Spare parts — Will the NG 9-5 become a problem?

A news story making its way through Swedish media today reports that the availability of parts have actually improved after the bankruptcy. Some suppliers with unpaid bills from Saab Automobile AB held back deliveries to Saab Parts AB as well in an attempt of putting extra pressure on Saab as a whole. The profitable Saab Parts company paid their bills, but was suspected of sponsoring the production line with various crucial pieces of parts to keep production going.

I am going to point out the obvious: If Saab Parts were indeed doing that, they were effectively looking out for the suppliers’ best interest as well. Every car made would generate money for Saab the minute it left the assembly line. Money that could have paid off the suppliers (who were getting paid by Saab parts). It was far from ideal, but much better than the alternative which I dare say has now been fully explored (as predicted a year ago, a bankruptcy means no GM licenses). In addition, by squeezing Saab Automobile AB they were also squeezing us customers, which will make it harder in the future for us to trust Saab and Saab’s suppliers if they ever get the production going again. I dare say the suppliers will need to show us customers they want our business in the future.

In any case, back to the story at hand: Saab managed to make 11280 9-5s. The question is: Will Saab Parts AB look after us 9-5 owners or will we be left to fend for ourselves? And what about the 9-4X? Few made, but the plant making the 9-4X is very much alive.

I do not have the answer to those questions now, but it is something the crew is presently looking into. Meanwhile: What parts are you guys out there waiting for (part # and short description), and for how long have you been waiting? Comments are open. And please, do not all of you answer “keys!” at the same time — We have been told a big shipload of key-fobs for the 9-3 are on their way.

67 thoughts on “Spare parts — Will the NG 9-5 become a problem?

  1. I’m waiting on a rear window for my ’11 9-5 – defroster issue. Part has been on back order/not available I am told (in the US) since mid October. I shudder to think what happens if a rock goes through the windshield. And now I hear Saab Cars North America is liquidating, that doesn’t bode well for the short term outlook for parts and short and long term outlook on warranties. Yay.

    I think what we 9-5 owners are going to need at some point is a GM part number cross reference list for parts that can be gotten from GM dealers. Also, it would be nice to know if my Navi system will never be able to be updated.

  2. Supply problems will be restricted to the few Saab specific parts. Many Saab parts sold in blue boxes started their journey in yellow Opel boxes and others are generic parts available through Bosch, etc etc.

    The 9-4 probably has even fewer Saab specific parts.

  3. ….KKKKKKKKKEEEEEEYYYYYYYSSSSSS 🙂 are supposed to be delivered to Belgium around 04/04/2012. BO since 05/2011
    NG 9-5 MY11 Aero Bumper. BO since 10/2011
    NG 9-5 MY11 rear fog lamp
    9-3 MY08 Sport Hatch LH side skirt
    9-3 MY01 tape for front LH door
    9-3 MY01 side mouldings FLH + RLH
    etc etc etc.
    I cannot say BO are for a specific car or MY. It’s all mixed up.
    BTW today I received a NG 9-5 MY10 front bumper which was supposed to be new, but in fact it has been painted silver and then scrubbed again.
    Seems to me as SAAB parts are reusing, recovering ever part they can out of the production line, as bumpers were deliverd to production line already painted in body color!
    No problem to me! Happy to get my customer’s part 🙂

  4. I just hope hat parts for the 11280 made 9-5’s will be available so we can keep these beautiful cars on the road in a perfect form.
    parts means all parts, including body parts.
    Just want to drive the 9-5 as long as possible.

    • +1 I hope they made a ton of spare body parts. I would hate to have the insurance company total my car for a fender bender (due to lack of parts).

      Also, as someone mentioned that we may be stuck with the last update on the navigation system. Eventually that will become very annoying when roads change. Maybe a group of owners could approach the vendor and pay for updates out of pocket.

      • The Nav System looks similar to other GM systems I have seen. The 9-4 and 9-5 system look almost identical in function so it must be pretty close to the Cadillac system. I think the maps are done by NavTeq, maybe NavTeq can supply something that works or it can be hacked.

        • I know that GM sells discs for updates to the Nav system in GM vehicles, perhaps they could sell them to us as well. Anyone try GM customer service? I’m sure it won’t be easy, nothing seems to be.

            • I would think if you were in the US, you’d be better off getting the disk for the 2010-2011 Buick LaCrosse or Cadillac SRX – although I’m not sure if it would change the screen saver from “SAAB” to “Buick” or “Cadillac”. That would be horrible to have to look at that anytime it wasn’t on.

