Bring back the hatch……anyway!!

Another follow on from Bring Back The Hatch (part 1 and part 2).

Gripen got his OCD going and looked into some historical numbers on Saab cargo capacity. The C900 and 9000 saw some steady capacity, which dropped when the NG900 came along. Capacity in the modern SportCombis is pretty darn good, as you can see, but there’s just something about that hatch body style that whispers ‘utility’ and screams ‘SEXY’.

Or maybe that’s just me.

Here’s how the numbers stack up (measured in cubic feet):

capacities.jpg

And here’s another picture of a loaded NG9-3. As a point of note, if those rear seats were flat then the driver would have absolutely zero legroom. The 900/9-3 did have that hatch shape and utility, but at a severe cost to the driver when in use.

gocart9-3.jpg

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32 Comments

  1. The Hatchback as we all refer to began with the 99 Combi Coupe in 1974 and ended in 2002 with the OG 9-3.

    28 Year Run of the Hatchback.

    There is no reason why this model could not compliment the existing model lineup.

    The 9-1 is supposed to embody this characteristic as the continuation of the hatchback from 2002.

  2. Just an unimportant correction, I think you either meant “NG900” or “OG9-3″ in reference to the go-cart photo. Did I ever mention my OCD? How about the fact that I’m not a journalist and can’t drink worth a damn? 😉

    I forgot about the fact that you can’t even get the cargo floor completely flat in the NG900/OG9-3 like you could in the C900 comfortably (unless you’re a 6’5” giant…). ;-P

  3. Ok, so I’m a long time listener, first time caller. I must ask, reluctantly mind you, where’s the 9-2x? I would think it fair, with 61.6 cubic feet, to include it in the stats also. *holds hands over face to block the stoning*

    Bet you can’t tell what I drive! May I make up for it by telling you I also have a MY03 9-5? 🙂 (Ok, it’s wifey’s.)

  4. Just a quick comment… No matter what, but I think that the 9-3 SC looks great, much better than OG9-3. I think that it has the sportyness and versatility saab needs.

    Sure, a hatch would be good, but if I had to pick between a XC version of the 9-3 withsomeextra plastic etc or a hatch (which probably would be more expensive) I would not have to think long…. If you can not afford do to more than 1 version of a car the hatch works, but in today’s world you have to do more than that.

  5. Additionally, the Hatchback as we all refer to began with the 99 Combi Coupe in 1974 and ended in 2002 with the OG 9-3.

    28 Year Run of the Hatchback.

    There is no reason why this model could not compliment the existing model lineup.

    The 9-1 is supposed to embody this characteristic as the continuation of the hatchback from 2002.

  6. Nevitz, my personal distaste for the way they handled the 9-2x thing is well documented here, so I won’t expand on that.

    But a wholehearted welcome. There are actually two people out there in the world with TS 9-2x T-shirts that I produced around 18 months ago, believe it or not.

    How’s the 9-2x going? Which model did you end up getting?

  7. Just curious … I realize that the “loading potential” isn’t the same, but … why no data for the 9-3SS with the seats flat?

  8. Well, for me the question isn’t one of cubic feet, it’s one of real-world utility. The hatch has that over any notch in spades simply because the hatch opening is huge by comparison. Try putting a motorcycle into the notch and you’ll see that not all cubic feet are equal. Ditto the mower, the bed from Ikea, etc.

  9. 93Aero – Those are the figures Gripen sent me. I had a look at the Saab USA site as well as Saab Sweden, even the GM Media archives for when the model was first released and I couldn’t any data for the 9-3 or 9-5 sedans with the seats down.

    If youve got it then please let me know as I’ll be happy to plug it in and update the graph. Would love to know.

  10. The seats fold down in the 9-3 SS, yes.

    The seats fold onto themselves, unlike the 9-5 where the seat bottoms open out, and the seat tops fold into where the seat bottoms were and lay completely flat (like the 9000 did).

