Saab 9-5 price comparison

Earlier today I posted about a review of the Saab 9-5 from Singapore. The review was notable not only because it was a good read for Saab owners. It also featured what I think might be the highest price payable for a Saab 9-5 – the highest I’ve heard of at least.

I mentioned that it would be interesting to compare the Singaporean price with others around the world. I know there’s a few countries with very high vehicle taxes, but how would they compare with Singapore?

“Joe” was kind enough to do a little research earlier today and post the results in comments. I thought I’d drop those results into a table and present them here.

[table id=10 /]

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Here’s some visual representation to give you a view of the comparative prices at a glance.

I expect this will bring out some of the complaints about how cheap cars are in some countries compared to others. There are reasons for this, namely the aforementioned vehicle taxes (or lack thereof), which are occasionally balanced by costs in other areas (e.g. welfare, healthcare).

Bottom line: cars cost more in some places than others, but it’s just amazing to see how much that variation can be.

Thanks again to Joe for putting the information together.

Arild
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Included in the Norwegian price is 108 000 USD in special car tax and value added tax of 13 500 USD. Thus the price of the car is 54 000 USD excluding all taxes.

Phoenix
Guest
Phoenix
5 years 8 months ago

That is simply amazing 🙂

Anders
Guest
Anders
5 years 8 months ago
I agree, it’s amazing. The car costs 2.5 times more than in Sweden. Even in Sweden the new 9-5 is somewhat too expensive for the private market, almost every 9-5 is sold as a “leasing car”, where an employee lease the car (and uses it as a private car) and pays a monthly fee. Of course are the salaries higher in Norway than in Sweden. In Sweden a normal salary is about 50 000 USD per year before taxes*, which means about 35 000 USD after taxes. This, as far as I know, a quite normal North Western European salary… Read more »
EricDH
Guest
EricDH
5 years 8 months ago

Wow, to be more expensive than Norway is not easy, you really need to have a wild car taxation regime. But apparently Singapore managed it.

OddJob
Guest
OddJob
5 years 8 months ago

Strangelly enough it seems that the most complaints about high prices on the 9-5 comes from markets where the prices are lowest.
On the other hand I also heard that the Saab dealer at Aker Brygge in Oslo, Norway sell tremendously well even at those high prices.
Strange world.

benrp
Guest
benrp
5 years 8 months ago

I guess people need cars and the price is still relitive to other cars

Saabheart
Guest
Saabheart
5 years 8 months ago

This is absolutely incredible! I am from the US and I always took for granted the prices we pay on cars (and fuel). I just assumed there were higher taxes on cars elsewhere, but no where near the magnitude shown! How can anyone afford a new car when the tax is $100000? This blows my mind!

And OddJob is right, I think the most complaints on price come from America 🙂 Sorry guys!

aerobert
Guest
aerobert
5 years 8 months ago

Now you know how the rest of the world works. Never complain about your prices in the US again my friend. 😉

Chris Carrier
Guest
Chris Carrier
5 years 8 months ago

Yes, but note the comment about health care and such. Your money goes in other directions besides the car.

Adrian
Guest
Adrian
5 years 8 months ago

The US price isn’t necessarily the price you’d pay, though, is it? All US prices are quoted as excluding sales tax, which varies from state to state – so in California, you’d be paying an extra 8.25% on top of the list price.

For all the other countries, taxes are included.

Be interesting to see a “Big Mac Index”, comparing 9-5 prices to rival’s prices in each of those countries.

Jr.
Guest
Jr.
5 years 8 months ago

Kind of interesting to see that those european countries with the lowest tax on cars also are the ones with a large domestic car manufacturing sector. Apparent that they are trying to help their local industries in this way.

Phoenix
Guest
Phoenix
5 years 8 months ago

Base Audi A6 sedan and 170hp diesel and with no additional equipment is 473000 NOK, Base Saab TID4 160hp seems to land at 476000 NOK. CO2 for the Audi is 149 and Saab is 139. Both stick. Don’t know std. equipment for those cars in norway though.

