Saab 99 Evolution

Here’s a look at the Saab 99 as it began as well as how it evolved over the course of its lifetime.
This is a long one, but a pretty good insight into the evolution of the car. The importance of this car shouldn’t be underemphasised. I’m relying on somewhat dated statistics here, but I think I’m right in saying that it’s still the second-highest Saab produced by volume behind only the C900.
1969_99_2.jpg
Saab 99 – 1969
Engine:
4 cylinder overhead valve engine with overhead cam, longitudinal mount, watercooled.
Capacity: 1709cc
Bore: 83.5mm
Stroke: 78mm
Compression: 9.0:1
Power: 80hp (64kW)
Torque: 127Nm
Carburettor: Zenith Stromberg
Fuel pump: Mechanical, AC Delco
Transmission:
Front wheel drive.
Single dry plate clutch.
4-speed fully synchro gearbox with freewheel
Floor-mounted shift
Suspension:
Coil springs and hydraulic telescopic shock absorbers to all four wheels
Front – individual wheel suspension
Rear – rigid axle with transverse Panhard rod.
Brakes:
Dual circuit diagonally divided brake system with disc brakes front and rear.
Handbrake acting mechanically on the front wheels thru separate drum brakes.
Steering:
Rack and pinion steering.
3.33 turns lock to lock
Turning radius 5.1m
Wheels and Tyres:
Pressed steel rims
4.5″ x 15″
Wheelbase – 2473mm
Length – 4354mm
Width – 1676mm
Height – 1450mm
Top speed – 153kph
0-100kmh – 18.0 seconds
Economy: 9.3litres per 100kms
Colors – Red, White, Blue, Green, Black, Light Beige.
Price: 18,385 SEK
————


