Maybe this is why people sometimes make unreliable witnesses. One man sees someone drowning and another sees someone waving. It’s all about perception, correct?
So, we have two views in the Saab stand from the New York Auto Show, both from people I haven’t met before. One happy, and one not so happy.
It does go to show that you can’t please all the people all of the time, but some darn good cars always help…
First, a word from Rene:
I went to the NY Auto Show last weekend and the Saab stand was very nice (you can feel very Scandinavian in the middle of that chaos). They have two concepts: the 9-7X from the SEMA and the beautiful 9-5 white wagon (Ethanol). It looks amazing and those white leather seats are very chic! This year (this is my third year visiting this event) they also have a little section with some white tables and white stools, that way the visitors can have a seat and a little break while they were illuminated by the thousands of little lights surrounding the stand. I really like it. They also have the new color (top) for the 9-3, a white car with a camel color top. It looked very nice.
Let me tell you one thing that I’m very disappointed in, and the same time kind of sad. The new 9-5 exterior is terrific. I really like it, the car does not look aged. However the new plastics from the interior are very GM (cheapest of the cheapeast). If you compare with my 1999 Saab 9-5 there is no comparison. The materials that Saab used before were 100 times better than the new ones. I really hope the quality of materials in the new Saab 9-5 will be an important part to consider by Saab designers and executives.
And a contrary point of view, from “Peace Frog”
Just thought I would share my observations after attending the New York Auto Show yesterday with my nine year old son.
Overall, the show was very well done with the highlight being the interactive off-road driving course that Jeep had set up in front of the Javits center. Now that’s how you sell cars. Most of the drivers had smiles on their faces as they conquered the course in a new Jeep. Once inside, the premium brands like Audi, BMW, Lexus, Mercedes, Acura and Volvo all had great representation of their product line with some having exciting displays of their new technology. The majority of these brands had a reasonably good flow of traffic interacting with the merchandise.
As for SAAB, thank heavens we printed a map of the floor layout as we needed that and a pair of binoculars to find the Saab booth. Way beyond the enormous GM display, tucked way back in the corner we found SAAB. The first thing my son asked the girl at the booth was if the Aero X was there. Sorry, not at this show she replied. Wouldn’t make much sense to have the highest profile creation Saab has ever generated, displayed at an auto show being held in the money capital of the world, right? Someone may actually get excited about the brand. Wouldn’t want that now. Instead, we had the “Pimp My Ride” version of the 97x, complete with the built-in boom box. Now that is marketing genius. I wonder how many professionals I saw that day had their eye on that lovely piece of work. From the amount of folks that just walked past it without a second look I would say the chances are zero to none.
Disappointed from the no-show of the Aero X, my son ran over to the 9-3 Aero Convertible with the top down and seemed again excited until he looked inside and asked “Dad, why is the cup holder broken and the shift knob missing”? Followed by “Dad, can we go over and see the Kia’s? Those cars look cool.” Before leaving, he begrudgingly followed me over to the 9-5 Sport-Combi Bio-Powered car on display. Wait, someone was actually sitting inside and seemed interested. Then his buddy walked over and looked inside saying “That interior looks worse than my 99 Saab. Not much has changed, huh?” I think they followed us over to the Kia booth.
Yes, the Kia display put us to shame. The cup holders were not broken and the shift knobs were still intact. That and the neon lighting combined with the rotating platform Kia used held my son’s attention for quite some time. I momentarily lifted my head to see many others around me, mostly adults, who seemed just as excited.
I was left with the thought that we in no way can compare ourselves to “other” premium brands as we are so far behind in design, technology (bluetooth?) and presentation. Sure, we compare well next to a Chevy. Side by side with a BMW or Audi? Sorry guys…no comparison.
Anyone know where the Aero X was? In for repairs maybe?
The Aero-X was at another show in Europe. It stormed the New York show last year.