SAAB, Friends, Coffee and The Open Road

SAAB Club Of LA March Meet

There are Saab groups and clubs around the world that really come together and express exactly what Saab represents to me and many others. A couple of such groups are the Saab Clubs of LA and San Diego, Ca. I have followed both clubs on Facebook and am constantly pleased with how connected they are within their respective clubs with coffee meets on weekends and with how they come together for combined meets to share their cars and the love for the brand as well as a great love of the community as a whole. In the last year I have come to know some of the members here personally and have a great respect for what they do.

The story below is from Paul Hughes (LA) with photos from Alan Izzo (Saab Club San Diego), Simik Ghookasian (LA) and Duane McFarlane (LA).

On Saturday, March 16, the Los Angeles Saab Club gathered together for a fun morning of chat, photographs, and of course, a drive on one of the LA area’s most entertaining roads to exercise the turbocharged engines and wonderful European suspensions that the cars are known for. For anyone who enjoys driving but lives in Los Angeles, finding a fun road that isn’t clogged with traffic is remarkably easy, if you know where to look and are willing to spend about 30-45 minutes to get there. Special kudos go to Alan Izzo and his family for driving 2+ hours up from San Diego in his Griffin embossed red 9-5 Aero wagon for the meeting.

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Meeting up in what was a very foggy Woodland Hills, the Saab loyalists showed up for the ever required caffeine Route 23stop, breakfast and plenty of car chat just off the 101 Freeway. By the time the fog cleared, 15 Saabs were lined up for their beauty shot in the sunshine, ranging from a 1986 900 SPG to a 2011 9-5 Turbo 4 Premium, with plenty of 9-3s and 9-5s in between, and a 9-7X 5.3i to round out the group. Around 10:30am, the convoy left to head north to Route 23 South in Westlake Village, one of the LA area’s hidden driving gems. Once off the freeway, and heading south towards the Pacific Coast Highway, the road narrows from 3 lanes on each side to a two lane road that will put any sports car to the test. Curve after curve of pure driving perfection…that is, unless you get a Camaro convertible or Toyota Yaris in front of you doing 15 mph. Thankfully, Bryce Johnson, in his 2011 9-5 T4 managed to “scare off” the slow pokes, and the entire Saab convoy headed down to the PCH…I doubt any car got out of third gear, due to the nature of the road.

By the time the group reached the intersection of the Pacific Coast Highway and Route 23, there was an amazing smell of hot brakes, some faded brake pedals, but plenty of grinning Saab owners. From there, the group turned north for a group lunch at Neptune’s Nest, a classic coastal California seafood shack that serves up everything from fried clams to fish tacos, and where bikers, surfers, and a bunch of Saabers all mingle while staring out at what was a very fogged in Pacific Ocean. Never mind the view of the ocean…the view in the car park was what mattered anyway!

Overall, it was an excellent way to spend a Saturday morning and mingle with Saab lovers from all over the LA area.


What better way to spend the day then with friends and enjoying Saabs together? Here’s a little video of the cars on hand as well. Thanks to the Saab Club of LA for sharing your event with us, you are such a passionate group of Saab fans.

12 thoughts on “SAAB, Friends, Coffee and The Open Road”

  1. Always nice to see a spring gathering. Would love to be in sunna CA now here in Stockholm we just had more snow. Keep up the good work have fun driving Your Saabs. Just a little question where are all the 92-93-95-96-97-99 cars???

  2. Jörgen, The v-4 rally cars and 99 turbos are getting ready for concourse road rally in San Diego,CA only a very select few were allowed in, they had to meet the show standard, this is a very elite group of drivers and there handlers. Currently rebuilding a turbo now for such an event.
    The Sonett’s of LA tend to do there own thing on Sundays.

  3. Good time, glad I made the trip with my son. Thanks for the post Jason and thanks Paul for the write-up. I look forward to many more gatherings with the LA Saab “family” members!

  4. I notice the 2001 red Viggen on the top row. There were only about 12 red 2-doors in the USA. I have the only red one left in Wisconsin. however one of my friends bought another red one because he liked mine so much but he later sold it to someone in California. I would like to know if the owner in the photo knows the history of that car, especially if it came from Wisconsin.

  5. Woodland Hills, eh? I think I know exactly where that parking lot is in the lineup video… I bet I was working whenever the meetup was, anyway. One of these days!

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