              • I e-mailed GM NavDisc last week and got a reply on Friday. The gist is that there is no 2011-12 update available at this time. Nothing to worry about me thinks. I provided them the version (U40D) and update (20.09.03) found in my car. And yes, the Nav system is sourced from Denso. (see the link below). There may have been a 2010 update but it appears GM sold out quickly, well before I bought my 9-5.

                I’d be curious if those of you with the Nav system have a working RDS readout. Apparently there was no issue with the RDS on the non-nav cars and 2010 nav-equipped cars but for some reason it did not function properly on the 2011 nav-equipped cars. A thread I followed on another Saab forum says that SCNA researched and found a solution to the problem in September 2011. There is a flash update (takes about an hour) that renders the RDS operational. Of course since we have no warranty we’d now have to fund this update out of pocket.

                Also: follow this link to a what may be a very useful 9-5 supplier chart found on SaabsUnited awhile back:


                • My RDS doesn’t work. Dealer didn’t know about any update in October when I mentioned the problem but I have heard confirmations from 2 other owners that their system was reflashed and problem solved. I’m waiting for first service to come up and will ask again. Yeah, I guess I will have to pay shop time for it to be fixed now, along with the actual service. 🙁

                • @BMW Rider,

                  In Sweden, the contract is between me and my dealer. As long as my local dealership is alive and kicking, they cannot walk away from this contract. I was never worried about my warranty.

                  Have the dealerships in the US removed themselves completely from the equation?

                  IMO, if you are having the car serviced with the dealer who sold you the vehicle, then I would think it very strange if they did not honor this agreement or at least give you a hefty rebate on the work done.

                • I called the dealer where I purchased the car, informed them of what I found about the RDS and was told that they could flash the radio unit for me. I was also told that I would be charged the cost of labor necessary to complete the update as the warranty was null and void.

                  In the US the warranty is between the manufacturer and the customer. The dealer is merely an agent or intermediary. If there is no manufacturer all of us in the US are left to fend for ourselves, even for problems and updates that could have and perhaps should have been addressed before we took delivery.

                  However, if you’re a dealer in the US with lots of unsold inventory at present (like the one where I purchased the car), you’ve got far greater problems than a customer complaining about non-functioning RDS.

  5. @Rune
    Can you change the title to 95 NG? I read the title and thought: OK I’ve to take a wrecker tour with my old 95 😉
    I saw some 95 NG on the support events in switzerland and germany. I like them!! I had the 95 SC in mind to buy next..

  6. My 2008 SportCombi XWD Aero has been in the body shop for 6 weeks, practically untouched as we can’t get the parts. I have an opportunity to purchase a salvaged one, and my body shop and insurance company will do that this week if it turns out we still can’t get the parts we need from SAAB parts. This has been a bad experience, having to rent a car for so long while my Saab, with cosmetic damage, sits in a shop for months.

  7. Will 9-3 parts in North America become a problem? Seriously considering trying to sell my 2010, but I really don’t want to. Part availability would be the deciding factor however…


  8. Its over! Saab dealerships will become service and sales for used Saabs. Just change the oil in your Saab well before dealer recommendations & your car will love you back. Good luck.

  9. SCNA is being liquidated and there are only a few people left. The headquarters in Roayal Oak will be closed by the end of February and about 80% of the employees were let go on Friday January 13th. Colbeck hopes there is going to be a new distributor for parts but it is unsure right now. Some parts started shipping on January 19th again but that can end any moment because no new parts are coming in.

    In other words, it looks pretty bad for the NA market, especially for the 2nd gen 9-5 and 9-4X owners. Let’s hope for the best.

  10. We have recieved parts Friday and today. All collision parts are filled. Someone will buy the parts business. It is my understanding several companies are interested in the parts side. There will be demand for OEM patrs for several years. GM is paying our warranty claims on 2009 and older.

  11. I believe that both in the US and Sweden laws require that parts be available for 10 years after the model was built. There is probably no way to force a closed and liquidated company to fulfill that obligation. However, since GM was the owner pre-2010 it would assume responsibility for cars sold under its ownership. This should mean that parts for the 9-3, which hasn’t been updated much post-GM, will have to be made available for quite some time (until at least 2020), as well as older 9-5s, 9-7x, etc. Of course they could be expensive. I am still thinking that there will be a good chance with Saab’s potential suitors.

    • Who’s the party you would like to sue to get the 10 year warranty? Spyker/ SWAN, Saab in bankruptcy or GM? You can discuss the 10 year warranty with an existing company.

      • I know, that’s what I am saying. But since GM is alive I imagine that once everything sorts itself out one way or another GM will have to ensure parts for 9-3s, up until 2020 and pre-Spyker everything else, as it is doing with its warranties. Not for 9-5s and 9-4x, but maybe something could be worked out, esp for 9-4x, since GM actually built them.

