SOTW, 9-3 at the Airport

This weeks “Saab of the Week” comes from Arvin Blank and shows his 2001 SE in the car park at Orlando Florida Airport.

He has owned her for four years now and speedo is reading 178,000 and still going strong.

A larger picture can be found at

If you have a Saab that you would like to share with us, please email RobinM at [email protected] and you may be our next SOTW to be displayed on our homepage and shared with the world.

11 thoughts on “SOTW, 9-3 at the Airport”

  1. I always believed in my heart that when SAAB abandoned the hatch, it lost a significant amount of its market identity, and competitive product advantage.

  2. Maitland, Florida resident here and I gotta say it’s nice to see a gorgeous local SOTW!

    And Mnztr and Joe, I couldn’t agree with ya guys more, in eagerly desiring the return of Saab hatches. I should also add that methinks your points about Saab abandoning the hatch were absolutely spot-on Joe. Strikes me as a bit of a mockery that Saab’s in a bit of lull now and hatchless, after coming back from the dead for a second time; while its European competition, Volvo and BMW have been manufacturing and selling hatches aplenty.

    • In my view, Methos; I believe Saab’s execution of the hatchback was as much a market differentiator as the 4 cyl turbo…which today could be marketed as a “high density” powerplant, like the Eco-motors engine being mfg by our friends the Chinese.

      • Saab did a lot of things to work their way out of business and moving away from the hatchback was certainly on the list. Darn stupid. They had it in their heads that they could take on the executive series cars (which were almost universally hatchless). Reposition themselves to sell against BMW and Mercedes, charge more money, make more profit. At least that’s what they believed. Funny how it all backfired.

        • Hence my position that Subaru is the “new” SAAB (at least from a market perspective)
          Take note how nicely they’ve filled the void left by the SAAB hatchback group. Virtually identical market demographics.
          Angelo; the good news is the folks both Swedish based and GM, that made those kamakazie decisions to go way upmarket are now history.
          Can they learn from their mistakes…that remains an unknown.

          • Joe: I think a strong case can be made that Mazda is the heir apparent to the real Saab (i.e. the original Saab). But I also think Subaru can be considered too. And frankly, if you isolate a few vehicles from KIA, they have some of the old character of Saab too—-that is, affordable, versatile, front wheel drive, some unique character/design that leaves no doubt who makes the car. And in some ways, KIA’s move to go to the high end (K9) means that they now cover Saab’s old market position at the lower end and Saab’s more recent position at the high end (doing it better than GM or Muller did). Some will never accept a branch of a large company like KIA as Saab’s successor—-because they have so many models and because they make cars in Korea, not Europe. But unless NEVS can pull off a miracle, there is nothing coming from Saab that will restore what they were—-for crying out loud, they’re not even selling cars in most parts of the world where they did sell cars.

            • No major disagreement there, Angelo.
              However do take a peek and see who owns the sport wagon market; which could arguably be what SAAB’s hatchback was prototypically.
              More importantly, look who’s BUYING Subarus. I have a chance to travel fairly extensively in a previous SAAB stronghold…CT and MA. SAABS are being stacked like cordwood in salvage yards, while Subarus are populating the roads at an incredible rate. NEVS take notice!!

              • Good point about the New England states migrating to Subaru from Saab. I think Volvo still sells in respectable numbers up there an upstate NY. NEVS isn’t worrying about this at the moment. They’re busy figuring out where to stick the battery packs.

  3. Saab seemed to abandon the hatch when it decided to take on BMW with it’s ‘3’ and ‘5’ badge numbering.

    Am I alone in thinking that the US spec front indicator light clusters on these old 9-3s and Arvins car look much cooler and saab-like than those clear lenses we had in UK and rest of europe. I managed to source some for my 9-3, although probably illegal in EU.

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