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Old 04-23-2015, 07:46 AM   #1
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Question At a cross road

Well guys, id like your honest opinions.

4 years ago i bought myself a black 2000 sedan aero MT, since then ive put alot of money, blood, sweat, tears, and hopes n dreams. it was my perfect bad ass little daily and my 4th saab ive owned.

4 months ago i got side swiped, USAA totaled it. damage was minimal, new hood and fender and she is back on the road. it runs and drives just as good as it did when the accident happened. But the state of maryland is throwing a fit and long story short i cant get it back on the road after failing an inspection. way to much work and money for me to justify.

however I have just recently found a black 01 v6 wagon auto. trans is no good, and doesnt start. having always wanted a wagon and seen the condition of the body im debating transplanting everything from my sedan into this wagon.

yes this means a v6 to I4 and Auto to manual swap at the same time.

this is something i can tackle with out an issue and i have the space. i more or less have the time and im young but im just trying to gauge if this is going to be worth the trouble or not in the end. should i cut my losses and move on away from saab or should jump back in and make a pretty bad ass wagon?

any and all thoughts are appreciated
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Old 04-23-2015, 08:49 AM   #2
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Mechanical-wise I don't see a problem with everything dropping in... the wiring I think would be the issue because the 2.3 uses Trionic while the V6 uses motronic(?) or something else. I would think some major re-wiring would be needed, and for me anyway, wouldn't be worth the effort when there are plenty of wagons out there with the 2.3 and trionic already.
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Old 04-23-2015, 09:01 AM   #3
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9-5 Aero+ wagon 5spd is the best iteration of a late 90's+ Saab. This is after having Viggens, and 9-3ss'. Maybe a Turbo X Combi 6mt would be up there too.

I put 60-75% of the same chassis mods on the 9-5 as I did to my Viggen and the feel of the unibody and front and rear end grip are so superior its funny. I gave the car to MiataPowar/Tim last week who put it through its paces to also declare it far superior to the OG9-3 platform.

Point being. If you have the skills, time, money and space to make a nice 9-5 wagon 5mt, its worth it.
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Old 04-23-2015, 10:37 AM   #4
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You know I love wagons!
Find a blown-engine 2.3L, and swap everything over.
There's a kid selling a red aero wagon cheap-ish in Glen burnie/pasadena.
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Old 04-23-2015, 10:40 AM   #5
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Mechanical-wise I don't see a problem with everything dropping in... the wiring I think would be the issue because the 2.3 uses Trionic while the V6 uses motronic(?) or something else. I would think some major re-wiring would be needed, and for me anyway, wouldn't be worth the effort when there are plenty of wagons out there with the 2.3 and trionic already.
while i agree about starting with a I4 wagon, its hard to find a sane person near me who is relistic with their prices. i dont want to pay 3 grand for a 200k wagon. from what i have found everyone thinks there saab is made out of gold...which i cant really argue against..

ill have both harness' at my disposal so at least i have that going for me, i merly ask out of curiousity, do you think i will run into an issue tie-ing the t7 harness into the motronic body harness? if so would it be worth my time to tear both cars down to their skins and start fresh? thats so much work... if you wanted to do this how would you tackle this task?

@ jameson If you had to pick, would you run a 99-01 wagon or sedan?
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Old 04-23-2015, 11:29 AM   #6
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while i agree about starting with a I4 wagon, its hard to find a sane person near me who is relistic with their prices. i dont want to pay 3 grand for a 200k wagon. from what i have found everyone thinks there saab is made out of gold...which i cant really argue against..

ill have both harness' at my disposal so at least i have that going for me, i merly ask out of curiousity, do you think i will run into an issue tie-ing the t7 harness into the motronic body harness? if so would it be worth my time to tear both cars down to their skins and start fresh? thats so much work... if you wanted to do this how would you tackle this task?

@ jameson If you had to pick, would you run a 99-01 wagon or sedan?
I love the wagons for the added utility and stealth/sleeper factor. In my case, the dog only rests comfortably on the 8 hours jaunts to NJ in the wagon, not our 9-3 sedan.

