Monday morning travel snippets

What a weekend!

Whilst Eggs et al were having a great time at the US Saab Owners Convention, I was here with the Saab Owners Club GB having a great time in Bath, a beautiful city with a postcard view at every turn.

I’ve got plenty of stories to tell about some amazing Saabs and I’ve managed to fulfill a few dreams in the last two days, but I’ll tell you more about all that later.

Here’s a summary of my last few days.

——

We started the weekend with a trip up to Birmingham to see Dave R, which is where I had a rather exhilarating drive of Dave’s Jaguar XF-R (supercharged V8 with around 500hp) and a look at the new Jaguar XJ in the local showroom. The XJ really is a magnificently finished car, one that exudes quality and despite some hefty prices, one that’s already selling well. It’s a car that lives up to its brand promise, which is why it’s selling. I think there’s something in that….

Next morning we rode with Dave in his pristine early 1980’s vintage Saab 99 down to Bath, meeting up with another Saab Owner, Elly, in his magnificent 1988 900 Convertible.

There were some magnificent cars on show at the Saab Owners Club annual meet. I’ll write more about them later in the week, but here’s a few highlights…..

This Saab 93 is absolutely incredible and the guy who owns it rebuilt it all by hand. What’s more, he’s got three other vintage Saabs that are equally impressive.

This is one of just a handful of Troll R’s ever made. A very understated beast of a 9-5 with immaculate details inside and out.

The local Saab dealer put on a good display, including the new Carlsson edition Saab 9-3, and of course the new Saab 9-5. The cars got a lot of attention all day.

I wrote last week about falling in love all over again with the Saab Sonett II at the Saab Festival. There were only 258 of this model made with a two-stroke engine and one of those was at the meeting at Bath. It was beautifully presented and yes, I got to go for a ride in it. John, the owner, still runs this car regularly and has taken it on several drives from England to Sweden.

I can’t wait to tell you more about this incredible Saab 900 Carlsson and the dedication of its owner, Craig. It’s a great story.

(Owner of the Saabhuy blog and the man who I’m dubbing Saab’s unofficial ambassador for international relations) Etienne came over from Belgium in an early 900 he’d just bought for pennies from an elderly lady. Owners of the 900 would be familiar with a common condition where the roof lining of the Saab 900 sags. This lady had an interesting fix for it:

The Saab Owners Club annual meeting finished up with a great dinner and a quiz (which I missed as we had to check into our accommodation) but look at it as a visitor, the day was an outstanding one and I think all concerned should be pretty pleased with how things went.

I’ll have more from Bath later in the week.

The next morning we jumped on board with Mike P and his wife, Hilary, and took the scenic route to their home, stopping in at a very picturesque village called Bourton on the Water.

There’s a car museum in this village, and outside the museum, the owner is engaged in building a very interesting living sculpture using some wire and vegetation. It’s perfectly proportioned, too.

Mike was towing a rather huge caravan with his Dame Edna Saab 9-5 TiD Estate and the car made pretty easy work of it, to be honest. The outgoing Saab was mocked by some in the press, but it really is a fantastic cruising vehicle.

Getting a ride in a two-stroke Sonett was one of my dreams fulfilled. Getting to drive Mike’s Saab Sonett III was another. I’ll have a lot more to write about this in the next few days, but it was a BLAST.

I’ll explain this photo later, too.

We finished the weekend off with another great dinner with Mike and Hilary, as well as Dave R and his wife Eileen. If that dinner was the perfect ending to a great weekend, then driving the Sonett back to Mike’s place was the cherry on top 🙂 . I love this car.

——

Our vacation continues through to the end of the week, but I’ll keep updating with important news as it comes to hand, as well as snippets from our trip.

Have a great week.

wpDiscuz