If you’ve never had the pleasure of driving a Saab, maybe today’s feature will inspire you to seek out this oddly obscure car brand that is often forgotten.  Helpful hint though so as to not look like a newbie on the test drive, the ignition key isn’t in the normal ignition key location.  Situated in the center console area, just beside the hand brake is where you’ll find it hiding.

1988 Saab 900 center console showing key location; unknown photo credits

You should also probably know how to put it in reverse.  See the picture above, and see that little donut knob looking thing on the gear shifter?  While in neutral, put the palm of your hand over the gear knob and using your index and middle finger, pull up on that and then make your motion to right & down for reverse.

Photo credits to Trygve Sørli (Saab 900 project)

The Saab 900 had a long successful history…produced between 1978 and 1998, it was sold in many variations including a sedan, hatchback, 2- and 4-doors, all of which weren’t immediately indistinguishable from one another in any form.  Yet another reason the Saab is abstrusely cool.

Photo credits to Trygve Sørli (Saab 900 project)

Today though is less about the model and more about a car…not the car, but a car.  A survivor of epic proportions.  Second Daily reader Dan Rojas wrote to tell us about his 1988 Saab 900 turbo.  Purchased new to him in 2015 with over 200k miles, he thoroughly enjoyed his new Swedish friend until a recent trip through Colorado.

Just after taking an exit off the freeway, he hears a loud pop, car stalls out and immediately the smell of petrol filled the cabin.  A broken fuel line the culprit, it caught fire as Dan tried to restart it.  Engulfed in flames, Dan and his wife were able to get out safely but we can’t say the Saab fared as well.

Unsure of whether to crush or repair it, it sat in his garage for over a month before deciding on the latter. Ten and a half grueling months later, it is “completely restored from top to bottom, bumper to bumper, including rewiring, rust removal, new floorboards, sealing undercarriage, new paint job”. 

Some may wonder why Dan would choose to make such an investment when a “new” one could be had for under $5000.  To that we just say…job well done Dan…thanks for saving this one.

 

Alicia Keys “Girl on Fire” celebrates the “achievements of women everywhere”,..today we toast the achievements of Saab in being eclectically cool and successfully unpopular (in a good way) everywhere.

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This and Cover photo credits to Trygve Sørli (Saab 900 project)

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3 Comments on "The Saab 900 – That car is on fire"

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pmatusov
Member

What a great Second Daily choice! Almost bought one 20 years ago in Detroit!

Luckless_Pedestrian
Member

Ha, ha… I had a classic 900 burst into flames when backing it out of the garage… hot wire off altenator broke and came in contact with the block… got control of things before any real damage was done. Same car had the hose running to the heater core rupture and hot coolant sprayed all over my right leg… fun times… not my best Saab experience, but this was only one of four I’ve owned over the years….

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