This sketch has been doing the rounds for the last few days. As far as I know it started on Saab Central and it looks like it’s gathered a fair bit of momentum after hitting Left Lane News and then LeBlogauto (thanks, Andy).
Is it a 9-5 sketch that we’re likely to see in sheetmetal or is it another case of internet linkfire?
The picture on LLN (left) is actually a section of the picture shown at SaabCentral, reproduced below. As you can see from the watermark, the original shot appears on Car Design News, who published an interview with Nesbitt on Febraury 9. The interview is members-only, but I first saw this picture there a few months ago and I have a feeling that it was indeed an accompaniment to the interview piece.
So is it a new 9-5? Well, firstly, I don’t think it’s a bad sketch at all, I really like the look of that car. But I’d be quite surprised if the new 9-5 is as dramatic. This is just a sketch, and sketches aren’t bound by the rules of engineering, the principles of aerodynamics or the practicalities of customer demands (like usable boot space). That’s probably why they’re so much fun.
It certainly has some of that Aero-X design language that future Saabs are apparently going to inherit and in this guise it looks pretty good.
But I don’t necessarily think it’s our 9-5 in waiting, at the very least because I’d imagine GM to be way more secretive about real upcoming designs. Most spyshots that I’ve received have been taken with cameraphones. This one’s quite possibly a professional photograph taken by CDN for the purpose of publication. I can’t imagine they’d be allowed to do so around a concrete sketch for a car that’s 2 years or so away.
But I’ll be happy if it is. Like I said, that’s a nice looking vehicle there. But at the end of the day I think it’s about as much the 9-5 as this picture on the wall in the GM Europe office is the Aero-X. Close perhaps, but no cigar (as Hillary once said to Bill).