Yesterday I had a bit of a rant about the fact that Autoblog were testing a 9-2x. My anger was over the fact that the test car they been provided with was an automatic rather than a manual vehicle. As I’m really concerned about my favourite automotive brand (as I write this I’m thinking that maybe my level of concern is almost a little unnatural and a cause for concern itself!!), I didn’t want to see an important road test like this get half-done.
My theory was that most typical 9-2x buyers would want the fun of the manual gearbox, and by testing it with an auto, the guys at Autoblog wouldn’t be having as much fun with the car (which will affect the way they write about it to a degree) and more importantly, wouldn’t be reviewing it in the same configuration that most potential customers would choose.
I’m pleased to say that I’ve received comments from both Autoblog and GM about the issue. Dave from Autoblog indicated that the configuration of the vehicle (other than asking for a specific model) is somewhat out of the press’ hands. The comments from GM thanked me for the heads-up on the issue and indicated that they’ve undertaken to try and get a manual vehicle to the Autoblog guys for the purposes of the test. This contact and intention has been confirmed on Day 2 of the Autoblog test – which is a good, positive read in itself concerned with the interior of the car.
If I may blow my own horn for a minute – I’m really pleased with the outcome of this issue. As I mentioned in the initial post, Autoblog is widely read and is a very accessible, user-friendly site. They approach reviews in a very down-to-earth manner and reading it is like getting a review from a friend or co-worker. There’s no journalistic pretense involved. I really do think it was important for a positive review of this car, given it’s importance to Saab’s current sales dilemma in the US.
Getting some action on this has been a win/win situation for everyone and has shown a little of the effectiveness of blogging as a realtime tool for communicating news and opinion. *takes a bow*
Bob, Jay, can I get that job yet?