Saab UK Adds Value to the 9-5 for 2012

Saab UK issued a press release detailing the new specifications and changes for the 2012 9-5. Click past the break to hear all about them.

First up is the new engines. Both the Saloon and the SportWagon will get more efficient diesel and petrol engines, with lower CO2 emissions (down 4.7% on average)and improved fuel economy. They’ve fined tuned the engines (hopefully to deal with UK drivers’ tastes) and best of all, they’ve added for the first time on any Saab ever Start/Stop functionality for the 2.0 TID engine. Whether or not this is coming to the rest of the world we’re looking into, but it’s a welcome change. The 160 hp, 2.0-litre TiD engine with manual transmission has projected CO2 emissions of only 125g/km (Saloon) and 128g/km (SportWagon), a great increase in efficiency. They qualify for zero-rated excise duty and benefit-in-kind company car taxation of only 18 percent.

In combination with manual transmission, this engine features Start/Stop functionality as standard. It automatically stops running when neutral is selected and the clutch is released, and restarts when the clutch pedal is pressed to engage gear.

Saab chassis engineers went to work adapting the car on UK roads once again to gain better ride refinement, particularly on rough surfaces. They’ve already done this before to great response from the UK auto press, and hopefully this takes them that much further in competing against their rivals. On the Vector SE, the suspension adopts revised front spring rates, damper settings and bushings. The Aero gets standard DriveSense (which has been featured in the US Aero model), which gives the advanced adjustable dampening system. All XWD models come with a standard eLSD (electronic Limited Slip Differential) like the Turbo X introduced.

The interior is where I and many others have been praying for a solution to the plastics problem, fortunately there’s one in sight. The metallic effect dash center panel (which they’re calling black pearl, NOT carbon fiber, got it?) will replace the matte plastic, which will go a long way towards increasing the premiumness of the car. It’s standard on both Vector SE and Aero models. And here’s the best news yet– satellite navigation and digital radio (DAB) also become standard on all models. Finally, the death of the monochrome radio– at least in the UK. This decision can’t be understated by Saab– it’s a necessity for a car this big and at this price point. For the extra few hundred Saab needs to pay to get it in the car, they get much more back in value, at least that’s my opinion. Vector SE models also gain a multi-colour main instrument display (the one between the speedometer and tachometer on the dash). Well done Saab UK.

New active safety features include an optional rear-view camera which is mounted above the rear license plate and displays its picture on the standard 8″ touchscreen. Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) is also available in combination with automatic transmission and a Head-Up Display (HUD) (meaning I think you need the Auto and HUD to be able to get the ACC). It uses a radar system mounted behind the front grille then automatically brakes or accelerates to keep a safe distance behind the car it’s following. Full distance control is provided from 112 mph (where legally permitted) down to a standstill.  If the car in front comes to a complete stop, the ACC is re-engaged by a tap on accelerator pedal.  A Following Distance Indicator (FDI) shows the distance to the vehicle in front, and Forward Collision Alert (FCA) gives a warning in the main information display and the HUD if the vehicle ahead is too close. Sure this has been offered on competing BMW and Mercedes models for a few years now, but now it’s on a Saab and you can bet they won’t charge you near as much as the Germans do.

All in all, every change brings the 9-5 more in line with the competition. They’re all simple tweaks, but they add up to create great value for Saab owners. Once again, just as Tim Colbeck suggested in his first interviews, Saab wants to compete on a value equation with their rivals– a more rewarding and exclusive driving and ownership experience for less money. How can they lose with that?

 

GerritN
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Ugh, Adaptive Cruise Control = Zombie Driving.

GerritN
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Sorry, that was too negative (but straight from the heart….)

Hopefully the start-stop diesel will make it to the US in the new 9-3 one day. I don’t think the American 9-5’s will have it.

montahue
Member
5 years 3 months ago

From what i read the start-stop thing is way overrated. I guess it will save you a a buck or two a week if you daily find yourself in very heavy traffic
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f79E3By7VTw
but it needs active input and is probably just annoying. I might be wrong, but the saab 180hp diesel is taxed the same as the beamer with less hp and start and stop.

Olav
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Yeah, I tend to agree. What about the encreased wear of the start motor because of all the starts and stops? Maybe the start and stop function will contribute positive to the environment, I don’t know, but a mechanic (works with one of the three German ‘premiums’)I spoke withe some weeks ago said that the cost of this will be paid by car owner since the car will have a lot more repairs related to the S&S function.

SaabClubAlaska
Member
5 years 3 months ago

No, I think you’re spot on, Gerrit. Assisted parking, adaptive cruise control, rear view cameras, lane change warning… Safety is paramount, but some of these recent innovations just seem to pander to lazy drivers. I know Saab needs to stay in front of that to remain competitive, however. That said, I CAN’T WAIT to see the first 9-5 on the roads of Alaska!

marvin
Member
5 years 3 months ago
I disagree about adaptive cruise control. I love driving but unfortunately 90 – 95 % of my driving is pure highway / boring way driving to work etc. in medium traffic. In those cases adaptive cruise control is absolutely wonderful. I know it is easy to think that it is about taking the driver out of the loop (or only for lazy driver), but that is not the feeling you get when you drive it, it is more a sense of relief. But, it will take some days of “getting used to” before you reach that state of mind. And… Read more »
nichell
Guest
5 years 3 months ago

That’s a nice pic of the Saab in downtown London. Saab, way ahead.

