Tattoo You And The Griffin

I did a post a little while back on SAABSUNITED where we touched on the subject of tattoos and the devotion of many fans to this brand called Saab. Since that post, I have received a few more emails of tattoos and not too surprisingly it would seem the most popular is the Griffin head logo. Below are three examples of this Griffin head inked on fans who really have no looking back on Saab now, it’s a part of them forever.

The Griffin head is an easy one to choose because it just looks so cool. I have seen a few others where someone has tattooed a certain model on their arm and if the car is a classic old model, this looks great too unlike the tattoo I saw of a Chev Cavalier….. A Cavalier? What ever would posses someone to get that on their body forever? This may be a good reason to look at age restrictions on getting ink done because with age you think things through a little better…… well in most cases.

Seeing as the Griffin is the most popular in the tattoo department maybe we should take a look at the history of this creature and how it came to be a symbol of Saab.

Searching for this information I came across the website where this is broken down quite nicely.

The first rendition of the Griffin logo is found to the right.

The AB Scania-Vabis corporate symbol featured the crowned head of a mythical beast, the Gripen, or Griffin. Though this symbol was not actually used on any Saab car, it is important in the respect that it is the forerunner of the Saab-Scania corporate symbol that was used between 1984 and 2000.

The first such image used for Saab was the Saab/Scania logo designed by Carl Frederik Reuterswärd, which was introduced in 1984. This was the first logo to reintroduce the head of the Griffin as seen in the Scania-Vabis logo.

The next rendition was introduced months after the complete takeover of Saab by General Motors. This logo was officially introduced on 14th August 2000. Saab had said the logo “has now been refined to reflect more clearly the strengthening brand name and a model range which is the most competitive ever produced by Saab.”

I noticed on the Saab Museum this curious not about where the griffin head actually comes from.

The heraldic Griffin’s head – derived from the coats of arms of the Skåne and Östergotland counties in southern Sweden traditionally symbolises vigilance.

So naturally I had to see what these coats of arms look like and using wikipedia it was quick and easy. As you can see below there are some similarities but I much prefer the Saab griffin head.


First is theÖstergotland:     Second is Skåne: 

Looking at the two coats of arms it is obvious to me that the closest to the Saab logo is the one from Skåne and it looks pretty cool itself. Both images show the griffin and the golden crown and it’s easy to see the ties to our beloved griffin logo.

The griffin itself has the body of a lion considered the king of beasts and the wings of an eagle considered the king of birds. Griffins are known for guarding treasures (not unlike our SAAB) and are thought to be a powerful and majestic creature.

This one missed my posting but here’s Megs tattoo from tonight and another from facebook.


Notify of

ok… thats pretty cool 🙂


I kind of like the Griffin that Saab AB uses:


meg haviland

Got a griffin tattoo tonight, symbolizing Saab and the Griffin that’s been in my family from my grand parents..


I am no fan of any tattoos at all. I was appalled when I heard of people at Nike in Beaverton OR putting the swoosh on their legs.
We live in a free world but, at least in my world it is a very de-classing action to put on tattoos.


Where’s that? 1932?
Hard to believe (well, actually it’s not, really) there are still people like that are around, especially in a place like OR at that…. (yes i have been there and have friends living there…. before you go there)
We live in a free world but, at least in my world, somebody judging people because they have a tattoo, should NOT be talking about having class…


Trued – agreed. I’m not sure why people feel the need to make their bodies walking billboards. Just wait till they get into their senior years when all the artwork begins to sag. To each their own but I think I’ll pass on this one. Saab on!


LOL, I agree.

But to each his/her own ……

Lars Gunnar Olsson

Okay, we get it, you don’t like tattoos. How about we all agree to disagree and move on.



The only tatoos I have seen that I have seen worthy of appearing on the human body are those drawn using UV ink.


Jason, if you’re comfortable with people admiring the tattoos (that is judgement too), then by posting them on a car site you may have to be comfortable with people not admiring them.

You’re right – tattoos have been around for a long time. But their popularity has big peaks and valleys – they are peaking now. Tattoo removal is becoming a strong business and it will grow in coming years. They don’t age well.


I think there is a big difference between saying “x is not my thing” and “wearing x makes you less of a person in my eyes”.

A little diplomacy goes a long way.

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