Teknikens Värld takes the 9-3X Griffin out for a spin

The past few days here have had a heavy focus on the business side of Saab. It is only appropriate then to turn our focus back to the cars.

JH gracefully supplied us with the following manually improved googletrans of the original article (also containing 11 pictures worth checking out).

More after the jump:

Saab 9-3X Griffin – live report from the test drive

The Saab 9-3 of the current generation is petering out. Therefore Saab
has updated the model and given it the additional name Griffin. We
have taken out a 9-3X Griffin to experience the news and convey them
to you.

Hello Hans! So you have picked out a new Saab 9-3X Griffin this
morning. Some overwhelming experiences?
– Hello. No, I wouldn’t say that. Experience-wise, it feels almost as
before. The eye, however, sees a bunch of changes, as the ice-blue
lights, the greater Saab emblems in the grille and frame around it,
which is a little different. On the tailgate the birdie has
disappeared and been replaced by a Saab badge. But the birdie, meaning
the Griffin, remains on the rim’s center caps and the steering wheel.
The 9-3 Griffin has gotten a tougher front end where the air intakes
who cherish the front fog lamps have gotten a 9-5 look, but
unfortunately this is not applicable to the 9-3X Griffin. The rims
have by the way also been revised.

So the driving experience is the same as before?
– Unchanged at that point. Before I got the car I drove a bit in the
new 9-5 and compared with it the 9-3X feels old, a bit more classic
900-feeling. But in a positive way must surely be added. Nice to drive
and soft in the suspension. But it still feels like it’s time for the
9-3 to get a successor.

Has something happened to the interior?
– Yes, they call it updated dashboard quality. Like the new 9-5, which
also gets an updated interior, the 9-3 has had some criticism due to a
plastic impression. It has been solved in the 9-3 and 9-3X Griffin by
the surface surrounding the gauge housing and the radio/navigation
component now has a new smooth surface with carbon fiber appearance.
In addition, you avoid reflections in the windscreen that makes you
think you have cracked it. This is because the chrome molding around
the dash has been toned down.

Something to say about the engines?
– For the moment i drive the 9-3X Griffin with the 220-horsepower
BioPower engine, four-wheel drive and automatic transmission. It is a
nice engine with great performance. Also introduced now is one, or
rather two, engines that keeps the 9-3X below 300 000 SEK. For 299 500
SEK you get the BioPower and for 295 000 SEK you get the Turbo4, which
is the pure gasoline version. Automatic gearbox can not be combined
with the 163-hp engines. In contrast, they have four-wheel drive.

Something to add before we move on?
– It would be the cell phone pocket on the side of the front seats. A
funny little feature that is most interesting for rear passengers.

Trev
Guest
Trev

The wheels and new seat pattern with contrasting stitching look amazing and more premium I think, however, I noticed the driver seat bolsters look very worn and misshapen. I’m sure that is a pre-production model so lets hope that quality will be improved for the production cars.
When will the Griffin range go on sale in the US by the way?

Knape
Guest
Knape

I have noticed on cars.com that there are a 9-4x in stock in Maine. Is it possible that cars have been delivered to dealers or is it just a way of getting people to know about the model and collecting pree-orders? Off topic, sorry 😉

Marco
Guest
Marco

It is sad to see the 9-3X leave the market as a marginal model of the 9-3 family. It had a potential to become much more than it has been.
Of course the time of its arrival was one of the worst in the middle of Saabs crisis in 2009. It must have affected the range of it by missing popular engine-transmission combinations and the right kind of marketing when introduced.
Lets hope that the next generation of X becomes better in sales and visibility.

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