SAAB Reviews

SAAB left these shores in 2013 after the parent company, General Motors, got into difficulties in the Global Financial Crisis, and subsequent attempts to keep it alive also failed. Chinese interests now own the Swedish brand and plan to return to carmaking in the future.

Latest SAAB reviews

Saab 's hopes of a phoenix-like rise from the ashes rest squarely on two cars - the 9-5 Vector four cylinder in diesel and petrol and V6 petrol Aero. Both are built on a GM platform and use GM underpinnings. VALUE The Aero is a $94,900 competitor for the likes of BMW 5-Series, E-Class Benz and Audi A6. Whether punters will chance their hundred grand on a Saab is an interesting question. DESIGN It's an...Read more
It wasn't so long ago that Saab was for all intents and purposes dead in the water. Dumped by General Motors during the financial crisis, it was eventually bailed out by German sports car maker Spyker which has in turn joined with a Chinese company Hawtai Motor Group with a guarantee of substantial financial support in return for shared technology. It's all a bit confusing really, apart from the fact that Saab is back and...Read more
It has been a long time since I've driven a Saab and even longer since I've driven one I liked. So long, in fact, that I can't really remember if there was one at all. Under the stewardship of GM, the cars became bad, dull or hopelessly outdated. The previous 9-5 was a symptom of that regime. It lacked the upgrades needed to keep it relevant and fell behind the competition. DESIGN This car has...Read more
THIS is a handsome, well-mannered machine for the more genteel, more mature outdoors type. Launched in Europe in early 2009 and based around Saab 's 9-3 Combi, the X adds all-wheel drive, a little extra ground clearance plus some exterior cues to distinguish the wagon from stablemates. It is, says Saab designers, the machine for those who eschew traditional SUV styles; more Timberland than Blundstone perhaps. And if anyone can combine practical solutions for conquering...Read more
Looking for the “real you” usually involves selling the family wagon and buying a red convertible. However, after your toupee has been torn from your head, you have been stared and pointed at by giggling schoolgirls, and you have been drenched in the rain when the roof has refused to return to its raised position, you will be ready to sell your convertible and try something else. At this stage you realise you have wasted...Read more
Actually, it's something I've never done in our wide, brown land. Neither is sitting beside a 60- something crazy man; as he flings a Saab 9-3 Turbo X along a snow-covered forest track at close to 200km/h with nothing but a wall of snow between us and a disastrous trip into the trees. Yet this is all everyday stuff for one-time rally champion Per Eklund and the team from Saab Ice Experience. Every year, they...Read more
With only two models on offer, the Swedish brand sold just 1862 cars last year. A small slice of the market, but not for lack of choice within the range. Within the two model range — 9-3 and 9-5 — there are diesel, petrol and ethanol BioPower options, as well as the choice of a sedan, wagon or convertible body styles. Without a definite all-new model on the horizon, the ageing 9-3 recently had a...Read more
Thanks to former US presidential candidate Al Gore, global warming is dinner party conversation these days. Diminishing oil reserves have also focused attention on fuel economy and emissions, leading to Swedish carmaker Saab expanding its bioethanol engines across its local range. The new 9-3 range now includes a bioethanol model, which joins the TiD diesel or turbocharged petrol four and V6 engines. The 9-3 BioPower E85 joins the 9-5 BioPower, which has also just gone...Read more
Saab has changed more than 2000 things about the new model range to meet massive sales expectations. While the platform remains, the biggest news is the addition of all-wheel-drive. Given Saab's ability and penchant for loads of torque and front-wheel-drive. There are a number of models in the brand's history that could have warranted AWD ; involuntary lane-change in a Viggen anyone? but it's here now. Destined for our shores early next year, the XWD...Read more
Called the 9-3 TiD, it comes with a six-speed manual as standard or optional six-speed automatic. The auto has sequential manual change mode. Prices start at $44,990 for the manual sedan, subject of this review. The twin cam engine is a lift from General Motors Opel operation in Europe and can be found in the Holden Astra manual diesel. It is good for 110kW/320Nm output – plenty to push the sedan along at a rapid...Read more
They’ve been running cars on ethanol for years without incident in South America. But apart from adding a small quantity of the stuff to our unleaded petrol it really hasn’t taken off here yet. And even this small quantity has not been without controversy, with claims that it can damage engines. That could all change, however, with the arrival of Saab’s BioPower cars, designed to run specifically on ethanol – led by the Saab 9-5...Read more
Generally, I’m in favour of trying the local delicacies in a foreign country, but a plate of hair-rings (sometimes spelled “herrings”) or some briney kippers is enough to turn anyone’s gills the colour of mushy peas. The Swedes are also very Green people, as in so environmentally aware that if they ruled the world we’d all live in flatpacked houses made out of recycled Ikea packaging and there’d be so little global warming we’d all...Read more