G’day all. Still limited to no internet access at home and still spending 90% of the waking hours cleaning up the old house and organising the new one. I can confidently say that I will grow old and die in this house as I never want to move again.
Here’s the news:
Those of you that have been watching it would realise there’s been no unveiling of a plug-in hybrid at the New York International Auto Show, as was speculated at Aftonbladet and repeated as a possibility here. From GM’s perspective it’s been all about Saturn. The question now remains: when will it be unveiled and what brand will get the honors?
JimF’s wrap-up of his NYIAS experience is coming.
Still on the hybrid: I’m on record as not being overly interested in them in general, though Saab’s version seems to take it to a much better performing level and if something like that’s going to help the company, then count me in.
There’s a lot of people that are interested, though. Autoblog have just linked to a Gallup poll about people’s interest in hybrid vehicles. Of the 1,001 respondents (all in the USA), a rather astounding 57% indicated an interest in purchasing a hybrid as their next vehicle.
The results favoured younger and wealthier people, which is a demographic I’m sure Jay Spenchian and the gang would be very interested in if they could get something like that hybrid convertible to market.
Saab recently held a press event for the 9-3 Convertible in the US. ‘Unfortunately’ it seems to have rained and snowed and generally produced the sort of weather not necessarily conducive to getting the most out of a convertible. The inclement weather did provide an opportunity, however, for the 9-3 ‘Vert to prove it’s claim as being the best 4-seasons convertible.
There’s a Washington Post article that I’m trying to find the link to (update: found! See below), but in the meantime, here’s one from the Milwaulkee Journal Sentinel though I’m not sure if it’s from the same event:
Saab’s 9-3 rocks from a standing start. That turbo, with only a slight lag, taps in quickly and boosts the car from 0 to 60 fast enough to get you past all but the real performance models.
Handling is nimble and fun. The car turns into corners quickly and with a fair amount of precision. Even in the damp, the Saab sticks well in turns and delivers a good steering feel to the driver.
That Washington Post article is here.
Another road-test, this time in the Portland Tribune. I’ll let the writer clue you in as to the model he’s driven.
I wish I knew the answer to these questions: Why couldn’t General Motors have made this vehicle? Why did it take a bunch of Swedes to turn the Chevrolet Trailblazer into something this good…..
…..It’s almost like a “tuner” car, where someone takes his vehicle into a specialist and spends tens of thousands of dollars to have it modified — made into the vehicle it had the potential to be because the manufacturer, for whatever reason (usually bureaucratic), wasn’t able to complete the correct execution.
Some of you may not like the entire idea, but the 9-7x is kicking goals, people. Exactly as it was meant to do. There’s close to 500 new Saab 9-7x owners every month now in the US, and for many of them the 9-7x is their first Saab. Given that it’s being as well received as it is, it can only be a good thing.
The Washington Times really liked their brief drive in the 2006 9-5.
Driving either 9-5 model is a delight, with enough performance to satisfy the sporting enthusiast, enough comfort to please the luxury conscious and more than enough safety technology to provide optimum confidence and security.
Ultimately, the new 9-5 is enough reason to “Never fly coach again.” The seats are indeed First Class quality, and highly supportive during spirited maneuvers over challenging roads.
For those in the market for a sporty, functional, nontraditional mode of transport, don your flight suit, strap on your helmet, check your favorite radio frequency, ignite the afterburner, pull back on the stick and lift off in style.
Warm and Fuzzy:
Saab USA have announced a partnership with Angel Flight, a charity in the US that transports people and their families in need of medical treatment. It’s got a volunteer network of 5000 pilots covering 50 US states.
Saab have donated $75,000 and the use of six 9-7x’s for a year.
The Elmia custom car show is on in Sweden this weekend and there’s a very beefy Saab on show. How about approx 800hp with AWD?!? More and better pictures as they come to hand. Click on these to enlarge a little.
Have a wonderful Easter holiday, folks.
I’m off to paint and move stuff. No rest for the wicked.