Tuesday Snippets – the grumpy edition

Sometimes stories pop up for no conceivable reason, but they’re interesting when they do.

This story was written way back in December 2003 so there’s no reason why it would pop up on my RSS newsreader, but it did. I don’t know if Saab USA still use this incentive system, but if you go into your dealer to get your car serviced and he’s talking about the new plasma screen he just got for the kids…….know that the two are perhaps more linked than you think!

The article is all about the incentive system used to drive the marketing of genuine Saab parts at Saab’s independant dealerships accross the US. A very interesting read.


If you see a good condition Saab 99 Turbo for sale – buy it. Or a 900. Perhaps even a Viggen. Why?

If this is the future, then I’m going to make a deliberate effort to get back to basics as much as possible.

Come on – airbags designed to lift your legs out of the footwell and electronic sensors that will monitor everything from your eye movements to the progress of your breakfast through the intestine – OK, I made that last one up (but don’t be surprised if it happens – it could trigger an advance burst of air freshener right before your corn flakes revisit in a vapourised form).

Too much nannying if you ask me. People will still drive too fast. It’s just that if the car thinks more then they’ll get lazy and think less.

The Future of Luxury Cars – Part 1 and Part 2.

Thanks to Petar for the tip.


I received 2 emails yesterday from people that aren’t planning to buy new Saabs any more. Both were multiple Saab owners. One with a 9-3 and one with a new 9-5.

I’m too grumpy to deal with their complaints other than to say that one I’d sympathise with and one I wouldn’t. I’ll leave it that as they’re probably both thinking I’ll sympathise with them, which is a good outcome.

Needless to say I hope they both change their minds and not write Saab off for the future.


Some Coppers in the UK are now driving around in some 9-5 HOT Aeros, which isn’t overly remarkable but makes for some good photos….



So, I’m trying to give up the fags again. Hence the grumpiness.

I know it’s apparently going to be good for me but I really think sometimes it’d be worth living 5 to 10 years less as long as you were happy. If the next 30 or 40 years are going to be like this then I’m going to make myself and everyone around me miserable for a very long time.

Now !$#@ off…..

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  1. Kudos — those cigarettes aren’t good for you!

    And about the Saab owners switching brands — I’ve never felt obligated to buy Saab without considering the alternatives. Given the poor quality record of Saab in the US and the apparent dearth of service locations, I wouldn’t blame anyone for that decision here.

  2. I will admit, I have never owned a Saab even though I have been in love with them for 25years but the more I read about Saab the less inclined I am to own one. Why? They cost a lot more to lease than my next favorite car – BMW, the seem to be lacking in reliability (they seem to have gotten worse over the last 5 years), they cost just as much to insure as a BMW. Used BMWs come with a free extended warranty and the knowledge that they are going to last years. To top it off I dont really like where designers are taking the Saab brand. It hurts for me to say this but when the time comes I may not be buying what I always wanted for all these years! 🙁

  3. To add to Greg’s comment, those last 5-10 years will be healthier if you quit the cancer sticks now. It’s not as if you’ll be perfectly healthy right up to 65 and then BOOM, you go horizontal.

    B’sides, who the heck is gonna run Trollhattan besides you ?!?

  4. I’ve already got you nominated in my will Ken. I’m sure my local trustee/solicitor will have no trouble locating some guy named “Saabken” on the other side of the world 😉

    I’m persevering, just more moody than a supermodel.

  5. Going back to basics with a 900 or 99T? Dare I say neither are really ‘basic’. An EH Holden is basic.

    Try a 95/96 V4. No clock even! Manual choke. No real seat adjustment. No dash lights. No radio. No bloody nothing!


  6. The parts incentive article is interesting. What Toyota and Honda did in Canada is to price their parts reasonably, meaning that OEM pads, rotors, etc, are now sometimes cheaper than aftermarket parts. GM and Saab should think about this.
    BTW: This is not a new problem for GM. If you read John DeLorean’s biography (“On a Clear Day You Can See General Motors”) you will see that they were overpricing the parts that they sell to their dealers 40 years ago. Nothing has changed since then, and GM parts are now 5x the price of Honda parts. Compare a $160 GM brake rotor to a $35 Japanese rotor. The difference is that the Japanese rotor will last 100,000 km (compared to 10-20,000 for the American part).
    Thankfully, Saab parts are still high-quality (though overpriced).

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