really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,554 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 1999 Saab 9-5:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

problem #42

Sep 122007

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,780 miles
I have a Saab 9-5 1999 wagon. My direct ignition cassette is overheating causing the car to miss. I checked online and found a recall on these cassettes. The recall though only covers years 2000-2002. My car is a few months before the recall and is having the same problem.

- Savage, MD, USA

problem #41

Jul 302007

9-5 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,000 miles
My son just passed his drivers test and we were going home when the car started making noises and then stalled. Smoke was coming out of the car and smelled like burnt rubber. My son luckily was able to get the car to the side (avoided an accident). Lifted hood thought car overheated. I tried starting the car and it sparked and started smoking again. Found out it was the electrical system, ignition discharge module. My car is a 1999 9-5 Saab. I found that the 2000's had a recall due to this overheating and could cause a crash. This could of caused an accident.

- Farmington, MN, USA

problem #40

Jul 122007

9-5 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 127,000 miles
1999 Saab 9-5 V6 (127,000 miles). No prior related problem before this incident. Upon start up, vehicle ran rough at idle. Low power when attempting to accelerate. Parked vehicle and raised hood. Noticed smoke coming from ignition module on front side of engine, strong smell of burning plastic. Also smelled raw gas coming from exhaust. Check engine light came on. Engine stalled and would not run again. This all took place in less than 5 minutes. Vehicle was towed back home. Replacement ignition cassette currently on order.

- Carmel, IN, USA

problem #39

Oct 122006

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,897 miles
My 1999 Saab 9.5 wagon just died. It was towed to dealer. Dealer diagnosed and said ignition cassette was burned out. Dealer replaced the ignition cassette and spark plugs for $525.40 + 6.0% tax for total of $556.92. My mechanic said there was a recall on these cassettes. Dealer said my car was not covered. I paid the bill.

- Litchfie;D, CT, USA

problem #38

Aug 252006

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,400 miles
Stall and surging to the point the brakes would not hold the car back at a stop. Later idm failed without warning. Seen smoke coming form coil, pack.

- Richmond, IN, USA

problem #37

Jan 012004

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
: the contact stated that the vehicle had experienced the same symptoms as the recall that is on the 2000-2002 Saab 9-5S for the electrical system ignition module. The recall number is 05V399000. The dealer stated that the dealership had numerous 1999 Saab that have the same problem.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #36

Jun 262006


  • 90,736 miles
: the contact stated that two vehicles were taken to an independent mechanic for repairs on the di cassette or the id module. The mechanic determined that the two vehicles may be under recall for the parts affected. However after an investigation it was confirmed that there was no recall on these vehicles. The vehicles was repaired three times prior with the same part. The manufacturer was alerted. Updated 7/19/2006 - the manufacturer refused to provide any assistance.

- Easton, CT, USA

problem #35

May 022006

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles
: the contact stated while driving 60 to 65 mph the engine lost all power without warning. There was smoke coming for the rear of the vehicle and it was pulled off the road without incident. The vehicle was towed to a dealer, upon inspection the ignition control module had failed. There is a NHTSA recall, # 05V399000, regarding the electrical system: Ignition control module. The model year was not included in the recall. There was also an NHTSA investigation, # PE5017, regarding the electrical system: Ignition control module.

- Menlo Park, CA, USA

problem #34

Jan 172006

9-5 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,032 miles
I have a 1999 Saab 9-5, V6 and had to replace the ignition cassette module. The 2000 9-5 has had a recall for this same part. Why hasn't the 1999 been recalled?

- Grand Rapids, MI, USA

problem #33

Oct 112005

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 122,000 miles
: the contact stated while driving 40 mph, the vehicle shuddered followed by a loss of all power. The warning lights did not illuminate to indicate a failure. A strange burning odor was present but no flames or smoke was visible. The vehicle was towed to an independent repair shop; the ignition module and coil assembly were replaced. There is a NHTSA recall, # 05V399000, regarding the electrical system. The vehicle had the same problems as indicated in the recall; however was not included in the recall due to the VIN. Updated 05/04/06.

- Sagamore Beach, MA, USA

problem #32

Apr 152005

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles
: the contact stated while driving 70 mph the vehicle stalled. It was pulled off to the side of the road without incident and towed to the dealer. There is a NHTSA recall, # 05V399000, regarding the ignition module. The vehicle has the same problems as indicated in the recall; however it is not included in the recall due to the VIN.

