The motoring section of the Fairfax press here in Australia, Drive, has published a review of the 9-3 Aero V6. I think the journo’s been a bit harsh on his assessment of the chassis, claiming wheelspin in cornering and steering that’s too light. Maybe I need to drive a little more of the competition, but I thought the car handled exceedingly well on my jaunt through the twisties here in Hobart.
Being an Aussie though, there’s no shortage of praise for that Melbourne-assembled engine:
Quietly – it is Swedish after all – it clears itself of a little initial turbo lag to deliver a really strong urge from 1500 rpm, revving cleanly and vibration-free up past the 6300 rpm redline.
This engine can cope with the jabs and bursts required in the city and suburbs as confidently as it blurs the straight of a country road. This is V8 performance delivered at V6 fuel-consumption rates.
The good thing about this review: it doesn’t re-hash a bunch of irrelevant GM relationships to describe the car. It’s focused, which is a nice change. The bad thing: well, I’m biased, so his criticisms of the car’s handling and especially the interior just don’t ring true to me based on my time behind the wheel.
Are there things that could be improved on the 9-3? Aren’t there always?
Is it a fine, sporting drive nonetheless? Absolutely. I think the writer and I end up at the same point, I’m just not sure I like the way he got there.