experiences? Share in the comments.

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