Thursday, April 30, 2020

Cheap Project: 1972 Saab 96 V4

This next car comes as a tip from Erik202 who writes: If you’re going to buy what amounts to a rolling shell with potential you could do much much worse. Yup, the seller admits that the powertrain has been disassembled, but the German built Taunus V4 is one of those little engines that you can rebuild in your garage with a pair of pliers, a 6-pack of Heineken, and a jar of Loctite. And this is the kind of car that you will drive everywhere because you won't worry about rock chips but you will worry about missing out on beautiful mountain views because you are grabbing fistfuls of opposite-lock. Find this 1972 Saab 96 V4 offered for $2500 CAD ($1800 USD) in Calgary, AB via

From the seller:
Body TypeCoupe (2 door)
DrivetrainFront-wheel drive (FWD)
Fuel TypeGasoline
No. of Doors2
“I have enjoyed driving this car for the past 25 years, recently the transmission became noisy. During the transmission disassembly and an initial inspection, It was found that the pinion shaft locking nut had backed off causing the excessive noise from the transmission during operation. Further inspection revealed major oil leak at the pulley shaft at the front of the engine, resulting from a very loose balance shaft. Camshaft bearings were also found to be worn.The crankshaft bearings (main and connecting rod) proved to be in good condition when inspected.The engine water pump (bolted to the timing cover assembly) showed signs of seal leakage (coolant), and the radiator cooling fan hub shaft/ bearing assembly was loose and noisy (this is pressed into the timing cover). Heads were done with hardened valve seats about 35,000 miles back and are in good shape. Car is complete but drive train is disassembled. Body shows some surface rust but no perforations.”

See a better way to drive a sweet old SOB?


  1. I love projects like this (but fortunately this one is miles away).
    Just hope that he gives you all the parts he disassembled and not like an old 911 I bought like this. That had parts missing but also parts from everything else that the previous owner must have had through his garage at some time. Even parts from a modern Jaguar/Ford - just for extra head scratching!

    1. 100% agree. I bought a Le Car to restore then learned that the parts are plentiful just not on this continent. Now I am engine swapping a Fiero, everything is at Napa or the local junk yard. So much easier to drive and grab parts to finish projects rather than waiting on shipments from the other side of the ocean.

  2. If it was that easy to rebuild, the owner would have done it. He probably gave up when certain parts were not easy to source even from Sweden. I had the same idea as Munky above.

  3. I'm at least glad to say that Volvo parts support for my Amazon are still quite available, both from the mothership as well as specialized suppliers such at vp-autopart and others.

    1. Being a Mac user in the 90s always prepared me for a bit of a wait for things to arrive through the mail.


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