MY08 Saab 9-3 ‘vert caught in the wild

Here’s some more shots, posted at the STCS forum. This one’s been spotted on the streets of Trollhattan with some mild disguise work.

Interesting bits:

* the inserts in the front spoiler vents look more understated on this one – very good.

* of course, the more normal tail lights on this one make for an interesting point of difference from the last spyshots seen

* that rear strip looks like a definite fixture.

* that ‘clamshell’ hood adaptation is looking better and better.

Please note that the original pictures at the link above feature a fair bit of lens distortion so some proportions could seem a little out of whack here. I’ve cropped the pictures to feature the car better and done a little color correction.

Click to enlarge.












Thanks Dave!

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  1. While there is some lens distortion, does anyone else think the hood looks flat and out of place?

    THe back end seems to flare out a bit on a downward slope. Is it just me?

    These dang spy pictures – my hopes go up, then down, then up again, now back down….

  2. I am actually enjoying everyone’s guessing about what the final release will look like. One thing is for sure Saab owners are among the most passionate of all owners.
    I think this look will be good for bringing the 9-3 more in-line with the rest of the Saab line-up

  3. Okay, this is no longer a “spy shot”, it’s clearly on purpose.

    There was a full line of vehicles of Saab’s including the photographer was clearly taking a photo from a 9-3 Convertible anyways.

  4. SG, did you notice that the green 9-3 Vert that the pics were taken from was not an ’08, nor an ’07? Note the HUD! At least ’04-’06!

    While I think it looks almost posed, I still think it’s a teaser. The other blue vert pics seemed so much cleaner and crisper on the front and rear design.

    We shall soon see!

  5. did someone say HUD?! *salivates*

    is it me, or is the rear wheel similar to shimano’s biopace crankset from many years ago? hehe

  6. Well, May 10 we will hopefully know anyway. That’s the date when press-kit about the 9-3 will be sent out. But I’m almost 100% sure these pics don’t show the final design.

  7. I’m of a similar mind to joemama. Sometimes the arse of the car looks too high for my liking. Same with the bonnet.(Although that is a trend in most modern cars.) At times it just looks a bit too bulky.

    Other times it looks great and in proportion.

  8. As feared, I see they kept the stupid silver lining around the dash that reflects in the windshield, directly in the line of vision of the driver. That alone will keep me away from any 9-3. Such a gross oversight does not bode well for future Saabs.

  9. Dear lord that looks awful!
    I don’t know which end is worse.

    Am I the only one that thinks it looks incoherent and cobbled-together?

  10. I have to agree with adam, concerning the back end! The lights should have been way smaller! The front end is not awful – please have look at the more final version we saw on the fusion blue vert a couple of days ago – I thought it to be nose heavy, though beautiful, but after having seen it from the side its fitting in quite well! At least no one will mistake it anymore as only a car amongst a homogen mass 😉 … thats what it takes to be a Saab – different with understatement and us – feeling good about it 😉

  11. I think that it will look good in the end…. And I agree that this must be a setup given that the guy taking the photos drivs a cab (with the roof down as well). I think that these guys just want to go out with the cars to take the photos…. Can only guess if it was authorized or not….

    The only thing I know is that we have not seen the ss yet….

    One thing that someone might be able to clarify, the twin exhaust – is that only for the aero? It says aero on the back so maybe the slight difference in the front spoiler to the one we saw a few days ago is that that one was a linear? Maybe the linear will get crome in the front, while the aero will be getting LED’s?


  12. I can’t believe how terrible this car looks. The current 9-3 SS Aero is the best looking car on the road, and this is close to the worst. The designers at Saab should be fired, but before firing them, they should be chained in the center of Trollhattan and whipped mercilessly for this atrocity.

    Just kidding! 🙂 but do think it is hideous.

  13. I have to admit that I think it looks a bit odd…

    Maybe I’ll get used to it.

    The front end doesnt look bad on dark cars, but th eblack grille and the blue paint look hideous to me.

    The strangely rounded rear bumper looks kinda odd too…

  14. Agree w/ MDJ and mattlach. I know it’s the unfinished product but given the overall styling direction it’s still very bland and doesnt incorporate enough aero-x design. I love it because it’s a saab but beyond that, not bold or impressive in any way. Can you say ‘boring’?

  15. ctm mentioned the official pics will be shown May 10. Aside from magazines, can anyone confirm this date?

    I am looking to buy a 9-3, and will, I’m just waiting for official MY08 pics. So far I am not liking what I see. I might as well buy an 07′.

  16. I keep going back and forth on the MY08 9-3. I’m hopeful they’ll come out with something that looks distinctive and attractive. Given how many changes they’re supposed to make under the sheet metal, it would be a shame if the car looked the same or worse.

    So far, I like what I see on the sportcombi, but the convertible seems oddly shaped. We’ll see…

  17. I’m not totally sure I’m seeing the same thing as you guys. It looks almost exactly the same as an 07. Look:

    The only real difference with the back end is that the bottom flares out more and is more rounded and bulbous and whatnot.

    As for the front…

    It seems to be the same except more Aero-X-ish and with different airdams.

    Some of you guys are talking like it suddenly looks like a Yugo or something. It’s not all that different. I hope it ends up being more different than this, but I mean, I don’t get the hostility :p

  18. Again,

    Sorry to those who like this but the only real prob i have with this is the front, especially the hood.

    As one has earlier said its too flat and incongruous. The shape of the headlights exaggerate this. If the hood where more rounded and the grille matched to it, thats paydirt. It looks too much like a tupperware lid.

    It also seems to be a mismatch when you consider the shape and lines of the rest of the car, especially the rear.

  19. why not an SPG version? I enclose a quick photoshop of what one could look like using the classic spg wheels. note the rear bumper strip how low it is compared with the front and side? the only color would be black?

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