Saab 9-5 future pics

Please note, this whole story deals with CGI’s only. They are not real photos, but computer generated images based on what CGI artists have learned about the car.


I hinted a little while ago at some pictures that were coming up in Auto Motor and Sport magazine from Sweden.

I declined to publish what I’d seen of them as they hadn’t been published online yet. But now the cat’s out of the bag….

A UK site with a decidedly Italian bent, Infomotori, has published three images, two of which I saw in the AM&S file. The third image (3/4 rear shot) is actually a bit older and I think I first saw it as an image in Autocar. It’s been shown here before, in any case.

I’ll let you click through for all three, but here’s the one that I think might be the most controversial:


The front 3/4 and rear 3/4 cgi’s of this car look great, but I’m left wondering about this side profile. Something about the back just doesn’t quite do it for me. It grows on me a little every time I see it, but still….

Ah, well. They’re just cgi’s and external ones at that. I’m sure Saab’s finest will put the touches on that it needs.


Enough about the cgi’s….

Many Saab dealers will be converging on Sweden next month for a conference and whilst they’re there they will see in-the-metal mockups of the next 9-5. Reactions will be interesting to say the least.

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  1. It just doesn’t remind me of a 9-5… u know?

    IT doesn’t neceserily look bad, a bit lexus-ish… but doesn’t look like a 9-5…

  2. A puzzle.
    I’ve just visited the Saab Island webpage (don’t ask why, it was just an impulse…) From what I can see there, people in Island can still order a brand new pre-facelift 9-5. How is it possible? Is it still produced for the Islandic (?) market or does their webpage needs upgrading?

  3. Well… The 9-5 of today doesn’t look like the old 9000, so I don’t think that’s problem. They have to do *something* and find their only style with the large sedan. I don’t like them to just copy Audi or Volvo or BMW.

    The rear end of a car with hatch-profile is always difficult because of the big sheets of metal one could end up with. It easy to have look clumsy.

  4. It’s a strange mixture creation.
    The “C”-pillar is tooo bold, small triangle window behind the rear door is missing.
    The front is a slightly modified 9-3.
    The whole rear looks too heavy.

  5. @bart, the page is not updated. The company Ingvar Helgason ( hardly selling any Saabs in Iceland. I do not exactly know that happend but in the 80s Saabs used to be more popolar on that very island than today.

    To the 9-5 drawing: I think it is a bad idea to have a black A-pillar. All of the new small cars, like Suzuki Swift and this Eastern European Skoda Fabia (VW-derivate) are desined around a black A-pillar. So, people would think, Saab has copied that in Eastern Europe or Asia. At least in Europe.

  6. I think these mockups looks fabulous. I’m not sure about the front 3/4 view from the rear doors back, but everything in front is awesome.

    The profile is also superb, something a bit different. And I absolutely ADORE the rear 3/4 view, stunning!!

    Saab would be onto a winner here.

    And to those that are saying that it doesn’t look like a 9-5, not many can get away with the same shape for so long, look at Jaguar. The only company to really manage it successfully is Porsche, and even then people still complain that the generations are begining to look a little TOO similar. Porsche Boxster for example.

    Sticking to old lines has almost killed Jaguar, their new S-Type replacement could be too little too late.

    Saab need to progress, or they will die a lingering death. This new design shows a bold new direction, and one that will certainly tempt buyers away from BMW and Audi, well……as long as the quality is up there too.

  7. Totally agree Kaz. Saab needs to find new fans as well as appeal to existing buyers. Its modern and more importantly it looks like a strong car as well as being one.

  8. With this kind of designs (which is a raw PS work only, just like mine was with the 9-3 hatch) Saab may win new fans but surely will loose many existing fans…

  9. The concept from other angles looks great. However
    the side view needs some tweaking. Maybe a little more of a conventional touch. I am no pro at designing, but maybe a lower beltline will help. the windows, particularly the passengers side windows are a bit smallish.

  10. Bleurgh. Like most car designs these days the bonnet is too high for my tastes. They design them to look okay with massive wheels and they end up looking daft with more normal sized ones.

    The back end is atrocious. Either the wedge goes too high giving it a huge arse, or the roof is too squashed down.

  11. Sorry Gareth, you’re wrong on the reason for the high bonnets on cars now-a-days.

    The reason manufacturers are moving that way is because of the EU and the strict pedestrian protection laws. No choice unfortunately, but alas, it is going to be this way for some time for all cars selling in volume in Europe.

  12. This looks alot like the picture Saab USA was floating around at a dealer meeting a while back. Hopefully they can do something with the rear quarter…..It won’t sell here in the US. If it is a hatchback, then no need for a wagon but my understanding is that there will be a wagon…so who knows for sure…Afterall it’s GM….

  13. Could it be that Saab is going to BRING BACK THE HATCH?

    On a side note, the 9-1 needs to be a modern 99 or classic 900. Think retro ala Mini Cooper and the new Fiat 500. Retro is STILL in, and selling!

  14. Dan, on the 9-1 I recently said the same thing. 900 fans need to have their patience rewarded with a spiritual sucessor to the 900. BUT Saab needs to develop a new design direction too. Kaz is spot on with the high bonnet line and to be honest Saab must make pedestrian safety a priority to be seen as a truly responsible company.

  15. Much as above, love front and rear 3/4 views, pretty clumsy side profile towards rear, but then this is only early cgi. Actually don’t think that profile cgi is from the same suite as rear much bulkier than the rear shot?
    Stunning departure from upright architecture of 9-5 yet clearly ‘saab’.
    Looks promising contender for A6 and 5.

  16. Well, the Vauxhall / Opel ‘Signum’ was a short-lived and unloved car, and this 9-5 looks like it could be based on that.