- Stone Ridge, NY, USA

problem #31

Mar 152006

9-5 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,187 miles
: the contact stated while driving 25 mph the check engine light illuminated, the vehicle lost power and the speed dropped to 10 mph. The contact managed to get the vehicle home and once the engine was turned off, it would not restart. The vehicle was towed the dealer, where the ignition cassettes and spark plugs were replaced. The dealer determined the spark plugs were damaged as a result of the ignition cassette failure. There is a NHTSA recall, #05V399000, regarding the ignition module. The vehicle has the same problems as indicated in the recall; however it is not included in the recall due to the VIN. This happened on the road where the speed limit was 30 mph. If this would have happened at one of the highways where people are driving at 65 mph there would have been a fatality. This vehicle would not do over 15 mph. The contact was able to drive home. The small of the car was very bad so the contact waited 20 minutes before leaving. There was no fire. Both ignition cassettes were replaced, as well as spark plugs.

- Reading, PA, USA

problem #30

Feb 152006

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 0 miles
On February 15, 2006 as I was exiting my car (1999 Saab 9-5 SE), I was jolted by five "shocks" when I reached for the door (just below the window) after turning the ignition off and removing the keys. When I returned to the car, it would not start. It was towed to East of sweded (Saab specialists) in boulder, co for diagnosis of the problem and repair. The direct ignition cassette was replaced, and the problem solved. I was informed by the mechanic that Saab usa has recalled this part on the 2000, 2001, and 2002 Saab 9-3 and 9-5S. I was told that the direct ignition cassette which was removed from my car is the exact same part that was recalled on the other model years, but that the 1999 had not been recalled. I still have the part in my possession.

- Longmont, CO, USA

problem #29

May 272005

9-5 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,584 miles
My 1999 Saab 9-5 SE turbo V-6 has now had both direct ignition modules fail. The first one failed as the car was being driven at city speeds, the car stalled once was restarted and pulled off the road. There was smoke coming from the engine compartment and a strong odor coming from the engine. The ignition module was replaced and the vehicle functioned properly. Four months later the same thing happened to the other ignition module.

- Milford, MI, USA

problem #28

Jan 222006

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles
: the contact stated while driving the vehicle stalled. This occurred several times at no specific speed. The vehicle was taken to the local dealership for inspection. After diagnostic testing, the dealership personnel determined the idm component needed to be replaced. The brake light warning assembly was replaced. Updated 02/13/06.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #27

Jan 032006

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,893 miles
The engine stalled and would not restart due to ignition discharge module failure. The vehicle was towed to an authorized Saab dealer where it was purchased. Per a conversation with the technician, the module was replaced with an identical module of the same part number.

- West Hurley, NY, USA

problem #26

Nov 302005

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 86,700 miles
The contact states there is a NHTSA recall campaign 05V399000 concerning the ignition module. This vehicle has the same problems as indicated in the recall, but it is not included in the recall due to VIN. The contact repaired the vehicle at his own expense. Updated 2/24/2006 - the faulty ignition module caused the vehicle stall suddenly without warning.

- Sandy, UT, USA

problem #25

Jun 182002

9-5 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles
Direct ignition cassette burned causing engine to stall. I was luckily able to drive in limp-home mode. Car taken to dealership. Diagnosed as burned dic. Mechanic stated that car should have died. Very fortunate to limp home. Dic replaced with new unit at my cost (out of warranty).

- Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #24

May 032004

9-5 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 83,283 miles
1. car was hesitating and mis-firing. Exact same symptoms as the Saab recall no. 05087. 2. with family, car completely died while going up a hill. Since it was a 5 speed, I was able to roll back down the hill and subsequently have the car towed. 3. direct ignition cassette (dic) and catalytic converter replaced. With dealer assistance, Saab replace the part and related repair at minimal costs. Unlike the Saab recall no. 05087, 1999 owners are being excluded from the remedy for the exact same issues and failures. Saab / GM need to remedy the exact same issue in Saab recall no. 05087 for the 1999 owners. The failure and safety concerns are exactly the same.

- Ottawa Hills, OH, USA

problem #23

Oct 262005

9-5 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 60,200 miles
(1) normal city driving operation for 20 minutes (2) while idling at busy intersection for left turn, car stalled and would not turn-over; burning smell came from under hood. Did not open hood so could not evaluate whether there was fire. Car towed by aaa to closest Saab dealer. (3) dealer inspection identified the failure of the direct ignition cassette. This is the same failure as identified in NHTSA action number PE05017 and campaign recall number 05V399000. Vehicle - Saab 9-5 2.3L manual transmission wagon make year - 1999 current mileage - 60K miles all servicing up to date and done by dealer.

- Irvine, CA, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »