Planned SU project vehicle: 9000 AERO

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Yes I have had a 9000S once, a silver metallic 1987. Originally sold in the US to a swedish correspondent working Washington DC. That was a fine car with all the bells and whistles of the TURBO version but no turbo. A 130 bhp super efficient engine with 6.5l/100km gas milage. The 9000 was when it came out as the first of 4 siblings (Fiat Chroma, AlfaRomeo 164 and Lancia Thema) in 1984 one of the best cars on the road. Never had SAAB Automobile made such a jump in technology. All previous cars dated back two decades. SAAB needed something more and new. The Swedish-Italian development was reaching the pinnacle of car engineering. The SAAB 9000 Turbo was a sales success and the performance and handling was so radical and new compared to earlier versions from the Trollhättan engineers.

The model evolved gradually and in 1993 the AERO model was launched after the previous Talladega limited run model. The Aero was getting super performance with a 225 bhp engine and a top speed of 240 km/h making it sweden´s faster production car ever. The acceleration on 3rd and 4th gear was better than most Italian exotics from Ferrari. The red color of the 9000 Aero was even named IMOLA Red. Was that a hint on what cars this swedish beast could take on? One guy who knows the 9000 Aero as his daily drive is ex. design manager Björn Envall who has a black AERO with some 580000 km on the odo.

Over the years as You might know I have restored and built quite a few 99 Turbos, now it is time to finally do a 9000 AERO. So what we are looking for is a 9000 AERO in a condition that could be made into a truly great car. I does not have to be in mint condition that will be done though the project.

So if anyone here has a car like this or know of a car please let us know. The preferred car would be IMOLA Red, manual transmission, black leather interior. But any specimen would be of interest really as long as it not rotten out and the interior is in a decent shape.

Lets once again Unite and do a project together here on SU similar to what we did when saving the last SAAB 9-3 TTid. With Your support and that of the long list of SU commercial supporters. This project would be doable. The project will be shown here on SU of course and will be peppered with in depth stories from the people who designed and built the 9000 cars. A teaser for all of You: the unique captains leather interior was originally designed in 1977 before the launch of the planned SUPER AERO 900.

Contact jtrued  [at]

Skärmavbild 2016-02-22 kl. 16.48.14 Skärmavbild 2016-02-22 kl. 16.50.19 Skärmavbild 2016-02-22 kl. 16.49.58

20 thoughts on “Planned SU project vehicle: 9000 AERO”

  1. I have a 9000 CSE (A50) that is in need of some TLC. I just haven’t had time to do anything myself… 🙁

    But you are exclusively looking for aeros?

  2. One 9000 that I owned was a 1991. At some point I found a sticker on the underside (i.e inside) of the trunk lid that had some numeric codes and the word “AERO” printed thereon. However, the car was not badged an Aero (I don’t think that SAAB used the Aero designation at the time). Nonetheless, it varied from most 9000 turbo’s of that year. It had the two color three spoke wheels and seemed to sit a bit lower than the typical 9000 turbo. Also it was very powerful (can you say Torque Steer) – much faster than my Dame Edna 9-5 which has 260 hp. 1991 9000’s were the older style, but if you can find a version like the one I describe I recommend it over the later version (which I also have owned).

    • The ’91 and ’92 9000 Turbos were/are often seen or referred to as the pre-Aero. They have 200HP engines, and with a manual transmission, the gearing was a bit lower than the later ’93-’98 cars with the 225HP engine, so response quickened. They came with the same two-tone Aero wheels that were standard on the ’93 Aero (My favorite 9000 wheel, though many prefer the all silver ’94-’97 Aero (and anniversary) wheels, or the center-cap-less ’98 CSE wheels).

      With the lower gearing, off-the-line was quicker, but with more shifts, overall acceleration was a bit slower (to 60, say), and with the smaller turbos (only manual transmission Aeros, and ’98 CSEs came with the Mitsubishi TD04 turbo), they had less torque, and ran out of a bit of steam at higher revs.

      That being said, I would love to own a ’91-’92 9000Turbo someday, though my nearly 10 years of 9000 Aero ownership has scratched that particular itch quite well. (And there is nothing like the seats in an Aero. I know, I know… all Saab seats are very good, but the 9000 Aero front seats are truly a cut above. I’ve long dreamed of an office chair from a 9000 Aero seat. More character in one seat than an entire boat load of Camrys or Accords.)

      I firmly believe that the 9000 Aero was a high-mark for Saab. At the time, it differentiated Saab from the other cars on the market more favorably than any car Saab made since, as good as the 9-3 and 9-5 have been. It was pure Swedish understatement in a beast of a car. Just enough visual ques to set it apart from an otherwise great “standard” 9000, but under the skin, one heck of a car. Wolf in sheep’s clothing, so to say.

