As a bit of a follow up to Bring Back the Hatch!, Gripen’s done some awesome research that SaabUSA would do well to follow up on and use.
I’ve noted a few road tests of the 9-3 SportCombi where the writer compares it very favourably to SUVs, and Gripen’s done the legwork to show us why.
He’s been fossicking around Edmunds on a fact-finding mission. The task: given that the Saab 9-3 and 9-5 outpoint almost all petrol SUVs on economy and emissions – how do they compare in terms of cargo capacity and importantly – towing ability?
Here’s what he found….
Both the SAAB 9-3 Sport Combi and 9-5 Sport Combi models offer more maximum cargo space and more towing capacity than the 2WD versions of the following SUVs in a similar price category:
– Ford Edge (the SAABs get way better than the Edge’s 24 mpg highway too)
– Ford Escape (non-hybrid – the SAABs get better fuel economy)
– Honda CRV (the SAABs get the same fuel economy, but have three times the towing capacity)
– Lincoln MKX
– Mazda CX7 (the SAABs have better fuel economy too)
– Mercury Mariner
– Mercury Mariner Hybrid (don’t know the towing capacity, but because it’s a sister to the Escape Hybrid, I’m guessing the SAABs have it beat)
– Mitsubishi Outlander (the SAABs get better fuel economy too)
– Toyota RAV4
So, one would have to ask why these vehicles are sooooooo popular.
Some may be capable of carrying more people, so there’s a point. Some may consider them more versatile due to ground clearance, but Gripen and I will both bet that very few of these 2WD vehicles see any rough surfaces whatsoever.
There is, of course, the popular myth that a bigger vehicle will keep you safer. But with the 9-3 range’s reputation for safety, that’s about as likely as the SUV carrying more cargo. All of this begs the question: why build the 9-4x? But I guess that’s a market expectation thing.
The point is, if you need to lug a load – get a Saab SportCombi. You’ll carry more, do it more efficiently and safely and in much greater comfort than the usual suspects.