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Saab 9-3 SportCombi

stefan_belgiumstefan_belgium Posts: 17
edited August 15 in Saab
Just saw the first pic of the new 9-3 wagon, very nice looking car.

It has the new 250 hp 2.8L V6, but I think AWD is not yet available. Many other changes, including (finally) body coloured door handles and upgraded interior.
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Comments

  • I think that's the prototype you saw. Not sure how much of that will make it into production (particularly the interior, which I think is very cool). I have seen spy shots, and the front looks more like the current 9-3 than the prototype
  • Actually, I've seen the shots of the definitive version, taken in the desert for the catalogue.

    Not the concept or the spy shots.

    The front is indeed very similar to the 9-3 sedan, but the rear has huge taillights going all the way to the roof (a bit like the volvo wagon)
  • Here's a link to the official swedish saabpage it has images of the new saan 9-3 wagon;

     

    http://www.saab.com/main/SE/sv/93_sportcombi_announcement.shtml

     

    Maybe it's also annonced on the american site.
  • Stefan, One could make an argument that GM has once again had some input on the Saab designers. The 9-3 combi tail lights also resemble the Cadillac CTX Sport Ute's. It would be nice if there was an AWD option for this as well. I would be inclined to think it might capture more market share from its competition if offered. This would put it on par with the Audi Allroad and Passat AWD. A 250 Hp manual 6 speed works for me! With those offerings I would consider trading up from my 9-2X Aero.
  • AWD is coming I hear, next year maybe. Saab has been working forever on AWD components in Sweden. I would think that something interesting is going on. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that all Saabs will eventually be AWD.
    I also hear that much more powerful Saabs are in the pipeline.
    If GM doesn't run out of cash in the meantime, more exciting Saabs will eventually come to market.
  • saaboysaaboy Posts: 23
    I hope you're right stefan_belgium. Even though SAABs are good for FWD, with AWD, i'm thinking so many more people will be drawn toward the sportcombi. If you look at all of SAABs competitors, they all have AWD; A4 quattro, 330xi....... and whatever else. And "Saab has been working forever on AWD components in Sweden." You mean GM has been trying to share more parts with Opel/Chevy and SAAB?
  • sp01sp01 Posts: 81
    This thing is a looker, as is the rest of the 9-3 line, but is there a truly compelling reason to buy it over other players? With AWD, I agree it would pack more punch...
  • saaboysaaboy Posts: 23
    Um, yeah? Even without AWD. It's safer then competitors. I think 9-3 has better fuel economy then others. And even if it doesn't it's respectable. And above all it's a SAAB ;)
  • sp01sp01 Posts: 81
    LOL!

    Now, now! Take off the SAAB-colored glasses for just a minute and really sell me!

    As I said, I truly admire the look, and wagons are without question the God's-own-green-earth of vehicles, but aside from safety, which is a relative term, what makes a fun-hungry driver (vs. commuter) like me want to own one?

    Let's say the competion is a BMW E90 touring, an Audi A4 Avant 3.2 DSG Quattro, a Mazda 6s wagon, maybe even a Subie Legacy GT wagon to name a few. Why do I want the SAAB?

    FWD is not a point in favor, in my book, and unless a car has abysmal scores in safety testing I'm not deterred personally. Razor sharp steering would be a must, as would a firm stance and minmal roll. Seating needs to offer significant lateral support and firmness, but be pliant enough for long-haul duty.

    No bashing here, merely an earnest quest for a great wagon.
  • buddhabmanbuddhabman Posts: 252
    I was a bit disappointed that the 9-3 Sport-Combi is not coming with AWD. That being the case, I still think this will be a nice car for Saab. It looks great, the turbo V6 should be a nice motor and I think the handling set-up will prove competitive.
  • saaboysaaboy Posts: 23
    I feel like I have to write an essay here. Ok, 9-3 has "sport" seats instead of bucket. SAAB seats are WAY more comfortable IMHO(especially if ventilated, makes it all the better)(but I don't know if they offer on 9-3... they have on 9-5). For a FWD, the weight distribution thingy is pretty close to 50-50, screw japanese competitors, what the hell is a BMW E90!?!??! Mercedes-BMW? I don't know about Audi. this is an ugly color but i guess these are SAAB colored glasses --> :shades:
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 7,812
    E90 is an internal BMW model designation code. The real BMWphiles use those designations instead of saying 99-05 3 series for example.

