SOTW, Portuguese TTiD

This weeks SOTW comes from Joao Paulo Fortuna who lives in Portugal

I am from the island of Sao Miguel Azores Portugal. This is my 9-3 1.9TTID 180hp my09. It just got it remapped to 210hp with maptun. I also upgraded to 18″ wheels from AXE wheels and got Michelin Pilot Sport 3’s mounted on them. I also upgraded front brakes to turbo groove discs and redstuff brake shoes from EBC brakes. Hope I get on!

Thank you Joao, you are most welcome.

Larger photos can be seen at

A Winter’s MPG Tale

Paul from SVS fame has a query for you……..

Back when I started my blog I made a real effort to monitor the real world mpg of my Saab 9-3 TTiD 200bhp. Over the course of a year it had highs and lows, never really moving from 40 – 43 mpg with regular daily driving, that’s around 550 miles from a full tank.

I can push it seriously hard one day and take it easy the next, sit at high speeds on the motorway or fly along country lanes, but the figures remain pretty constant. Over the past few months however, I’ve seen a real drop in these figures, down to 38 – 39 mpg, that’s between 450 – 500 miles per tank.

This is an mpg trend that’s happened for the third Winter running, here in the UK we don’t get harsh Winters, we may get snow or extreme weather for a few days but nothing for a prolonged period, so I wonder what changes?

If it’s abusing the Saab heated seats then I’m fully to blame, say no more.


Testing the Pressure in a 9-5 TTiD

As some of you may know, friend and fellow Saab enthusiast, Graeme Lambert, took delivery of a Saab 9-5 TTiD Aero as a long term test back in April of this year. Graeme is a journalist for the British Car Weekly Auto Express. He has just sent us his latest artical about life with the stunning 9-5 Aero which can also be seen in full online. (Now with added pictures)

Big saloon is under pressure to deliver with better efficiency after we switched to Eco tyre readings

Read moreTesting the Pressure in a 9-5 TTiD

Low carbon Saab is a hit with Alex

Below is a piece written by Steve Sowden from The County Gazette in Somerset, England.

Alex is a good friend of mine and my co-founder of South West Saab. The snowy photo’s were taken on the 24th December which was the day Akex received his new TTiD.

With an ever increasing focus on how we can do our bit to help protect  the environment, eco-conscious Alex Rankin from Yeovil has invested in one of the cleanest, low carbon Saabs ever produced.

When Saab recently launched its low emissions Saab 9-3 range, Alex headed straight to Astley Saab in Yeovil to find out more and was
instantly impressed by the quiet and smooth drive and superior  styling combined with class leading fuel performance and low emissions
offered by the Saab 9-3 SportWagon.

Read moreLow carbon Saab is a hit with Alex

Lasse Sward – we live in different worlds :-)’s Lasse Sward has published a review of the low-emissions Saab 9-3 TTiD today and I had to have a giggle as I read the ending.

The test goes extremely well, to be honest. One could go so far as to say it’s almost a glowing review. Well, about as glowing as reviews get in Sweden.

Sward praises the work done on the car to get it below the magic 120g/km mark, and notes that even though the model is older now, it’s still quite capable on the road, very reliable, very safe and despite some cramping in the back when there’s a tall occupant in front, it’s still comfortable and very driver-friendly.

The bit that made me giggle was near the end when he was discussing the fact that three models are available under 120g. They are 130hp, 160hp and 180hp versions – and the fact that the 180hp version is the most powerful ‘green’ car in Sweden is noted.

Sward opines that people should save some money and go for the 130hp version, arguing:

The price starts at 267 800 SEK for version Linear Active. The corresponding ethanol version with 175 hp is 18 000 cheaper – but drink more and thus provide higher mileage, and must also be serviced more often. If you settle for simple diesel engine of 130 horsepower, you’ll get away with 244 000 SEK, a clearly smarter choice in terms of their wallets. And honestly – how many need 180 hp?

It was that last sentence that made me double over.

And honestly, how many [people] need 180hp?

Mr Sward, I’d like to employ you to moderate my comments section. Please. If you can convince a readership that 130hp is perfectly adequate then I’d love you to come in to SU-land and help me to persuade some people here that a 220hp engine, with the option of taking it up to 260hp with factory-backed tuning, is more than perfectly adequate.

It’d certainly save me some time, angst and heartache 🙂

Seriously, it just goes to show the different philosophies from place to place. Sweden is the land of Lagom and Saab, a company who embrace this concept to a large degree, are selling cars to a lot of very different markets from it’s little base in Trollhattan.

Check out that review. It’s well worth the read.

And people – don’t take the bait. I realise quite clearly that more is needed in other markets. I’m just amazed at seeing the difference so stark in this article.

Saab building as a good company car choice in Sweden

It seems Saab are receiving some very favourable consideration in the Swedish corporate fleet market.

From Swedish Radio:

Swedish companies are beginning to trust Saab again and more people choose one of the company’s models. [This is] an important market for Saab as great company cars constitute [a large number] of sales.

