2009 Frankfurt: Is the new 9-5 the car to save Saab?
In the first six months of this year, globally, Saab built 9,061 9-5s—down 72.4 per cent from 2008.
So, as you can imagine, much is being made of the long-overdue 2010 update of the Swedish automaker’s 12-year-old 9-5 mid-size sedan, which Saab spat out some details of today before its official unveiling in Frankfurt next month.
Apparently, the 9-5 will be “the most technically advanced car it has made to date,” so says Saab.
Yet most of the noted features (head-up information display, Bi-Xenon adaptive headlights, adaptive cruise control, parking assistance and all-wheel-drive) competitors have been offering for years.
Sharing a longer wheelbase version of the GM platform that also underpins the Opel Insignia and forthcoming Buick Regal, at least the new 9-5 is going back to Saab’s traditional all-turbo engine lineup.
Said Saab Managing Director Jan-Ake Jonsson, “This car is the start of a new era for our brand,"
But hey: no pressure.
Despite all this new goodness, the 9-5 has some strikes against becoming Saab’s saving grace.
As customers move to value, 9-5’s mid-size luxury sedan segment is getting clobbered in this new economy. As well, so-called “mainstream luxury” brands like Saab and its Acura, Infiniti, and Volvo rivals, are also been dropped by buyers.
So, over to you: Is the new 9-5 the car to keep Saab alive?
Or are we watching the unveiling of potentially the last ever Saab flagship?
[Source: Automotive News]