Su Hi-Po Challenge #3

Time for another entry in the SU Hi-Po Challenge.

This one’s from Thyl, out of Germany.

It includes a few additional thoughts at the end, which take in information he learned after sending in the first draft.

——

So, what I propose as a halo car is a dignified high speed travel limousine based on the 9-5 Aero6, with only minor upgrades:

1. Engine: The 2.8 T with two turbos and about 400 hp. I suggest to use the engine from the Aero-X; as I assume that this engine was developed to a degree allowing daily use. If not, maybe some minor tweaks need to be done to improve durability, depending on what is available with GM/Holden.

2. Aerodynamics: Bring down drag coeeficient to 0.24. This is the most important aspect, since it will have significant influence on maximum speed (+/- 10-15 km/h) and on acceleration on motorways above 120 km/h. It will also be the most expensive aspect to develop, and will require redesigning the bumper to allow better airflow, modifying the grille with automatic flaps and maybe with acrylic inlays (greenish iceblock design) to make it smoother; providing better under-car-airflow including cladding and diverters from the front wheels; if possible, coverings on the wheels, and maybe more complicated stuff like lowering the hood (pyrotechnical pedestrian protection lifts the hood in case of a collision), etc. I however believe that in the long run, this field requires improvements to the 9-5 line anyway, and the other models in the range would hence also benefit from such development. Could be offered as an aerodynamic kit, like the one for the previous 9-3 that originated with the Viggen. Since I am pretty sure that at least some of the above measures have already been developed at Saab, cost might still be kept under control. Further, for sceptics, the aerodynamic kit for the 9-3 Viggen had a similar improvement to the drag coeeficient, from 0.34 to 0.31, and when looking at the overall shape of the 9-5, I think it should be doable.

3. Transmission: If the automatic transmission cannot absorb the torque, offer just the manunal transmission.

4. Speed: no speed restriction at 250 km/h. This is more than it seems, because it is also a clear political statement. There are manufacturers that follow this unwritten agreement to restrict maximum speed (e.g. VW, Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Volvo, Jaguar) and others that don’t (e.g. Porsche, Maserati, Bentley, to name only those that offer salons), even though most of the cars can also be purchased inofficially without restriction. By not restricting the speed, Saab would set a clear signal that they intend to belong to that sporty group of high class players, not to the boring rational guys. Ie., they would change sides, at least for this one car.

5. Styling: call the car the “Draken” and develop badges for the hood and steering wheel where the griffen is replaced by a dragon in the same style.

6. Tyres: Speed index Y for restricted speed of 285 km/h, or ZR without speed restrictions (as an option)

7. Suspension: No changes. This is not a super sports car, but still a salon.

Price guestimates. From what I found concerning biturbo conversions in the tuning sector, I would guestimate that the engine conversion to a biturbo version as such could reasonably be offered at around 10000-15000 Euro, including “hardening” the engine. Aerodynamic stuff is more complicated than the Viggen kit, and I would guess 5000 Euro. Better brakes (standard components) and tyres (Y) might add another 5000 Euro. Don’t know about exhaust.

The overall concept of moderately powerful engine, excellent aerodynamics and high top speed would be unique. Most competitors have a worse aerodynamics (not Mercedes though) and use heavier and more complex V8 engine to achieve 400 hp. The concept would play nicely with Saab’s alleged strong traditions of turbocharged, light engines and good (aircraft like, if you will) aerodynamics at a reasonable price. Funny, now that I have written this, I ended up rather close to the Viggen ;-), but less sporty. And XWD/HiPerStrut will help stabilize this stuff without requiring as many modifications.

Risks: Aerodynamic instability might ruin the whole idea. See Citroen C6.

Addendum:

Thylmuc again with some additional remarks on my concept…..

Sadly, I was informed that there is no real 400 hp engine in the Aero-X, so I cannot say how much it would cost to develop it, nor whether it will be possible at all:-(( I was unable to find any tuner that offered a biturbo conversion for the Insignia OPC. Maybe the engine really explodes at 400 hp.

