SAAB

SAAB Aero X

I have previously banged on about SAABs here and mentioned by feelings about the awful Cadillac/SAAB.

Anyway a quick reminder of the Aero X (2006)

“This study shows how the strength of the Saab brand heritage can inspire bold, innovative design,” said Bryan Nesbitt, the Executive Director of GM Design Europe. “As we move forward with new Saab product, we will remain focused on carefully cultivating this brand equity in the context of Scandinavian design values.”
“This concept shows the exciting possibilities that are open to us as we evolve a more progressive design language for the Saab brand,” says Jan Ã…ke Jonsson, Saab’s Managing Director. “Our designers, engineers and marketers in Sweden are ideally placed to nurture and communicate the unique DNA of the Saab brand. Their work will ensure that future product proposals express core qualities, such as progressive design, sporty performance and emotional functionality, in a way that is specific to Saab.”

SAAB Aero X microsite

Vive la différence – Design needs to appeal to human emotions

SAAB 900 T16s

SAAB 900 T16s

Recently, on Top Gear, James May said that he quite liked SAABs, in part because he felt that people who drove them were ‘interesting’. This left me with a slight smug glow, I have had a few SAABs, four actually and drive one now. I’ve also had three Volvos, three Moto Guzzis, and three BMW K Series motorbikes. For those with the slightest interest in this a picture will be developing, of brand loyalty, perhaps an interest in design maybe safety too. For others I will be coming across as a ‘bit of a yawner’.

Having recently spent some time looking for a new car with my partner, I am sad to say that anyone buying a current SAAB is beyond interesting (by some degree) and well into the new category called ‘Of Clinical Interest’. It was bad enough when SAABs started wearing Dame Edna Everage glasses, but who ever thought that re-branding them as little Cadillacs was a good idea? Oh yes General Motors did. At the time of writing SAAB’s future is tenuous to say the least.

Prototype NG 900 SAAB

Prototype NG 900 SAAB

Of course I realise that my car shares the underpinnings of an old Vauxhall Cavalier but despite what people say the GM 900s were actually rather good and for someone like me they offer a lot of car for not much money. It has been and continues to be a good car although it uses far too much fuel. At the time when I bought it though it was one of a handful of affordable cars that offered speed, space and three proper seat-belts in the back.

I see no great reason to sell the car although I wish it would use less fuel. It does most of what I need and, as Mr May’s colleague Mr Clarkson once accurately predicted, as a SAAB driver I have a little too much linen in my wardrobe. My son often comments on how the car seems right for me. I am interested to know the bigger picture with regards to the Scrapage Scheme, does it make environmental sense to scrap a perfectly viable car?

NG 900 SAAB

NG 900 SAAB

Anyway, I like cars, particularly older ones, but I don’t often look round garages until recently since K has been looking for a new one.

Initially she had wondered about a BMW Z3, we went to the local BM dealer but they didn’t have any. I went into the showroom and kicked the rear tire, the salesman got the joke, I explained it to K later. We looked at the One Series which ticked many boxes. However to my eyes it looked like it had already been in an accident, as Clarkson said;

The BMW, however, is just plain ugly. It may have the double headlamps and the kidney grille and the Hofmeister kink, but viewed as a whole it looks like a van….And it’s why I’m choosing the words for my conclusion with even more care than usual. So here goes. The 1-series is crap

The simple truth is that there isn’t much out there to excite, cars seem to be designed for people who watch X Factor a little too much. Yes we did venture into the local Aston dealership (to look at an A3) and yes I would, but I can’t so I won’t.
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