Saab USA giving ’em away*

* conditions apply

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In the recent web-fire story that started in JS Online a few weeks ago about Peter Gilbert’s million mile Saab journey, we saw the following:

Saab executives rode in the car and discussed putting it in their museum in Sweden. Gilbert hoped they would give him a new car, as a replacement, but he didn’t get so much as a T-shirt from Saab.

“I am a little disappointed in them,” he said.

Well, he ain’t disappointed no more!

Saab USA have done the extraordinary (in my eyes at least) and awarded Gilbert a brand-spanking-new 9-5 Aero as a reward for exceptional customer loyalty. And what’s more, they’ll give YOU one too if you meet the criteria.

Here’s the press release:

One Million Miles in a Saab? Get a New One from Saab – For Free

DETROIT — Convinced of the jet-like performance and endurance of its products, Saab Automobile USA is announcing that it will offer a free new Saab to any U.S. customer who covers the distance of one million miles (or more) in a Saab that he or she originally purchased new. The new Saab will come with the 100,000 mile/5 years GM Powertrain limited warranty and 3 years/36,000 miles no-charge scheduled maintenance, standard with every model in the 2007 Saab Automobile USA portfolio.

This announcement comes after Wisconsin resident and insurance salesman Peter Gilbert recently reached the one million milestone in a 1989 Edwardian Gray Saab 900 SPG, still with the original engine and turbo, at this year’s North American Saab Owners Convention in Lake George, N.Y. Saab Automobile USA General Manager Jay Spenchian was the very first to congratulate Gilbert and his 900 SPG on the occasion.

“Saabs are made for people who love to drive, as proven by the many high-mileage examples in the Saab owners’ community”, Spenchian said. “Having personally been with Peter Gilbert in his 900 SPG as we crossed their magical finish line together, one cannot help but being impressed by the condition of car and driver after one million miles. Our offer of a new Saab to any U.S. customer who equals this achievement, should be seen as a token of appreciation for the enduring loyalty and confidence in Saab.”

Mr. Gilbert will receive a brand new, 260 hp Saab 9-5 Aero (MSRP $38,735) as a worthy replacement for his tried-and-true 900 SPG. Delivery of the new car is to be scheduled in early 2007 at the Saab Aero Academy at Road Atlanta, Georgia. Saab is the only U.S. manufacturer offering this two-day enhanced driving course – a $1,350 value – at no cost to every U.S. customer who buys a new Saab 9-3 Aero or 9-5 Aero.

“I am obviously thrilled with the idea of being presented with a new Saab 9-5 Aero”, Gilbert said. “It is not just fast and fuel efficient, but also extremely safe. A reassuring thought, keeping in mind that my faithful 900 SPG and I survived many a collision with Wisconsin deer. Who knows, I might take a run at another million miles in my new 9-5!”

The offer of a free, new 2007 Saab 9-5 Aero [not to exceed an Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price of $38,735 (certain features and options are subject to availability at time of delivery) and delivery to take place at an authorized Saab USA dealer] valid from the date of this release through calendar year 2007 (offer ends Dec. 31, 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time), is available to any U.S. customer who can present verifiable proof to Saab Automobile USA that he or she is the original owner of the Saab vehicle that covered one million road miles or more, that the vehicle is in running condition, that the odometer hasn’t been tampered with, and that the vehicle is currently and has always been registered in the United States. The customer is responsible for all applicable taxes, title fees, registration and destination charges. Visit www.saabusa.com for important details and limitations on this offer.

A very noble gesture, indeed. History documents that fact that Saab USA have met Gilbert’s excpectations in this instance, but I’ve got to say that they’ve certainly exceeded mine.

Now we wait in earnest for the next million-mile-one-owner Saab to pop up…..

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13 Comments

  1. I like this, a standard policy. I have 960,000 more miles to go in my 9-3. I figure by then the next generation 9-5 will have been out for awhile and I can get a free one, plus taxes of course. Gotta go, must keep piling up the miles.

  2. I am impressed that they did this.

    Methinks that there was two reasons for the delay: (1) the lawyers had to chew it over, and create a policy so as not to play favorites; and (2) the fairly significant amount of news coverage Peter got, all in the last 2-3 weeks, when he donated the car to the museum — which significantly outstripped the publicity in response to the press release Saab sent out about Peters’ car after the owners’ convention.

    Moral of the story – corporate press releases go into the circular file, press releases from non-profit automotive museums go into dozens of newspapers across the U.S.

  3. My theory: Swade got it for him. They read Swade’s post and realized how a pat on the back and a photo-op wasn’t going to cut it. 😉

    Now Mr. Gilbert is going to have to decide what he’s going to have to drive to work every morning: his Viggen or his Aero. Must be a difficult position to be in. Maybe he can use those driving skills he learns at the Aero Academy in during his sales calls! :-0

  4. Nah, definitely can’t claim a hand in that one. I’m on the record as thinking it wasn’t new-car-worthy. I’m very happy for him nonetheless and think it’s a fantastic gesture.

    Ain’t it a shame the lawyers have to get involved. I can understand why they do, but it takes some of the lustre off what should be purely a partytime piece.

  5. suddenly people who use their vintage high milers only on the weekend are planning coast to coast drives to tick their odos over the ton-ton! shame you have to have owned it from new, and be a yank… at 324,000km i’d only have 800,000mi to go… i wonder how many laps of Australia that’d take?

    either that or just put it on a dyno for, um, 3 weeks.

    seriously, i think this a cool move by Saab, and something they should promote heavily and make a permanent feature… call it the Saab Challenge: “Our cars are built to last. To prove it, any original owner who racks up a million miles/kilometers will get a brand new Saab, free” etc. etc.

    Let’s face it, even if the car can survive 1M miles (I doubt the newer ones can) few people keep a car that long or will ever put that number of kays into one car. Saab would be lucky to fork out a dozen cars a year, probably much less. yet the PR and Saab community good vibes would be worth so much more.

  6. I wouldn’t assume that the newer cars are less durable than the old ones. My 2000 9-5 Aero is holding up a lot better at 116,000 miles than my ’88 9000 turbo did.

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