Yerrun
Guest
Yerrun
5 years 8 months ago

Interesting to see these huge differences! You can’t really compare the prices “just like this” though. The average Norwergian income is at least 50% higher than that from a Euro-zone country…

Rico_Caleuche
Guest
Rico_Caleuche
5 years 8 months ago

Speaking from Germany: 70796 USD are 52424,438 EUR

It would be important to have a common base to compare, to know what car configuration was taken here to make this comparision.

Without that information, this tabel could produce missunderstandings…

Joe
Guest
Joe
5 years 8 months ago

Sources are each countries official Saab websites, The tool where you build your own car. 9-5 model, Aero tab, V6 300hp XWD Automatic. The prices that show right there, before you start adding goodies. Think all prices for European countries include sales tax contrary to the US price where sales tax will be added except for Oregon, New Hampshire and Delaware where sales tax is 0%?

Frank A
Guest
Frank A
5 years 8 months ago

Delaware’s tax for cars is not zero. There is a 3.5% document “fee” (yes its a tax) that applies to cars and trucks. Otherwise Delaware has no sales tax.

khrisdk
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

It is always hard to compare prices.
Danish car taxes are high and our normal tax is about 45%

It helps a bit that the average Danish income is just below 69.000 USD a person, and most households have 2 full incomes.

Anders
Guest
Anders
5 years 8 months ago

Are payroll taxes (Swedish: arbetsgivaravgifter) and insurances included in the 69 000 USD, i.d. are the 69 000 USD the average total sum the employer pays? Or are also other kinds of incomes (pension, unemployment aid, etc) be included in the 69 000 USD average?

If 69 000 USD is the average salary including payroll taxes (Swedish: arbetsgivaravgifter) and insurances, income taxes, and the salary left for the employee, then it’s about the same average in Sweden.

Börjesson
Guest
Börjesson
5 years 8 months ago

In Sweden, the average salary for a full time worker in 2009 (all trades included, from burger-flippers to CEOs) was SEK 27 900 per month before tax, which equals SEK 334 800 before tax for a full year. Normally, you can expect to pay about 31 percent taxes on that, so an average yearly net salary in Sweden 2009 was SEK 231 012. In other words, this particular Saab model costs almost exactly two years’ salary for a Swede to buy.

GerritN
Guest
GerritN
5 years 8 months ago

Even taking the average income into account is not enough. One actually has to look at how the income distribution looks like. If the distribution is wide then a larger chunk of the population is able to buy premium cars than when the distribution is very peaked around the average, assuming that the average is below the target income for premium cars.

Anders
Guest
Anders
5 years 8 months ago
I think you have to have in mind that almost all Saabs sold in Sweden are “leasing cars” leased by employees (and used as private cars) for three years. These leasers may have quite normal incomes, but mostly somewhat above the average salary. The average full time working Swede earn about SEK 30 000 (in reality more if you include payroll taxes, insurances, etc) before tax each months and get a little more than SEK 20 000 after tax. Employees getting this average salary could be for example construction workers, teachers (often earn a little less), younger engineers, etc. Most… Read more »
Anders
Guest
Anders
5 years 8 months ago

The last part of my post above was somewhat unclear. I meant:

Then you also must have in mind that almost all women work in Sweden, often full time or close to full time. (Public child care is heavily subsidized and well-developed in Sweden.) Almost all families have thus two full time or near full time incomes.

Börjesson
Guest
Börjesson
5 years 8 months ago

Why on earth would you include payroll taxes in your reasoning? If your employer happens to pay an additional 30 percent on top of your salary in taxes, what has that got to do with you, or with your ability to buy a car? And, as I said, the average salary in Sweden in 2009 was 27 900 kr, not 30 000. (I haven’t found figures for 2010, but they won’t be much different.)

The fact that most cars in this price range are leased is a very valid point, though. But I expect that’s the case in most countries.

Rico_Caleuche
Guest
Rico_Caleuche
5 years 8 months ago

OK Joe, thanks for the information. I did not found this info – 9-5 model, Aero tab, V6 300hp XWD Automatic. – in the text to the table.

