2008 Saab 9-3 Update

UPDATE at the bottom!!!


I know I’ve been a bit doom-and-gloomish around here in the last week. Must be a by-product of the Viggen being off the road.

So here’s some bloody fantastic news about a car I can’t wait to see:


I received a few bit of new information in my inbox this morning pertaining to the reskinned and upgraded MY2008 Saab 9-3.

For those of you that haven’t come across it yet, the 2008 Saab 9-3 will be unveiled in Sweden in June 2007, to be later shown at the Saab Owner’s Convention in August. Saab have finally been allowed to take the shackles off and integrate AWD into the car. It’ll also feature some of the Aero-X family style.

The new information I received this morning pertains to rumours floating around Sweden about a new, bigger diesel setup for both the future 9-3 and 9-5 range, with a 2.4l diesel engine from Alfa to be used. The Alfa Brera currently uses a 200bhp 2.4 diesel engine, so this may be the one they’re being tapped for. This must be a remnant of the former arrangement with Fiat when GM owned a chunk of them. Of course, it’s not the first time Saab and Alfa have had things in common, either, and the current Alfa 3.2 V6 is a variant of the engine used in the Saab 9-3 Aero.

My mail also tells me that AWD will be available with the diesel variant. Please understand that these are, at this point, rumours only. The source I’ve received them from has been accurate in the past, but he’s passed the info on to me as a tip only, not as substantiated.

The other bit of new info relates to the production schedule. Tooling has been ordered and production is slated down for commencement in Week 11, with full production going ahead “in the summer”.

Swedish spypiccers, have your cameras at the ready in March, please!

And if anyone’s stumbled upon some pics or sketches already, then my inbox is always open.



The new MY2008 9-3 will be using a ‘proactive’ electronic stability control system. In an understeer situation the current reactive ESP system applies the brakes to the inside rear wheel. This creates an opposing force to help bring the car onto the required course. The “proactive” system that we’ll see in the new 9-3 will actually increase the power to the other 3 wheels to create the same opposing forces.

I’d like to see this system in action. I’d have thought that creating the opposing force through increased power to other wheels would also increase the danger element. A reduction seems more prudent, but then that’s probably why I’m here blogging and not designing safety systems.

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  1. Now, that 5 cyl 2,4 diesel i reckoned as one of the finer diesel engines on the market, so it would be fabulous if Saab could use it. Reports say it has massive punch and a nice growl.

    I still prefer petrol, though…

  2. Sounds great. Guess we will probably see the first pics/drawings after year end then prior to the production start.

    Is it confirmed that the interior will stay the same (as upgraded in 2005)?

    Also, what changes will be made to the sportcombi? Only the front – probably?

    I got stuck with the AWD news – is it them possible that this is what will be used on the new 9-5, keeping SAAB FWD, and still get 4WD for the adverticing? Or is the new platform only RWD/AWD?

  3. Is there any news on a new gasoline (petrol) engine?? Since AWD has been confirmed- granted assuming AWD = true AWD system and not some electrical motor assisted system- I’d think that additional power could be added….

    I’d like to see a twin-turbo model that would compete with the BMW 335i.. I’d buy it in a heart beat!!

  4. I haven’t heard anything to that effect, Talon. But it’s fair to assume with AWD that they’ll give things a fair boost.

    However, we ay have to wait for the next 9-5 until they really take the shackles off. Can’t have the baby brother outclassing the flagship.

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