Friday Snippets

Volvo PHEVOvlov are going to unveil a plug-in hybrid concept in Frankfurt.

Saab had a plug-in concept car last year, until it’s plug was pulled at the last minute.

Trollhattan Saab will be in Frankfurt and so will Bob Lutz. It’s so tempting to ask the question, but what are the chances of getting a straight answer?

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Ryan over at Saab History has been very busy of late and he intends for SaabUSA to be busy as well.

He’s set some XWD goals for them to meet and I think he means business.

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This is Chrysler news, but it just seems too significant to not mention. No specific link as it came via an email but i’m sure you’ll find it on Automotive News and just about every other news source in the next few hours.

Jim Press, who’s been the head of Toyota for years now and has worked for Toyota for 37 years, has just quit to join Chrysler. That just seems so strange. He must be seriously in need of a challenge.

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I posted some photos from the Saab company’s 70th Anniversary celebrations last week. I’ve just picked up another one. That initial set was taken on an overcast day, but this one looks like it was shot on a crystal clear day.

I just love those shapes.

Saab jets

Born from jets indeed. I tell ya, if Saab Automobile can get their car advertising to invoke even half the inspiration that this photo does on it’s own then they’ll be just fine.

Hang the whole idea of corporate parts, just put jet bits into each car and jet-inspired badging (I love my Viggen badge). Make them as jetty as possible in ergonmics and performance. That’s such a cool shot.

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Speaking of Saab ergonomics, a site called Machine Design, which I haven’t heard of before, does car reviews. Every time I think I’ve done the last MY2007 review it seems another one pops up.

Here’s Machine Design on the Saab 9-3 SportCombi:

Inside, eight-way leather seats and a tilting, telescoping steering wheel let you get truly comfortable. The seats are also heated and cooled to help take the edge off those weather extremes. The Swedish ergonomics, like the ignition in the console between the front seats, take a bit to get used to. But once you do, you wonder why other carmakers aren’t following suit.

I have firmly believed for a very long time now that Saab have an incredible amount to offer most motorists, and their parent company, GM. More bums on seats. That’s what they need.

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One thing I’d like to add to the sidebar of the site is a “Best of Trollhattan” list with some of the best posts here. I’ve already picked out a few, but if you’ve got a favourite post then add it to the list via a note in comments. You can look them up in the archives or drop a pretty strong hint on the subject matter and hopefully I’ll be able to find it.

My initial picks after a brief look through:

Is a Saab for you?

Saab Factory Tour

An open letter to Steve Shannon

Sorting it out

Did GM Screw Saab’s Hybrid?, in conjunction with The Smoking Gun

The Saabiest Saab

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12 Comments

  1. Appears to be the Ovlov C30 hatch model from this angle. Interesting platform to build as a plug-in. Guess Saab needs the 9-1 first in order to enter that venue, as I belive the 9-3’s weight poses a challenge to the smaller electric engines being used.

  2. I would like for you to post that link of the scanned MY2008 9-3 brochure that we were able to drool through in your “2008 Saab 9-3, Click Here” link that you have in the upper right corner of the page – thanks for the feedback request!

  3. Dan, the 2008 click here image links to the 2008 Saab 9-3 archive, which contains all posts about the 2008 Saab 9-3. The post about the brochure is included, you just need to scroll through and you’ll find it there.

  4. I read at Autobloggreen back in February that ovloV intended to show a plug-in diesel hybrid version of the C30 to work much like the GM E-Flex platform at an auto show in Shanghai later this year.

    GM was going to get the jump on them by debuting the plug-in diesel-powered E-Flex (cousin to the Chevy Volt) as an Opel at Frankfurt.

    I wonder if ovloV moved the debut of the C30 hybrid up to Frankfurt to try and rain on GM’s parade.

    Regarding that Machine Design review I have to point out that the 9-3 does not and never has had the option of “cooled” (ventilated) seats. That option has always been exclusive to the 9-5, which innovated the feature now found in many other luxury automobiles. Another first for SAAB!

  5. Oh great. Now reading the comments I see I’m only the third person to point out the seats thing. I’ll just go crawl under this rock here… 🙂

  6. After reading the article on ovloV’s ReCharge series hybrid they’re going to have at Frankfurt, it appears to be different than the diesel one they had (have?) slated for Shanghai. The one at Frankfurt isn’t diesel, it’s flex-fuel (ethanol/gasoline). So the one at Frankfurt is ovloV’s alternative to the Chevy Volt e-Flex and the one at Shanghai will be ovloV’s answer to the Opel e-Flex.

    How does ovloV get all this development money from Ford to create this stuff? What could SAAB do with the same kind of money from GM?

  7. Grip: (Re: Ovlov’s extra money) That’s what happens when you dump Jaguar and Aston Martin… 🙂

    Why can’t GM do the same to Caddy? (wishful thinking, I know, and I know the obvious answer. But just think for a moment what Saab could do with freed up revenue from a Caddy sale. Indulging, isn’t it?) *evil grin*

  8. Swade,

    maybe its just me but, I don’t really like the whole overt claims of engineering brilliance based on Saabs history making military hardware. I know that they’re separate companies now , that they also make civilian jets and that the point is really about having a fresh approach to car design but……..the planes & hardware are designed to kill people and thats not cool.

    Why not:

    Saab….born from trucks?

    Or maybe i’m just thinking about it too much.

  9. I saw the C30 plug in bit the other day too. I was kind of disgusted to see Volvo get out ahead of us with the plug-in. That would have been great and needed headlines for Saab, especially because it would have shown real genuine logical technical leadership that has been lacking.

    However, I guess I won’t complain too much… Ford dumped their less profitable European luxury brands to fund their new technology. If GM did the same thing they’d dump Saab to fund the stinkin’ Volt.

    Has anyone noticed what kind of cash is going into the new ad campaign for the Chevy Malibu?

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