  11. As much as I like the hatch, I think the spotcombi is definitely an adequate successor. Besides, at one point saab used to compare itself with the 7 series. But do you really think saab want people lugging around their cement mixers? 7 series owners wouldn’t do so. Doing so in a saab probably isn’t anything to brag about. I think it hurts the brand image.

  12. The hatch is dead, long live the Sportcombi.

    Premium compact hatches is where it is so bring on the 9-1. Practical all-swallowing hatches are over.

    Now back to the classifieds to buy a 9000CS for the missus to replace the one we should never have sold.

  13. Turbin,

    Your sentence that begins with

    “Premium” along with the second sentence that starts with “Now” seem to contradict one another.

    Why can’t the hatch be brought back? I don’t see the logic here.

  14. SG,

    I think the sentence that begins with “The” sums it up. We would likely have 2 Sportcombis if money was no object. A 9000CS Turbo is a good affordable second choice. 😉

  15. An ’08 9000 Aero would be a godly car. I-dont-care-what-color on black interior… I’ll start selling paper airplanes as funds, will you guys help as you help swade?

  16. if you take out the headrests with the seats folded down, legroom isn’t as big of an issue for the driver.

    I used to drive a ng900. Being in a band, i was able to fit a full drum kit (kick, snare, floor tom, rack tom, symbols and hardware), 5 guitars (1 bass guitar) and a guitar amplifier head in the trunk with the seats folded down. i wish i had a picture of that. it was glorious.

  17. Swade, I understand what you mean on the 9-2x. Thanks for the greetings!

    I have a 2005 Saabaru 9-2x 2.5i Linear (Deep Blue Metallic w/Cold Weather Package and Moon roof). I have put on 37,000 miles in 22 months, and it’s solid! My only complaint, aside from the “public de-nouncement” saying the 9-2x was a mistake, is that I can only get $11k for it on trade in now. *slaps self in forehead* This is the only thing in the way of getting my dream car, the 9-3 SportCombi, but of course!

    Let me briefly state my story (sorry if not the right forum). I actually stumbled upon the Saab 9-2x – and Saab altogether – in June ’05! I am an employee of a GM subsidiary. In considering my choices in which I could utilize a discount. In my personal experience, I’ve had great luck owning foreign [read Japanese] cars, Honda’s in particular. I found out the 9-2x was a more refined Impreza. You surely remember the target demographics, right? The 9-2x was supposed to capture new blood. The young-yet-mature male professional, otherwise looking for something that carries more cachet than an Accord or Camry. That was me. I am/was new blood, and tell you what, I am now in love with Saab (other models too, mind you).

    Sorry, now back on track…

    And so, LONG LIVE HATCHBACKS!

    I surely hope I am still welcome here!

  18. “But do you really think saab want people lugging around their cement mixers? 7 series owners wouldn’t do so. Doing so in a saab probably isn’t anything to brag about. I think it hurts the brand image.”

    I don’t see how that hurts the Saab image when it IS the Saab image. Saabs aren’t BMWs, and they shouldn’t try to be.

  19. Of COURSE you’re welcome here, Nevitz. We don’t discriminate against anyone, not even Ovlov owners! ;-0

    Seriously, the Subaru WRX is a really great little car so one with a SAAB front end on it is even better! I have no hard feelings against 9-2X owners and think you shouldn’t be sorry, you should be proud for making a good purchasing decision.

  20. Thanks Gripen!

    I do love my car, but yearn for just a bit more. I’ve been obsessing for a Combi for 6 months. Is that not horrible?!

  21. Nevitz, great story, and you’re right on about being the target demographic and it looks like it’s worked in this instance.

    You’re absolutely welcome.

  22. Nevitz, welcome!

    …at least you’re not obsessing over a dying breed of Saab ( sniff Viggen sniff).

    Logan, might your last name be Jordan?

  23. peace to all the combi lovers, but if they put the top combi specs into a 9-3x, which is a “hatch,” i’d much rather have the 9-3x. my point being a hatch can still look cool; even cooler than a combi stationwagon.

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