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Old 2nd September 2005
SaabKen's Avatar
SaabKen SaabKen is online now
 
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Default New 9-5 reviewed by AutoExpress UK and Canadian Auto123

Most complete preview write-ups to date. 2nd article by Auto123 says this:

"To go along with the updated 9-5 and the new 9-3 Aero range, there are rumours that General Motors could be showing off a new Saab concept in Frankfurt, which might be the final vehicle styled by ex-Saab designer Michael Mauer. To be based on the next-generation Epsilon platform, which will be used as a base for the next-generation Saab 9-3, 9-5, Opel Vectra and Signum, and Cadillac BLS, this large two-seat sports car could incorporate styling that may hint at the 9-4x crossover vehicle, expected for 2007. The only thing that's been confirmed is that GM will be showing an "Adventurous Concept", although the brand within which the vehicle belongs is unspecified."

Sounds to me like an evolution of the 9X concept that may be the 9-4X !



http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/news/59585/fresh_95_gets_x_appeal.html

Fresh 9-5 gets X appeal

portier styling and more fun to drive - that's how Saab is billing its facelifted 9-5 range, which makes its public debut at next month's Frankfurt Motor Show.

Following the spy shots we printed in issue 851, these are the first official pictures of the saloon and estate. They reveal how the car has been inspired by the 9X concept, first unveiled at the same exhibition four years ago.

The 9-5 now gets a more aggressive front end, with bolder headlights, plus a bigger grille and more chrome detailing. At the rear, new tail-lamps and a restyled bumper complete the look.

Under the skin, engineers have tuned the steering and suspension to give a sharper, faster response to driver inputs - an area where BMW's 3-Series and the Audi A4 have had the Saab beaten. Yet while the firm has aimed for a more sporty drive, it says the 9-5's reputation for a comfortable and refined ride hasn't been sacrificed.

Changes have also been made to the engine line-up, with Saab ditching its 2.2-litre diesel in favour of the 150bhp 1.9-litre direct-injection unit seen in the Vauxhall Astra and Vectra. The existing turbocharged petrol family will be supplemented by a range-topping 260bhp 2.3-litre unit for the Aero model, which has 10bhp more than before.

A 2.0-litre BioPower turbo will appear after the launch. It's capable of running on a mixture of petrol and bioethanol - an organically produced fuel that costs drivers around 25 per cent less than unleaded. Its engine will be more powerful and economical than a standard unit.

While the 9-5 has been significantly refreshed, prices won't rise significantly. The saloon range is likely to start at about 20,500, with estate versions around 1,000 more. Both models go on sale in November.


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http://www.auto123.com/en/info/news/...tid=47951&pg=1

2006 Version is Most Thorough 9-5 Upgrade in Years

At eight years old, many consider the Saab 9-5 to be on its last remaining leg. Having had a facelift once already, with several interim powerplant and model-line upgrades, the car that remains is truly an acquired taste. Nevertheless, needing to give its loyal consumers a large car to move up to while the next-generation 9-5 is in development (speculated for 2008), the current 9-5 will soldier on with yet another post-mid-cycle revision. Making its debut at this year's Frankfurt Motor Show, the 2006 9-5 is the most comprehensive redo to date, covering everything from powertrain to interior.

The most obvious changes affect its exterior, which now sports completely revised front and back ends. It's quite an aggressive approach to Saab styling, and is the first production implementation of the design language first spotted in the bold 9-X and 9-3X concepts. Saab has taken its traditional grille with two offset, diagonal spars and separated them; the central grille is now smaller, and the headlamp bezel incorporates the components, as well as the covered headlamp bulbs. Both are outlined in chrome, to catch the eye. Below this, the bumper is completely new, and features a centre intake with body-coloured ribs, offset on both sides by Audi-esque intakes that have 'teardrop' bulges for fog lamps.

Around back similar changes take place, but they are less dramatic. Saab has swapped out the old 9-5's frumpy trunk lid for a new unit that's flatter, while a new rear bumper works to play an optical illusion. The new car looks as if it's got a loading lip that's much lower than the previous model due to its cut-in indent, and curving sides, however, dimension-wise it's the same. New tail lamps have also been fitted, looking a might bit similar to the ones on Audi's new A3 Sportback, A4 and A8. Body coloured trim on bumpers and doors, body-coloured door handles, and a new selection of alloy wheels round out the exterior changes.

Underneath, the old platform remains, but Saab's engineers have tried their best to extend the 9-5's shelf-life by revising its suspension. While it's unclear what exactly has been changed, expect new springs, dampers, uprated anti-roll bars, all with wider front and rear track for a better footprint on the road. Other important revisions include a sharpened Linear now fills the base model, with mid-grade Vector, and the performance Aero model rounding out the top. (Photo: Saab) steering system, hopefully something that will help filter out the 9-5's rabid torque steer and fidgety cornering. More information about these changes will follow in an in-depth preview after the vehicle's debut.