Aaron
Member
5 years 3 months ago

It looks very photoshopped in. Front right tire is all kinds of blended in wrong.

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Simple tweaks??
They have added the Nav system and the DAB radio at no cost at all !!!
And the Turbo4 Aero is even cheaper, allthough it has DriveSense HiPer Strut, Nav System and Dab Radio as standard.

If one single Brit moans about the price in the UK, I make him buy the car in Norway !!!! 😉

BTW, the TiD4 with 125g is second to none in its category. (No the Volvo DRIVe does not belong to that category), and it is the next ZERO HERO (even the SW),

RS
Member
5 years 3 months ago

9-5 SC TiD4 (160 hp) 128g. Holy cow!
Isn’t that about 5L/100km mixed consumption, which equals probably to something like 4L/100km highway and these are real life figures for a 5 meter long wagon weighing roughly 2 tons. Wow.

Lets get that factory rolling…

Phoenix
Member
5 years 3 months ago

That was impressive updates for UK! Start/Stop, lowered consumption, NAV std (finally!) and updated dash. Good job Saab, now we are only hoping you could build some of those as well. We need a solution quickly and I’m afraid we are in a hurry. EIB, Government, HELLO??!! People wants to invest, would you mind let them?

Toby K
Member
5 years 3 months ago

That’s good…Now frikin build some.

theSandySaab
Member
5 years 3 months ago

+1…

Coke is it
Member
5 years 3 months ago

That is impressive!

I like that they have added the satnav as standard. Can we hope for it to be standard in Sweden as well?

Please, start building my 9-5 SportCombi now!

scottishsaab
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Just hope they can build it now!!!!

Belfast_Saab
Member
5 years 3 months ago

SAAB UK really are leading the way as shown in their sales figures – this is a very important round of changes alonside the press ‘launch’ of the wagon today, all-in-all very optimistic once production resumes…

spacy
Guest
5 years 3 months ago

” They qualify for zero-rated excise duty and benefit-in-kind company car taxation of only 18 percent”.

When you think it was not so many years ago, it was only the very smallest & lightest cars could achive this, this is really something.

In the UK, where Road tax is now rated on emissions this should give the BIG 9.5 a real advantage.

Sure to upset the Goverment though, they’ll just find another way to get the tax.

Juerg_U
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Is the start/stop system also available in Switzerland with the 2.0T Aero BioPower manual transmission? I’d just love that!
JUST BUILD THE CAR! It is freaking great!

900 classic cab
Guest
5 years 3 months ago

All great except the Start/Sop. I’m sorry but I just hate that thing. Introducing it in SAAB years after the main competitors seems like a “copy/paste” solution and SAAB is not known for copying stuff. When I get a ride on a BMW 3 series with that system, I hate to see the car shutting down after 200m on a traffic light and during cold weather. There’s got to be another way…

w3c validator
Guest
5 years 3 months ago

Yes, we may all have different opinions about that system. But if it is a system that in a easy way help to lower the consumption in a way (and nowadays more and more focus is on CO2-levels), then I see it not as a copy/paste but a natural system in a car.
(Just like cars nowadays have a steering wheel which is a copy/paste of the first car with that…)

JH
Member
5 years 3 months ago

I believe there will be a button on the dash to turn off the start/stop feature. 🙂

900 classic cab
Guest
5 years 3 months ago

Really hope so, as these cars are built mainly for road driving, not as much city driving. It’s easy to see that on the steering, gearbox, etc… I wanted a car to drive arround the city I wouldn’t have bought a “heavy” SAAB just like I did. There are smaller cars wich drive nicer in the city. They belong on the road 🙂

SteveW
Member
5 years 3 months ago

In neutral, lift clutch – engine stops. I hope the software is programmed to not allow this at 70mph but only when the car is stationary.

solvy
Member
5 years 3 months ago

impressive!!! next step to reduce emissions – this 9-5 with electric rear axle 😉

WooDz
Member
5 years 3 months ago

+1

900 classic cab
Guest
5 years 3 months ago

Now that is something cool and there aren’t yet many other manufacturers with that system.

Alex740
Member
5 years 3 months ago

I really hope the interior updates make it to the US, especially the NAV. Features likes that are HUGE to US buyers, to have it at no cost makes the 9-5 look like a real steal. Fingers crossed!

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Alex,
it is up to Mr. Colbeck to decide how the MY 12 cars should look like. The fact that some European markets have added some standard features at no cost bodes well for the US also.

SteveW
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Yes but the US already gets all it cars (not just Saabs) at prices that can’t leave much margin for the manufacturer. How much more could they add before their giving it away?

