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  1. #1
    Dave T.
    Super Moderator Dave T's Avatar
    Join Date
    03 Aug 2010
    Seattle, Washington
    1999 9-3SE (2013-2015), 2005 9-3 (2005-2013), 1990 900 (1990-2003)
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    Saab:Wasting of a good name

    If you want a slightly "better" car but not an exotic, there aren't too many brands for the American and Canadian.

    The Japanese brands are probably Acura, Lexus, and Infinity, all products evolving from the late 1980's and early 1990's.

    The American brands are possibly non-existent. Buick was one in the 1930's but that's not the case now. Lincoln is very much a regional brand.

    There used to be quite a few European brands. Now it seems to be limited to, if one wants a sedan or wagon, BMW, Mercedes, Audi, and Jaguar.

    Saab is no longer in the North American market.

    Volvo is still there but sales are down, possibly because of its ownership by Geely.

    Alfa Romeo left years ago and is only coming back with one model.

    Lancia also left years ago.

    Rover/Sterling hasn't been around for a long, long time. The hatchback Rover 3500 was unreliable but looked very sharp.

    Citroen is gone.

    I think Ford's selling of Volvo was a huge mistake. They only got a little more than a billion dollars. They will be unable to build Lincoln into a worldwide Volvo for a billion dollars and 20 years. Name recognition is very important.

    I think GM's selling of Saab was a mistake but not as big as Volvo. GM was so massive and thought that it could make Buick and Opel big, so it was hard for them to see the value of Saab. Saab could been the FWD and AWD version of the reputation that BMW has. It could even be a little safer and a little more practical. GM could have positioned Cadillac as the Mercedes competitor (but it also would take 20 years) and Saab could be a combination of BMW (sport) and MINI (economical, though MINI's don't really get good gas mileage).

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  2. #2
    Saab Addict
    Join Date
    10 Mar 2011
    new jersey usa
    08/280/xwd & 09/210/xwd
    Thumbs Up:   0
    Back when the GM cars each had their own personality in the 50's and into the 1960's they each catered to a different segment of the market from luxury with the Caddy, modest luxury with the Buick and so on down to Chevy that was the bread and butter car for the common man. Olds was an experimental test bed and offered some innovative "quirky" items on it's menu like water injection and the first production turbo which sadly didn't fare well but the turbo in the 1962 Corvair had a long and successful run till 1969 and 180 horses out of a small pancake air cooled motor was nothing to sneeze at with the Porsche 911 only around 175 horses. Pontiac was the wild child and even had a "back door dealership" where the unleashed so wild cars for the street like aluminum body GTO's in 1964 (I almost bought one), and others with the NASCAR 421 in that tiny, itty bitty 1961/62 Tempest called the "Super Duty" and yes you could order one.

    For that matter, I'm currently trying to fine a 1963 Tempest to restore with the 326 cu inch motor which is actually a 331 cubic incher (GM policy was not to eclipse the 327 of Chevy so they called it a 326), but with the 1970's the divisions lost their individual charm, kink or quirks. I'd love to find this precursor to the GTO and I'm quite serious about finding one hoping that I could add power and tame the live rear axle. One fellow bought a 62' Tempest Wagon with a V-8 only to find it was a "Super Duty" and it commanded about half a million on e-bay.

    The "badge fever" was so pathetic and bad that my father in law was at a sales meeting and as they took a company car to lunch, one side of the car was all badged Buick Electra 225 and the other side Olds 88 (the big one), someone on the line didn't hear the "switch badge alarm" go off. Funny but sad at the same time.

    Even with all of the positive changes at Ford they are still in trouble though not as bad as GM but with our economy sliding backwards the entire North American market is becoming a problem. Even BMW was caught inflating sales numbers last year. As much as I'd love to give Alfa a try I doubt if I can afford it so how long will they last? Renault screwed itself with the Dauphine and other lame cars they sent over but the new stuff doesn't look half bad as long as they send the budget performance stuff over and not things like the Alliance. How about Skoda?

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    Semper ubi sububi in caput tuum

  3. #3
    Third Saab's a Charm Warren Demontague's Avatar
    Join Date
    30 Jul 2010
    Lakewood, OH
    2010 9-3SS 2.0T
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    I dig the Citroen DS line, but if Americans don't buy Swedish cars, then they definitely wouldn't buy French.

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    - Joe
    2006 9-3SS Arc 5-speed
    2004 9-3SS Linear 5-speed (RIP)



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