However, a '02 9-5 Aero sedan at a local used car lot recently caught my eye, & I'm debating whether it might be a good idea to have a more recent vehicle for my hobby car . . . lots more performance parts & goodies available for the 9-5, & extra safety & comfort features.
Upgrades/repairs on my 9000 include the rear main seal, Spec Stage 1 clutch, clutch master & slave cylinders, a stainless clutch line, gearbox rebuilt by Bo at AutoMotion, and a Quaiffe limited slip diff installed when the gearbox was apart. The car has Koni dampers & Abbott springs at each corner, & Abbott (Powerflex?) poly bushings on the control arms. Also a SQR Stage 3 tune, but I haven't yet installed a 3-inch exhaust or less-restrictive intake to get the full benefit of that tune. Some original parts remain, including the water pump, steering pump & rack, & alternator.
The 9-5 has 85K miles (high for its age), but was CPO'd in 2004 (the seller may not be aware of this . . . yet). So, my understanding is that it would be warrantied until 2010 &/or 100,000 miles. Two prior owners, according to CarFax. Oil changes done by the selling dealer since CPO were at 45k, 56K, 63K, 67K, 71K, 75K, & 82K (I don't know if any oil changes were done elsewhere, e.g. between 45K & 56K). It has a manual tranny, xenon lights, and is bright blue (cosmic or cosmos blue, something like that?) with a beige interior. Recent work includes a clutch, clutch master/slave cylinders, & a fuel pump. All four all-season tires are nearly new, on OEM rims (17-inch 10-spoke, I think). Carfax shows it was part of a police report documenting an accident, but there is no info re: airbags being deployed or work performed by a collision-repair shop. I couldn't see any paint overspray, etc. from bodywork.
My 9000 is due for a serpentine belt, & I just noticed a little bubbled paint next to a rear tail light that needs to be remedied.
No record of the 9-5 having had its 60K major service at the dealership, so I assume it is also due for a serpentine belt & tensioner/pulleys. The seller would take care of all cosmetic issues (some paint scratches & chips). I would replace all four rotors (they each are worn enouth to have a deep lip on the edge, although pads are new at all four corners). I pulled the plugs & they have a nice light tan color on the insulator. Spark plug electrodes looked like sharpened pencils, with a little shiny (platinum?) point at the top of each one, so I assume they are due for replacement!
Prior owner wasn't a neat freak, the 9-5 really needs a thorough cleaning, both inside & under the hood. Asking price was $13,500 but the seller has agreed to $11,700 assuming I do the brake rotors, plugs, & serp belt myself.
I'm waffling on this choice. My 9000 now pulls nicely in all gears & tracks nice & straight, whereas the 9-5 is pretty sedate until you get into 3rd or 4th. Definitely fewer rattles in the 9-5, & much nicer seats & sound system compared to my base model 9000. Either vehicle would likely see only 5,000 to 7,500 miles per year in my hands. FWIW, Consumer Reports lists the '02 9-5 as a used car to avoid, at least in part due to both major & minor engine repairs (probably including the sludge issues that I've been reading about the past couple of days).
I'm currently leaning towards keeping my 9000 & passing on the 9-5 . . . but it really is a pretty car (typical male, easily distracted by pretty things) & in many ways is more refined than my 9000.
If anyone who has ownership experience with these vehicles has any opinions they care to offer, I'm all ears . . . thanks!
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