  12. I’m seriously considering an ’11 9-5 Aero. I probably wouldn’t use it as a daily driver, just as a weekend toy. I’ve spoken to several folks who know Saab well and say these cars are well built, reliable and the key systems (such as Haldex AWD) are proven and bulletproof. I do however have major concerns about proprietary Saab bits inside, like the Nav system, the electronic suspension, have heard issues with headlight aiming and adjustments, etc. As mentioned before, will the Nav ever get an upgrade or is it set based on 2010?

    That being said, the price points do make it worth the gamble.

    • Earlier this month, I had to use a UK source to get a replacement throttle body for my ’03 9-5 Aero wagon since I couldn’t find a new one anywhere. Price without VAT was comparable to US. The web is going to become our best tool for tracking down certain parts, for sure. That, and clearly there is demand for parts of all types, so there will be plenty of money in Saab parts creation, distribution and sales. I would recommend US folks looking for parts leverage UK sources where necessary. It worked for me twice already in the past few weeks.

      • The Griffin was first presented at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2011, and started deliveries not much later than april, I think.

        • The Griffins were produced between april and june 8th 2011, except the half dozen from the august test-production. I actually bought one and (not only) the engine is into a large extend a different machine than the older 9-3s. If the NG 9-5 production stands at 11.000, the number of Griffins shall be much lower. E.g. There are two Bugatti Veyrons in the Czech rep., and three Saab Griffins (as far as I know) 🙂

      • The automotive´s 2012 started in january 2011. E.g. check for the new 2013 Dodge Dart. Their calendars are one year ahead of ours 🙂

  13. How about a tow hitch for a 94X? I checked everywhere, Saab, aftermarket and Caddy to no avail. Was told Cadillac won’t work due to wiring differences.

  14. I don’t see 9-3 parts becoming a huge problem (after everything gets sorted out). Someone will distribute parts. There are a lot of cars out there and a lot of parts to be sold. A US parts distributor or dealer with deep pockets will pick up the NA market at some point and for pennies on the dollar. Heck, even GM could make money on distributing Saab parts.

    The NG9-5 and 9-4x will be the big question marks. So few parts, so few actual cars on the road. I don’t see there being an upside for a distributor.

  15. I already suggested in the NG 9-5 group to set up a “The 10,000 NG 9-5” Club to share infos on everything about spare parts. We could also try to open and keep open a direct connection to Saab Parts about this subject.

  16. I am curious to know what laws are in Europe regarding parts and manufacturing of parts after a model is cancelled? The US law I believe is 7 years after a model is produced.
    Now I’m not bashing, but I am really pissed at GM for what they did! That aside I believe they can be held accountable for parts, warranty’s for the cars in question, and I know their are laws on the books regarding this issue. (I currently cannot look them up)- but I think pressure (Class Action) will be happening shortly regarding more than just the 2 above issues with GM!

    • The 9-5 is a GM designed car. I think little was changed from what GM/Saab would have released on their own. GM parts are all over the thing, open the hood and see. Under the circumstances GM bears some of the responsibility to their “indirect” customers for the current situation, maybe not legally but….anyway, I think GM has the power win back at least some goodwill from some Saab owners if they would do the right thing by the 2010-2011 Saab buyers. But I doubt that will happen.

  17. In my 2010 9-5 Aero I need a driver’s side seat controller module. The module controls the heated seats, which has failed. According to a local dealer, he’s seen several of these fail in the NG 9-5s.

    Otherwise the car has been flawless. And it is an absolute blast to drive (aided by the Hirsch software upgrade I did a few weeks ago).

    • Silly question: Are you absolutely sure the module has failed?

      After a power outage the seat heater button did not work on mine. I drove around a bit to make sure the battery was fully charged and then we disconnected it for ten minutes. After that the seat heater was working normally again.

      As I understand it, if the button doesn’t respond, then it could be something as simple as that. (Basically the car enters into a mode where it attempts to preserve the battery as much as possible — a mode it won’t always exit)

  18. I don’t have the part number, but I need the ECU for the airbag. I have been waiting since mid-December. My fear is that Shaw SAAB will have closed before the part becomes available. 🙁

    • I honestly don’t think Shaw Saab will close. Saab USA Parts does a good business for them, and they service lots of vehicles. They are also in a fantastic high traffic location with a state of the art new building and could easily pick up another brand. When I spoke with Fred Shaw after the Dec. bankruptcy announcement, he said that while he couldn’t guarantee that they’d be there 20 years, he thought that by focusing on the internet parts business, service, and used cars they could make a go of it.

