Ever find a treasure at a garage sale? Well, today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe 1999 Saab 9-3 was bought from GM's Heritage Collection blowout, and while covetable, will its price make it not destined for your garage?
The GM Heritage Collection is a repository of the maker's most memorable or noteworthy achievements - and a bunch of other stuff. Yesterday's 1975 Corvette Purple People Eater may have fallen into that latter category as 53% of you found its price more worthy a pass to the Collection, than to the other option- Crack Town.
Today we have a 1999 Saab 9-3 Viggen which is claimed was a member of GM's exclusion Heritage club. Prior to that, it was apparently owned by some dude who considered auto ownership more a spectator sport than participatory which is the reason the electric blue Swede has but 993 miles on its digital clock. Now some of you who haven't yet had their coffee or hair of the dog may be questioning why GM would even have a Saab in their collection, but as you will recall, the American behemoth swallowed the tiny Swedish car maker back in 1989, and in fact the 9-3 is based on the larger company's German Opel Vectra platform.
The GM overlords clamped the swedes between their massive corporate buttcheeks and proceeded to squeeze most of the Saab-ness out of the new generation of cars - the 9-3 being the antecedent of the initial Opel-based 900. Kept was only the shift-lock ignition key and Saab's sweet turbo four cylinder as remnants of the Swedish maker's own aviation-infused heritage. That four in this Viggen (Thunderbolt to us English-savagers) is the B235, direct-
injection ignition, high pressure turbo out of the 9-5. That makes the 2.3-litre good for 225-bhp, and zero to sixty times in the six and a half second range. Backing up that moose slayer of a four is a five speed stick, which puts the power through the 17" front wheels.
Those larger wheels (and remember, way back in '99 17-inch wheels were pretty damn big) harbor larger brakes, and the Viggen gets bespoke suspension upgrades to keep it from getting all wonky all the way up to its 155-mph top speed.
Obviously, having spent most of its life in either some fraidy cat's garage or a climate controlled warehouse - where it was probably pampered by winged monkeys - this is one Trollhattan that doesn't look like it lives under a bridge-hattan. In addition to its keep-you-up-at-night blue paint, which looks near perfect, the two-tone, black and blue leather interior is equally without fault.
The whole sordid tale of this Saab's ownership is detailed in the ad, and suffice to say, it's been kind of a little orphan annie most of its life, and is now seeking a Daddy Warbucks to give it some stability. The present owner, says he was the parts vendor for the Heritage Collection. The ad claims that he's highly tempted to keep the car, but having it up on eBay not being a guarantee of closure, that's like the president of your high school chess club announcing that he's tempted not to give up his virginity to the head cheerleader. And while the chess nerd's eventual deflowering cost will likely be $20 and a nasty case of the clap, relieving Mr. Indecisive of this Viggen will set someone back $24,995.
As it's not only rare (only 2,500 made for 1999), but also with most of its driving days ahead of it, that may not seem untoward an asking price. Or is it? What do you think, is a Lincoln short of twenty five large too big a lingonberry for this Saab's pie? Or, does that price make this some heritage worth collecting?
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