Charles River Saab 100K Clinic

If you’ve got an older Saab, you’d probably love to have someone with 30 years Saab experience take a peek over it and lead you through a review of the entire car, yes?

Next time Charles River Saab holds one of these 100K clinics, I’d suggest you sign up.

Luke Lewis did, and here’s the report he shot through via email today.


On Saturday, January 29th, Charles River SAAB hosted a 100K- Mile Clinic, which was open to anyone with a SAAB that had 100K or over on it. The idea behind this clinic (from my perspective) was to bring people in and give them a chance to not only meet the people who work on their vehicles, but also give those customers an opportunity to see their vehicle from a Tech’s perspective.

I was there with some other members of NESA (New England SAAB Association). I tagged along with my buddy, Ryan, who brought in his 9000CS.

The day started with an introduction from Pierre (to introduce the technicians and customers). We then went with the Tech to the car, did the initial walk-around. We then got in the car and went for a brief test drive. The entire time, the Tech was telling us what he was looking for.

When we got back, we went inside to the Service area and through the car up on the lift. Our Tech was Peter and he gave us an extremely thorough walk-down on this car and was extremely descriptive in his actions. (Note from Luke – Peter, a service tech for SAAB for 30 years previously drove a 9000Aero and knew this car inside and out).

(Note from Swade – I met Peter Maitland at Swedish Car Day last year and his knowledge is indeed Britannica-ic when comes to Saabs. He’s also got a nice little collection of them, too, including Ol’ Blue and a Saabo caravan).

I have provided some pictures of the event.

I wanted to thank Charles River SAAB, Pierre, and Peter for this awesome experience.

  • Pic 1: Peter (Tech in the driver’s seat) and Ryan in the passenger seat – getting ready for the test drive.
  • Pic 2: Fellow SAABer, Mike M, was getting a detailed walk around with his Tech on his 9-5 Aero SC.
  • Pic 3: Down the way, an other customer was taking advantage of this opportunity with her 9-5 Sedan.
  • Pic 4: With gloves on, both Peter and Ryan are ready for a thorough exam of the engine bay.


My thanks to Luke for the report.

It’s always great to see people getting to know their cars a little better. And it’s outstanding to see a dealer going to this length to help them do it. CRS are straight from the top shelf.

11 thoughts on “Charles River Saab 100K Clinic”

  1. Huge thanks to the folks at Charles River Saab for putting on the 100K service clinic!!

    Peter, Pierre, Seth and the rest of the staff were fantastic. Peter really walked through every detail of the car with me and pointed out things that only someone with his level of experience can do…this is a huge contrast to my previous experiences with other mechanics over the last 7 years with the 9000. And they certainly take great care of the Turbo X when I bring that in as well ๐Ÿ™‚

    It’s great to see that along with being the top US retailer for new Saabs in 2010, they’ve got a top notch service operation as well.

  2. I love things like this – wish the Saab dealers in this area (especially mine) would do some things like this. Good to see a dealer seeing the value of a good service department.

    Even though I can (and do) work on my own car it is nice to be able to interact with the guys that work on them everyday and get little tidbits of information. And who knows – we just might learn something from each other – like how to turn of those pesky DRL’s on the 2007 9-3. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. Wow! That’s really impressive. If more clinic’s like these existed, there would be alot more trust in dealer service (that includes other makes as well). THANK YOU, CRS!

    Just a note: Marten’s Volvo of Washington (DC) used to do something similar. No sure if they still do it. The best thing they had going was showing customers how to maintain and do general repairs on their older cars. For example, replace a mufller.

  4. I don’t work for this Dealership. I don’t even work for SAAB; however, I can not promote Charles River SAAB enough. I have never in my life been exposed to a group of people (sales, service, and parts) that are like these people. They are the real deal and this Clinic and the others that they host are just one of the many things that put them well above the rest. I live 60 miles away from them with 4 SAAB dealerships that are closer – I go to Charles River when I need something.

  5. Wow what a great idea! Has anybody heard of other Saab dealerships that do these sorts of clinics, particularly in the Southwestern United States/California? I have a 100K 9-5 SC and this would be a perfect event to learn more about the process of maintaining it.

  6. Sounds like an excellent way of attracting future business as well as sell some spare parts and supplies.

    I’m not sure it would work over here though. Twice (in Norway) have I been told that access is denied to the holiest of holy. One outfit claimed their insurance policy prevented my access and the other guys simply stated it was policy (without going into the specifics).

    My local dealer (here in Sweden) is good though, and have allowed me some sneak peaks into what is going on.

  7. So – How about some examples of the kinds of things the techs found? I’m a preventive maintenance nut. I keep cars for ten-plus years and expect absolute reliability. Had my last Volvo for 12 and 160K miles and was still ultra-relaible. I just wonder what they’d find on a well-maintained car?

    • RhodyDave, I will leave the majority of the items to Ryan, as it was his car; however, on this particular 9K CS Peter did find a torn CV Join boot, a mild leak in the water pump, some wear/play in the passenger side tie rod.

      What I love most about this inspection was that Peter was able to provide Ryan with the correct explanation for why his accelator pedal was difficult to step on. From what Ryan said, all the other people (in other states) that worked on the car gave a temporary fix. Peter told Ryan the reason for the sticking was due to the actual cable carrying rust and the sheath between the cable and the housing had disintegrated.

      Also, after Ryan told Peter that he had replaced his fuel pump, Peter went the extra mile to remove the upper floor of the 9K and examine the fuel pump only to find that whoever put this “new” pump in actually put in an aftermarket pump that attached to the OEM piece.

      Other, more minor, items were the check valve to the headlight wiper washers and a vacuum line to the fuel pressure reg.


      • RhodyDave- there were a lot of minor things…worn engine mounts, leaks here and there (heater core, pwr steering reservoir, water pump), spots with potential to fail were ID’s, like the serpentine belt tensioner that was wearing out, a torn cv boot, stiff gas pedal from the throttle cable.

        With the fuel pump, Peter was able to diagnose that whomever had installed the last one might have reversed the lines for the return line, which causes the car to take just a slight bit longer to start up when cranking it, since the return line ensures that there is fuel in the lines when you start it up. Just learning tidbits like that really contributed to the overall experience.

        What I think stood out most was hearing the how and why about the parts and items that were checked. I think there are a lot of Saab enthusiasts out there who are looking for that experience, and it goes a long way to get that level of explanation. I’m looking forward to taking the 9000 in to get it back into tip-top shape again.


  8. Charles River Saab was truly impressive! I drove down from Vermont for the clinic and cannot say enough about the entire staff at Charles River! Everyone there from the sales, service, techs, parts, etc that I came in contact with was very professional, knowledgeable and courteous. A special thanks to Rodney the tech that worked on my car, he was fantastic!

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