Saab 99 – 1970
Changes:
– clock added
– cigarette lighter added
– ash trays in rear
– improved interior lighting
– seat belts added in rear as standard
– mew steering wheel with double horn button
– three-point engine suspension
– new inner uni joints
– aluminium exhaust
– Automatic transmission added (Borg Warner 35)
– Bosch EFI (95hp)
– 4-door model added in March
Colors:
Polar White (Red)
Silversand (Black)
Toreador Red (Black)
Savannah Beige (Golden Brown)
Sea Green (Golden brown)
Black (Golden brown)
Medium Blue (Dark Blue)
———-
Saab 99 – 1971
Changes:
– Headlight washers and wipers (standard)
– New instrument panel
– Anti-glare fitting on rear view mirror
– larger external mirrors
– Two external lower grilles for improved cooling
– larger 1854cc engine (93hp – carb version and 103hp EFI)
– Electrodipped body
– Better brake servos
New Colors:
Silvermink
Tyrolese Green
———-
Saab 99 – 1972
Changes:
– electrically heated driver’s seat
– energy absorbing bumpers
– larger flashers and parking lamps
– new wheels
– 1.7 litre engine ceased
– freewheel ceased
January 1972 – EMS model unveiled
– copper coral metallic
– light-metal wheels
– steel cord tyres
– halogen lamps
– leather-covered steering wheel
– tachometer
– Swedish-built 2.0 litre engine (Bosch Jetronic – 110hp)
– 0-100 in 11.6 seconds
– 170kph top speed
– Price: 27,500 SEK
New colors for non-EMS range:
Verona Green
Amber Yellow
Ceased colors:
Silvermink
Savannah Beige
emscalshot.jpg
———-
Saab 99 – 1973
– 99L model (1.85)
– Door protection beams
– compression moulded fibreglass headliner mould
– pivot-mounted front springs
– instrument modifications
– halogen headlamps for non-EMS models too
X7 model introduced for Nordic market
– lower cost model in basic trim
– no chrome trims
– seats from V4
– rubber mats
– plain wheels
New colors:
Brilliant Yellow
Caroline Blue
Sepia
Silver Crystal Metallic (EMS)
Ceased colors:
Tyrolese Green
Medium Blue
1973_99_2.jpg
———–
Saab 99 – 1974
January 1974 – Saab Combi Coupe starts sales.
– Primary development by Bjorn Envall.
– 184cm load space
– electrically heated rear window
– improved aerodynamics
– New higher front seats with integrated head restraints
– New steering wheel
– rel type seat belts
– improved interior heating and ventilation
– improved door locks
– More luxurious interior on EMS
– armrest built in to rear seat
– improved inner door mouldings
New color:
Sunset Orange
1000293.jpg
———-
Saab 99 – 1975
Changes:
– Improved brakes
– Improved steering gear
– Improved uni joints
– Improved exhaust
– Bigger fuel tank
– Standard power raised to 100hp
– Double-carb model introduced – 108hp
– X7 name for base model dropped
– EMS model moves to mechanical continuous injection (118hp)
– central grille received extra frame trim
– May 1975 saw the introduction of a goods fan for Denmark
New colors:
Solar Red
Emerald Green
Coral White
———-
Saab 99 – 1976
Changes:
– Improved clutch
– wider rims
– improved instruments
– electrically heated rear window for sedan
– new boot interior
– improved dip lights
GLE model introduced at Belgium Motor Show
– 118hp engine from EMS
– power steering
– automatic transmission
– EMS wheels with gold tones
– tinted windows
– power adjusted mirrors
– heated passenger seat
5-door CombiCoupe introduced at Geneva Motor Show
New colors:
Opal Green
Mustard Yellow
Ceased colors:
Emerald Green
Sunset Orange
———-
Saab 99 – 1977
Changes:
– Turbo model unveiled!! Test series vehicles numbered 900-999 based on EMS hatch
– New larger front lamp cluster
– larger tail lamps on sedans
– New bumper decor
– larger outside rear view mirror with black casing
– speaker inserts in doors for EMS (standard on previous year’s GLE)
– New steering wheel for L and GL
New colors:
Astral Blue
Antelope Brown
Dorado Brown
Cardinal Red (EMS and GLE)
Anthracite Grey (EMS and GLE)
Ceased colors:
Mustard Yellow
Caroline Blue
Sepia
Brilliant Yellow
Verona Green
Amber Yellow
———-
Saab 99 – 1978
Saab 99 Turbo for sale!
– special Inca rims
– 2.0l turbocharged four cylinder
– 4 speed gearbox
– top speed around 200kph
– 0-100kph in 8.9 seconds
– Black or Cardinal Red three door hatch
99Tblack.jpg
Other models:
– Automatic preheating of induction air
– new shift lever
– oil cooler for automatics
– daylight driving lights wired to starter in Sweden
– catalytic converter for certain markets
– sunroof availability on certain models
– interior redesign for GLE
– gold tone on wheels changed to black
– EMS available as a 3-door in certain markets
New colors:
Jade Green
Laguna Blue
Ceased colors:
Opal Green
Astral Blue
———-
Saab 99 – 1979
Number of model variants declines due to Saab 900 becoming available.
– Reinforced rear axle
– modified front suspension
– semimetallic brake linings
– Bigger fuel tank made from polyethelyne
– more legroom in the rear
A small number of 2-door turbos was made for certain European markets
New Colors:
Alabaster Yellow
Chamotte Brown
Midnight Blue
Marble White
Acacia Green
Ceased Colors:
Jade Green
Laguna Blue
Antelope Brown
———-
Saab 99 – 1980
Changes:
– seats upgraded to the same as those used in the 900
– Lower side mouldings to alter appearance
– Bumpers from 900 fitted
– black moulings around wheel wells
New colors:
Carmine Red metallic
Aquamarine Blue metallic
———-
Saab 99 – 1981
Changes:
– limited numbers of 2-door turbos in UK only
– same front and rear seats as 900
– new steering wheel and powered rear mirrors (previously GLE)
– single-carb version in base model
– 1,600 GLi units were made for the Nordic markets
– 2-door abnd 4-door
– electric mirrors
– tinted windows
– decor rings on wheels
– upholstery in blue, red or green
– white cars given black mouldings on windows and black door handles
– econometer installed in dash
– Saab 99 Petro released in Finland
– designed to run on kerosene.
New colors:
Cirrus White
Cameo Beige
Terracotta Red
Indigo Blue Metallic
———-
Saab 99 – 1982
– All models receive the ‘H’ engine
– New grille
– black window surrounds for two door
– Nordic market received 2 and 4 door 99s with 5-speed gearboxes and low-profile tyres
———-
Saab 99 – 1983
– New bumper moulding on all models
– New 900-style grille
– Black decor on windows of 2-door models
– Asbestos-free brake linings
– Oil filler repositioned so that dipstick could act as filler cap
– separate econometer removed with economy markings placed on tachometer
– Rear fog lamps
– New centre console
– sunroof option on 5-speed cars
———-
Saab 99 – 1984
– final year of manufacture for the Saab 99
– breakerless electronic ignition system
– seats lowered 20mm in the front
– seat heating for passenger seat is made standard
New colors:
Azure Blue
Ivory
Platinum Blue Metallic

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