Adrian
Guest
Adrian
5 years 8 months ago

It also highlights another difficulty with this kind of comparison – the v6 XWD is a borderline irrelevant car in many of those markets.

Here in the UK, the first year’s road tax (included in the on-the-road price quoted) for a v6 Aero XWD is £750. For a 2wd TTiD (irrelevant to the US, yet by far and away the most common here), it’s only £155 – even in Aero spec. When the 119g/km TTiDs come through, that’ll be zero.

Phoenix
Guest
Phoenix
5 years 8 months ago

Road tax is expensive but I think for those people who buys those cars a £750 road tax isn’t much to talk about. If you think that is to much you will probably not buy any car in that segment. The times I have been in UK there are a lot of luxury cars in the larger cities so road tax can’t be an issue.

Adrian
Guest
Adrian
5 years 8 months ago

I think you misunderstand – it’s included in the UK prices, so makes the gap between a US v6 XWD and a UK v6 XWD wider than between other models – which may well be far more representative of what actually gets sold here. By the time you add state sales taxes onto the US figure, it could easily be 10% of the difference between the two.

Bernard
Guest
Bernard
5 years 8 months ago

Aren’t European prices usually “key in hand?” In other words, they include freight, PDI, taxes, so-called documentation fees, plate fees, and everything else that gets tacked onto US prices. I wouldn’t be surprised if actual transaction costs in the US were very close to UK costs (depending on the State tax rate, of course).

Obviously, US dealers are famous for never selling at list, but I understand (from watching Top Gear) that UK buyers often get thousands knocked-off the list price as well.

Edonis
Guest
Edonis
5 years 8 months ago

This is the most expensive Saab I’ve ever seen on finn.no: http://www.finn.no/finn/car/used/object?finnkode=26323574

An 2.8T Aero for the small sum of 1.151.000NOK = $197.000 (exchange rate provided by Oanda). It’s been there for a little while now, doesn’t seem like it’s so easy to sell, not that I’m that surprised, but if I somehow manage to win the lottery I’ll be glad to take it off their hands 😀

benrp
Guest
benrp
5 years 8 months ago

Anyone know where Australia would fit into that?

Peter Gilbert
Guest
Peter Gilbert
5 years 8 months ago

In the USA we don’t know how lucky we are with these prices. To be honest I don’t know how people even afford public transportation in some other countries.

Loma
Guest
Loma
5 years 8 months ago

+ the cheaper US gas prices for all those V6 ! 🙂

GerritN
Guest
GerritN
5 years 8 months ago

+ paying through the nose for health care
+ paying through the nose for your pension
+ having no social safety net to speak of

So, we can happily drive those big gas guzzlers until we get sick or old.

Although we should try to keep politics out of these discussions this is not always possible. I think this is one of these cases, the other is environmental impact.

Loma
Guest
Loma
5 years 8 months ago
Does someone have experience with buying a Saab through a parellel import company ?? If you look at the pricelist from for example Mineurobil.de , they offer 9-5 Turbo4 Aero for 35.900 euro ( tax incl.) Compare to the Belgian price for the same car : 44.890 euro ( tax incl) ! The reason they can offer a lower price is that they buy the cars in countries (I think Denmark ?) where there a high taxes. Apparently in those countries the base price (without taxes) schould be cheaper. And the cars would also be better equiped to compensate for… Read more »
nodrog
Guest
nodrog
5 years 8 months ago
In the US, in addition to sales tax, we also pay title and registration fees every year (another name for tax) which also vary by state. Many states also have mandatory smog inspections from time to time that cost a little money. The registration fee is based on the value of the car and will be a couple thousand more dollars the first year. For my ’03 model it is now down to a couple hundred, so our prices are even closer to Britain. Although, I don’t know of any US city yet that has something like the special congestion… Read more »
Adrian
Guest
Adrian
5 years 8 months ago

The London Congestion Charge is a bit of a red herring. Nobody drives in central London in the working day unless they REALLY, REALLY have to – traffic’s too heavy and slow, parking’s too expensive and rare. I live on the edge of London – and I think I’ve paid it twice, maybe three times in the 8yrs since it started.