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

We will see !!

martinsaab
Member
5 years 3 months ago

I doubt the sense of start-stop. Might save you a Euro or two in fuel but might cost much more for a new eletric starter that wears much faster?!

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Martin,
this is the reason why you can’t add a S&S system to any engine. 😉

And as far as I’ve heard, those systems also check the current status of the engine (temperature) before stopping the engine.

S&S systems might save you more than 1 Euro if you live in a city, less if you live in the countryside, but the most important, and it is a big selling argument in most European countries, it brings the consumption/CO2 value from the NEDC (New European Driving Cycle) down by a big amount.

Bravada from GMI
Member
5 years 3 months ago

I do hope the eXWD will fix that as well, allowing for electric-only propulsion at low speed in traffic jams and such, and will also work as a boost when accelerating to remedy the inherent lack of low-end torque in small-displacement engines.

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

– e-only propulsion: Depends on the size of the battery.
– e-Boost: yes it will have a e-Boost function.

RS
Member
5 years 3 months ago

And as far as I’ve heard, those systems also check the current status of the engine (temperature) before stopping the engine.

Very important and I hope it will apply to cabin temperature as well. Lets say you’re sitting in a queue at -25 C and the engine is warm and stops but it’s still -5 C inside the car. With the cabin heater at full speed the air wouldn’t be hot for more than 10 seconds.

I trust the Saab engineers to make the start/stop ten times better than in any other car.

JH
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Very nice upgrades, this should be for all markets, not only in the United Kingdom!

Bravada from GMI
Member
5 years 3 months ago

+1

Motoradd's Cat
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Well done Saab UK, once again they show they way forward.

Sales Up
Media Presence (Welsh Open)
Fully Loaded specs
Tuned for British Roads (Cart Tracks).

Saab take note, make sure that the new 9-3 is designed to run on British Roads before releasing it to the media.

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

I can remember than in one of those early 9-5SW UK previews they said that Saab used to test cars in the UK to tune the chassis, but during the GM years they stopped doing so, and they wanted to use the British roads once again to tune the ride smoothness.

Motoradd's Cat
Member
5 years 3 months ago

I read recently that the General insisted that the new Saab 9-5 was to be developed as an Autobahn blaster, i.e. to ride at high speed in comfort.

I haven’t been to Germany for a while, but last time I drove on German roads they were pretty darn good. French Autoroutes are pretty darn good too.

We poor Brits have to suffer. Two bad winters (2 inches to snow!) and the roads are broken with no money to repair them. I’ve driven on better roads in Mexico. Still it makes a great development environment for Saab.

JH
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Two inches of snow… we probably had at least 20 inches here in the middle of Sweden this winter! 😉

Motoradd's Cat
Member
5 years 3 months ago

And I bet the traffic kept moving.

The threat of Snow causes absolute chaos here. No problem to a Saab, but you still get stuck because further up the road some expensive rear wheel drive car looses control.

Tripod
Member
5 years 3 months ago

“I’ve driven on better roads in Mexico.”
😀
Thank you UK, for providing such a, ehm, good test environment! 😉
(Yep, read about your winters; it was pretty bad in northern Europe, and in the USA etc.; as JH said, however in Sweden it was back to business as usual, more or less, still most the country got surprised, the second time as well. 😀 )

Motoradd's Cat
Member
5 years 3 months ago

The UK testing ground is particularly challenging in the West Midlands. The motorway (highway) near Coventry is really bad at and around Junction 3.

Oddly enough, Spyker are building their cars at Seven Stars Industrial Estate in Coventry. Maybe Saab should send their pre-production 9-3’s to Coventry for tuning. Oh and near Nuneaton (near Coventry) there is the MIRA (Motor Industry Research Association) test track, which has got some great examples of Britains worst roads as part of its facilities.

S@@B Krazy
Member
5 years 3 months ago
Do we know how soon these (brilliant UK) upgrades will be implemented? I have been waiting (reasonably) patiently for what seems like an age for my new 95 Fjord blue aero sedan. I believe it is on or about to start it’s production just before this last shutdown. I would feel incredibly cheated after staying loyal through all this turbulance to find I did not qualify. Should I discuss cancelling my order and re placing it? fyi – I don’t believe the engine upgrades will be relevant (to me) as I have chosen 190ps ttid (to be hirsched). I would… Read more »
S@@B Krazy
Member
5 years 3 months ago

Thanks Jeff,
that was pretty much my thoughts,
I get spoiled by my local Saab dealer…..I wanna own one and they wanna sell so we keep bumping heads til they have a headache ;@)
that said….My order was agreed in mid March, so 2012 model was not really considered then.
Would be great if SAAB could just make a clear announcement on the point of changeover, I am not the only one in doubt, Whilst I also believe it is a small price for Saab to pay to reward such loyalty.

Red J
Member
5 years 3 months ago

As Jeff said, you can try to cancel your order and order a MY 12 instead, you will just have to wait a little bit longer 😉

wpDiscuz