The market for used cars seems endless, with years worth of car makes and models. There are also a lot of reliable cars that you can buy for a bargain after they are a few years old. Buying a used car typically means getting a better price because the cars have already begun to depreciate, and after around 10 years most cars have depreciated so much you can buy them out of pocket if you don’t have the credit to get financing. If you’re looking for something a little bit more unique, the Saab 9-3 is the affordable and reliable option you might want to take on a test drive.
The underrated Saab 9-3
You can buy a 2011 Saab 9-3 for under $10,000 and some for even half of that depending on mileage. They aren’t your high-end luxury sedan, but their modest design is part of what makes them a great commuter car, or even a first car for a new driver. It also gets decent enough gas mileage, with as much as 38mpg on the highway.
The Saab 9-3 was not a hit seller in America, partly because Saab was already an underdog brand in the United States. While you can’t get a brand new Saab 9-3 here anymore, that’s part of what adds to the brand’s unique qualities. Most people won’t recognize the brand at all, adding to the mystique of the car and making it seem more foreign and expensive than it is.
A unique and minimal option
The Saab might seem like an exotic car, but it doesn’t have any exotic designs. Overall the sedan is basic and traditional, but for a 2011 model, it has aged remarkably well. While many drivers have gotten used to the iconic styling of Audi and BMW front fascia, the Saab is far less recognizable, leaving people turning around in their seats to try and figure out what the car actually is.
If you check out some of the recalls for the 2011 Saab 9-3 they could look concerning, but under the surface, the problems aren’t that bad. The recalls were in regards to seatbelts which wouldn’t tighten in case of an accident, airbags failing to deflate, and even an issue with the fuel pump that could cause the car to stall while in motion. All of those recalls seem serious, but they didn’t all affect every 2011 models that was produced, and with the last recall having been issued years ago in 2016 most of them have been resolved.
RELATED: Why GM’s Reinvention of Saab Failed
Buying a used car can be just as exciting as buying a car brand new — because either way, the car is new to you. The Saab 9-3 might not be the newest, flashiest car on the market, but it’s reliable, and the unique and rare brand makes it just that much cooler.