GerritN
Guest
GerritN
5 years 8 months ago
What state are you in? Just so I can avoid it when relocating. Sounds like your registration fees are excessive. In NY state its about $50 per 2 years. On the other hand we are paying much more for insurance because of all the uninsured drivers (making the insurance even more expensive, leading to even more uninsured drivers, etc. etc.) It is even so bad now that in case of an accident the insurance companies don’t even try to go after the guilty party to have their insurance pay up. When asking our insurance agent about this he just told… Read more »
Per
Guest
Per
5 years 8 months ago

And I live in Norway, bummer. ( not really )

Jim
Guest
Jim
5 years 8 months ago

USA to rest of world: If you think our Saab prices are low, you should see our BMW, Benz and Hyundai prices! You can get a 5 series BMW here for ~$45,000. That’s 33,000 Euro. For a new 2011 528i.

Our 2011 9-5 prices might be as low as 26,000 Euro.

Truly, we are a nation of lucky car fans. With the cheap gas to fuel them. 🙂

I would note, however, that the quoted USA prices do NOT include sales tax and registration. Or the income tax already paid on the money.

GerritN
Guest
GerritN
5 years 8 months ago

“I would note, however, that the quoted USA prices do NOT include sales tax and registration. Or the income tax already paid on the money.”

All peanuts compared to income tax, luxury tax, road tax, VAT, BTW, etc. etc. in Europe.
Yes, we are a nation of lucky car fans!

Anders
Guest
Anders
5 years 8 months ago

This is of course partly true, but our high taxes are in many ways an efficient way to finance services like health care, higher education, child care, etc, which all are free or nearly free in most of the Western European countries.

Flemming
Guest
Flemming
5 years 8 months ago
Here in Denmark the taxation on cars has been an ongoing political debate for years and years. Although many danish politicians claim that they want to lower the tax on cars, it´s a fact that none of them dares to because of the billions and billions danish kroner the state recieves each year from car sales. Furthermore each year one has to pay taxes to own the car, depending on the car these can be pretty expensive, my 07 9-3 Aero for instance cost me approx 1250 dollars each year in green taxes. If you are under 30 years old… Read more »
Jason Powell
Guest
5 years 8 months ago
The pricing here I think for the US anyways is before options on the 9-5 Aero XWD. In Canada our pricing starts at $59700 before freight and extra options. The thing to remember in all of these comparrisons is the average incomes in said places, some of these numbers seem so unreal, but I don’t live there so I don’t know what I’d make doing the same job there as I do here. Look at house sales in the US, I could buy a house in Georgia for under $200,000 and in Vancouver, Canada, I’d be hard pressed to find… Read more »
zippy
Guest
zippy
5 years 8 months ago

So with tax and delivery Id be looking at just over $68500. HST got rid of that 3% luxury tax which is probably the only good thing about that blasted tax. Based on my annual salary a 9-5 Aero costs no where near double my annual income as it does in Sweden.

Housing costs here in Vancouver are WAY out of line with salaries though.

Jason Powell
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Zippy,

Totally agree with you about housing costs, which is why I live in Pitt Meadows instead of somewhere like North Van, where I grew up but can’t afford to live. Also, yes, I do believe that is the only good thing about that tax. Since the car isn’t anywhere near your annual salary, should I tell the business office here that you’ll be in this weekend? Lol You do need to come in though and drive it soon and you can update everyone on your take and comparrison of both models you’ve driven.

Jason

Nicola
Guest
Nicola
5 years 8 months ago

Well, Singapore is a town on an island, has a surface of 700 km2 and an efficient public transport system.
No room for cars. The car tax tries to discourage people buying cars.

aussielars
Guest
aussielars
5 years 8 months ago

208000 is not to bad for a 9-5 in Singapore considering that Mrs aussielars paid 116000 for a BMW 318 that was mechanically standard but beefed up with M3 paraphernalia back in 1995. And she would not drive it in to Malaysia since her 9000 would handle bad roads and long distance driving a lot better. 🙂

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