Tuesday Snippets

Still sick, but starting to feel a bit better. Today’s DVDs: Seinfeld series 7

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I’ve never looked into it – I find Facebook to be stressful enough – but I wonder if Saab have a presence on Second Life?

I was just thinking about it today as Scott Adams, the guy behind Dilbert – is participating in an event on Second Life where you can, in a virtual sense, kick him in the nuts.

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Ryan’s certainly kicking goals at Saab History this week.

A writeup from Bjorn Berglorf, Saab’s head of Motorsport in Sweden, and recent news that Saab Sonett #4 has been purchased by none other than Rene Hirsch himself.

Rene runs a Saab tuning house that you might have heard of.

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My spam killer has so far fended off 63,500 spam attempts to leave comments at this site. Since July.

There’s only been round 21,000 genuine comments left here in just over 2.5 years!

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There’s been some interesting stuff in the future 9-5 comments thread.

That BMW didn’t sell a 4-cylinder in the US was news to me, as was the fact that so many of their non-US sales are four cylinders (but then again, I guess I don’t tend to think of diesels as 4-cylinders, so on reflection it seems to make perfect sense).

There’s a piece in the New York Times today (reg reqd) about car manufacturers needing to offer more efficient models. It’s not their first editorial on this subject but this one seemed fairly well reasoned. Saab actually got a mention as a pioneer in turbocharging, too.

Given the proliferation of comments about needing efficient models as well as bigger models, it seems there may be a market for something below the 2.0T there, and Saab’s perfectly placed to do just that if they’re given the right technology (i.e. direct injection). Of course, the American public’s got to want to buy them, too.

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Another issue that’s been well covered in recent comments is the whole Born From Jets and Move Your Mind argument.

And again, there’s a piece in the press that mentions Saab and vehicle branding.

Talondariel linked to a good Youtube clip that shows the beginnings of BFJ and I agree, it’s a good clip. But it’s two minutes long and Saab can’t be showing two-minute ads on TV. Cut it down to 30 seconds and I’m afraid to say it, but I’m finding it a little cheezy.

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5 Comments

  1. at the end, the commercial has the griffin badge with the loops inside. definitely a few years old. the jets look more exciting than the cars. the upstaging creates a disconnect for me.

    (…used to love “seinfeld.” not anymore…. kkk-kramer plus they treat saabs like a p-o-s on the show.)

  2. You need to get Seinfeld season 9. That’s the season with the episode The Puerto Rican Day with the classic line, “I’m glad I cut you off. Black Saab rules!

    I recently read an article in Wired magazine that Second Life is deserted. It’s like a ghost town. Despite all the hype nobody actually goes there. You might remember last year (I think) the Swedish Embassy opened a presence in Second Life too.

    About the BMWs in the U.S., I didn’t even know BMW made anything smaller than an inline-6-cylinder engine. To find out that not only do they make a 4-cylinder, but that the sales of 4-cylinders worldwide exceed sales of the I6 was surprising to me to say the least! For some reason European manufacturers don’t bring the bottom portions of their product line for sale in the U.S. Even Saab doesn’t sell the 1.8t or 1.8T cars in the U.S. Nor do they or have they ever offered the 2.0T 9⁵ here. Maybe they figure people aren’t going to buy the “economy model” of a car at that price point and those cars would never sell in the U.S. It’s hard enough to sell an “entry luxury” or “premium” car in the U.S. without at least a 6-cylinder engine in it (thanks, BMW!)…

    I’m afraid the “proliferation” of comments about Saab needing more economical models may just be the case of a few loud people (myself included) calling for it. I’d venture to say that the majority of Saabers have fuel economy way down on the list of concerns regarding their cars.

