Canadian test: Saab 9-5
February 4, 2011 in Saabology
Every now and then it’s extremely refreshing to read a road test that isn’t cynical, doesn’t have too many attempts at whipcrack humour and doesn’t do much else other than share an impression of a car.
Once you get past the toaster story, that’s exactly what happens in this Canadian review of the Saab 9-5 2.0T.
I’ll let you read the whole thing for yourself, but I feel compelled to share this bit as it really made me smile.
And this is where I start to become puzzled. The 9-5 comes in two flavours: the regular 9-5 and the 9-5 Aero. Oddly enough, Saab actually decided to go with two different suspensions in the trim levels. The top of the line Aero gets “HiPer strut front end” which essentially increases longitudinal stiffness and reduces torque steer. The base 9-5 on the other hand, uses a conventional multi-link suspension which improves comfort noise and vibration. Saab’s thought process was clearly that the hotted up 300 horsepower and 295 pound foot of torque Aero (which uses a 3.6 litre V6) should clearly walk the walk as a sports sedan, while the base 9-5 will take a more luxury role for those who value it more over performance. But I found the base 9-5 to handle quite well despite its set up for comfort. In fact, considering how big the car is, I was downright surprised. It’s poised, sharp and yes comfortable all at the same time.
OK, let’s overlook the 3.6 litre engine thing.
What he’s experiencing there is the lighter weight of the 2.0T vs the V6 and the resulting agility it gives the 9-5.
As mentioned in my own tests of the car last year, I loved the power of the V6, but for me, the 2.0T was something I’d see as more fun as a daily drive for my typical commute. It combines the brilliant space and comfort of the 9-5 with the agility of a much smaller car. The thought of Hirsching that car for another 40hp is a delicious one, indeed.
Anyway – go read the test. It’ll cleanse your mind to read something decidedly good about what is undoubtedly a very good car.
Thanks to Vince for the tip!