    MB owners do it to (W???) as do VW/Audi (B5, B6) owners. All manufacturers have internal designations but only the true "philes" refer to them. It's a snob thing. :)
  • sp01sp01 Posts: 81
    Nope, No essay required!

    Yeah, robr2 is right; E90 is lot less of a mouthful than "next-gen 3-series"! I'm pretty much a "phile" of anything sporting with more than two doors, so I guess I qualify! Snob? Dunno. You judge! :-]

    I think that's kind of harsh about Japanese competitors. I think Mazda has shown itself as a line of real driver's cars, even in the face of over-whelming pressure to homogenize and Toyotacize (or dumb down to most-boring common denominator!) in a thrust for mass market appeal. I think they have the best styling shop of all the Japanese makers as well, though it's the handling that really sets them apart.

    You need to test-drive an Audi. I can't say it any other way.

    But here's some loose thinking on the Combi:

    In this class, and at this price, especially considering from whence the car comes and the current market conditions, not having AWD seems a mistake, especially with the corporate opportunities to offer it without heavy R&D cost, AFAIK. And it doesn't even need to be a balanced system. It could be something like Haldex that defaults to the front wheels for average puttering (thereby saving a scad of fuel) and distributin power when pushed or losing foot.

    I can't see going with the four in a sporting car of this size, personally, unless your main concern is economy at the pump or the bank. The six seems like minimum buy in, though 250hp/258lb is a little more than necessary. Honda may need over 250 horses to make an Accord seem desireable; I don't think SAAB need go all that way.

    A slightly lowered sport suspension is very desireable upgrade. From the little reading I've done on it, the press knock it slightly for promising sport handling but not quite delivering. I think the handling part is key. Without it, it's just another mommy-mobile with a very pretty face. In this regard, I think BMW still owns the class, and I don't look to SAAB to exceed (IMO can't be done w/o RWD), but merely to approach.

    The interior looks very nice in print and on line. I'll have to go see in person. For interiors in any class, I think the benchmark is definitely Audi, but from the pictures, the 9-3 seems to have a similar kind of tasteful restraint without the complete austerity of a BMW 3-series. My main question here is ergonomics. SAAB's have had quirky layouts in the past (key on the floor, muffler in the glove compartment }-] ), but I don't know about current models.

    So it's an attractive package. I just wondered what thoughts some in here might have about why it might be a good choice to add to the list!
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I asked our benevolent hosts if they would open this topic back up (and rename it) given the fact that there are now SportCombis in the country.

    I was driving around at lunch last Friday checking out the area surrounding the new offices that my current main client just had us move in to. As it turned out there was a Saab dealership right next to the bank that I was headed toward, so I stopped in. The good news is that they have a Fusion Blue 93 SportCombi due in next Saturday equipped with a 5-Speed Manual, Premium Package, Sun Roof, Cold Weather Package, and Roof Rails, and assuming that they haven't sold it before then (their other inbound SportCombis have automatic trannies and are all sold), I’ve been invited back for a test drive.

    So, what's the rub? I just bought a Razr last week and the Saab isn't scheduled to have BlueTooth anytime in the 2006 model year.

