Saab 9-2X: Positioning and functionality [Archive] - SaabCentral Forums

: Saab 9-2X: Positioning and functionality

8th December 2003, 05:16 PM
1) Early entry in emerging premium sport compact segment

2) For many buyers, Saab 9-2X will be first car from premium brand

3) Start of sales is scheduled for July 2004

The new Saab 9-2X is the next significant step in the biggest product development program in Saab’s history. With standard all-wheel-drive, powerful engines, and a distinctive European – as well as versatile 5-door body style – it is a unique offering in a developing new niche in the car market. This new segment is expected to significantly grow in the next years. The Saab 9-2X will also generate considerable additional growth for the Saab brand – the fastest growing European premium car brand in the American market today. The Saab 9-2X is scheduled to go on sale in the USA and Canada, with other markets still under consideration.

With cars reaching dealer showrooms by July 2004, the Saab 9-2X is an early entry in a car segment just emerging on the American market: The premium sport compact segment. Other entries expected by industry observers include Audi A3, BMW 1-series and Volvo V50.

“In general, we expect the 9-2X to attract the same type of customers we’ve traditionally had – active individualists, who want a fun to drive vehicle that is a bit unconventional,” says Chip Wilkerson, Brand Manager Future Vehicles. “However, since the price point of this car is lower, the Saab 9-2X will be accessible to a younger demographic. This combined with all-wheel-drive represents a tremendous opportunity for us.”

Customer surveys show that up to 40 percent of all Americans are looking for all-wheel-drive in their next vehicle – a feature standard in all Saab 9-2X.

With prices starting under $25,000, the Saab 9-2X will be the first premium brand vehicle for many of its customers. With this vehicle, Saab expects to attract customers, in their early stages of their career, who are cosmopolitan and open-minded, and who appreciate the sophisticated style of a European brand.

Current owners of the former Saab 900/9-3 range are another target group. “With our new 9-3 Sports Sedan we have successfully moved up-market. The 9-2X and especially the top-of-the-line 9-2X Aero will fill the vacated spot. The new car line will attract to our loyal owners, especially those who are used to the versatility of a 5-door body style” explains Wilkerson.

High versatility and good economy
Saab 9-2X customers will lead an active lifestyle and, therefore, need a vehicle that enables them to carry passengers — and their sports gear. With a wheelbase of 99.4 inches (2,525 mm) and an overall length of 175.6 inches (4,460 mm) the Saab 9-2X offers nimble handling about town and on backcountry roads. Yet it holds up to 27.9 cubic feet (790 dm3) of cargo space with the seatback up and 61.6 cubic feet (1,744 dm3) with the seatback folded down. A 60/40-split fold-down rear seatback is standard in all 9-2X models and the large rear luggage door opening gives optimal access to the trunk space provided. Weighing in at just under 3,100 pounds (1,400 kilos), all 9-2X versions return excellent highway mileage anticipated to be in the 26 to 28 mpg range – yet with their standard all-wheel-drive they can safely tow up to 2,000 pounds (900 kilos).

Comprehensive safety equipment package
Based on a robust and rigid body design, the Saab 9-2X range offers a long list of standard safety equipment. The front and rear of the body are designed as energy absorbing impact zones with multiple load paths. The framework around the passenger cabin is strengthened to help resist deformation. The door-beams and the reinforced B-pillar are designed to help resist the incoming crash forces resulting from certain side impact collisions.

The Saab 9-2X is equipped with 3-point seatbelts on all five seating positions. In order to further increase the front seatbelts’ efficiency, there are pre-tensioners that tighten the seatbelts in a collision. Load limiters then release the pressure of the belt so as to reduce the forces on the front seat occupants’ bodies.

Driver and passenger front airbags help to provide protection in frontal impacts. In the front seats there are also head-thorax side airbags mounted in the backrests. The side airbags are designed to help protect the thorax and the head in a side impact.

The front seats in the Saab 9-2X are fitted with active head restraints designed to help reduce the risk of neck injury in the event of a rear end collision.

Long list of standard comfort features
The standard equipment level of the Saab 9-2X leaves little to be desired with all features executed to the brand’s renowned premium standard. Standard equipment in all 9-2X models includes:

16 x 6.5-inch alloy wheels with 205/55 R16 all-season tires

AM/FM/CD stereo system

Climate control system

Cruise control

Height-adjustable driver’s seat (pump lever type)

60/40 split fold-down rear seat back

Tilt-adjustable steering column

Power door locks with remote keyless entry

Power windows with driver’s one-touch auto down

Electric power sideview mirrors

Rear window wiper/washer with rear wiper de-icer as option

Variable intermittent windshield wipers with wiper de-icer

Tinted glass

Cargo cover and light

Dual overhead map lights

On top of that, the Saab 9-2X Aero distinguishes itself with

Larger brake discs front (16" vented)

Hood sculptured air intake

Sport exhaust tail pipe

Front fog lamps

Special light alloy wheel (17" with tires 215/45 R17 as an option)

Semi-automatic climate control system

6-disc in-dash CD changer

Leather wrapped shifter knob and handbrake handle.

Leather wrapped three spoke sport steering wheel

Metal rimmed instrument dials

Strong contrasting textile trim material.

Peter Augustsson, Saab Automobile’s President and CEO, puts the launch of the Saab 9-2X in broader perspective: “The Saab 9-2X is a milestone in expanding our model range and our customer base, especially in the all-important American market. For the first time ever, Saab will offer more than two car lines. Additionally, it is quite exciting for us to be able to expand our model range by adding an entry level offer in this newly emerging segment.”

With the loyal following of its luxury Saab 9-5 line, the enthusiastic reception of the sporty new Saab 9-3 Sedan and Convertible and with additional new products to come in the next 18 months, Saab is prepared to continue to grow at this historical pace.

Information in this release is based on specifications which were valid at the time of final editing (November 2003). Technical specifications and equipment may be altered without prior notice.

10th December 2003, 11:52 AM
I feel really, really sad when I saw these pictures...
This is the beginning of the end of Saab's own caracter.

16th December 2003, 09:22 PM
It's not your typical Saab, but then really, what is that? :wink:

As they stated, one of the objectives is to get people interested in Saab who may not have otherwise given them a second thought!