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Re: Query about SAABs - and comparisons with Audi

>2. Anyone have views on the comparative merits of an FWD
>Audi 90 of late '80s vintage and a comparable SAAB? 
>(Reason for query is I'm looking for a car for my
>daughter, and most of the '90s here have slush-boxes
>which she detests - so due as much to availability as
>anything else, I'm considering the SAAB alternative,
>but have heard mixed responses - from "great car" to
>"unreliable, expensive, slow, poor handling and steering."
>since I've heard a similar range of views on Audis -
>and know the former to be true - I'm hoping that that may
>be the case for SAABs too.) 

>Performance wise it really depends on which variant of the Saab motor you get. 
>The turbo's are sweet motors that get up and go, 

Durable too.. A friends '83 900turbo was just laid to rest with 350K+
(rust and burned valves)

>the 16V motors are nice and fairly responsive.

Available in '86-on 900S models and included on base models after '89.
In '91 they went to a 2.1L 16V which bumped the power from 128hp to
140hp, but now we're getting beyond the "late 80's". The '86 5sp 900S my
wife had, was at 192K when we sold it 3 years ago and never needed
engine or clutch work and is now at ~250K(my mechanic still works on it
and updates me occasionally).

Common problems for the 900 we experienced were exhaust and ball joints
about every 50K. We also had the sedan body which has a weak taillight
ground(inexpensive, 15min fix).

I can't attest to reliability comparisons to Audi's as I've had my '91
CQ20V for less than two weeks, just that they have similar repair
ratings. Local mechanic availability would be a consideration. I don't
think you could find a safer car for your daughter than the Saab in that
vintage. We are on Saab #5 and still counting.

91 Coupe Quattro 110K
93 Saab 9000CS    95K