9-4X Reaching Dealers

I just got off the phone with Michele Tinson of SCNA and a few Saab dealers, and I can confirm that those 9-4Xs I reported seeing at the port in Newark are finally reaching dealers. One of the first to receive them happens to be only a few miles away from the port, JMK Saab in Springfield, NJ. Sometime in the next few days I’ll take a drive out there to see them and get some pictures and footage. They have one of each trim level– Base, Premium, and Aero.

Once the first pre-ordered 9-4X hits a dealer that’s already sold one, we’ll have coverage of it as the first Saab of its kind ever sold. It’s going to be a fun event, and SCNA will be getting in on the action too. This should happen in the next week or so. If you’re a dealer reading this and have any news, please email us at [email protected] While I’ve spoken to a few of you, we’d love to hear what your experience with the 9-4X pre-sale has been like and how customers are reacting to it. While you’re at it, send in some photos of their deliveries if you can.

In other news, the 9-4X configurator is also finally live (but the interior photo section may still be glitchy- it just went up). Despite us being able to price it on truecar.com for months, now you have the option to select your trim, colors, wheels, and packages right from saabusa.com.

UPDATE:

I have a quick question for all readers and commenters– as Clay noted in comments, he’s anxiously awaiting delivery of his new 9-4X. Are there any East Coasters out there who pre-ordered one and are waiting for it to come in? Tri-staters are likely to get them first, so if you’re located in the NYC metro area especially (or even if you’re not), let us know in comments or send us an email ([email protected]) where you’re located, what model you bought, and what dealer you ordered from, so we can see which one of you is likely to be the first 9-4X customer delivery!

Friday Snippets – Red J edition

This is my first snippets edition, let’s see what I found.

For the Canadian Saab fans:

The first Saab to arrive in Edmonton is expected to arrive next week. It will be an Independence Day convertible. Other “normal” Saabs are expected to arrive in Edmonton mid-April.

Saab Canada is telling a different Story about the dealer in Edmonton.

One dealership in Edmonton is selling high-line certified used vehicles and doing a booming business in import service, as well as carrying the new Saab line-up.

Source: The Edmonton Journal, Autonet

For the US American Saab fans:

Saab is having really interesting incentives in February in the US for the 2010 Models, upp to $7,000 for a 2010 Saab 9-3 Convertible.

Source: Autoloaddaily

For the Rally fans:

Saab’s friend and rally enthusiast Vladimir Antonov said to have cleared North One Sport’s (a WRC team) outstanding debt and is providing significant investment for the future.

So people are starting to speculate if this means the return of Saab to Rally racing, maybe next year.

I think, not with the current cars and not next year.

Source: Rallybuzz

For the Swedish Saab fans:

BIL Sweden County and Municipal distributed statistics for January 2011 shows that diesel cars with carbon emissions of up to 120 g / km dominate green car market. In Stockholm County, every newly registered clean car in January, a diesel-powered “120-gram down”. While losing both ethanol cars and gas vehicles market.

Better translation thanks to Börjesson:

In Stockholm County, every second newly registered clean car in January was a diesel-powered “120-grammer”. At the same time, both ethanol cars and gas cars are losing market shares.

BIL Swedens läns- och kommunfördelade statistik för januari 2011 visar att dieselbilar med koldioxidutsläpp på max 120 g/km dominerar på miljöbilsmarknaden. I Stockholms län var varannan nyregistrerad miljöbil i januari en dieseldriven ”120-grammare”.Samtidigt tappar både etanolbilar och gasbilar marknadsandelar.

I think there is indeed a reason for a sub 120g Saab Wagon.

Source: Bil Sweden

For the BioPower fans:

There is a fascinating article at just-auto explaining why bio-ethanol days of glory are already history in Europe.

I think the last 2 paragraphs tell the hole story.

A spokesperson for Renault, which now sells more FFVs in Europe than any other carmaker, told just-auto that “what is clearly lacking is a stable EU policy environment that delivers a clear and consistent signal to industry.” Meanwhile, Jonathan Nash, Managing Director of Saab Great Britain is clear about what he thinks are some of the reasons behind such inconsistencies: “There has always been a high level of government policy sensitivity around biofuels. This scepticism has been caused in part by the powerful anti-biofuels lobby, while the lack of credible well-to-wheel certification for biofuels’ emissions also makes policy makers ambivalent towards them.”

Whatever the reasons, it is clear that biofuels continue to divide opinion on a major scale in Europe. The fact though, that Europe’s policy makers are as confused as the general public about them is helping no one.

Source: Just-Auto

If I’ve forgotten somebody please rise your hand!

SaabUSA site now available on iPad

Saab are in the process of migrating the US site to a unified global template but in the meantime, there have been some mild updates to the standard site.

