The price of the XWD

There’s been a few questions coming in about pricing for XWD-equipped Saabs. Some have come to me privately via email and some have come through comments.

Looking through my archive again, I fear that I may have said the wrong thing in a few emails to people and in a recent post here on the site. So allow me to correct things to the best of my knowledge.

The following is for US models only, but should be reasonable transferable to other markets, in principal at least, if not in amounts.

US pricing for the 2008 Saab 9-3 range was mentioned here some time ago. As far as XWD is concerned, what we’re interested in is the price of the Aero model, front wheel drive with 255hp. That’s listed as follows:

Saab 9-3 Sedan Aero – $34,620

Saab 9-3 SportCombi Aero – $35,520

I don’t think I’ve heard any official word on this yet, but Edmunds reported that the XWD version of the Aero would bring a $2,000 premium on this cost. For your extra $2K, it’s believed that you get the 280hp tune and the basic XWD system.

When I say the ‘basic XWD system’ I mean the one without the eLSD. This basic system will shift your power front to back, but it’s my understanding that it won’t shift the rear wheel power side to side – that’s the role of the eLSD.

It’s unclear at this point how much extra the eLSD will cost on top of the Aero XWD version.


The Turbo X is a limited edition launch vehicle for XWD and features the full XWD system, including the eLSD, as standard. Pricing for this model has not been released yet.


I hope that clears everything up and I apologise if anyone’s been misled.

In any event, the effect of this different price calculation should be pretty minimal and not too far off compared with what I’ve stated elsewhere recently. The only difference factor will be the price of the eLSD, which we don’t know yet.

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  1. I’m not sure, but I wonder whether the Areo model with XWD will be 255 HP. A couple of days ago I recieved a copy of SAAB Magazine ( from Saab because I’m an owner).
    On the back page it lists the 2008 Saab range as 210 up for the 2.0T and 255 HP for the Aero (no mention of the AWD.)
    It’s my hope the the the 280 HP engine is not being reserved for the “black turbo” model. I guess at this point it’s just “wait and see”.

  2. Sorry about the bad grammar and repeated words, I’m trying to use my “iPhone”, instead off waiting tip I get home.

    Next time I’ll use my Mac.

  3. There’s no mention of the XWD yet in that brochure because the system isn’t available yet. The info here is pre-release and gathered from various bits and pieces, including some inside info sent to me a while ago.

    255hp for 2WD and 280hp for XWD. I’m pretty sure that much has been released in terms of official Saab info.

  4. Gripen is going to have a field day with this, I’m sure, but $34.6k + 2k = $36.6 for a sub-300hp car without eLSD.

    Am I the only one who thinks Saab is crazy?

    and that $36.6 isn’t for the black turbo either – that’s just for the “normal” XWD.

    Did I miss something? I must not be reading all of this right….

  5. Joemama, you’re missing the deals that Saab will likely give out…. But it’s still seems a little high to me too… Especially since I’m trying to keep the price down for my purchase in Feb/March…. if the price for XWD with eLSD -why would you not get it?? – is going to be $38.6 k then I might not be purchasing till later in the 08 year 🙁

  6. Yeah, Joemama – you’re rght about the pricing. But at the end of the day half the premium’s in the badge – do you want to drive a Saab, or do you want to drive a Germ/Japo me-too?

    Every Saab owner supports the brand’s “exclusivity” – we have all bought Saabs when for a comparative price we could have picked something “much better” (according to the motoring press) – but also much more mainstream.

    I’ll die in an overpriced Saab over an overpriced Nissan (Infiniti), Toyota (Lexus) or Skoda (Audi). And you pay a premium for that luxury.

  7. Maybe you should head on over to Hirsch and see what a horsepower upgrade from them costs. It’s factory backed, just like this one from Saab will be. Then try to find an XWD upgrade and see how much that costs.

