The impending sale of Saab to supercar makers Koenigsegg has raised a few eyebrows from a lot of people in the auto industry and rightfully so.
The question on everybody’s mind was the motive behind Koenigsegg’s decision to buy a mainstream car brand despite only being a small company that dedicates most of its time and resources on a number of supercars that go for an easy million out on the market.
While talks were still up for negotiations, not a lot of people put too much stock on it until talks began heating up last week and Koenigsegg co-owner came out on the news saying that they’re company has big plans for Saab down the road.
Apparently, one of Koenigsegg’s intentions was to use the resources – most specifically, Saab’s production facilities of electronic vehicles - Saab has accumulated over the years. One of Koenigsegg’s main projects include the production – finally – of its so-called car of the future, the NLV Quant.
Struggling to make ends meet, it looked as if it was only a matter of time before Saab would have crumbled under the mounting debts it had incurred over the past couple of years. Fortunately for them, there’s finally a sliver of light at the end of the tunnel.
On the heels of reports that said that Saab was on the market for anyone willing to take a stab at restoring the company to its glory days, it appears that someone has taken up that challenge. Swedish supercar makers Koenigsigg, together with a group of Norwegian investors, has ironed out a lot of the details involved in the company’s imminent purchase of Saab. While there are still a few kinks left to iron out, it’s becoming more and more apparent that Saab has found new life under the Koenigsigg brand.
The Swedish automaker’s Saab should be happy, despite losing their home at GM; the super car manufacturer Koenigsegg has signed a letter of intent to purchase the orphaned car company with the help of a few Norwegian investors. Imagine going into a showroom and finding a Saab Turbo X sedan sitting next to a 9-7X SUV alongside a Koenigsegg CCX. That will definitely get new car buyers into showrooms, at least for a test sit in the limited edition super car.
The vehicle hiding underneath a form fitting car cover in the showroom of the future Saab Museum in Trollhattan is the 2010 9-5 sedan. One of the benefits of the tightly wrapped display is that you can see the Saab Aero-X inspired headlights and grill sticking through, but not as good of a view as you will this September get when the next 9-5 makes its world debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show.
The 2010 9-5 will be built on the same Epsilon 2 platform as its European GM cousin, the Opel Insignia, except the Saab will stretch the wheelbase just a little bit. It has been said that the car company that was born from jets will offer two different types of suspension for the 2010 car. Standard and premium; as well as an optional four-wheel drive layout and a series of engines ranging from an alternatively fueled economic four cylinder diesel to a high performance 2.8 Liter turbocharged V6. No matter which variation you choose, the next 9-5 should be as fun to drive as ever, especially if they get an injection of attitude from the Swedish super car manufacturer.
The Swedish automaker Saab, will finally unveil the new 9-5 sedan at the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show in September. The four door model will soon be followed by a wagon version for the spring of 2010. The future also holds a 9-4X SUV, a vehicle aimed directly at competing with other compact crossovers like the BMW X3 and Audi Q5.
The future 9-5 will be built on the same Epsilon 2 as its European GM cousin, the Opel Insignia, except the Saab will get a stretched wheelbase. Word on the street is that the car company that was born from jets will offer two different types of suspension, standard and premium, as well as optional four-wheel drive and a series of engines ranging from an economic four cylinder diesel to a high performance 2.8 Liter turbocharged V6.
What we need to ask ourselves here in America is, how will the elimination of non essential GM brands here in the U.S. affect the automotive conglomerate’s new car lineups around the world. Could this beautiful 9-5 face an early grave due to the cutbacks here on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean?
As you should already know, as part of GM’s going out of business sale some of their niche brands must go, like Saab for example. At the moment there are three groups interested in purchasing the Swedish car maker: Fellow Sweeden based super car makers Koenigsegg, the U.S. based Investment company Renco Group and Italian automotive conglomerate Fiat.