If you never plan on using the utility, the wagon weighs more than the sedan.
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Old 04-23-2015, 12:21 PM   #7
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Love the wagons myself (having owned 2 concurrently) but this '02 sedan could be a good candidate:

SAAB 2002
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Old 04-23-2015, 01:17 PM   #8
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Love the wagons myself (having owned 2 concurrently) but this '02 sedan could be a good candidate:

SAAB 2002
i might just have to check this one out, but im pretty set on this black wagon i found..

and it was your rare white 05 aero wagoon that turned me on to wanting one, god bless her soul, RIP.
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Old 04-23-2015, 01:39 PM   #9
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errrrrbody wants a black wagon!

back to the wiring. I've done engine swaps before. across the same company with the SAME engine management. It sucks. now, having the access to a full car with harnesses and computers will make it easier, but it still sucks.

Engine harness is a piece of cake. It's the twice/dice that would worry me.
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Old 04-23-2015, 02:07 PM   #10
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errrrrbody wants a black wagon!

back to the wiring. I've done engine swaps before. across the same company with the SAME engine management. It sucks. now, having the access to a full car with harnesses and computers will make it easier, but it still sucks.

Engine harness is a piece of cake. It's the twice/dice that would worry me.
so you think for the smallest amount of head ache would be to swap EVERY module over to the wagon?

mid you i do have a tech 2....
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Old 04-23-2015, 03:16 PM   #11
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Probably. Still not something I'd want to do.
i vote for finding a 2.3l and swapping it.
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Old 04-23-2015, 03:53 PM   #12
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You might consider spending some quality time in the EPC. That'll tell you what harnesses and controllers are the same (or not) between the two.
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Old 04-23-2015, 10:46 PM   #13
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You might consider spending some quality time in the EPC. That'll tell you what harnesses and controllers are the same (or not) between the two.
^ This. For all you know it could be as easy as unplugging the old harness and plugging the new one in.

Or you could have to splice in every single connection...

Though if you can afford the downtime of two vehicles it should be doable.
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Old 04-24-2015, 06:04 AM   #14
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I always vouch for the saving a of a decent Saab if it's mostly rust free. If we keep scrapping them, we'll run out eventually. Swapping all the wiring for the 4 cylinder sounds like something I would want to do. Ha, but it really is a labor of love. I say if you're up to the challenge and have the time, go for it.
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Old 04-24-2015, 06:58 AM   #15
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Wagons are where it's at. What'll be more of a pita though, the V6 to 2.3 engine swap or the slushbox to manual conversion?
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Old 04-24-2015, 07:31 AM   #16
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Parting out a 2003 SAAB 9-5 Wagon, 2.3t, Manual Trans

2000 Saab 9-5

01 SAAB 9-5 $700

2000 Saab 9-5 mechanic special

2001 Saab 9-5 2.3T
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Old 04-24-2015, 09:37 AM   #17
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With the 2 cars mentioned, this will be a pretty straight forward swap. You'll only need to swap over the engine harness (the rest does not care V6 or I4, it's all T7), and sort out wiring for the reverse lights and neutral safety switch. Just unplug the TCM

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Old 04-24-2015, 08:26 PM   #18
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With the 2 cars mentioned, this will be a pretty straight forward swap. You'll only need to swap over the engine harness (the rest does not care V6 or I4, it's all T7), and sort out wiring for the reverse lights and neutral safety switch. Just unplug the TCM
This. V6 9-5's are t7 as well. My understanding is they use the same ecu even. I've swapped harnesses on a 4cyl car, probably won't be any tougher than that. Engine swap should be straightforward with the exception of the upper engine mount. How do they do that on a v6? Is there the provision on the passenger side frame for the mount to bolt into? As far as all else I'd do a subframe swap.

The auto to manual part may be tricky. I don't know what provisions carry over from one to the other.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:28 PM   #19
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Oh and by the way, I am embarking on this same journey except with my 94 900 v6. Motors out, have the donor ready, will be loading it this summer.
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Old 04-27-2015, 05:40 AM   #20
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"Engine swap should be straightforward with the exception of the upper engine mount. How do they do that on a v6?"


Upper mount will not be an issue, only the brackets attached to the engine are different, the mount on the body is identical v6 or I4
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