  19. At the risk of getting flamed off the board, doesn’t it make sense if GM just took over the sale and distribution of parts for Saabs? At least in North America where they will be the ones doing the Saab warranty work (for those cars that applies to). They would certainly be (one of) the largest consumers of Saab parts in North America and it would seem more secure for ensuring a continuing network of dealers to offer parts and service in the same way authorized Chevrolet dealers do for Saturn vehicles now. Again, I realize I’m going to hell for the suggestion, it just seems like at this juncture to make the most sense to help people in North America to get both the warranty work the deserve and parts they need to keep their cars running perfectly.

    • I agree. I’m no fan of GM, but if Saab is not to be resuscitated it makes sense for GM to handle the parts delivery side of things. That’s what they would have done had they not sold Saab in the first place. It would be a money maker for them, which seems to be their biggest concern.

      • I’d been waiting in vain for a windshield for my 9-3 MY08 since early May 2011. Just gave up eight months after. All that time kept bombing GM Russia with e-mails, phone calls. They were the only official supplier of SAAB parts and my insurance company naturally refused to compensate me if I order from anyone else.

  20. Tomorrow marks one year since my MY11 NG9-5 purchase.

    I have driven 18,430 miles and loved every minute. The vehicle has returned just shy of 30 miles per gallon.

    I am seriously considering purchasing another one…this time however, at approx 50% off the list price. It’s probably a correct value considering some of the statements on this thread. I don’t look forward to knowing the availability of parts, and my free 20,000 mile service due in early March will not be so free…

    Oh well. Thanks to all at Saab who gave it their best try. Let’s see what the future brings.

    Perian – (GM Inside News)

  21. From the start of this Post: “If Saab Parts were indeed doing that (i.e supplying SAAB Automobile AB), they were effectively looking out for the suppliers’ best interest as well. Every car made would generate money for Saab the minute it left the assembly line. Money that could have paid off the suppliers (who were getting paid by Saab parts).”

    Why would the suppliers expect the money would end up going to them? More likely, SAAB Automobile AB would have used the money to pay other expenses. After all, that is exactly what SAAB Automobile AB was doing while building up supplier balances. If SAAB Parts AB had acted as a supplier to SAAB Automobile AB, why wouldn’t SAAB Parts AB have ended up unpaid just like the other suppliers?

    While it is true that every car leaving the production line would have generated money for SAAB Automobile AB, it is also true that every car made was being sold at a loss, so the amount of money accruing to SAAB Automobile AB when a car left the production line was insufficient to pay all the costs (the cost of parts for instance) associated with producing it. .

    Fortunately, SAAB Parts AB did not or could not participate in a scheme to supply SAAB Automobile AB with parts. The end result may have been a financially damaged SAAB Parts AB.

  22. I’m a little concerned that the NG 9-5 will become a theft target in the US if the value of the parts rises to levels that make it hard to resist for chop shops. Insurance rates would then rise if that comes to pass. In the mean time I love my ’11 9-5 and really hope the short supply of parts does not make it a huge mistake to own. Such a nice machine, such a shame.

    • The first problem the thief would have is finding a new 9-5 to steal parts from. I’ve only seen one other new 9-5 where I live in the past 4 months. It was the owner of the dealership’s personal car.

      If it were anything other than a SAAB, you might have a legitimate fear. Under the circumstances, I don’t think you’ve got anything to worry about. The worst case scenario would probably be a part is stolen, replicated by the thief and then returned to the vehicle it was stolen!

    • If my ’11 9-5 can’t move under its own power due to some $50 part not being available I might welcome the theft. Nice machine, I agree, but lately thinking I should have gone the leasing route rather than purchased. Time will tell.

  23. Here´s one 9-3 SC MY09 automatic XWD waiting for part #93167181 (ABS/ESP control unit). Another similar car here has been waiting for the very same part since april 2011!

  24. I assume the body presses for the NG9.5 are still in the factory in Sweden, so if a new buyer does come forward, body panels will/should be available, which are the main problem parts, as even a small prang could cause a write off, with no stamping available..

    I have found this site, quite helpful:

    They also have a dealer search facility & Vauxhall [Opel] sections for cross reference parts[No part # search/comparison, though]..

  25. anyone got the ACC buttons kit recently?
    It think it’s been back ordered for a while! sigh… I hate my peeling buttons…… I wish we could just swap in the ACC module from the newer 9-3ss…… who cares if it looks like GM parts bin…. anything is better than white buttons!

  26. Since GM left us largely an Opel, couldn’t we just slap in Opel parts or even ones from Buick or Cadillac? The badge engineering could actually come in handy! The SAAB badges could be fashioned after market.

  27. I am in need of a driver side rear quarter panel and bumper for my 2011 Saab 9-4X. Any news on when and if these will ever be available?

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