NCC, one of Scandinavia’s largest construction and property companies, were last at the turn back to that retrieved their car from Trollhattan. (i’m not sure how to accurately translate that in context – SW)

– We have pressure from our employees that Saab will be an eligible car [for company purchases/leases]. Saab has produced a pair of models [with] carbon dioxide emissions below 120 grams. And then there is another reason: it is a Swedish car maker, says Lennart Persson, head of car purchases in NCC.

Bottom line – this refers to the Saab 9-3 TTiD Sport Sedan and with that, Saab are offering a range of cars that are popular in Sweden because they’ve been able to give the market something it wants: a sub-120g/km car with good space and power.

Just wait until they get the SportCombi below that level. They’ll have to build bigger doors at the factory to ensure they can get them out quickly!

This is something that the numbers have told us might be the case (sub-120g/km cars cost less to register, etc), but it’s great to hear it being confirmed. on sales, Saab 9-3 and TTiD SportCombi

Our friends at Auto Motor and Sport have been speaking to Saab and there’s some indications there that some good news we’ve been expecting for a little while now is just over the horizon.

Cue the Googletrans:


Saab started slow, but climbing up
Pär Brandt – 2011-01-07 09:21,

Sales forecast was written down twice and Saab sold not more than 32 000 cars in 2010. But the year ended with a faster tempo and according to managing director Jan-Ake Jonsson, [there is] confidence [for] sales [in] 2011.

Saab’s new start after the change of ownership in February was significantly slower than management had imagined. The original sales forecast of 60,000 cars were written down twice and finally ended up at only 32 000 cars. Although an improvement of 53 percent compared with 2009, but it was a particularly bleak year for the automotive industry as a whole and Saab in particular.

Despite the problems is managing director Jan-Ake Jonsson happy with what you did to accomplish in 2010. Saab loaded bearings out at the shops and established new sales organizations in several countries. Important markets such as China, Russia and Australia in the starting blocks and they will contribute positively, as the launch of the new 9-5 sedan and the 9-4X. In addition, hope you capture the more important to company clients during the early years then also 9-3 SportCombi in an eco-rated version with a low emissions to 130-180 hp. 9-3 will also get a face lift to increase interest.


The bit of particular interest there is the last few sentences, where it states a couple of things we’ve been expecting, but hadn’t heard much of from a Swedish source.

  • The 9-3 SportCombi will achieve the same low-emissions status with TTiD engines as the 9-3 Sport Sedan, and will be available in three versions from 130-180hp. This is expected early in 2011.
  • The 9-3 range will receive a facelift to carry it through to a replacement model in late 2012.

It’s noted that those items aren’t direct quotes from people at Saab, but the author of the article is a man I know reasonably well, Pär Brandt, and I know he talks to the right people at Saab. He’s not one who’s given to idle speculation.

Anyone who knows anything about the Swedish market will recognise the massive drawcard a 119g/km emissions SportCombi will provide for Saab. Sales have been up already on the strength of the Sport Sedan offering this much power with such little emissions. To have to configuration available in the Swede’s favoured body style, the SportCombi, is going to be a huge bonus.


It’s nice to see Pär make use of an article penned by our newest contributor, Red J, as part of his column.

Great stuff, and I imagine Red J might feel quite happy about that. As well he should 🙂

Thanks to Tobias for the tip!

Friday Snippets – CRS edition

It’s a Charles River Saab -ish edition of snippets tonight, though it’s not intentional.


First of all, Pierre’s set an unofficial goal for Saab dealers in the US and I think it’s a pretty good one, actually – conduct at least 100,000 test drives (amongst the dealer body) in 2011.

That’s 1.5 road tests per dealer, per day, which should definitely be achievable. I’d love to see them tally these up.


Seth, one of the service guys from Charles River Saab, is selling his Saab 99 on Ebay.

——, sellers of fine Saab scale models, have a fantastic new Saab 900 model in stock. 900 models are the one scale model I’ve never seen much of, so this one is a very attractive item to me. An order will be placed.

They have a new red convertible which looks the goods, too.


Speaking of convertibles…..

We’re featuring Saab’s four-seasons four-seater drop top all this month with Winter Convertibles in focus.

It’s great timing, then, that motoring website Pistonheads has an article celebrating the development of the Saab Convertible.

I’m going to reproduce a special release from Saab on the Convertible shortly, which will give their own take on the car’s background.


Road tests……

City AM drives the Saab 9-5:

It’s a lot of car for the money whichever way you look at it and a breath of (Nordic) fresh air if you like to be different.

Autocar, one of the British mags that didn’t like it’s first drive in the TiD, drives the Saab 9-5 TTiD Aero:

This new engine is much more responsive than Saab’s regular, single-turbo 2.0-litre diesel. Performance below 2500rpm is much less lethargic than it was in our road test car, and engine refinement below 3000rpm is better too. The 9-5 hardly feels fast, even in this guise, due to those tall gear ratios – but at least this one’s quieter and easier to drive at normal crank speeds…..

….This new version of the 9-5 proves that, if you dress it with the right options and go for the latest diesel engine, you can make this Saab meet most class standards.

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