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  1. #1
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    18 Dec 2017
    Location
    Kensington, Maryland, USA
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    26
    Saab(s)
    2009 9-3 Aero Convertible 2.8T Auto (current) Previous: '71 99 Sedan, '74 99 Combi, '85 900 Combi
    Thumbs Up:   6

    Questions from a New Owner

    Greetings and Happy New Year! I’ve owned a 2009 9-3 Aero Convertible, automatic, for a month now. I have a few questions that I hope this group can help me with:
    1. When the car is cold (after at least one minute warmup on these cold mornings) and I back out of the driveway and put it in Drive, there is a pause before it “hooks up” and moves. Just a cold weather thing, or do I need to have something checked. I just read here that it takes a Tech 2 to check the trans fluid level. If that’s the case, it will require a trip to the local Saab specialists, which I’d rather not have to do.
    2. Is my car debadged? See photo. No 9-3 or Aero emblems, which I have seen on other Aero convertibles (although their years are unknown).
    3. What are your experiences with the soft top. Reading the manual, it seems that it is delicate. Although my car only has 36K miles, the top is wrinkled and I can see some abrasions in the fabric. The top is tan.
    4. There is a strong exhaust smell upon startup, almost raw gas. The mornings here have been in the teens and 20s. Normal? Thanks for any help, Steve
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  2. #2
    Bruno
    Saab Addict swisssaabist's Avatar
    Join Date
    18 Nov 2016
    Location
    Cheeseland or TICTAC land
    Posts
    603
    Saab(s)
    9-5 ARC Wagon 2002 2 t auto engine B205E
    Thumbs Up:   56
    it's time to change trans fluid that's and low level are knowing for delaying shifting when cold. simple test is to park on a downhill and trying to stay on crawling mode without brakes if the car slip the level is too low.
    the gas smell is almost normal on choke sequence, 1-2 min after start in cold weather, and before 5-8 miles the catalyst doesn't work like it should.

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  3. #3
    Saab Owner Digger's Avatar
    Join Date
    28 Oct 2016
    Location
    Minneapolis Minnesota
    Posts
    1,131
    Saab(s)
    2006 9-3 2.0t SportCombi
    Thumbs Up:   156
    I can't tell you anything about any Aero Emblem you might be missing, but I can tell you that some smell on starting is normal, with the smell of raw gas on starting you should check the car or have the car checked.

    Before you go spending a C note on a mechanic to do what anyone can, get yourself a good small bright flashlight and check the end of every vacuum line to make sure it's plugged on tight. The car is 8 years old and I would hope that its been serviced at least once and sometimes things don't always get put back where they belong. Finding something as simple as a loose vacuum line connection could solve both your transmission lag and your raw gas smell.

    I have nothing nice to say about any manufacturer that installs a transmission where the fluid level can only be checked at a specific warm temperature, that doesn't provide tranny temp as driver accessible information. Checking the tranny fluid has become a PIA on all newer cars, bad enough that on some you need to be a contortionist, but when you need to spend money to have a shop check your fluid, or you need to spend several hundred for a scan tool so you can check this yourself, well. this requires foul language to properly express my opinion. The 5 speed takes a contortionist to check when warm, the 6 speed auto is very picky about fluid level and needs to be check at specific temp.

    Canvas tops are like shrink to fit blue jeans and the top condition sounds to be normal for a 39K mile 8 year old convertible with a tan top. I have a 28 year old 80K mile ragtop in my garage, the only time I intentionally put the top up is when I take it out of the garage for a wash. My guess is that both our tops have led the same kind of life. As your car spends time out of the garage in the rain and sun, the top will tighten up. Do not put your top down when it's still damp, even if you don't leave it stored long enough to mildew, it will eventually shrink to be to tight and that will cause problems that cost money to fix. Also, avoid the brush type car washes, they are about as kind to the canvas top as a desert sand storm is to paint.

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  4. #4
    Saab Fan
    Join Date
    18 Dec 2017
    Location
    Kensington, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    26
    Saab(s)
    2009 9-3 Aero Convertible 2.8T Auto (current) Previous: '71 99 Sedan, '74 99 Combi, '85 900 Combi
    Thumbs Up:   6
    Thanks Bruno and Digger, these responses are very helpful. Upon further reading in my Manual, I see that it recommends one to pause between shifting into Drive and giving it gas. Maybe the car is just reminding me of this. Further, the required interval for trans fluid change is 60K. Not that it shouldn't be checked sooner, I'm sure. I also see that there's a 40K service interval (I'm at 37K), so when I go in for this I'll certainly ask about the transmission. On the top, yes, I've owned a car with a much simpler cloth top. I did take it through the auto car wash, but will not do that with my Saab baby. I almost regret reading everything here about the top and it's mechanism ; ). Cheers, Steve

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  5. #5
    Bruno
    Saab Addict swisssaabist's Avatar
    Join Date
    18 Nov 2016
    Location
    Cheeseland or TICTAC land
    Posts
    603
    Saab(s)
    9-5 ARC Wagon 2002 2 t auto engine B205E
    Thumbs Up:   56
    don't forget your car has 8 yrs old, the fluid stay for long life, meanwhile it could be bad after all those years, depends too how to drive,shift.. my way to is to be sure the car is really immobile when i change from R to D (losing a Mercedès Benz like that )
    anyway a fluid change doesn't hurt apart your wallet...

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