This first came to my attention when Kurt K emailed me all excited about the fact that he could finally view a rendering of the US site on his iPad:

Saab USA iPad

It’s great to see they’ve got this sorted out (and I hope it’s a big, big priority for the global site, which needs to be compatible with mobile devices).

How significant is this?

As far as SU is concerned, mobile devices aren’t a huge part of my regular traffic. They make up about 2% of the visit total here. But within that 2% – which is growing, by the way – the iPad represents close to 50% of the mobile device segment. Within a few months of its release, the iPad is close to being the mobile device used more than all others combined.

It’s primarily a reader and a lot of websites are crafting their iPad offerings carefully as the device offers a pretty rich experience. Get it right, and people will keep coming back.

Anyway, it’s good to see they’ve made a start and hopefully there will be more to come very soon.

Saabs no longer ‘Born from Jets’ in the US

Chalk one up for Mike Colleran and the new team at Saab USA.
Whilst they’re still keeping the non-minimalist styling, they have made the effort to change the tagline on the SaabUSA website from “Born from Jets” to “Move Your Mind”.
SaabMYM.jpg
I’m not sure when the change occurred, but it must have been reasonably recent as I’ve received a couple of emails in the last few days about it.
The BFJ tagline still adorns the “Build Your Car” website, but thankfully that website is no working properly, producing your car in the colour you select rather than just showing a red one like it used to do.
SaabBuild09.jpg
Small steps, but important ones.
Thanks to Koji and Jose.

Thursday Snippets – oops! Edition

It was all good news for Koenigsegg at the EIB board meeting, but it was nothing but bad news for a New York Koenigsegg dealership after a car was bought in for service and ended up like this:
wrecked_koenigsegg.jpg
Apparently this scrape with a guard rail also managed to scar a Porsche GT2 as well.
There ain’t a font big enough for this OOPS!
——
People like this shouldn’t drive Saabs:

A “professional thug” from Thames Ditton, who was caught by police with a sawn-off shotgun and a pot of sulphuric acid, was jailed on Friday for at least 10 years…..
Police recovered the shotgun and acid, as well as ammunition, ties ready for use as handcuffs, two baseball bats and a picture of the men’s target, from the Saab convertible they were travelling in, the court heard.
They also later found a stun gun.

“Bubba” is waiting in cell block B, Mr McRae.
——
You know I love Alfas, right? And I can appreciate Anime, even if it’s not something I’d choose to watch.
But the two should never meet.
This abomination was spotted in the carpark of the Tokyo Motor Show, which is on at the moment. More pics at the link.
RuinedAlfa.jpg
——
Employees at the new HQ of Saab Cars USA stand to make an average of around $2,200 per week.
This little factoid was revealed in a story about the company getting some initial approval to set up their headquarters in Royal Oak, just outside Detroit. They’ve applied for some tax concessions and consequently have to spill some beans on how many people they’ll employ, what the jobs will be worth, etc.
That’s an average of six figures a year for 50+ employees.
Here’s an offer, Mike Colleran: I’ll uproot my family and drag our soon-to-be miserable butts all the way to Michigan and work for you for $95K a year.
That’s a bargain, and a genuine offer.
UPDATE: That offer’s out there for you, too, Mr Batish. We could be in Melbourne by yer-end. Just say the word.
——
I haven’t covered Per Eklund’s exploits for a little while.
It seems the GFC has limited Per’s schedule and travel to a point where he’s competing in races mostly around the Nordic region. He cancelled an appearance in Belgium in August, but has since taken 5th in a race in Norway and 1st in a race in Finland.
More over at Mike Jager’s page.
——
One final little observation from here in Australia.
It seems Saab have had to give up sponosrship of one of the big horseracing events of the Spring Racing Carnival in Melbourne.
The Saab Quality Stakes was the final big hitout and always keenly watched by punters as an indicator to the biggest race in the country – The Melbourne Cup. Saab have sponsored this event for a number of years, also hosting a hospitality tent during Cup Week.
Not in 2009, however. A search of the Melbourne Cup Carnival website shows no reference to Saab and it seems the event has been taken over by insurance company, AAMI.

SaabUSA website adds ‘Saabcasts’

This may be old news by now, but the guys and gals at SaabUSA struck me off their Christmas card list some time ago, so I’ve only just discovered it. I guess you can rag on about a crap car configurator too much!
Anyway, whilst checking my RSS feed tonight, I noted a video they posted about how XWD works. Curious, I clicked through to see their new Saabcasts page.
The SaabUSA Saabcasts page has a number of movies on it that you can either watch on site or download for your portable media player.
The XWD film is after the jump for those using a video-friendly browser. Visit Saabcasts for more.

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