OK, this one doesn’t strictly fit in with the “I drove a ….” category, but I didn’t know where else to put it. And I’d find it very hard to print if it denigrated Alfas at all anyway, given my love for them.
But it is a good Saab story and shows how they’ve offered the right car in the right market with the right combination of practicality and importantly, performance.
This comes from TD, and you’ll pick up on where he’s from as you read on…..
I have been an avid Alfa-driver since “for ever” and owner since 2001. I’m now into my second Alfa, after the first was totalled on a highway when someone in a car in front of me had dropped a wheel (rim and all) onto the grey stuff wheels are supposed to roll on – attached to a car, not laying down flat.
Second Alfa is only half true, as I also have an Alfetta from 1979, that is more of a “drive it till it blows” hobby-car than anything else.
Then several things happened:
1. Sweden decided to give large discounts to drivers of “eco-cars”;
2. Stockholm (re-) introduced the congestion charges;
3. My Alfa 156 Ti turned 3 y.o;
4. I had a second child (in March)
5. The company I work for put a new lease-plan into place.
With all that in mind, I decided to go to my runner-up favorite brand, Saab. Mainly because Saab can give me a car that not only fills all of the criteria above, but also a car which is quite a lot more comfortable than the super-sporty 156, and not to mention roomy boot.
So, I went to the local Saab dealer and ordered myself a new Saab. A 2008 9-3 Vector Active 2.0T Biopower with all but three options ticked (curve lights, integrated BT and navigation). The color was chosen in close “cooperation” with trollhattansaab: I chose Snow Silver after reading the posts and seeing the images. (Originally we had chosen red).
Now, what would I have done had I not lived in Stockholm? I would most likely have chosen to switch cars then too, but opted for an Aero TTiD – a choice the politicians in Stockholm have made all but impossible due to the congestion charge model.
What am I then missing most from the Aero? Simple: The very very nice aluminum trim around the fog-lights. I know several posters on trollhattansaab are not so fond of them. All I have to say to them is: Get yourself a 9-3 non-Aero – problem solved!
For the rest of us who like the trims (=me)….
TD attached a picture of his new car, built from Saab Sweden’s website as it hadn’t arrived when he wrote to me. And just for fun, I’ve sourced a shot of a 156 as well.
First the 9-3, which is looking sensational from the website….
And the Alfa, with an almost unfortunate number plate, but still beautiful regardless. Ah, Italians….