According to the Top Speed editorial staff, the best place for the Saab brand to end up is with the high performance automaker Koenigsegg. The born from jest mentality of the cars with the ignition in the center console would fit in perfectly in the lineup alongside the upcoming Koenigsegg Sedan or a production version of the NLV Quant even the green CCXR super car that can sip on E85.
However the real reason we want to see Saab go the way of the world class super car builder is because we want to see the Saab Aero-X finally go into production.
With summer approaching and gas prices creeping closer to $4 per gallon, electric vehicles are looking better and better every day. Chevrolet has the Volt, Opel the Ampera and even Cadillac will have an upscale Converj. But what about Saab, General Motor’s brand selling strong in Sweeden, well they could soon have the Elektrisk, a word that means electric in Swedish.
Even if this is just a rendering, we here at Top Speed are almost certain that Saab will soon have an electric model of their own. If it could look anything like this, even better!
Chevrolet has the Volt, Opel the Ampera and now Cadillac has the Converj. So what about Saab? What would a Swedish interpretation of GM’s E-Flex platform look like? It took the imagination of a 24 year old designer to answer that question.
Mayeul Walser wanted to create a luxurious four-seater coupe that blends the futuristic feel of sci-fi movies with the elegance of products from renowned fashion houses such as Karl Lagerfeld and Chanel.
The Fashionista will be powered by a hybrid powertrain coupling a V6 gasoline engine with an electric motor to produce (a purely theoretical) output of 300 HP.
Just the sort of thing we like to see here at Top Speed. A turbocharged engine, packaged with a host of sports inspired features and creature comforts at a price that won’t break the bank; and if it pollutes a little less, even better.
That is exactly the case with Saab’s new 9-3 Turbo Edition. Priced starting at under £20,000 the special edition features 17-inch alloy wheels, leather interior, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, 9-speaker 150w audio system with MP3 compatibility and cruise control all standard. With power coming from either a 1.9 TiD making 150 HP or the higher performing 1.9 TTiD turbo diesel powerplant producing 180 HP and loads more torque.
Unfortunately the car is destined for the U.K. and probably won’t be making it the U.S. anytime soon.
Saab revealed today first details on the 2010 9-3X. World debut will be made in March at the Geneva Auto Show, while the American debut will be made at the New York auto show in April. The 9-3X is expected to arrive in Saab showrooms throughout the United States this fall.
The 9-3X will come to the U.S. with Saab’s hallmark 2.0-liter gasoline turbocharged four-cylinder powertrain, offering 210 hp. The engine is mated with a six-speed manual or automatic transmission.
The model comes with new front and rear bumpers, grained finish that is also applied to the side sills and the edges of the wheel arches as a protective covering when the terrain becomes loose or muddy. This treatment is complemented by skid panels with a matt aluminum finish, curving up towards the door opening at the rear and adopting a wing form in the lip of the lower front bumper.
With the addition of newly designed, multi-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels, the 9-3X’s exterior character reflects its ability to handle mixed road conditions, whether rough or smooth, loose or paved. Inside, the 9-3X interior is based on top-of-the-line specification, adding a dark metallic finish to the door trims, glove box and gearshift surround.
Okay Saab, we get it: You’re proud of your aircraft heritage. Now its time to make cars you can be proud of, not just cars celebrating airplanes. Until then, Saab’s big unveil for the Detroit Auto Show will be the 9-5 Griffin Edition, named after Saab’s new Gripen fighter aircraft.
So if it was built to celebrate a fast and maneuverable aircraft, then the car must have engine and suspension upgrades, right? WRONG. The 9-5 Griffen comes with the standard 260 hp 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine from the regular car. It’s a fine engine, but its no jet fighter.
Instead the 9-5 Griffen goes for luxury add-ons such as a matte chrome for the front grille, unique 17-inch alloy wheels, and rear spoilers for the sedan and wagon. The interior gets high-gloss interior trim (isn’t that something GM has been trying to stop doing?) as well as some special stitching.
If this gets you excited, then grab $42,775 for the sedan ($44,045 for the wagon), and head on down to your Saab dealer this January. The line forms wherever you’re standing.