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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought a 2007 9-3 tid last week and on the first day of ownership it juddered to a halt on the motorway! Does anyone have any thoughts on diagnosis?

I had just come off the slip road from one motorway onto another motorway, and the dash lit up with (at least) the Limited Performance / spanner symbol, check engine light, fuel light, possibly others but I didn't get a good enough look in the panic. I thought it was in limp mode and would be going slowly but it just juddered to a complete halt.

I left it for a while and it started back up fine. No CEL, no other warning lights etc. No problems for the couple of days since.

I took it back to the garage I bought it from at the first opportunity (an old Saab dealer). They were able to read out historic codes P0001 5B and 75: Low Fuel Pressure. They say that the fuel filter was carbonised, replaced it and sent me on my way.

My concern is that given that the fault is intermittent, I'm not necessarily going to know whether the fault has been fixed until it's too late to do something concrete about it. At the moment it feels unsafe to drive this thing on the motorway if it's going to completely conk out - it's a good thing I was in the slow lane at the time.

I know nothing about cars, but my first reaction was that the fuel gauge might have been in error as it was certainly fairly low on diesel, and it happened shortly after banking/cornering on the slip road. The garage don't think there is anything wrong in this respect though. DTE was stating 70 miles left, needle hadn't entered the red zone and the fuel light was not on (until the fault appeared). It was on around 60-70 miles DTE when I set off 20 miles earlier so it went up during the journey, but I guess this is because it was on its first good 70mph motorway run for a while. Probably nothing to do with it, but I figured it was worth mentioning.

Thanks in advance for any hints!
 

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Probably was just the fuel filter, people forget about them and eventually they're going to get blocked.

Only well to tell is to wait and see if it happens again - fingers crossed.
 

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My Cadillac BLS uses the same 1.9 150bhp 16v diesel engine as the Saab 9-3. The car failed on me twice in both the first and second year of ownership necessitating recovery to the Cadillac authorised service centre in Manchester. Both times the AA when called out to rescue me, (one from a horrendous situation on a dual carriageway), could not fix the fault at all. It certainly didn't help their case that they apparently had no technical info on the Cadillac anyway and the Saab 9-3 technical instructions they hold were of no help, despite the car effectively being a Saab 9-3 in every way except for the body shell. The only thing that the AA were able to determine both times the car conked out, was a total loss of fuel pressure.

First time the car was fixed, it was done in less than an hour and a loose electrical connection was blamed. Apparently, the electrical connections have some sort of blade that secures the two halves of electrical blocks together and one of them was apparently missing, probably just dropped out.

A year later, the car stopped again. No fuel pressure, AA technician spent an hour at the roadside, admitted defeat and car recovered to Manchester by them after it being sat on my drive for a weekend. This time, car took nearly two and a half hours to fix, something to do with the Secondary Fuel Pump? Again, apparently, another electrical fault. Connection had come loose, shorting out something and melting an electrical connection block. Cadillac technicians kindly informed me, that the AA technician never stood a chance finding the fault at the roadside, it is something that is just not visible from crawling around under the vehicle in a layby! Anyway, the the car was fixed all under warranty and I was away.

I guess I should count myself lucky, as both times the car has been repaired promptly under warranty (with much thanks by the way to the technicians in Manchester), the only pain in the butt being, I don't exactly live anywhere near Manchester! Anyway, if the problem appears intermittent, might be worth getting your electrical components around the fuel pump or secondary fuel pump, checked out.

Never had a problem with fuel filters. I have it changed every year, which might not make sense to some, but I prefer it is done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Probably was just the fuel filter, people forget about them and eventually they're going to get blocked.

Only well to tell is to wait and see if it happens again - fingers crossed.
Thanks for all the replies.

Well the fuel filter was replaced, but a few days later the exact same thing happened and in the exact same location (cornering/banking on a slip road between two motorways). Limited Performance (but not really limp mode, it juddered to a halt) and CEL were lit. I've driven the same route for about 5 days, and on the two occasions it stopped I was fairly low on fuel - the first time it was just above the red zone, the second time just inside the red zone.

It looks to me like it's not sensing the correct amount of fuel in the car - like there is 10 litres less than the gauge shows, and cornering is the first time that this becomes serious. To test, I put in £5 diesel when it was just in the red zone, the needle didn't move at all after fuelling, or for the next 20 miles of driving (up or down) - it's like the needle was stuck. I then put in £12.50 diesel and it jumped from just in the red zone (1/8 full) to 3/8 full, which felt like a big jump, considering it looks like it had just run out of fuel on cornering - from running on fumes to nearly half full after £12.50.

Does anyone know what the fuel tank and float is like in a 2007 1.9tid? Is there some kind of reserve system for the last bit of fuel that could explain it cutting out when cornering? Can the float "stick" or send slightly incorrect tank level info? The needle is generally in the right place, I just suspect it can be 10% out or it can stick for a period.
 
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