    The rear does look heavy, and it looks as though they may return to the hatch with this, if, of course, this is it, which it probably isn’t.

    That said, I quite like it. The rear has the look of old Tatraplans. No bad thing.

    Might be quite good if they can stop their cars rattling and squeaking after they’ve done a few miles. πŸ˜‰

  17. it looks very much like a hatch! but 9-5 probably won’t be… in fact, for the sake of saab’s sales in the USA…

    otherwise, bring it on…

    that picture looks like more of a 7 series, a8 size car doesn’t it?

  18. Since we are getting high bonnets from now on (even though they apparently swap a lower risk of broken legs for a higher risk of shattered knees), perhaps the 9-1 should look like a two-stroke Saab.
    Bring back the teardrop.

    I think the front of the new 9-5 looks too heavy from the side.

  19. everyone talks about the hatch, me i’m an estate man so it’s not too much of a worry for myself. but how about a hatch and boot just like the mondeo always has been. the cars look the same as each other but you get to choose how big you want the boot door to be. just a thought.

  20. Bernard, the high bonnet is not to stop broken legs but is designed to prevent children being killed. The raised line is designed to provide clearance between the softer bonnet and the harder engine block below. Jaguar have got around the problem by having a pop up bonnet on the XK.

    The 9-0, if Saab would ever think about it, should echo the 2 strokers. The FIAT 500 in this months Car looks fantastic and Saab have access to the platform.

  21. If SAAB were going to offer a hatch again I sure don’t think they’d start with their upscale “flagship” model. I’m pretty sure the 9-1 will be offered as a hatch (or maybe only as a wagon and notchback like the Subaru WRX…), and I was HOPING the 9-3 would offer at hatch variant, but I’d be very surprised if the 9-5 were even offered with a hatch option, let alone come standard with one.

    I think what we’re seeing at the rear is an emulation of the Aero-X rear “design language”. The Aero-X was not a true hatch either.×768.jpg

    I think too many compromises would have to be made to the handling in order to make a large car like the 9-5 into a hatchback. Not only that, like Saaboy pointed out above, I think USA sales of the 9-5 would be horrid if it were offered as a hatch, I’m sorry to say.

    The side profile Photoshop reminds me of the Dodge Magnum Wagon, for some reason:

  22. As someone anxiously awaiting the next 9-5, I must say that I just don’t like it enough. The rear looks ridiculous from the side. The front is nice and the rear is nice but, that side profile… UGLY.

    Judging on Saab’s history (current 9-5 not included)I can safely say that the back will not look like that.

  23. A few comments. Most people on the forum apper to like the front and rear, with the side being up for discussion. The problem with the side is not the side, but how they have done the pictures. If you look at the rear pics, you will see that that is not a hatch, but has an ordinary trunk space (flat surface but not a big opening / maybe the roumor of a new opening comes from this where you will be able to open it as a hatch as well).

    Then the sedan will be a combined hatch, with the combi being the addition to the sedan.

  24. I am seriously concerned about the blacked out A-pillar more than anything else right now. I am not concerned about others thinking saab is copying the europeans or asians, I simply think it looks really bad. As far as I can tell, it only exists so that it resembles the lack of A-pillar on the aero-x.

    I believe they should simply try to make the A-pillar as narrow as possible. On my 900, the painted part is narrow, but the A-pillar itself is much larger (another two widths or so)… so really, if it is structurally possible, it could be reduced dramatically without changing the appearance of the car.

  25. I think the beltline is too straight, it should be a graceful curve. This looks a bit too much likc the Volt. Also, if that’s not a hatch, then the rear is definitely a mistake.

  26. Erek, know what you’re saying and having seen a new suzuki Swift and new Sloda Favia, I can see the trend – but hey, this is a serious exec contender we’re hoping for here – the chances that anyone in that market even knowsor cares what those budget cars look like is not going to matter at all. I like the blacked out pillars and think it is a good direction for Saab and more importantly creates a visual differentiator from the german clones.

  27. Having said that the front view looks great (except for the cheesy Skoda look-a-like blacked-out A-pillar)as it looks like the 08 9-3 which is no bad thing, the rear end looks classy but needs “Saabifying” but that side view is clearly a TOTAL afterthought – just gouge my eyes out now please! CGI or not as a complete package that thing is even uglier than the current 9-5!!

    In Germany this car would be the 9-Danke.

    Rival for Merc CLS, Aston Martin or Porsche Pamanera, oh puh-leeze…. give-me-a-break! Is someone “extracting the urine”? I wet myself laughing when I read that!!

    I think you get the gist of what I am trying to say here, ladies and gentlemen.

  28. I love this photo/illustration. It looks strong, fast, Saab-ish and chic. I think ANY brand right now is considering a hatch instead of sedan, due to the pressure to satisfy those with an addiction to their sport UTILITY vehicles. Thus, Saab especially should go for it however, with a wagon variant, as well. If it has half this much design moxie, I’ll be surprised but delighted.

  29. It looks like some unprofessional CGIs. Actually, they are 3 slightly different cars, I mean, they are inconsistent.
    If you look at the rear 3/4 and compare it with the profile, the rear lights are different, they are more narrow on the rear 3/4. There is a curve on the profile separating the bumper from the body and starting at the bottom of the rear light (the position
    is wrong, it should start on the very corner of the light), this curve is missing on the rear 3/4.
    It seems to me that these CGIs made by 3 different people.
    Also, the bonnet level on the rear 3/4 looks much lower than on the profile.
    On the 3/4 there is a strip on the right side of the bumper and 2 parking radar sensors, which are totally missing on the left side.
    So, don’t expect anything based on these CGIs, they are amateur PS works only.

  30. The A pillar was “stolen” from Mini. Suzuki and Skoda just copied it. Saab needs to make challenging design and get some attention, not just rehash the past.

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