Saab-9-3-CabrioBack in June, GM issued yet another vehicle recall – but this time it came as a real surprise, for it was a recall for a Saab.

29,000 Saab 9-3 Convertibles built between 2004-2011 (basically, all second generation 9-3 Convertible) are affected, says US safety agency the NHTSA, which issued the recall. A faulty driver’s side seatbelt retractor is the cause: it can break, so the seatbelt fails to reel back correctly when the driver unbuckles.

But if cars over in the US are affected, then won’t European Saab 9-3 Convertibles be too? Motoring Research found out, with an enquiry to GM’s British representatives, Vauxhall.

UK Saab 9-3 Convertible owners: you can claim

The response was couched with a disclaimer. “The manufacturer of Saab 9-3 vehicles is Saab Automobile AB, which is why the latter has the legal product responsibility for these vehicles.

“GM was the shareholder of Saab Automobile AB, but shareholders do not bear legal product responsibility.”

This, we expected. But then, a surprise: “Nevertheless, as Saab Automobile AB is insolvent, GM and Opel/Vauxhall are ready on a voluntary basis to help owners affected by the 9-3 convertible seat belt retractor issue in Europe to get their cars reworked.”

In other words, Saab 9-3 Convertible owners, if you think your seatbelt is faulty and you have a case for a claim, take it to your local Vauxhall dealer and ask them to have a look at it.

They probably won’t be expecting you and a bit of explaining may be involved, but there should be a bulletin in their system telling them what to do, so stick at it. You may just get a surprise free safety fix for your car (helping it pass its MoT) – despite the brand no longer existing.

Saab 9-3 Convertible owners, over to you: if you decided to give it a go and take your faulty car to a Vauxhall dealer, do let us know how you get on.