Hasn’t that photo on the left got the crowd buzzing? All to a different tune, too. Some loving it, some hating it, some quite indifferent if that’s not too contradictory. (Bigger photo here)
Me? Well, I started off a little cool towards it, but have collected my thoughts, spent a few hours staring at it and….and…. I think it’s great. I’ve spent some time reading everyone’s comments and thoughts about the Aero-X picture and whilst I can see where people are coming from, I’m going to disagree with what’s been the predominant opinion so far. I like the car. A few tweaks and I think I’d really, really like it.
It’s just my humble opinion, but I think Saab needs something in the lineup that looks almost as aggressive as it’s capable of being. Understatement is a Saab trait, so there should be alittle aggression in reserve. The 9-3 and 9-5 show relative levels of class and can look quite smart. I think this car looks like it’s got 400HP under the bonnet. Contrary to what some have written, it’s not a muscle car. It looks to me like the beginnings of a very capable sports tourer.
What would I change if I were king? Well, I’d probably make those front air dams a little less prominent and I think I’d also try to narrow down that central grille opening. As it appears here it’s a little too Audi/VW for me. The ancestry (i.e. 9x) was a bit wider in the grille area, more consistent in depth with the headlights and I think I’d be leaning more in that direction. I’d also try and shape the headlights so they’re a little less new-Camaro, other than that I think the headlight design is actually pretty sensational.
I think this car has got a hell of a lot of potential. Saab needs a halo car and as much love as I have for the current range, that halo model’s just not there right now. I think this would appeal to the US market and comments on the Euro billboards already indicate a certain enthusiasm from the Swedes that have seen it (but what would they know?).
Where’s the Saab DNA, you ask? It carries reminiscences of the 9x in the front, the Sonett in the rear, it’s turbocharged – twice, and it features Saab’s more recent prominent feature, the Biopower setup. Remember a short while ago when Saab’s lineup was all-turbo? How about a mid-term future where Saab’s lineup is all alternative-fuel capable – a total Tri-fuel lineup – and Saab the first company to do it.
Consider a strong looking Saab coupe with AWD and a 400hp Biopowered engine. Where’s the downside to that?
It’s important to remember the following:
It’s only a concept. This isn’t slated for production, although early words were mentioned about a possible spinoff from this on a shortened Epsilon II platform. But right now, it’s a concept only.
It’s just a drawing, too. The real deal will probably look a little different in the flesh when the covers come off next Monday. What would you rather look at? A photo of Elle Macpherson or Elle Macpherson? Case closed.
It’s only a drawing from one angle. We’re yet to see the rear, the proper profile or the interior.
Given all that and what Saab needs for the future, I think it’s a great concept. I think it could be even better, but for the moment I’m pretty happy to welcome it to the family. Come give daddy a hug…