Out of the Bay Area comes the Mercury News, and Matt Nauman of said news service has just spend two weeks driving two different Swedes, the Saab 9-3 Aero and the Volvo S80.
He covers both cars in the one article, which is strange enough in itself as it naturally draws comparisons to what are cars from two different classes. The Saab acquits itself reasonably well, though Nauman finds it too understated for his tastes, which is just fine with me.
The Saab’s exterior is pleasant, if unassuming. It adopts a wedge-like profile that’s a big improvement from the days of the odd-shaped Saab models. Still, this car’s look exudes neither performance nor luxury. Instead, it’s subtle from its unremarkable face to its roundly squared rear end. A strip of black trim encircles the car; other automakers would use shiny chrome instead.
I can cope quite well with anyone claiming to underappreciate the 9-3’s styling, but they’re going to have a crack at earlier Saab, well….them’s fightin words!!
But then, after this little quote, one could say that Mr Nauman doesn’t necessarily see everything that’s there, anyway.
The 9-3’s cabin was redesigned for 2007, but, frankly, I couldn’t tell.
Here’s the old and new interiors pitched together. Which part of buttons vs dials does he not see? Click on either to enlarge.
He loved the ride, the handling, the acceleration. The looks got compliments from the ladies and he found the can’t-see-the-difference interior to look pretty clean.
It seems the main problem was a lack of pizazz.
Which is just fine by me.