    However, that being said, the price of crude oil futures closed at an all-time high yesterday. A barrel of light sweet crude for December delivery closed over $93. That’s an all-time high even when adjusting for inflation, surpassing the previous high, set back in 1980 when adjusted for inflation. I’ve read one economist surmising that if the price of oil stays around this price by next summer the price of a gallon of gasoline in the U.S. will be over $4 per gallon. If this happens I think that Saab will start selling a lot more cars as people get out of their SUVs and into more fuel-efficient and safe Saab combis. At least that’s my hope.

    I read a few years ago that $4 a gallon of gasoline is the “tipping point” in this country where people actually actively work to reduce their consumption so demand will drop (as will the price as demand drops). People will start to consider fuel economy when purchasing new cars, will start carpooling more, and will try to look at alternate transportation means such as public transportation. I think a high gasoline price would actually be a GOOD thing overall.

    Regarding that commercial, I think that’s the best BFJ commercial I’ve seen. I really liked it and didn’t find it cheesy at all. Much less cheesy than the ads which actually make their way to the air. Though this commercial is quite long it would work in movie theaters before the film. It used to be they only had coming attractions for upcoming films before the feature presentation at the theater and now you have to sit through 10 minutes of commercials before the coming attractions air. That’s where I first saw that excellent Jaguar commercial I keep raving about here in comments. It was an extended version in the theater (probably around two minutes long). I then later saw the same commercial on TV cut to the usual 30 seconds. It’s still good. The only thing cheesy about the Saab commercial above is how the narrator kept having to tiptoe around saying “they” and “we” because the aircraft firm is now separate from the car company and then they had to show the disclaimer at the end. I think the difference between the television commercials we see for BFJ and this one is that on the TV commercials they use a generic CGI fighter that looks like a Gripen, but it’s slightly different. That way they get around trademark issues with Saab Aerospace. It’s too bad they don’t get license to use an actual Gripen in the ads. It would look less fake and cheesy. The commercials look like a bad video game to me.

  3. Beat me to it, Gripen! I was just about to say how this would be perfect for those pre-preview movie slots… I kinda’ like seeing the product commercials while your sitting there waiting for the movie to start. It’s better than the random facts/questions thing that some theaters do.

  4. I read a few years ago that $4 a gallon of gasoline is the “tipping point” in this country where people actually actively work to reduce their consumption so demand will drop (as will the price as demand drops). People will start to consider fuel economy when purchasing new cars, will start carpooling more, and will try to look at alternate transportation means such as public transportation. I think a high gasoline price would actually be a GOOD thing overall.
    –1985 Gripen.

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    odd thing, though, is that demand has a funny way of expanding to increased capacity. so, if there were an increase in people riding motorcycles, there’d probably also be an increase in suvs and heavy trucks, as they’d “absorb” the consumption savings from the motorcycles. the only way for “reduced demand” to work would be for everyone to conserve. …not to point fingers, but i don’t see that coming from, say, china. my conservation will be nullified by someone else’s gluttony.

    now, to bring saab (or owning and/or buying one) into the picture so that the thread isn’t just a philosophical meandering on my part. i hope to buy nothing short of a 2.8litre version because i want the power, which sacrifices good fuel economy. why this preference?

    a. i’m tired of downshifting into 3d or, sometimes, 2d gear when driving in the mountains;

    b. i’m tired of $15,000 cars eating my lunch because my 2.3liter, only has 150hp;

    c. i don’t wanna drop $30k+ and only get to 210hp. an increase of 60hp (from what have) is not worth that price; and

    d. having a car with great fuel mileage and meager performance would feel like punishment, like being able to go to the prom, but only with my best friend’s sister.

    so, let the price get to $4.00, $5.00, $6.00, whatever. the philosophy of more powerful and bigger automobiles has taken over the psyche of ownership; and like a gold rush, the “more” mentality won’t stop until there are no more resources with which to feed it, unfortunately. so a fuel price hike will probably have a negligible effect on consumption.

    it’s a cruel irony, like many a “seinfeld” skit, that conserving oil doesn’t necessarily prolong its availability.