Stop the Presses!
The Sonett has been Painted!
1974 Saab Sonett III
Since I really didn't get much interest in the Sonett
as a for-sale item, I've decided to keep it and to fix it up a bit. In
addition to all the fun things you see below, the car was freshly painted
in the summer of '97.
The car was lovingly prepared to accept the finest quality
of automotive finish my budget could afford. Check out the before and after
pictures at the bottom of this page. Oh, and the finest finish my budget
could afford was: $19.95 for one gallon of Western Automotive Industrial
Synthetic Acrylic Enamel (Safety Yellow). Yes folks, I was too cheap
to even spring for primer! Oh, and that shine you see on the car is not
Adobe Photo Shop Trickery, the car actually does shine, really!
- 4 New tires P165 R15 blackwalls
- New exhaust, from the heads back, Y-pipe single
- 2 New wheel cylinders
- 4 New brake hydraulic hoses
- New brake pads & shoes
- New wiper motor
- New weatherstripping on doors and hatch windows
- 2 Spare wheel cyinders
- 2 Spare wheel cyliner rebuid kits
- 1 set each Spare brake pads & shoes
- 2 Spare axles, calipers, steering knuckels
- 5 Soccer ball wheels
- Current PA inspection (4/97)
- Comes with factory owner's manual and factory shop manual
- 84,000 miles
- Completely stock engine
- Runs very good
- Engine mechanically sound and quiet, but will need some attention soon
(burns about 1 quart of oil every 1000 miles). Probably will need needs
- Transmission & differential in good shape, second gear whines a
little bit, but has not gotten worse since I have owned the car. Transmission
has Amsoil synthetic gear lube in it.
- Nothing leaks! (I know this seems hard to believe, but this
is the only SAAB I've ever owned that doesn't leak anything).
- Body in very good shape
- No cracks
- No dents
- No patches
- Few scratches
- All glass good
- All lamps and lenses good
- Paint, very very very bad :-( a sun-faded $200 paint job, and no, I'm
not responsible I bought it that way :-)
- Interior complete, but a little rough.
- Dashboard complete and in good shape.
- All guages work.
- Heater works and doesn't leak.
- Both seats neet to be re-covered.
- Its a Saab, so the headliner is hanging down in your face.
- All carpet is in the car, but needs to be cleaned and re-glued down.
- Interior trim in hatchback needs to be cleaned and re-installed
Restoration & Rust-o-ration history/work:
When I bought the car, it had been sitting for at least five years,
out in the sun, and not running. It had extensive rust damage in the trunk
area, the rocker panels, and the seam that runs the width of the floor
pan, under the seats. I sawed out the trunk, and all the bad metal in the
floor and replaced it with 16 ga hot rolled steel. All in all, I used about
a 4x6' sheet of steel to make all the patches, and many many rivets. The
rockers have been plated on the inside and out. The holes in the floor
were patched from the interior (where accessable) or from underneath the
As near as I can tell, the car sat for a really long time and accumulated
water in the interior. The car had been undercoated and there was no evidence
of rust coming from the outside in; the car rusted from the inside out.
I finished the sheet metal work in February of '95 and drove the car on
and off all summer and parts of the winter. In fact, I ran out several
times to buy parts for the "reliable car" my '79
900 Turbo in the "unreliable" Sonett. After re-building the
carb, it took me three days of meddling with that junk FoMoCo carb, but
I finally got the automatic choke to set and work in all weather. 0-90
degrees F, just stomp the gas once, and turn the key, it started every
I took it in for inspection this spring and it passed no problem, so
the sheet metal work I had done heald up, and no new rust holes had appeared.
Mechanically, besides from the engine buring a bit of oil, there isn't
anything really wrong with the car. It will need a new CV boot in a few
thousand miles (which I already have, but have yet to install). The car
appears to have never been in an accident. The frame is straight and the
car is aligned and tracks very well. There is a bit of spring sag (they
are over 20 years old afterall) which I was going to look into if I got
The bottom line on this car is that without considerable expense and
restoration work, it will not be of "show quality". However,
if you are looking for a mechanically sound Sonett, with a good body, and
are willing to clean up the interior and get a decent paint job, this is
the Sonett for you.
I'm selling the car because I need money to go back to school so I
can finish my degree. I know I'll regret selling it, but I have no choice,
I can't justify two cars, let alone three -- all of them Saabs. I already
had to part with my '78 99T, which by far has been my favorite Saab to-date.
The car is located in State College, PA. If you don't know where State
College is, draw lines from the corners of the state in the form of an
X, where the lines cross, that's State College, home of Penn
State University. I can be reached at the below e-mail address if you
have any more questions.
Last update: 2-17-98