Included in this change is a model shakedown, revising trim levels, names and standard specifications. The Arc trim line is a casualty; while currently available in North America as the base-model station wagon it has been discontinued, replaced instead by a Classic package. This option group includes heated seats, dark walnut accent trim and integrated fog lamps. Elsewhere, the model names stay the same: Linear now fills the base model, with mid-grade Vector, and the performance Aero model rounding out the top.

As with before, the 9-5 engine lineup relates directly to the trim level selected. Linear models are badged 2.0t, and powered by a 185-horsepower turbo-four motor, the ethanol-powered E85 'Biofuel' turbo-four (not available in North America), or a Fiat-designed 150 hp 1.9-litre JTD turbodiesel (also not available in North America). The Vector's 2.3t motor generates 220-horsepower from its small-displacement turbo-four, while the top of the line Aero model receives a modest 10-horsepower upgrade for a total count of 260. The Holden-designed 2.8-litre twin-turbo V6 as fitted to the 9-3 Aero will not make an appearance on the 9-5 due to what would be extensive and costly re-engineering required to make the components fit.

The ****pit - we stress this because of its fighter jet layout and Saab's fighter jet manufacturing history - has also been freshened. The driver-focused, wrap-around cabin, a true Saab trademark now, has new door trims, new faces for the semi-circle gauges on the instrument cluster, and a sportier multi-function steering wheel, borrowed from the 9-3. Also freshened is the centre console which includes new, simplified HVAC controls that use round knobs rather than tiny, complex pushbuttons, and a new large-format satellite navigation screen. Yes, the clever 'ballerina' cupholder, and the 'floor' mounted key are still there.

The new 9-5 marks 2006 as a year in which every product has been revised, from the more powerful 9-2x to the newly introduced 9-3 SportCombi, as well as the more powerful Aero models. The 9-7x, a North American-only version of GM's light-duty SUV, is also now on sale.

While GM has committed to keeping the Saab brand name alive despite red ink and poor sales, compromises have been made, including moving engineering and assembly into Opel's under-capacity Russelshiem facilities in Germany. The next-generation 9-5, which is supposed to show up sometime in 2008, will be based on an extended wheelbase version of the Epsilon Mk.II Platform, also slated to underpin the next-generation 9-3 product line.

To go along with the updated 9-5 and the new 9-3 Aero range, there are rumours that General Motors could be showing off a new Saab concept in Frankfurt, which might be the final vehicle styled by ex-Saab designer Michael Mauer. To be based on the next-generation Epsilon platform, which will be used as a base for the next-generation Saab 9-3, 9-5, Opel Vectra and Signum, and Cadillac BLS, this large two-seat sports car could incorporate styling that may hint at the 9-4x crossover vehicle, expected for 2007. The only thing that's been confirmed is that GM will be showing an "Adventurous Concept", although the brand within which the vehicle belongs is unspecified.

Last edited by SaabKen; 2nd September 2005 at 12:48 PM.
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  #2  
Old 2nd September 2005
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edusaab edusaab is offline
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another detail I don't like......and everybody say the same, those shift pedals for the Sentronic in the steering wheel are very uncomfortable during corners, the 9-5 fitted it rear the wheel, its a backward step.
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Old 3rd September 2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edusaab
another detail I don't like......and everybody say the same, those shift pedals for the Sentronic in the steering wheel are very uncomfortable during corners, the 9-5 fitted it rear the wheel, its a backward step.
I agree.

But, I don't like the silly flappy paddles anyway. I'd rather have a gearlever sentronic change as in the 9-3SS.

That new dash layout is an absolute diaster......what a complete mess, looks like Saab have handed over the interior design to some muppet in Detroit....
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  #4  
Old 6th September 2005
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See, I really kind of like that dash layout...remove the Nav System and it would be perfect...less stuff the better (ie the old C900 dash was perfect). Nice looking steering wheel and seats too. Can't wait to see the LHD version for America.

I wish Saab would offer a LSD on Aero models of the 9-3 and 9-5...would make it a far better performer in the mag comparos.
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  #5  
Old 6th September 2005
LinearSLT LinearSLT is offline
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LSD would be the quick fix perhaps, though they have their own issues. What thery really need is AWD. ANything else is a bandaid.
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  #6  
Old 6th September 2005
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Sooo, what kind of drug is AWD ?


Quote:
Originally Posted by LinearSLT
LSD would be the quick fix perhaps, though they have their own issues. What thery really need is AWD. ANything else is a bandaid.
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  #7  
Old 6th September 2005
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LSD, AWD, PCP - Who cares, man? I ain't drivin. I'm flyin!
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  #8  
Old 6th September 2005
LinearSLT LinearSLT is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SaabKen
Sooo, what kind of drug is AWD ?

Figures a guy from the wet coast would ask that question
Be over there in a week for my cousin's wedding and to vist my parents.
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  #9  
Old 6th September 2005
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AND our "stuff" is all organic, free-range too


Quote:
Originally Posted by LinearSLT
Figures a guy from the wet coast would ask that question
Be over there in a week for my cousin's wedding and to vist my parents.
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