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!

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 car.

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 time.

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 time.

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