What happened to IQon?

In march 2011 SWAN Saab presented themselves on the Geneva Motor Show as a new company with lots of ideas and new pieces of technology that they wanted to implement in their future cars. For those nostalgic among us, you can review the press conference here.

Jason Castriota showed with the PhoeniX concept car, where the post GM Saab design was heading to. Now, two years later, SaabsUnited is bringing to you the design of the first offspring of that design language. This car will never hit the road, but from the comments on this side on designs that still do not show the final product, my impression is that this car had the potential to help Saab get back on its foot.

One of the technology pieces that would have put Saab back ahead of other companies is the eAAM electric rear axle. From their presentation on the Geneva Motor Show we learned that the Chinese Qoros will be using it but not on its full potential, as we learned that Qoros will not implement torque vectoring in its car. I don’t like the idea of Audi telling the world in 2014 or 2015 that their eQuattro system is the first electric rear axle with torque vectoring, as we know that eAAM could have been today ready for production.

The other piece of technology that Saab demonstrated at the Geneva Motor Show was the IQon infotainment system.

IQon was an Android based infotainment system. It was like the flexibility of a modern Smartphone or tablet combined with the car integration of a legacy infotainment system. Being this such a promising system, what happened to it after the Saab bankruptcy?

Read moreWhat happened to IQon?

PhoeniX European Tour 2011 – Trollhättan

I finally got to see the PhoeniX concept in the flesh. It is certainly not what we are used to from Saab and I liked what I saw.

Rather than attempt to take the world’s best picture of the PhoeniX, I instead opted for calling some attention to various details that caught my eye.

More follows after the jump:

Read morePhoeniX European Tour 2011 – Trollhättan

Sunday Night Snippets – Bowler Edition

It’s a long distance relationship that we hinted at a few days ago thanks to a tip from SUHRT’s Jorgen Trued – now confirmed.

CPP has bought Bowler.

I’m not sure if I’ve got all this correct as I’m writing off the top of my head, but here goes……CPP Global Holdings Ltd is the same group owned by Vladimir Antonov (and I believe, also part owned by CPP Managing Director, Brendan O’Toole) that recently agreed to acquire Spyker’s sports car business. They are also the coachbuilding company that now makes Spyker vehicles since their move from Zeewolde.

And if you’re not familiar with Bowler’s vehicles, do yourself a favour and go Google them. Brutal beasts, they are. It’s nice to have them in the extended family.


The Saab 9-3 Griffin is now being advertised in Sweden…..

…. nice image, that one. The ad also talks about the Saab 9-3 SportCombi now getting under the 120g/km bar.

243,000 crowns is around $38,000 US dollars.

Thanks to JH for the scan.


People are still buying Saabs……

I’ve had two emails over the weekend relating to people shopping for Saabs. One for a Griffin and one stitching up a deal on a Saab 9-5 Aero.

It’s great to see, and I’m sure we’ll hear more about these purchases as time ticks on.

In the meantime, I’m making a few enquiries of my own. I’m still not in a position to buy new, but am having some thoughts about some vintage Swedish steel. I’ll keep you posted.


This is the front of the Saab PhoeniX Concept….

And this is a quick photoshop of how the PhoeniX concept front end could be adapted for a future Saab 9-3. The artist wishes to remain nameless…..

Nice work. I’d give that a second look. For sure.


The Saab IQon video is definitely proving to be the hit of the Geneva Motor Show news releases. It’s been picked up by motoring websites, as well as plenty of technology mags.

I took another look at it today using my Apple TV device to stream to my 40-inch screen and it looked absolutely fantastic. As of that viewing, it had been watched over 110,000 times.

It’s hard to say what was the bigger hit for Saab in Geneva – PhoeniX or IQon. Great to have them both there, however.


It’s a long weekend here. Woohoo!

I have a lot of writing to do tomorrow, as well as trying to fit in a visit with fellow Saabnut Drew B and a good cleaning of the Monte Carlo. Busy days.

I hope you’re having a great weekend.

Saturday night snippets

Actually it is still barely afternoon, but as you all know the spirit of SU was born in Australia so by the time this is published it will already be almost Sunday. Eventually, I expect SU will convert to Saab Mean Time (SMT) which is more or less GMT+1.

On to the snippets.
Pam sent our team a note letting us know that the IIHS has published the first MY10/11 9-5 crash test scores. No side impact testing as of yet, but I’m sure their testing regiment will continue. Good score so far.
AutoNews’ Rick Kranz offers up some nice thoughts on the PhoeniX. “The PhoeniX design is polarizing. But that’s OK.” (thanks John for the tip).
Both Saab PhoeniX and IQon continues to receive attention all over Internet. A little googling turns up heaps of articles and opinions. “Don’t Angry Birds and drive!” writes Rik Henderson of pocketlint.com. A colleague of mine received a citation a week ago for using his mobile while driving. He tried to demonstrate that he had a handsfree device in his glove compartment, but no rebate on the ticket was offered. Imagine the cop’s reaction had there been a little Angry Birding going on too.

Personally, I suspect digital distractions will be difficult to avoid in the future. By blocking content on the main satnav screen, all you will accomplish is that the driver will whip out his other portable screen and use that instead. The choice will be between being able to use only one hand or be forced to employ other body parts as well. Still, as with the “fasten seat belts” sign, the car should lead with a good example. In either case, IQon is long overdue and an welcome addition to the Saab product range.
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