The Heart and Soul of a Sports Car, the Muscle of a Performance Machine, the Fuel Economy and Utility of a Workhorse

NORCROSS, Ga. -- Saab's "wild child," the 225-hp Saab 9000 Aero has muscled its way into perhaps one of the most unique niches in the European sports sedan marketplace. Few, if any, competitors can match the 9000 Aero's many seemingly contradictory attributes: potent horsepower, exceptional fuel economy, awesome acceleration, low exhaust emissions, segment-leading cargo capacity, sports car handling, luxury car amenities and head-turning style. These inimitable characteristics, artfully configured on a Saab drawing board, have established the 1996 Saab 9000 Aero as the purest definition of Saab individualism.

For 1996, the Aero's standard equipment list has been extended again, with the addition of two cupholders in the fold-down armrest of the rear seat. Another pair of cupholders is located in the front console, as well. Additional storage pockets have been fitted to the 9000's interior, including a rigid pocket for the car's document organizer located on the right side of the center console. Front seats have new flexible storage pockets on their forward edge, plus large pockets on the seat backs.

Load It UP or Rev It UP (Or Do Both)

Since its debut, the 1996 Saab 9000 Aero has put utility into sport. With the rear seat in place, this five-door's trunk swallows a generous 23.5 cubic feet of luggage. By folding the rear seat down, the cargo area can handle up to 56.4 cubic feet. Yet, despite its cavernous cargo capacity, the Aero avoids a boxy appearance. The sleekly sculpted Saab 9000 Aero boasts an aerodynamic drag coefficient of just 0.32, with exclusive color-keyed lower body panels and front and rear spoilers. In other words, the Saab 9000 Aero also puts the sport into utility.

Saab's most powerful production engine ever resides under the hood of the 9000 Aero. Delivering an impressive 225 horsepower with a five-speed manual transmission (200 hp with optional four-speed automatic), the 2.3L Ecopower four cylinder engine cranks out a remarkable 97.8 specific horsepower per liter. Perhaps more impressive is that the powerplant produces its muscular maximum torque of 252 ft.-lbs. at a very low 1,800 rpm. Defining the Aero's acceleration as simply "exciting" is an understatement, as zero to 60 mph takes less than 7 seconds.

Ecopower Technology For Maximum Efficiency

Building a powerful engine is not difficult, but producing an engine that delivers high power, good fuel economy and low emissions is a challenge -- with the exception of Saab's Swedish engineering team. Saab's Ecopower technology, a concept shared throughout the Saab model range, is comprised of intercooled turbocharging, four valves per cylinder and Saab's award-winning 32-bit electronic engine management system known as Trionic. To help lower emissions, all Saab catalytic converters have been moved closer to the engine to allow them to heat to proper operating temperature faster. The Aero's full-boost turbocharger is also monitored by Automatic Performance Control (APC) which adjusts boost pressure based on fuel quality and octane. With water-cooled bearings, the turbo is engineered to last the lifetime of the vehicle.

The 9000 Aero's sport chassis is lower than that of other 9000 models. Thicker front and rear stabilizer bars and specially tuned suspension components ensure that the Aero's roadholding and handling precision are nothing short of exceptional. Special low-resistance 205/55 ZR-16 Michelin high-performance tires are mounted on exclusive three-spoke "Super Aero" light alloy wheels.

Like all Saab cars, the 9000 Aero benefits from a full complement of Saab safety features. Continuously illuminated low-beam headlights, or other forms of daytime running lights (DRL), although not required in the U.S., have been proven in Saab's native Scandinavia to help reduce daytime car-to-car accidents. For that reason, all Saabs sold in the U.S. are equipped with DRLs. Other active and passive safety features include dual airbags, front safety belt pretensioners, anti-lock brakes (ABS), industry-leading 5-mph self-restoring bumpers and Saab's renowned safety cage construction with front and rear crumple zones. The Saab 9000 has been named Sweden's "Safest Car" continuously since 1990 by Folksam, Sweden's largest insurance company. In addition, the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) has rated the Saab 9000 "substantially better than average" for injury loss in its size class.

Exclusive Interior and All-Leather Sports Seats Set Tone For Serious Enjoyment

The Saab 9000 Aero's performance potential is highlighted by the distinctive body-contoured sports seats, with full sumptuous leather upholstery and power controls for the front seats. Leather is also used on the door panels, steering wheel, gearshift knob and boot. The dashboard is trimmed in polished California burl walnut, specially cultivated for use in Saab cars. Luxury convenience and comfort features abound, including Automatic Climate Control (ACC), a power glass sunroof, heated front seats, electrostatic cabin air filter, a 1 50-watt AM/AM/cassette/CD player stereo system developed and tuned exclusively for Saab by renowned high-fidelity experts Harman/Kardon. The system features 10 strategically placed speakers, a dedicated Weather Band channel and a removable key pad and individual security code for theft prevention. Front shoulder belts are height adjustable and the steering column telescopes to accommodate various driving positions.

A remote controlled security system arms or disarms the vehicle's theft alarm as it locks and unlocks the doors and/or trunk. When activated by unauthorized entry, the security system includes a digital engine-immobilizing feature that disables the car's engine management system. This, along with alarm sensors for the doors, hood, trunk and glass breakage, offer excellent protection against theft.

Color Choices Set Aero Apart

Each color choice for the 1996 Saab 9000 Aero gives it a distinct personality, suited to the owner's individual taste. The Aero is the only 9000 available in bright Imola Red, for an outgoing sporty statement. Classy solid Black is available, as well as metallic Silver or dark Scarabe Green. Leather interiors are either Sand Beige or Charcoal.

All 1996 Saabs include four-year/50,000-mile bumper-to-bumper coverage, including 24-hour roadside assistance and free 5,000-mile first maintenance. Perforation coverage extends for six years with no mileage limit.