    As the car that is currently at the top of my short list is the A3, a couple of comments in relation to that car have occurred to me:
    1) Assuming that the Saab 93 SportCombi has a similar amount of interior space as the Sedan (excepting rear of the back seats of course), it seems that when compared to the A3, the Saab has more overall interior room (head, shoulders and hips), however, the leg room (my biggest issue as my kids ride in back and like lots of leg room) seems to be substantially greater in the A3. Weird.
    2) The A3 has (or will very shortly have) BlueTooth as an option (although according to some sources it's a standard feature). Given the number of cars that seem to be offering BlueTooth and/or will be offering it in the near future I'm having a difficult time understanding how Saab missed on this little item.
    3) I think I like the dashboard and console layout and instrumentation of the A3 better, however, I will have to wait for my test drive for a more definitive comparison.
    4) The front seat area in the A3 has a more cockpitish feeling than the more spacious feel of the Saab. I'm not saying one is better than the other here, they are just different. I'm thinking that due to the AWD capabilities of the A3, the console is higher up to make room for the drive train, and that is probably what makes the difference.
    5) In Turbo 4-Cylinder trim (Arc vs. 2.0T, the two models I'm considering) the A3 has a 6-Speed manual while the SportCombi sports only a 5-Speed manual, I prefer the 6-Speed.

    I'll keep y'all posted.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Looks like its selling briskly, since your dealership's automatic ones are all sold.
  • dc_davedc_dave Posts: 52
    I'm in the same boat as you, considering the 9-3 Sportcombi Aero with the 3.2 A3 S-line. I think I can get a better deal with the Saab; I will likely purchase the car in late summer 06. I'm even considering taking the trip over to Sweden for the European delivery deal. It seems like reliability wise, they are about equal (fair at best). One selling point for me will be the service; I don't know how the two companies compare as far as loaners, quality service, ect? Another sticking point for me is that I have to be able to get my bicycle inside the car without taking off the front wheel, very, very important. It looks like the Sportcombi has more storage room plus all the seats fold flat (including the front passenger seat). The three things that keep bring me back over to the Audi is the fine interior, Quattro, and the super sweet DSG tranny. I can't wait to take them both for a test drive!

    Dave in VA
  • birdboybirdboy Posts: 158
    Shipo, I am also in the same situation. I tracked the A# for a year and was so excited to drive it. It was flawless with the dsg. When it came to making a decision I decided not to buy it because the interior space with the seats down was just too small. I could not even fit a small shopping cart in the rear with the seats up. Yes the fit, finish, ands dsg was wonderful...Never considered SAAb until I read of the combi. I test drove the 2005 9-3 and found it to drive very nicely particularly in the manual setting. It certainly was not as precise as audi in feel but it was more fun and responsive than other cars I have driven. I am patiently waiting for the combi to appear upstate NY in two weeks. From the pics and specs I think it should be all that and then some for me.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    I drove the a3 awhile back--it was nice but you can't get the 2.0T with quattro and that's the desirable engine to me in any case. Also, the headroom in the a3 is quite tight for me, and the "hatch" area is pretty small unless you do fold the back seats down.

    OTOH, i like the a3's 2.0T more than saab's 2.0T, the a3 has a nicer interior and a more compliant ride.

    The euro delivery on the saab is 9% off of sticker and $2000 travelling/walking around money, or at least this was the deal last year. So, a loaded v6 aero ( everything but automatic and navi ) 9-3 is 30772.65 delivered this way (with metallic paint). An a3 FWD 2.0T with sport, cold weather, xenons, open sky, and convenience is basically the same, sticker. Open sky may be nicer than saab's sunroof, i guess. Of course, the audi is a few thou cheaper if you buy the saab in the US, for sticker, but who will.
  • dc_davedc_dave Posts: 52
    I wonder what kind of performance a Hirsch tuned 9-3 Sportcombi with the new 2.8L V-6 turbo would put out? 300+ hp? With front wheel drive it might not handle so well?

    Dave in VA
  • dc_davedc_dave Posts: 52
    Anyone drive the Sportcombi Aero yet? I would love to know how the 2.8L Turbo drives.

