Some 9-5 Loving

I’m in a 9-5 state of mind at the moment, and it seems there’s others that are too.

I featured a 9-5 test drive a few days ago, which was quite favourably received. One of the real stand out points for the car was the value for money compared to the competition. This was an Australian test and they were driving the Linear version of the 9-5, which whilst being the base model is still pretty well kitted out.

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But it’s not the first bit of 9-5 love for the week.

Commenter Joe M has recently picked up his MY07 9-5 Aero Wagon and is quite possibly attending the Aero Academy in Atlanta as I write this. And he’s absolutely loving the car, promising some SOTW shots soon.

Speaking of which, I received a great 9-5 SOTW shot from Chris (photo to come soon), who had this to say about his MY06 9-5:

I love my 9-5. I previously owned a 2003 9-3 sport sedan that I really enjoyed, but the 9-5 blows it away in almost every respect, IMO. Personally, I really like the 2006 ‘refreshing’ that the exterior received, and I think that the 9-5’s body styling has held up quite well over the years. I much prefer it to the bloated look of alot of cars out right now.

Driving wise, I have seen a lot of reviews that state the 9-3SS is tighter when driving through curves and such when compared to the 9-5, but I have been very impressed with the 9-5. They’ve done a great job of strengthening the suspension over the years. Additionally, compared to the 175 hp engine in my 9-3, the 9-5’s 260hp stock engine is amazing – I love the way the car accelerates to 60 mph and doesn’t feel like it’s even trying hard yet! The Sport mode on the automatic transmission is outstanding as well. I’ve always owned manual transmission cars in the past, and I was ready to walk away from this car if I didn’t like the auto-box, but the sport mode is so smooth and seems to shift at just the right point. Very impressive.

It certainly is making an impression.

Dollar-for-dollar it’s got to be one of the best value propositions on the US market today. It’s written off by a lot of reviewers due to age, but this is still one heck of a car for the money.

As a completely random bit of 9-5 loving, I came across this piece from a blog that popped up on my RSS feed called Car Automotive. It’s by a guy named Ted Olsen and he’s talking about the engineering differences between European, Asian and American cars:

On a more “practical car” level, I recently drove a 2004 Saab 9-5 Aero with 77,000 miles on it. What struck me immediately was the cockpit feel that SAAB keeps raving about. It really is like an airplane’s cockpit, making one feel very comfortable, and more importantly, in control.

The tone of the engine and the solid feel to the car—even with 77,000 miles—was powerful. It was eliciting emotion—like the Ferrari! American and Asian cars tend to feel a bit sloppy after 60K whereas the SAAB felt like new, and was ready to go!

…….No wonder people drive these cars forever.

Apart from a recent half hour or so in a new 06 Aero, my 9-5 experience is limited to pre-refreshed models.

I spent some track-time in a 9-5 Aero Wagon last year (full story here).

I also spent a weekend with a 2003 9-5 Aero sedan, which was just sensational (full story here). That Aero sedan is probably the only car I’d get out of my Viggen for.

This weekend I’ll be driving and filming a 2005 9-5 Aero Wagon, so you can rest assured there’ll be some more 9-5 loving coming up soon!

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7 Comments

  1. It’s good to see that you’ve changed your tune on the 9-5. It is the one model in the range that is most true to Saab’s old school design values. Now if you’ll only see the light on a certain other truck…

  2. I see a lot of them new 9-5 here in Sweden. Sometimes it looks really nice, sometims not. In silver or black it’s ok (like in the picture above), in other colors it can look kind of strange,

  3. I’m not so sure I’ve changed my tune on the 9-5. I just went back and re-read my “Truth about 9-5” piece, just in case.

    There’s a difference between a car being great value for the US market and it being a potential class leader, which is what my article was about.

    I’ve always loved the 9-5, always will. But I’m still willing to ‘kill my baby’ for a better one and an assured future.

    Now, back to loving…

    And Ted – Yeah, I’ve had that one on my radar for 2 days now but just haven’t had the time to write about it. It should be an interesting series.

  4. Being an owner of a late 01 9-5 Aero I am obviously thrilled with it and love this car as is. But the current model despite its shape and other changes it lacks on the visuals and total effect that older models have as a total package. In particular on the wheels and suspension department quite frankly the designers in charge need a rocket under their desks. If only more up to date proper 18′ wheels and associated suspension tweaks/lows will be incorporated that same car will have a much higher appeal to consumers. I’ll consider then a changeover but not as is I am afraid !!!

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