      I’ve heard more than one person say that the power (and therefore torque) figures were somewhat under-reported. My seat-of-the-pants experience wonders if that just might be true.

      Cheers to all. I’ve offered my car for the restore, though I know that the logistics might be hard to pull off.

      ’93 9000 Aero, Cirrus/Charcoal, 5spd
      ’03 9-5 Aero Combi, Steel/Granite, Auto
      ’04 9-5 Aero Combi
      ’86 900 SPG
      In the Family at one point or another:
      ’77 99
      ’83 900S
      ’87 900S
      ’91 900
      ’91 9000S
      ’92 9000S
      ’97 900SE
      ’01 9-5SE

  3. 3cyl

    The reason Aero couldn`t be used in the US, was that GM owned the name Aero before they were involved with Saab. Once they had skin in the game the Aero name could be used.

  4. jtrued

    I have just sent you a long personal email in regard to having a good NO rust
    97 / 9000 Aero for sale. Let me know if I can be of help from Stuart Florida USA

    • Monique, Rust not a problem in Florida except when cars are not washed after being close to the ocean. Salt air can cause rust pitting.
      By the way you seem pretty cluey on cars. I have a 1976 NSU RO80 sitting in my garage here in Florida.
      Yes I have cheated on my Saabs.

  5. Trued,

    I’m a long-time reader here at SU, though I don’t comment much. I’m prepping my 9000 Aero for sale. In fact, I just took some decent photos on Sunday afternoon.

    1993, 149K miles, all records since new. I bought it in 2003 with 44K on the clock, then sold it in 2010 with 136K as my wife and I moved overseas. I purchased it back in 2014 with 145K. Original paint, very nice car. It’s not perfect (it’s 23 years old), but it’s one of the finest 9000s you’re likely to come across. Not a speck of rust as it lived in the southeast US until I brought it to California, and it lived in southern California from 2010-14 when I didn’t own it. The rear shock towers are spotless. Fender arches are perfect. Never any body work, only two new windshields during my ownership (rock chips).

    I have the original ’93 wheels as well as the ’98CSE wheels shown. I have a shed full of spare parts including 4 DICs, Bilstein struts mounted to stock Aero springs, original Saab-dealer service manuals, etc.. It is not 100% original, but I have most of the original parts.

    Oh yeah, and it has a bit of internet/SaabsUnited history. It was featured here:
    It was also featured in the 9000 Lovin’ series, and was an early SU/TS wallpaper calendar. (My recent 900 SPG was featured here as well as a SOTW in December 2014.)

    Please I can provide more photos if you’re interested. (Contact me through email.)

    • Monique, the TCS in my car has been trouble free, but I know that others have had issues. Taking it out is a matter of getting a new throttle body, some new cables, and re-flashing the TCS control brain. I know it’s been done. Mine only gave me trouble when a TCS safety valve went bad. It would go into limp home mode occasionally. Now its driving as it should, but with an intermittent TCS CTRL light on odd occasions, though the system continues to work as designed (which is to say, not very well by traction control system standards these days).

      I’ve had many great Saab experiences over the years, in fact, my first ride in a car, ever, was home from the hospital as an infant in my parents’ 99GL.


  6. Correction:
    “The acceleration on 3rd and 4th gear was better than most Italian exotics from Ferrari.”

    Nope, the saying was: The Saab is faster from 80-120 km/h in 5th gear, than a Ferrari in 5th gear.


    • On my saab viggen-B235R The saying was: better than porsche carrera in hp and torque per liter engine displacement. he had aggressive gear ratios and the hot version of the mitsu turbo. The coupe version was the nicest. My honda S2000 VTEC engine was the champignon in these figures w/o turbo.But he had a high rev switch gearbox(secondary gear reduction These dna motorbike engine were designed for 8800 RPM. Wonderful engine to look at.

      • And to add a detail on the viggen, the front bumper is just 10 cm above ground thanks to tom walkinshaw. A Hell of a to job to repair.And the honda s2000 had a wider rear track than on the front.So if you park the rh front tyre nicely close the street row bar your after wheel is scratched. It happened to me the first day i picked up the car new by the dealer. So i used it as a spare wheel further on but paid the bill and learnt the lesson.

  7. One of my all time favourite Saabs – I still have an immaculate Aero interior sitting in our living room waiting for the right project car (much to my wife’s disgruntlement).

    Also great to see a return to the Saabs that matter, the ones that are here today, after all the say tomorrow never comes 🙂

    • Eleven, there is a straight body green Aero in Lake Worth Florida if you are in the states. It needs a lot of parts from other sources, as it has been picked for parts. Body never hit or damaged. A good base to work with.
      I can put you in touch with the Saab independent shop if you like.

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