    Dave in VA
  • I am also looking at Audi A4 vs Sportcombi. I have not sat in the new Sportcombi since they are not yet in the dealer showroom, but have sat in the A4. I will be using the vehcile for long road trips occasionally, and have to say I am really hoping the Sportcombi is as nice as I hope/exppect since the A4 is far too small. The backseat is bad - not other word for it - it you need some space for tall adults or kids who are used to having a bit of legroom (I now drive SAAB 9000). The A4 iInterior dimensions are substantially less than Saab 9-3 Sedan and somewhat less than BMW3. I am anxiously waiting to see a "live" 9-3 Sportcombi ...
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "I have not sat in the new Sportcombi since they are not yet in the dealer showroom..."

    Hmmm, that's odd. I was pretty sure that the car I drove at lunch this last Wednesday was a 93 SportCombi Arc 5-Speed. ;-) I too am comparing the car to the Audi A4 and the A3 as well. In a wierd sort of way, the A3 actually seems to have the most amount of rear seat leg room (in spite of the fact that Audi hasn't even published a rear seat leg room stat) of the three. True, the Saab has it all over either Audi as far as head room is concerned, however, I'm the tallest in my family and I'm only 5' 8", so rear seat legroom is more important to me (my kids actually) than headroom.

    Best Regards,
    Shipo
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    Headroom's always a premium for me. The 9-3's great (for me) in the regard, the new 3-series is pretty darn good, the a4's acceptable, and the a3's borderline unacceptable. I don't have much perspective on the rear room.

    I think the 9-3 will be identical to the sportcombi in front, and have a little more headroom in the rear.
  • birdboybirdboy Posts: 158
    Tried to negotiate a deal on a 93 combi. I was thrown by two additional cahrges totaling $380.00. Are these legitimate charges? DO all dealers charge this or is it xtra profit ? Please share with me if you paid these extra charges. Also does anyone know of any incentives coming out soon? The combi is a bit more than I expected especially with add ons. Thanks
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    What was the description of the charges?

    A "processing fee" of about $50 is fair, but the dealers in my area charge around $200.

    If its Market Equity Adjustment, then it shouldn't be there. I doubt theres HEAVY demand for a SportCombi right now.
  • dc_davedc_dave Posts: 52
    The processing fee is total BS; in Virginia most european dealers charge between $299 - 399 for the processing fee...can you said 'dealer profit'. In Maryland, the dealers, by law can only charge $50. Lets face it; all they are doing is running a credit report on you, what does that cost, twenty bucks?

    Virginia dealers totally scam their customers, this is why I drive the extra 30 miles to buy in Maryland. Also, Maryland dealers are more willing to haggle with you unlike the Northern VA dealers.

    Dave in VA
  • birdboybirdboy Posts: 158
    thanks..I tried to negotiate a price for the combi 2.0t with cold pack, moonroof,auto trans, metallic paint. I did not like the upgraded premium radio. it was beyond awfull. the standard one sounded much better although poor by most standards.The dealer is going to give it too me for $400.00 above invoice. i wanted more of an incentive. in addition there was a $130.00 prep and handling charge, id and a $250 advertising charge it does not say processing fee. i have been informed at another forum that the ad charge is legit, however what is prep and handling charge on the vehicle invoice? Does anyone know of any potential incentives coming. The OTD price for this new car is $30284. Can I do better?? Thanks for your input..
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Back in Ohio you had to pay for the credit check and the temporary tags, which came to about $50.

    In Tennessee, its the same 2 things you pay for, but all dealers (save Saturn) charge AT LEAST $199. There is a Ford dealer that doesn't do that, but they'll probably find ways to make money elsewhere.

    When I bought my I35, the dealership charged $242.
  • I went to the Audi dealership in Long Island last week and the salesman told me that there are no leases available on the A-3. I like the A3 alot but he told me to finance it the monthly payments would be way higher than an A4 lease. I dont believe this guy. Anyone hear this??
  • gmroygmroy Posts: 30
    Can anyone tell me whom this car is geared toward? I am trying to lose the soccer mom image and have a fresh start. Every one is teasing me that this car is a wagon and I was thinking it's more of a sports car. I am also look at a caddy CTS and STS which I get guff that it is an old persons car. I want Hot and Sporty for my midlife crises! Help!
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