Nevertheless, applying that old physics stuff, “required power=0.5*air density*speed E 3*frontal area*drag coefficient”, and doing some to-and-fro and a lots of ratios, I calculated some maximum speeds (starting from the Turbo4 XWD at 161 kW and a cw of 0.28):

Top speed of Turbo6 XWD without restriction would be 256 km/h
Top speed of hirsched Turbo6: 264 km/h
Top speed of Turbo6 at a cw of 0.24, as suggested: 269 km/h
Top speed of hirsched Turbo 6 at cw of 0.24: 278 km/h

And the concept, 300 kW at 0.24: 298 km/h

Which is not too shaby, I would say. Hope my brain worked correct…

Hans H
Guest
Hans H
5 years 7 months ago

Regarding power output; is there any truth in the statement that no Saab engine could be more powerful than the corresponding Opel engine?
If so, is that perhaps the reason for the quite conservative hp ratings for Saab engines?
And is that engine restriction still there? Can Saab use more powerful engines now or are we waiting for some agreement to end?

Henke
Guest
Henke
5 years 7 months ago

Not to be the boring one πŸ™‚ But how will SAAB get the money for this?

RS
Guest
RS
5 years 7 months ago
I don’t want to sound (too) boring either but if they don’t have money in the coffer for the purchase and development of two blocks (3.0 TiD and 3.6 twin T petrol for example) good help Saab. The increased overall sales the flagship 9-5 would create, by putting Saab back on the premium map, I think would easily compensate for the cost. I don’t want see Saab stuck in the struggle mode (80.000/year) because they don’t have an engine range and therefore lacking that vital extra credibility. The midgets are getting taller all the time. I just had a peak… Read more »
RS
Guest
RS
5 years 7 months ago

Aargh… the typos (god) πŸ˜‰

Jon C
Guest
5 years 7 months ago

RS, would thise sales have gone elsewhere if they didn’t sell 300+ bhp cars? What you omit to mention is total sales – you could just as easily say they sold 300,000 >300bhp cars! guess which type of car will grow Saabs sales?

RS
Guest
RS
5 years 7 months ago
In BMW’s case absolutely, or Audi and MB comes flying by. I’ve never realized they sold that many of the 7-series. I’m not saying Saab should enter some kind of power competition though. 400 from the factory is plenty for the 9-5 and smart peoples will agree. It would actually be interesting to know how many former Saabers drive these Hi-Po cars and what would it take for them (and others) to start looking at the THN products (again)? If Saab only sold 160 hp (base JC 9-3) to 400 hp cars, that could be a pretty niche premium thing… Read more »
till72
Guest
till72
5 years 7 months ago

Aerodynamics sound good. Don’t know if 400hp are needed then. Maybe they could get another 15-20 on top of the Hirsched 2,8T.

Suspension tweak is available at Hirsch. Exhaust, too.

Ken H
Guest
Ken H
5 years 7 months ago

In a way, this is just a longer version of the “hi-per” posts that triggered the whole challenge…
Just tune the existing engine + reduce drag = gargantuan top speed…

Edis
Guest
Edis
5 years 7 months ago
1. Engine wise, as I have mentioned before, GM is working on a twin turbo version of the LF1 designated LF3 (both are 3.0 litre) that will replace the LP9/LAU that Saab currently uses. This engine is expected to be good for at least 350 hp. There is also a twin turbo show car based on the LLT (3.6 litre), good for about 420 hp. If such an output would be realistic for a production engine is however a different question. All these engines are based on the high feature engine. Also, there is no point in trying to compare… Read more »
Red J
Guest
5 years 7 months ago

Edis,
don’t be so severe with them.

BTW, what happened to points 4., 5. and 6. ??? πŸ˜‰

Doctor Donk
Guest
Doctor Donk
5 years 7 months ago

You cannot reduce drag too low:
1) Car will look go ugly and too Chinese
2) Will be unstable on high speeds. Did you know that if you release accelerator on F1 car on 300km/h it will start braking faster than most cars with their brake system.
3) Top Speed is not that important. Acceleration is.

About possible 9-5 engine modifications:
http://www.thorneymotorsport.co.uk/tuning/vauxhall/insignia/insignia-vxr-r.shtml
http://www.thorneymotorsport.co.uk/tuning/vauxhall/insignia/insignia-vxr-power.shtml

SAAB + Hirsch can do even better. But with better gearbox. Default AT is just ****, Classic MT is not suitable with modern high power exclusive limousine. OK i prefer MT over **** AT but not most people. So clear solution is MODERN AT.

