Saab crash stuff

Only one of these stories is Saab-specific, but both point out how safe your Saab is relative to other cars that don’t wear a Saab badge.

First up – a car that does actually wear a Saab badge thought it isn’t a Saab at its core.

The Saab 9-2x is, of course, based on the Subaru Impreza and Subaru do build safe cars, generally speaking. But from a Saabist’s point of view I was quite concerned when I saw a set of photos on Flickr relating to a rear-ender involving a 9-2x.

Saab 9-2x crash

It looks like a fairly typical rear-end crash and perhaps the occupants suffered a little whiplash as a result.

Unfortunately, another photo I saw in the set at Flickr made me think it ended up being a bit more serious. The photo showed one of the occupants of the vehicle in hospital with a device being used to stabilise his back. The photo wasn’t gruesome or anything, but it’s been removed by the account holder.

It seems the seat back broke with the impact, and this is one of the major contributors to the passenger’s injury. So be thankful not only or your Saab’s clever construction but also for the fact that the seats are not only comfortable, but strong and safe as well.

Saab 9-2x crash

Whilst the photo of the injured passenger has been removed, the photo of the seat itself was still available and you can see where the seat broke in the back section. Dangerous stuff when you’re dealing with people’s spines.

I hope the passenger recovers soon.


This second article, from the Times Online, relates to that news last week about the BMW 5-series performing so pooly in the IIHS crash tests in the USA.

In short, they say that prospective European owners of the ‘5’ shouldn’t be quite so worried as the car passed Euro NCAP tests, attaing much better results along the way. The prime reason the two test results were quite different is that in the US the test is conducted in a manner that simulates an SUV hitting the car in a side impact.

Given that there’s far fewer SUV’s in Europe, NCAP tests simulate a hit from a vehicle more typical on the continent. Consequently, the BMW fares better in the NCAP tests with a 4-star result as opposed to it’s “Marginal” result in the IIHS tests.

Memo to BMW – the Saab 9-3 rates as 5-stars in NCAP and has been a Top Safety Pick in the IIHS tests.

And the 9-5 has long been reputed as one of the safest real-world cars you can buy.

So once again, please remember those Saab engineers in your prayers tonight.

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  1. i saw that photo, too. the injured guy was smiling but the caption said his back was hyper-extended. ouch.

    about 10 years ago i was rear ended at a stoplight in my 1986 honda accord hatchback. the mechanism responsible for reclining/locking the seatback in place broke on impact and my chair went back flat, very hard. i had tissue damage in my neck for several weeks as a result.

    i hope to never need my SAHR, but i am very happy it’s there.

  2. why why doesn’t Saab get moore credit for their safety in articels and testdrives. I dont get it, many people rate that kind of thing very high.

  3. Ebbot: Very good point!

    I think Saab needs to push their safety thinking a lot more in their adds. Even though it’s really cool with the whole “born from jets” thing I think that in the end most people, especially families, will be more attracted to safe cars rather than jetfighter cars. Or something like that…

  4. One caution about comparing Euro NCAP crash test scores: I’ve learned from Swedish TV that one shouldn’t compare the scores achieved if the cars are tested in different classes. That means that the 5-series (executive class) can be compared to the 9-5 (executive class), but shouldn’t be compared to the 9-3 (large family car class).
    9-5 ***** vs 5-series **** – 9-5 is the winner
    9-3 ***** vs 3-series ***** – tie

  5. So BMW doesn’t design its vehicles to perform well in an SUV-related crash, even though they build 2 SUVs. Hmmm.
    I guess that’s why you don’t put your eggs into one basket. Volvo (sorry Swade, I love both Swedes) and Saab have had the formula right since 1981(240 turbo) and 1977(99 Trurbo). You can have performance and safety. Add to that fuel economy, comfort, and style.
    The Germans might do power, but the Swedes do it all…and they do it well.

  6. Aren’t the seats in the 9-2x standard-issue Subaru seats? I’d like to think that the Saab seats with SAHR might have fared better in such a rear-end collision…

  7. I’ve never heard of this happening to Saab seats………oh wait, it still hasn’t! Note to GM-please stop plastering Saab’s badge where it does NOT belong!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. So if the 9-5 is the safest “real-world”, what is the safest “fantasy-world” car? Is that like saying BMW is the best “road-car”? Lord knows they no good as “lawn-cars”.

    Saab needs to do a better job of the safety as the rest of us (sorry David) have gone sick on “BFJs”. One thing that helps me sleep at night (but not while drving on the D.C . Beltway ) is that my two kids (ages 1 and 4) are very safe in the back seat of my 9-3SC and my wife’s 9-5SW. Show us crashing Saabs with the folks walking away (and the dogs too for that matter).

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