Epic Project: 1973 Saab 99 Rally Build

We get a lot of tips of rad cars for sale here in the DT inbox, all of which are amazing to receive, but some of which stand out from others. When we get the same car tipped on the same day from two different readers, and opening the ad produces an audible “ooooh!” reaction, then we know it’s gooood. Underneath the patinated yellow exterior of this one lies the yet-to-be jumpstarted heart of a future rally monster. Find this 1973 Saab 99 Notchback project car for sale in Monrovia, CA for $6,000 via craigslist. Simultaneous tips from Sean S. and Rock On!

This is an unfinished project – let’s get that out of the way now – but as we frequently like to hammer into your skulls here on Daily Turismo, the best money spent on a car is the previous owner’s. The seller has dumped a ton of personal time, effort, and cubic dollars into building this thing, and it appears to be about 80% done. What could go wrong?!?

The original Saab 99 hatchback is a really cool, quirky design from those bizarro-universe Swedes in Trollhattan, what with its bathtub like construction, longitudinal front-wheel drive setup with the backwards engine, and unmistakable styling. We like them here at DT and in fact one of the former DT project cars was a pluckly little spleen-colored 99 EMS called the Draken. Read about that one here!

If the Draken taught us anything about these cars, it’s that they drive much better than you might imagine, if you’d never climbed behind the wheel. This platform went on to become the 900, 900 Turbo, SPG, etc. and made mega power to those front wheels. The engine in today’s project is a later B202, a 16-valve 2.0L four making somewhere around 120hp in stock form. But this thing is anything but stock (although it doesn’t run). The FIA-spec chromoly roll cage had to have cost many many pretty pennies, and add in all the other parts this thing comes with, and you have a great deal for someone willing to put in the time to get it purring… and spitting gravel.

Full ad copy:

Hello! Thanks for checking out my nearly complete road / rally race car project!

Asking $6,000, but I will entertain offers. I have an extensive collection of spare parts that can be negotiated as well – I have spares for nearly everything on the car if you intend to race it, want to install a turbocharged engine, etc.

I have owned this car for about 12 years and never got it to the fruition that I wanted to and now don’t have time or space to work on it.

This would make a great track day car, a very unique classic canyon cruiser, or a very competitive entrant to vintage racing events. I have a correct single-cam B20 engine that came out of the car if you want to make it period correct for vintage racing.

I would put the car as being between 90-95% complete, and all of the hard fabrication and custom work is already done. Almost everything that’s left can be done with bolt-on parts.

This car is pre-smog, and no inspection will be required at change of ownership if it is re-registered in CA. This car could easily be made street legal.

The extensive build thread is here Saabrally.com and documents almost everything that has been done to the car from start to finish, with fabrication and modification notes, parts interchanges, and build details.

An extensive photo album of the car’s current condition is available as well.

Call or e-mail me and I’d be happy to share the build links with you.

All of the fabrication and mechanical work was done by myself or my brother. I used to be a professional Saab technician, and all of the work was done to a very high standard using only OEM and old-stock parts, some of which were very hard to find.

Pertinent details:
-Rust free 1973 Saab 99 LE notchback body still wearing original paint, 1973-only Brilliant Yellow, code Y9
-Clean and clear California title on non-operation, with no back fees
-Extensive body lightening (door skins, undercoating, polycarbonate windscreen and windows)
-Custom hand fitted fully tig-welded 4130 chrome-moly roll cage built to FIA-253 (stage rally) specification
-Fresh rebuilt with zero miles N/A B202 twin-cam engine, firewall clearanced to accomodate larger footprint engine
-Fresh rebuilt with zero miles GM 456-06 5-speed transmission
-Fidanza 9 lb aluminum flywheel with 6-puck Clutchnet clutch
-Fresh non-power steering rack
-Complete suspension with all brand new bushings and balljoints, and vented disc brakes and calipers from 1991 Saab 900 Turbo
-Lowered ride height road racing suspension setup with new Bilstein B6 dampers and Intrax springs from Saab 900
-Two Bimarco Expert racing seats with valid FIA-8855 safety stickers

The car as it sits now weighs 1,850 pounds.

The car still needs the following to be made running:
-Cooling system (radiator, fans, hoses, engine oil cooler)
-Fuel delivery system (pump or pumps, fuel lines)
-Fuel injection system – I have parts to set it up to run on Saab Trionic5 fully sequential engine management system
-Exhaust system
-Pedal box and brake lines (Some fabrication required, brake master cylinders, clutch master cylinder, throttle and throttle cable, I was going to use Tilton or Wilwood racing components)
-Wiring – I have a complete Saab 900 body wiring harness that fits almost perfectly to wire the lights that is included

I also have extensive spare parts available at negotiable additional cost since I intended to race this car, including but not limited to:
-Exterior lights
-Exterior mirrors
-Glass, including original front windows, windshield, rear window)
-Extra set of Ronal 8-spoke wheels
-Lightly used racing slicks
-Suspension hard parts (front control arms, hubs, complete rear axle, power steering rack that could be adapted)
-Brakes (new rotors, pads, spare calipers)
-Additional suspension springs and dampers in various rates
-Extra engine (turbocharged if desired)
-Extra transmissions and transmission parts
-Clutches, flywheels, engine sensors, halfshafts, stock and modified ECU’s, etc etc etc.

See another almost-finished but fully awesome project? email us here: tips@dailyturismo.com

CFlo has so far resisted the temptation to own a Saab. Must…resist…