Jon C
Guest
5 years 7 months ago
Hmm, so Chinese cars are ugly and aerodynamically efficient? The number 10 bus outside my house is quite ugly and has quite a high drag factor so I don’t buy the efficent and ugly theory. I also think it was the lazy kind of generalisation applied to Japanese, Korean and Eastern European Cars a few years ago. Unstable at high speeds how so? The braking effect on an F1 car is due to the lack of a flywheel effect when you release the accelerator, not drag (although it plays a part). I do agree about acceleration being more important than… Read more »
North Toronto Punter
Guest
5 years 7 months ago
Though I’ve taken issue with some of your other statements, Doctor….You’re right on the money with this. Had the Turbo X been brought out such (without being saddled with Vauxhall looks) I think press reaction would have different, showroom traffic too. Instead, we’re mucking around with half-assed cheap marketing gimmicks…successor Carlsson Editions — or more recent abysmal ‘Turbo X Editions’, emasculated… Why haven’t Hirsch pushed the envelope like this? Or should I be asking: Why haven’t Saab Management made Hirsch push the envelope (Hirsch being our ‘Preferred’ tuner?) Note the warranty: Thorney Motorsport as well as being a specialist tuning… Read more »
Jon C
Guest
5 years 7 months ago
Some interesting thoughts Thyl especially on the Aero kit. My question is really what does the car do to boost sales? In terms of publicity an 185mph Saab is noteworthy but is it going to shift customers perceptions? You mention Bentley but at least 2 of their models have top speeds in excess of 195mph. Porsche has a host of models that are faster. Granted your 9-5 would out run the Maserati. When it comes to the press testing the cars would this car be tested against such machinery? I suspect that group tests would pit an XKR, S6, M5… Read more »
Paolo
Guest
Paolo
5 years 7 months ago

What do you mean about Citroen C6 aerodynamic instability???

ivo 71
Guest
ivo 71
5 years 7 months ago
If we agree as a group on the need for a halo Saab -which I personally don’t but I will bow to the majority- then it is a good idea to develop a flagship version of the biggest model Saab has instead of a sports coupe or a sportscar. Saab has never produced a commercially succesful sportscar and isn’t known for extreme designs. The most succesful aspect of any model was always the combination of sportiness, safety and everyday usefulness. Saabs were always striking due to the lack of striking exterior features. In other words, standard-looking cars with a very… Read more »
Jon C
Guest
5 years 7 months ago

Ivo, reading my submission I realise I did not point out in my entry I don’t support the idea of a halo model either. At least not right now and maybe not ever (but thats a long time) What I do support is the idea of developing an idea of a halo car within Swades constraints. Which I failed to do πŸ™‚ But it was fun to do.
Its also nice to have a day off (kids are off sick) and get to post for a change, even if I do lose a days holiday.

ivo 71
Guest
ivo 71
5 years 7 months ago

That is also why I wrote what I wrote above. And why I told Swade not to worry πŸ˜‰ .

Another similarity: I get time to post as well since the d****d flu is back, wih a vengeance πŸ™ .

Ivo

ivo 71
Guest
ivo 71
5 years 7 months ago
I don’t, Steve, it was just a figure of speech. And I think I comprehend the reason why you started this ‘challenge’ and also have an idea how you are going to ‘clear everything up’. But, at the same time, I don’t mind being a bit co-operative even if I don’t agree. I have worked on projects I had reservations about many, many times. Sometimes my doubts turned out to be justified, sometimes they didn’t. So I have learned to have an own point of view but also to leave room for not being the only one with a patent… Read more »
DODGE 111
Guest
DODGE 111
5 years 7 months ago

Keep it light Saab is working on making a lighter car, then have Hirsch do it’s thing to what we have and you will have the speed ,handling and gas mileage.The lighter cars with no Mods from Hirsch will get the benefits too .

PT
Guest
PT
5 years 7 months ago
I like your approach Thyl. Although there are plenty of flaws, taking the 95 to another level as a super-saloon is a different approach to the all-out sports model. It also seems to draw on some realistic technology ( although not all..) Most of all, I like your idea of a Draaken series which bookends the Viggen. Saab could have the Draaken at the luxury, all boxes ticked end and Viggen at the stripped-out and raw end of the performance market. This covers two ends of the market and probably allows most possibility of making some money. SaabSport Series: Viggen:… Read more »
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