1999 Saab 9-5
170 @ 5,500 rpm
5-spd man w/OD
$585 - $707
Saab New Car Warranty 48 months/50,000 miles
General Motors, which has controlled Saab since 1990, is working hard to reduce Saab's financial losses and build its image.But GM is not interested in turning Saabs cars into Swedish Pontiacs.Though it can't be described as 'mainstream,' the new Saab 9-5, which replaces the 9000, certainly has broader appeal than Saabs of the past.The question is whether that's enough to grab its share of a market niche dominated by such mainstays as BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Lexus.
Saab is hoping several factors will build word of mouth and persuade potential customers to put the 9-5 on their shopping lists.'Safety without boredom, performance without pretense,' is how Joel Manby the head of Saab's U.S.subsidiary sums it up.With its roots in the Swedish aerospace industry, Saab has always emphasized technical innovation.Often, that's meant ignoring convention.It was pushing aerodynamic styling when the rest of the industry thought boxy was beautiful, and Saab touted front-wheel drive long before it became the norm.
The 9-5 adds a number of firsts, such as its Active Head Restraint System, designed to prevent whiplash in rear-end accidents.On the performance side of Manby's equation, all new Saabs are now turbocharged, which ensures good acceleration performance.If nothing else works, Saab is betting the 9-5's attractive price tag will win some consideration in a hotly competitive luxury market.Will the strategy work? Here's what we discovered during our time behind the wheel of the new Saab 9-5.
1999 Saab 9-5 Information
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