    $2000 for an all-new AWD system and a higher output tune is bargain stuff if you ask me. If anyone buys the 2WD Aero (other than purely because it’s the full extent of their financial resources) then they’d need their head read.

    Just my 0.02c

  8. It was part of the presentation at the U.S. 9³ media debut that XWD will add USD2K to the price of the Aero.

    It was said pricing will be:
    $28,385 for the 2.0T sedan
    add $900 for the Sport Combi
    add $2,000 for XWD

    That’s about as “official” as it gets, coming straight from SAAB USA President Steve Shannon’s mouth.

  9. Swade, if I were in the market for a new SAAB I’d be looking at a FWD Aero. Why? Because I don’t ever plan to have my car on a track and we never get snow and rarely get rain where I live. I just don’t need the extra horsepower (worse fuel economy) and traction the XWD buys me. I’d be perfectly happy with a 255 bhp FWD SAAB. I wouldn’t be happy spending $35K for it though. That’s a bit high, IMHO.

    I’d rather try to score a 260 bhp FWD 9⁵ Aero Sport Combi if I could get one at a discount price. 🙂

  10. “I just don’t need the extra horsepower (worse fuel economy) and traction the XWD buys me”

    This is exactly where TTiD comes in. They really should think about using 150hp and 180hp diesel versions with XWD. Quickly. It´d be very competitive in it´s class.

  11. Gripen,

    Not sure about the quotes there. XWD isn’t coming for 2.0T for a little while yet, right?

    And on your second comment there – if I didn’t need or want XWD then I’d be going for the 2.0T. I was just reflecting on it this morning. That engine was the Aero engine just a couple of years ago. It’s a cracker and if I didn’t need XWD then it’d definitely be my choice.

    My contention regarding V6+XWD vs V6 alone is due mostly to re-sale. I wouldn’t “need” it for safe driving here, either. I’d like it for the twisties, though. And it’d likely hold it’s value a bit better, I think.

  12. MarkoA: unfortunately the TTiD isn’t an option for me. I live in California (U.S.A.). 🙁

    Swade: yeah, I wrote this stuff verbatim, and it didn’t occur to me at the time he didn’t give the price for the Aero, which would be required for XWD. It was quite a while after the point in the presentation where he stated that XWD would only be available on the Aero this year and the 2.0T in 2009.

    One of the draws of the Aero to me is the look. You get the lowered suspension and the body kits you don’t get on the 2.0T. The Aero looks so much sweeter than the 2.0T.

    When we bought my wife’s 2001 9³ base (I think it was before they were calling it “Linear”) I didn’t want to spend a little extra to get the SE model (which I think they later called “Vector” or “Arc” or something) because I didn’t think that the HOT engine or the upgraded audio or the body kit was worth the extra money. I later regretted that decision. The LPT feels positively pokey (especially after driving the current SAABs), I’ve upgraded the audio on my own to SE spec (it still sucks though), and I’m not satisfied with the boring look w/o the body kit (skirts) the SE provided. I don’t want to make that same mistake twice.

    You do make a good point though about the V6. I could definitely do without that (I’m really unimpressed with its fuel economy, or lack thereof). I’d rather get a 2.0T but that body kit…! Too bad they aren’t doing the Anniversary Edition thing again this year where you can get the Aero “look” on the 2.0T…

    I understand your point, but trying to retain resale value in a new car (particularly a SAAB) is an effort in futility, I’m afraid. 🙁

  13. Here is another way of looking at it. For the US price of an automatic ($1,350) and metallic paint ($550), you are only $100 away from XWD instead… Looks like a bargain to me!

  14. David – not really. While I see your point, most people want an automatic and almost all paints are metallic, so it’s still 2 grand on top of that.

  15. I personally miss the manual in my 03 9-3 SS since it was replaced by a 60th anniversary 9-3 convt with an automatic. Besides, if I am not mistaken, the extra 25 hp in the Aero XWD is only with the manual.

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